London-based singer-songwriter Nilüfer Yanya is hard to pin down. She’s got a unique voice, climbing and powerful, and genre-wise, you could make the argument that she’s pop, R&B, or rock. Her music is radio-friendly, but with the teeth of the best kind of exciting indie. Yanya’s new song “Heavyweight Champion Of The Year” proves that the young artist is one to watch. You can hear her determination in the song — her vocals are staccato and impassioned. The lyrics see her pushing against the limits, tired but willing herself to continue.
Yanya said of the song, “It feels like quite a physical song, quite physically tired — and mentally, but knowing the desire is still there to continue. I imagine it sometimes in my head as drawing a line around me and the outside world — form of self protection and preservation.”
The visuals for “Heavyweight Champion Of The Year” are just as stunning as the song. Directed by ENERGYFORCE, who also helmed the videos for her singles “Thanks 4 Nothing” and “Baby Luv,” the video is awash in bright colors. Yanya is stuck in a beautiful but suffocating house, full of twinkling candlelight and lush couches, but everything is plastic-covered. Yanya plays guitar and sings directly at the camera, asking for release. It’s the kind of video you want to watch over and over again, both to revel in the beauty of the scenery and to puzzle out what all of it means.
You’ll be hearing a lot from Yanya soon. She’s touring Europe with Interpol this November, and is gearing up to support Sharon Van Etten in the US this spring. Check out the recently announced tour dates here, and watch the video for Nilüfer Yanya’s “Heavyweight Champion Of The Year” above.