It’s not Thursday, but we have a young throwback for you.
Once upon the Word N Sound stage, came a performer by the name of Neil Atlantis. Rapper, producer, director, poet, novelist, painter … I think we can just call him an artist, ne?
Neil Louw, also known as Neil Atlantis, and formerly known as Blindfold, is a Joburger based in the Eastrand.
“Blindfold was my performance moniker. I left it behind, I outgrew it. Blindfold was a metaphor for inner vision. Neil Atlantis is closer to where my inclinations lie, I think; the mysterious and powerful and wonderful and hidden; the charmingly and unfathomable”, he explains.
Since we last saw him, Neil has been making live music, and he spoke to us about his latest single, Die Walkure. The title itself is a young throwback to German composer Richard Wagner’s opera.
“Die Walkure is a piece by Wagner. It refers to those who decides who will live and who will die in times of war. Die Walkure are usually women, from what I understand. So in the context of the song, they are showing who has survived. I chose not to Anglicize the tittle to pay homage, so to speak, to the original work”, Neil explained.
In March this year Neil dropped the video for his latest offering, which he also happened to direct.
“It is obviously an art video. I wanted to stick to the concept of the song. The two women in the video are Die Walkure. I arrived at on a concept that would not be linear in the classic sense, but would strike the viewer’s subconscious to create an eerie but familiar tone with them. Familiar in that, it hints to their dark side. Fire and still objects had what I needed to convey the message that I wanted to convey: eerie and enticing. This is my first film and I wanted not to embarrass myself. I’m an indie artist and you know what that means. So I tried my best to make it viewable and a somewhat entertaining video, yet not sparing the conceptual nature of the work”, Neil said.
Q: Looking back at your first album, what do you wish you had known?
That not to have a swear-word other that ‘shit’ on a rap album would be unattractive and too dense.
Neil says he knew from very young that he was a creative, having taken a liking to drawing. A brief scroll through his Facebook page reveals a beautiful collection of some of his drawings, perfectly captioned “I love you with my pen”.
Q: When did you decide you wanted to take music seriously?
When I saw Talib Kweli live at Park Station at Black August, which is when I was making ‘Magic In My Mouth.’ Until then it was sport for me, an exercise in evolving myself.
Q: When did you start taking your poetry seriously?
It just happened. I heard poets on Y-fm and felt embarrassed at what they were doing. So I penned a poem and maneuvered my way on to the show.
Q: What is the true meaning of words?
Q: How do you match words and sounds?
The music creates a feeling and if I’m equipped enough, the words come, like water tap charmed by music.
Neil hopes to do more live music, tour and making more videos in the future.