Indie Artist i was Eros Embraces Hyper-Pop As They Champion Their Genuine Self

A young creative based in Brisbane, the past 12 months has been a reflective period for i was Eros – both professionally and personally.

i was Eros

After a year that saw no new music, i was Eros recently dropped their newest single 'Strawberry Queen' that marks a switch in creative direction as they dive into the world of hyper-pop.

2021 also saw i was Eros embrace their journey coming out as non-binary, a courageous resolution to live their truest self.

"For years, everyone expected me to be one thing or another. They'd put me in a box and label me as they saw me.

"Only once I let go of those expectations did I begin to meet my most genuine self. "I feel really inspired by electronic and hyper-pop artists like CharliXCX, ElyOtto, Elio and Raine at the moment.

"I feel like I was always meant to make hyper-pop, like I've been edging closer with every song wondering what's missing."

It's been a minute since you released any new music with 2021 basically a fallow year for you artistically; was there a reason behind the lack of new material?
Last year was actually a very busy year for me outside of music. Along with working a non-music job, I also started studying again.

I've started studying design and have been giving creative directing a good look at, which has been really enriching. I've also taken the time to recreationally study bits of fashion and make-up to help further the visual work that accompanies my music.

Tell us about your newest single 'Pretty Peach Party'?
I started with just those words – pretty peach party – one night at a friend's house. It has a become a bit of a tradition for us to play Nintendo games together and I always played Princess Peach.

That specific night, those words had ensnared my head and I couldn't stop thinking about them. It just seemed so funny and lighthearted. The song then moulded into my experience with not living up to the expectations placed on me; but not wanting to either.

I didn't want to be this straight boy who has it all figured out. It just wasn't me. I wanted to have fun, make mistakes and be genuinely me; whether I was spiralling or having fun or sad, I wanted to be 110 per cent me the whole time.

This new song also highlights your move into electronic music and the world of hyper-pop; what motivated this change of direction?
At first, it was just a hyper-fixation as a listener.

I listen to music almost all the time to help with my ADHD; when I discovered hyper-pop it kinda went the same speed that my thoughts were going, so I formed an instant relationship with the genre.

I had always idolised artists like CharliXCX anyway, so it wasn't a big step. Then something clicked!

I often wonder what's missing with some of my music – something feels different to what I was visualising. It feels like hyper-pop was that thing. Like I was trying to make hyper-pop this whole time without knowing what it was.

It was the first time I was like 'yea, I'm a pop artist now I guess'.

The promo images for the new release are bright and popping. . . looks like you had a lot of fun; is it an important aspect of your creative persona to have visuals that match the energy of your music?
Visual art was always my first love, so I always give a lot of thought to the visual aesthetic of my music.

It's actually part of what inspired me to pursue design as well. Combining lyricism and audio with visual art creates such surreal and transcendent atmospheres, transporting a listener to this incredibly shared space with an artist. It's very intimate and I love creating that.

You also have a music video planned for 'Pretty Peach Party'; what's the latest news on that front?
I do indeed ;) At the moment it's in the editing phase, but I'm really looking forward to its release.

It follows the journey of our main protagonist, Peach, and their path in letting go and getting a bit crazy to find out who they really are. It's kind of like a coming of age story, but more fun and crazy.

Do you plan to release more new material in the coming months?
I have one more single planned, involving a different pink pop-culture character, for this year. Hopefully, if all fairs well, there will even be another towards the end of the year.

Creative influences; who/ what inspires your own artistic pathways?
Definitely CharliXCX and SOPHIE. They definitely ignited my love for hyper and future pop, pushing everything I thought I knew about music.

I'm also inspired by Lil Nas X, Doja Cat, Lorde, Kim Petras, Ashnikko and Halsey. I've recently been listening to ElyOtto, ELIO and daine. Those are the genres and audio aesthetics I've been drawing from a lot lately. Lots of pop with touches or rap and alternative.

Aside from music, do you pursue any other creative practices?
Yes! I'm always doing creative make-up and fashion looks. I've also been drawing since I was a teen, I like to sketch and use charcoal.

Every so often I paint – I'm not amazing at it but it's very expressive which I love. Creativity and artistry are what gets me out of bed, so I try and fill my life with them.

Your path to coming out as non-binary; how have the past 12 months been for you as you've embraced your truest self?
It has definitely had its struggles, but I've felt amazing; like everything has been adding up.

I no longer feel the weight of expectation or the burden of fitting the mould. I've come to accept my uniqueness and I treasure it. I express myself freely and I view myself as someone that other queer people could look up to if they're afraid of standing out.

Have there been any obstacles you've had to face during this time that have strengthened your resolve?
Yes. I've definitely experienced more bigotry than ever before, but I've also been given a lot of unconditional love from my queer family and we all support each other.

Often whenever I'm out I get horrible looks, I have people talk about me, point at me, threaten me, but I've learnt to grow a thick skin and be proud of who I am and what I've done. I look forward to a day when all queer people can feel safe in and out of home, and I'll keep doing my part to make that a reality.

As an indie artist, how much time do you dedicate to, set aside for your artistic pursuits?
Some weeks it's pretty spontaneous; creativity will hit me and I'll be doing studio work for days. Some days it'll just be on the train or on my break.

I'm not at a point where I schedule time every week to focus on my music, but I seek out creativity and let it take hold when I find it. When I do find it, I work and grind at it for hours, just refining every detail until it reflects exactly what I'm feeling.

I know a lot of people will tell you that you have to grind every second of the day to work on careers like this – for some that may work but for me that can take a lot of the love and passion out of it.

I'm always thinking about music, but I make sure when I'm working on it it's coming from a place of love for my craft. Not fulfilling a quota I've set for myself.

While COVID has made live performances very difficult to plan, is the stage part of the creative fabric of i was Eros?
I haven't done much stage work or live performances. I think I'm still waiting for my fan base to widen, but I would love to start training for the stage.

Once I feel I have the right fan base, I'll probably jump into some digital solutions for live performances, online performances and live streams. From there I might aim for the stage.

The last time we chatted (Dec 2020), you mentioned you operated two businesses alongside managing a cafe; still keeping a busy work schedule?
Yes, I am indeed. I'm supervising a new cafe, studying, making music and staying creative. Life has definitely chilled out more since then, but that's given me time to focus on my music more clearly.

Thanks for your time; anything else you'd like to add?
Thank you. Just that I'm incredibly grateful for the love 'Pretty Peach Party' has already received and that I'm looking forward to a wonderful and musical 2022.

This story originally appeared on our sister site, scenestr.


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