Ali Krausova | Designer
The recently released album Can’t Stop the Dawn by London’s rising singer-songwriter Eleni Drake yet again breaks the assumption that all the UK singers sound the same. Drake’s own sound is influenced by a mixture of genres and her voice remains one hard to be mistaken for anyone else’s. If still in doubt over Eleni’s uniqueness, you should see her play the Jimi Hendrix way: ‘I don’t find it hard playing upside down! When I was younger the only guitars available to me where right-handed, so I just flipped the chords and taught myself that way. I feel like there are pros and cons. I can hit notes that maybe I wouldn’t be able to if I played a left-handed, but equally sometimes I’m like, – f*ck should’ve just committed to left-handed. So now I have a left-handed too, but I much prefer my right-handed guitars.’ Drake tells me.
Can’t Stop the Dawn reflects on past and present experiences with the intention to self-heal: ‘I feel like this album was written for myself. I wasn’t really writing it for or about anyone other than myself (for the most part) which is what differentiates it from my other EPs.’ Focusing the album on Eleni’s own experience is perhaps what makes it more relatable to its listeners. The title track, Can’t Stop the Dawn, is my personal favourite as the line ‘I’m screaming that I know it all, but in the end, I know nothing quite at all’ ties my own experience together. Eleni likes Always Blue the best: ‘it was written for my most favourite human in this world. And the peace they bring me. It was pretty much the only “real love song” I’ve ever written so far, and I’m glad I dedicated it to them.’
‘You mention getting older quite a bit on this record, is that something that worries you for any particular reason?’
‘I actually have zero fears growing older surprisingly. I quite like moving on with my age and experiencing different things because I’m getting older. However, when I fixate on age it’s more so asking myself – am I supposed to be more at this age? Am I supposed to be doing more? Am I supposed to be doing better? And I guess that’s when comparing yourself to others comes in, which is absolutely one of the worst things you can do to yourself. I’m trying to not mind too much about other people around me and focus on what lies ahead for me.’
‘I tend to find your music reassuring on topics like these, like when you said that everything is temporary – not always a bad thing.’
‘Life is ever changing, and there will always be an amalgamation of emotions moving with it. One blooms for sadness or hardships and moves onto better paths from either lessons learned or tumultuous experiences. Though the album fixates on more sorrowful emotions, it is laced with hints of positivity that builds a metaphorical step ladder into rising up and to keep moving forward.’
If you’d like to see Eleni live, tickets are available for her performance at The Courtyard Theatre in London on the 13th of October. In the meantime, you can find her music on all major streaming sites and keep an eye out for her past projects as she re-works them.