is an avant-pop musician and artist who mirrors the weirdness of human behaviour in music.
Aren’t we thinking about ourselves a lot? On a small scale, we all are the main characters of our own little shows. On a bigger one we act like we are the main character in this world. Eccentric and literate songstress LIJO addresses this and its consequences, but then decorates it with a sense of lightheartedness and danceability, flowing melodies and feverish sounds. Because as she puts it, all we can and should do is add beauty to a world that needs it. Her non-conformism and awareness shimmer through her literate songwriting, strong visuals and her fair and sustainable merch line 'Awfully Quiet' which supports girl education through the Malala Foundation.
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NEWS & PRESS
LIJO and the hypnotic, surreal drama of Spell - American Pancake(USA)
Dutch avant-pop singer LIJO refuses to settle for less on her new single Future Memory - Here Comes The Flood (NL)
A glasshouse is a place where things cannot escape the see-through walls, even if they grow and grow until they are pushed against the glass. I wrote Glasshouse City with this image in my mind: a scalding city of individual, confined humans that cannot get to each other, even if they can see one another.
Listen to Glasshouse City here!
ABOUT AWFULLY QUIET
This store, called Awfully Quiet, is more of a project than an online webshop. I have chosen this name because it represents raising voices and breaking the silence through acts of beauty. As an artist I have always felt that adding beauty to the world, however modest, is an essential part of existence and the reason artists of any sort are crucial to society, together with providing a mirror reflecting events throughout history.
Recently though, while the whole world is going through a series of hugely impacting changes and is facing the biggest challenge of our time, a feeling starting creeping up on me: that playing my part in this ideology as a writing and performing musician alone wasn’t enough anymore. I needed more depth.
One day in lockdown I spoke to a dear friend of mine on the phone, and in our conversation about the current situation the fashion industry came up. Both being a fan of thrifting and recycling clothes, we still asked ourselves: what else can we do? That same afternoon I started researching online and found a website called Good On You, that rates brands based on ethology, sustainability and care for animals. It was through this site that I accidentally stumbled upon a company called Teemill.
Teemill is awesome. It lets you design and print fully sustainable, fair trade and vegan items of clothing, which you can return for recycling when you’ve worn it out. It’s printed on demand, meaning no bulk, and sent to you in a plastic free wrap. It allows you to build your own store. I was hooked.
I never intended to start a clothing company, but after discovering this possibility some things starting to come together. In the following weeks I started designing my own prints, drawing from LIJO lyrics and my photography project Owners Of Lonely Hearts. Combining the message that my songs aim to convey with raising awareness for sustainable clothing seemed to me the depth I was looking for: after all, the climate crisis is awfully important and needs as much attention as it can get.
And then there’s education. Creating awareness is one thing, but making a fundamental change in the ideology of the world starts with everybody having access to quality education. In order to be able to change the world, one has to be able to understand it and to grow towards better opportunities, dreams and aspirations. After looking into what would turn out to be Awfully Quiet, I decided to donate all profit from this project to a foundation fighting for the right of education, and what better fund to pick than the Malala Foundation.
Just a couple of months later, here we are: a series of organic, sustainable, fair trade and vegan-friendly printed tees, supporting my views as an artist as well as the mission of worldwide accessible education.
I’m very happy to be able to share this with you.