Stockholm multi-hyphenate artist COBRAH returned in full force with pulsating new single ‘DIP N DRIP’, a dark and propulsive cyberpunk reflection on the age of technology.
Drenched in metallic textures, its industrial nature and futuristic bounce are met with COBRAH’s rapid-fire vocals as title of the song repeatedly rolls off her tongue. But the magic of ‘DIP N DRIP’ is that all is not what it first appears, “it’s not actually sexual at all,” says COBRAH. “It’s more about how the struggle is real, how much of a fight it is to do all of this by myself.”
When COBRAH dropped single ‘IDFKA’ in 2019, it was met with rave reviews; paired with a Swedish Grammi-nominated video that lent a striking visual language to the song’s lyrical struggle for self-acceptance, it marked the arrival of a vivid new voice on the Swedish music scene. When she moved to Stockholm, the producer, singer, songwriter and visual artist immersed herself in the city’s queer and fetish scenes, a crucial breeding ground for the songs that would go on to form her thrillingly subversive and breathtakingly fresh debut EP, ICON, released via her own GAGBALL imprint. The five-track release was a deeply personal thirteen-minute, club-ready tour-de-force, celebrated by taste-makers, radio DJs and peers such as Charli XCX, who joined her onstage when she performed in the Swedish capital in 2019.
With ‘DIP N DRIP’, COBRAH is on a new path of self-confidence and is ready to dominate.
An exclusive interview with COBRAH x 33 magazine
How do you manage the creative process exactly as it’s really challenging in music industry nowadays?
I try to think that it’s all gonna work out. Being in the studio makes me forget those challenges for a moment. I used to think that it was okay to stop working or take a break because of the pandemic but I was wrong, it just made me feel worse. Nowadays I don’t like to focus on the extra challenges that we all face, I just wanna focus on doing my best and the joy of being creative. Although I of course have had moments where it all feels so scary and it’s hard to get out of bed it does not help to indulge in those emotions.
What is the most challenging issue in promoting your music?
The biggest issues are funding and gatekeeping for sure. Affording photo shoots and marketing agencies etc is expensive and in these times it’s really hard to save up a budget. Also a lot of marketing is knowing the right people at streaming platforms, TV and radio which is hard when you’re indie. Those people like to be difficult to contact.
What’s the main impact of social media for an artist?
It’s all about connecting, especially in these times it’s the only time I get a chance to talk to my fans or other artists/creatives. It’s also a great platform to be inspired and discover other peoples art not to forget it’s a place to raise awareness around politics and how f*cked things are.
What is the biggest challenge regarding the music industry during the pandemic situation?
Not doing shows has impacted my life to the core. It was the best way to connect with both fans and the industry, it was also the thing that made it possible for me to support myself doing music.
What would you change in a toxic system in order to help more independent artists / musicians?
I don’t like all the secrets, it feels like the foundation of the music business is built on secrets sometimes. The labels have eachothers backs and we as artists are encouraged to not tell other artists about the deals we make etc. I want artists to know their rights because too many have gotten into bad deals because nobody told them what they deserve or what’s a good deal. I want to be a part of an artist community that looks out for each other rather than compete with each other.
What is the message you want to express and who is your audience?
I just want people to be their authentic self and allow them to experiment with what that is. It might seem a little silly but that was always a big struggle for me, to feel free to express what I like without feeling ashamed or fearing to be left out.
Through my music I really feel free to push myself and show parts of me that used to make me feel really odd and different. And I think many of my fans relate to that, the joy in indulging yourself in your interests with confidence. In the end our likes and dislikes no matter if it’s gender, sexual orientation, aesthetic or food, it makes up who we are and being comfortable in who you are is the best feeling ever.
What do you think about the opportunity of playing music on various online platforms nowadays?
I both love and hate it, it’s the closest thing right now to meet people in all different parts of the world and be apart of a music scene together but with that said most of the parties are free which is great but you as an artist very rarely get paid for the performance and that means a lot of free work in a time where it’s already very hard to support yourself as an artist.
Imagine that you must write a letter to your FUTURE SELF. What would you write?
I’m so proud of you babe.