It’s been a while since we’ve heard any new material from Danish electro-pop artist Karen Marie Ørsted aka MØ however, following the release of her debut album No Mythologies To Follow back in early 2014, she’s suddenly made in appearance in both the UK and international charts with Lean On – a collaboration between herself and Major Lazer. Recently performing at Coachella and with a series of festivals lined up for the summer we’re certain to see her music being brought to the masses.
MØ’s sound first came to my attention at the end of 2013 after the release of her debut EP Bikini Daze which included a variety of original songs like the slower lament of Never Wanna Know and also saw her first collaboration with American DJ Diplo who helped to produce the euphoric XXX88. The EP also included a cover of a Spice Girls classic, Say You’ll Be There. In numerous interviews and articles MØ states that her passion from music stems directly from the massive influence the Spice Girls had on a teenage girl growing up in the 90s. They’re her ‘reason for doing music’ and the messages of female empowerment they embodied are now modernised and encapsulated through tracks like Walk This Way, an anthem about not conforming to stereotypes and expectations. This is something MØ certainly symbolises saying ‘all my life I’ve stepped to the rhythm of the drums inside my head’ however her now unconventional and almost futuristic image and sound say an outright ‘fuck you’ to this. A reminder of this is the plait she wears directly in the middle of her head and, whether you find it fashionable or not, it’s certainly iconic.
After this the release of her debut album couldn’t come soon enough and, once it did, it proved to be a breath of life into a previously stagnant industry. The album hears anthemic melodies and lyrics being brought together with resoundingly emphatic electronic rhythms with the album’s debut track Don’t Wanna Dance being received with great critical acclaim seeing it shared on iTunes and Vevo’s ‘Ones To Watch’ lists before being dubbed ‘Zane Lowe’s Hottest Record’. As most artists do, MØ then took the album on tour and visited mostly every country you could think of performing renditions of Pilgrim for Vogue and other sites whilst continuing to tour the world. She’s performed at most venues and festivals you can name from Glastonbury to some small Danish bar and clearly MØ has a lot of energy to be able to do this so, if you’re lucky enough to be at one of her gigs, you can expect it in abundance with extravagant dancing and occasional crowd surfing.
Bringing us into 2015 with the pensive New Years Eve, we were given a chance to reflect upon the past year and maybe MØ wanted this with the track being a way of looking back on how she’s developed as an artist. A string of significant collaborations and remixes with artists like Jungle, numerous awards and the promise of new music in the near future definitely makes MØ an artist to look out for (if you’re not a fan already).
Words by William Castile