Ysan Roche Interview by Roisin Kelleher

On Ysan Roche’s website it says “Her music has spread all over the internet, becoming popular in the US, Europe and all around the world. Fans and critics say she is pinned (sic) to be the next pop sensation.” She also, apparently “…represents a new league of artists who write and produce their own music, design their own fashion and direct their own music videos. They are independent from Big Record Labels because they want to be genuine, real and authentically create themselves.” Louder Than War’s Roisin Kelleher is a fan & as such she sent a few questions in Ysan’s direction. See them & Ysan’s answers below.

Louder Than War: What inspires you?

Ysan Roche: To be honest? Porn and Horror Movies. Why? Because you see things that are kept out of the Mainstream (if you choose the right ones).

But I think actually the most inspiring is to meet and talk to new inspiring people, and be truly interested. Trying to figure out what motivates a person, looking behind the surface of a facade. And life itself by living it to its fullest. If we start to pay attention to life’s details, the overlooked beauty of our world, we can get inspiration through the most basic, banal things that cross our way daily like the pattern of the wooden table we keep our laptop on.

As a nice colour for the next performance dress for example.

Louder Than War: Who are your key influences?

I’ve always been fascinated by artists who were brave to be different and do their own thing. I literally loved artists that intimidated or scared others off.

When I was only 5 years old my older sister was an ABBA and Modern Talking Fan, so I joined her passion and was absolutely confident to become the future wife of Thomas Anders when I was older.

When 8/9 I listened a lot to Movie Soundtracks and usually, well of Horror Movies like
Nightmare on Elm Street or “The Ghostbusters.” Some of my favourite movies as a kid.
In my teens I loved the Shakespear Sisters and wanted to sound like Siobhan, later I got an obsession with Bjork and Manson when I found his 2nd album “Smells like Children” in a store.

I loved Madonna, David Bowie, Gwen Stefani, Lil Kim, Christina Aguilera and Peter Gabriel, but mostly because of their complete creations of themselves, not just the incredible music. That’s why I had to study their biographies.

Other bands I listened a lot to and that captured my mind and imagination were: Sade, Whitney Houston, Tom Jones, Whale, Tricky, Adema, Holy Cole, Diana Krall, Fiona Apple, Godhead, Enigma, The Prodigy, Timo Maas, Air, The Chemical Brothers, Edith Piaf, Lunatic Calm, Massive Attack, The Doors, Missy Elliott, The Chrystal Method, Portishead, Elvis Costello, Juliette and the Licks.

I have spent a lot of time in the German House Scene and felt very related to the sound of Sven Vaeth, Johannes Heil and the early Kanzleramt/Cocoon generation in Frankfurt.


Louder Than War: Do you find music or lyrics more important?

I think it’s a pity that we often don’t try hard enough to understand the lyrics about a song as usually strong lyrics can make a song sound better to you just as you emotionally relate more to it.

I have to say I only started to like Adele’s songs when I began to listen to the lyrics and finally I felt “Oh we have a lot in common” and today I can sing every single song of her album.

Louder Than War: What do you think makes a great song?

There are two ways to look at a song, the mainstream one and the musicians one.

As for mainstream I’d say a song should basically make people feel good and be professionally produced and of course mixed, as a bad mix can destroy the best  song. A good mainstream song energises you and gives you a more positive outlook on life.

As a musician I’d say it doesn’t always matter if the song is produced excellently or the singer is the most fantastic one, but I want to feel someone means what he sings about. I want to sense his soul shines through the song.If someone truly expresses himself you can’t stay untouched.

If an artist puts his entire heart into the lyrics or I can’t keep myself sit still when I listen to its beat and vibe, then I usually say it’s a great song.

Louder Than War: What are your plans for the year ahead?

To make this world go wild.

Louder Than War: Who would you like to be as successful as?

Dangerous question. What do you think? I’m a bit of a megalomaniac and as I do not like to compare myself to people who are on the market now, I’d probably say David Bowie.

Louder Than War: If you could have written any song, which would it be and why?

I love Diva Songs, and at the moment “Run to You” by Whitney Houston is my favorite song to practise, as it gives a woman the opportunity to use all her vocal range and abilities.

I’d be overwhelmingly happy to write and perform a song like this and it’s a huge challenge

Louder Than War:What would be your ideal superpower?

Filling every single person in this world with love and freedom through my performances.

I would also like to give people the opportunity to find REAL LOVE as I know it exists but it seems to have become so rare these days which I sometimes find sad.

Louder Than War: How important do you think image is to music?

If your image is authentic and expresses who you really are, in my opinion that is what finally makes a great artist. If he has the ability to truly be himself on stage (which some characters can only do while they perform) and is still wise enough to “cut the bullshit out”. That means always being aware he is a role model and influences people if he puts himself out there. And that’s basically why you should try to give people only the best version of yourself as you must be aware how much impact you might have on them. And many talented artists forget that it’s actually not about themselves and their small, vain egos, but it’s about the people they serve on stage and who pay and come to be inspired. And to feel free and better.

Louder Than War: If you could visit any time in history, when would it be and why?

Great question. I’d like to visit the 1930’s in Paris but as a man please. Then I would become friends with Anais Nin and Henry Miller and spend a year living their Bohemian lifestyle through all the beautiful bars and French clubs with the most gorgeous French girls. We would have incredible fun together.

If you’d like to find out more about Ysan Roche her website would be a good place to go – you can find it here. She is also of course on Facebook & Twitter.

All words by Roisin Kelleher. More of Roisin’s writing on Louder Than War can be found here.

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Music has always been a passion, obviously. My favourites at the moment are Bela Takes Chase, Ali Ingle, and Ninth Paradise, but these are only a bare few of the many great talents out there today. Today’s music scene has a tendency to be chastised, but I have full faith in a lot of flourishing artists emerging right now and my main purpose when writing is to share these with the world!



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