Austrian born singer Tanja Frinta has travelled the world to work on her art. As the band leader in highly regarded underground dream pop outfit Lonely Drifter Karen she developed a penchant for wanderlust: emerging as a solo project in Sweden before moving to Barcelona, where she drafted in new members, on the way through France until settling in Brussels.
This impulsive approach to moving around has also transferred into her music: “My aim is to find the sweet spot between spontaneity, so not over-thinking and over-producing, which would be treating the song like an overbearing mother... letting in accidental randomness, because I don't think that calculation is a good thing”.
After the breakup of Lonely Drifter Karen, Tanja took some time out from writing. “It was a difficult period for me, since I have devoted my life to music since childhood,” she recalls. “I wasn't really sure where I was heading to and what I wanted to do.”
She found herself working on more music which arrived via excursions to Tokyo and Paris (whilst still being largely based out of Brussels) in the form of Lomboy’s excellent EP ‘Warped Caress’. Her dream-pop has since added a layer of opium fug; imagine an electronic lounge-music backed version of Gaspar Noé’s addiction epic ‘Enter The Void,’ perhaps.
Lomboy rose to fame pretty quickly last year with the washed-out sleeper-hit ‘Loverboy’ drawing from vaporwave and 80s nostalgia through its VCR powered visual and perfectly juxtaposed production. The video and song show a powerful female unafraid of risks, and Tanja is unafraid to travel a different route to her peers: “There's something that I would call music pollution, that is reinforced by social media of always having to be present in maximum quantity. I think it's awful.”
The rest of the EP explores exotica through it’s distinct dream-pop filter and Tanja’s casual, disinterested vocal style that creeps up, around, and eventually into you. The project itself is named after a purple fig from the Philippines - which is apparently delicious when served with salt. “My cousin is half-Philippine and came up with it. I like it because it's short, an exotic fruit and sounds like an English word, but isn’t.”
So what’s next for Lomboy? “We have some concerts and summer festivals coming up in Europe but there is some time to work on new music, I hope to be going back to Tokyo for some recording sessions with Japanese band Lamp, who also participated on the last EP.”
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WHAT: Exotic dream-pop through an opium fug
WHERE: Brussels, Paris and Tokyo
GET 3 SONGS: Loverboy, Alien Lady, Director's Paralysis
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Lomboy are playing their first London headline show as a full band at Dalston’s Archspace venue on May 10th.
Words: Nicolas Graves
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