Exposing the inner turmoil and conflict deep within the human soul, UK-based Arklay has a talent for keeping the horrors of life at bay. Influenced by artists like Paramore, Nirvana and The Smiths, the singer-songwriter merges pop-punk with grunge and a drop of emo. We speak with him about his latest EP Frankenstein’s Monster.
Why did you decide to become a musician?
I can’t really pinpoint the exact moment where I seriously considered this career choice for myself, it kind of feels like it’s always been my goal. I’d say the main reason why I continue to follow this dream is that I feel like I really have something to give to the world, in the form of my work. Music is my passion and I really believe in what I create, I can feel the potential for something new and unique that the musical landscape hasn’t quite seen yet. It would be a shame to waste that potential.
What can you tell us about your release Frankenstein’s Monster?
It was created mainly in the first half of last year, 2020. I held on to the songs for a long time and initially didn’t want to release them as at that point in time my skills and knowledge were far more improved and the newer music I was creating was far more polished and more unique. Funnily enough, I’m currently in that situation again as the music I have been creating in the past couple of weeks has been blowing my mind in comparison to the stuff I created at the start of this year.
Which is your favourite track from the EP and why that track?
‘Make Me Human’ by far! I love the production, the lyrics and just the general atmosphere of the song. It’s also a song I wrote at a pretty pivotable point in my life where I was in one of my most unloved, unwanted and darkest times. I guess it was rock bottom, to be honest. As they say though, once you hit rock bottom the only way is up. Listening to it reminds me of how far I have come since then.
If you could change anything about Frankenstein’s Monster, what would it be?
I’m not sure if I would change anything, to be honest. I would love it to sound like the stuff I’m creating at the moment, but I feel I have moved on from this EP now. I just want to keep looking forward, creating newer more impressive music as I go.
What do you hope people take from your music?
I hope they can relate to it and find some strength to battle their own struggles. A lot of my music comes from inner turmoil, I put it on the page and try and create beauty, art or just bops out of it, to be honest. I want people to see that. See that their struggles can be worth it with the right outlet or mindset. Some people go through life with more hardships than others, it can be hard to justify the pain you’ve been through. I want people to know that it’s worth it. It can make you a better person with the right mindset.
What was the writing and recording process like for this EP?
I was thinking about this the other day, to be honest. It was extremely hectic and strenuous, which is why I think it came out the way it did. I started recording the EP alone then found love with my current partner. I had not been intimate or in a relationship with anyone up to this point in my life. A month later I lost my best friend to suicide. I had known him since I was around 5 or 6 I think. This completely changed absolutely everything I had ever known.
My whole perspective on life was ripped apart and rearranged. Mixing and mastering this EP in the months after made me sloppy and I didn’t have the drive to really do anything with myself, to be honest. The whole writing and recording process happened over the course of all those events. Trust me when I say I don’t want to ever do that again.
How would you describe your music to a new listener?
I would describe it as emotionally provoked alternative synthpop that will make you want to dance and cry with the lights off – music created for the fatal condition known as “life”. Think of Paramore crossed with Haru Nemuri. I’m getting closer and closer to this vision with each song I make.
What do you think is the best way to discover new music?
Honestly either going to live shows of bands you like and watching the support OR go to your favourite artist’s band page on Spotify and look through the “fans also like” section. I have found some good music doing this, but it does take time as there is a lot of stuff out there.
Do you have any future plans for Arklay?
I have so many plans and I’m so excited. The EP is nothing compared to the stuff I have created this year, I’ve been working on both my musical personality and my human. They go hand in hand, to be honest. The closer I get to be the person I want to be, the closer my music does too.
Cannot stress how excited I am, you will not be disappointed if you join me on my journey, I have some really special music coming.