Haich Ber Na is taking a new approach to his sound on his sophomore E.P Everywhere’s Home. On this new project, the London based artist plays with darker undertones to create a sound that feels different from his previous work. “I wrote the music last winter, so naturally I guess it has a darker feel. The harsher, more distorted sounds we’re something I really wanted to highlight in ‘Everywhere’s Home’” he explains. “The first EP ‘Unbalanced‘ felt light and watery but still warm, with Everywhere’s Home I wanted it to have colder more frustrating moments.”
Those ‘cold and frustrating’ moments are translated through heavy synths and sound distortions that weave themselves around Ber Na’s voice. Musically, the EP pulls from elements of hip-hop, grime, dancehall and electronica to create the astro-like sonic experience. Those elements push the EP sonically forward while still keeping Ber Na tied to his original musical roots. “I didn’t plan for that vibe to come out, but it was really fun” he laughs.“I guess [i was just] just messing around, my brain was telling me to re-make the drums from Capelton’s “Good So” and it ended up like that. Hip-hop, grime and dancehall will always be my first love.”
Those darker beat set themselves up against lyrics that place Haich in a much different place than he was on his last project. On a song like ‘Black Box’, Haich plays with regret and frustration, as he murmurs ‘I keep on fucking up/save me’ over the cloudy beat. Throughout the project, memory, desperation and longing show up as key themes. “I guess those topics were on my mind at the time. There’s not much premeditated thought behind what I create; don’t really write lyrics or plan ahead. Usually I just get to the keys and record what I’m feeling. Let the subconscious do the work and the song writes itself.”
Connecting the subconscious and the song means that the project sounds a lot like snippets from a very busy brain. Inspiration from his personal life, old-school German cinema and sustainable/hippie-modernist architecture (see Haus-Rucker-co and Jose De Prada Poole) all played a role in inspiring the finished product. In the accompanying visuals, Haich paints an intricate visual portrait of each of the songs. Watching it feels like moving through an alternative funhouse or what he calls a ‘fantasy narrative’. At one point, the room is a pink toyhouse with a doll-Haich singing from his bed. At another point, we watch him clean and care to what looks like a dormant space-ship. Throughout the visual experience, we’re watching as Haich taps into different parts of his own mind.
On an EP that feels rooted both in space and in the city, Haich finds himself moving through time and emotion in a way that feels both everywhere and nowhere in particular. When I ask Haich why he named the EP Everywhere’s Home, he taps into that exact sentiment. “There’s multiple reasons I guess, a lot to do with race, background, interests etc” he says. “But the overarching message is; you don’t have to feel like you don’t “fit in” anywhere – you don’t have to fit in, you can make everywhere home.