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Mihra chats to Jen about their upcoming album ‘Girl and Her Symbols’ due out November 3rd.

Dream psych, synth pop, indoor plants. 

Started in 2014 Mihra is the solo project of Chevaunne Keleher (My Elephant Ride).

In late 2016 Mihra released their debut album ‘Hoping for Gold’.

The band have since been working on their follow up record ‘Girl and Her Symbols’. A concept album, each song details an individual dream from a month long period of keeping a Carl Jung inspired dream journal. With no exaggeration each song is a microscope into the unconscious mind ranging from mundane to spiritual.

‘Girl and Her Symbols’ is to be released on Wigwam Records on November 3rd. You can pre order it here. 

 

Hi Chev, thanks for taking some time to answer some questions.

Firstly, may I say you have one hell of a voice! From some that is more talented at journalism rather than singing I really envy your talent. Have you always wanted to be an artist? Any stories of when you were young, and you knew you wanted to be a singer or was it a gradual realisation?

Thanks Jen!! Yes there’s a little ‘what do you want to be when you grow up’ list from when I was 6 (grade 1) where I answered singer. The first song I ever wrote was about my dog Coco when I was 7. Completely ripped off Georgie Girl.

I must say whoever wrote your press release and the Facebook about age has the same sense of humour that I have. Eg Dream psych, synth pop, indoor plants and Trophy-winners on Everybody Gets a Trophy Day is really funny. Did someone in the band do this or Nathan? It made me laugh. I was addicted to Spyro the dragon in the 90s! Oli needs another job it seems.

Haha thanks! I thought our Fb info could use some zazz.
Love Spyro!! Stewart Copeland’s score is half of what made that game the absolute best. Love his playful use of polyrhythms, and he really knows how to create a mood.

You kept a Carl Jung inspired dream journal for a whole month and each member has a song based on the dreams. I find this an amazing concept!Was this a difficult process? Did all band members pitch in one each other’s song based on their dream?

All the songs are my dreams! And each song is a different dream from different nights. It was definitely fun to collect the dreams and I started remembering them almost every morning without fail. It really spiced up the songwriting process to explore different techniques to communicate the distinct mood and story of each dream, but find ways to tie them together.

Can you please take us through your song and explain about your dreams?

I ended up with quite a few dreams in the journal, and I picked ones that I felt had strong moods or characters, or that I found personal meanings in. I wanted to take the listener into that beautiful world where odd things dance, and see what different kinds of sense could be made. I can’t really say the dreams are ‘about’ one thing or another, but there are images of childhood, fear, unrequited love, racing the clock, flight, the God of creativity, Dr House, burning organs, oceans. Lots of things.

Interested about this ‘With no exaggeration each song is a microscope into the unconscious mind ranging from mundane to spiritual’ With writing these songs that are so personal and sharing them with the world have you found that you have some reservations in sharing now the album is done and dusted? Or do you find it cathartic?

I feel really happy to be sharing this packet of wizz fizz. I feel a bit silly about the song about being in a House episode but my family have already done the laughing at me so that’s fine.

Now it is the long wait for you until you release your album ‘Girl and Her Symbols’ are there some nerves and trepidation? Or are you feeling good about it?

We’ll be stoked to have the album out there. We put a lot of love into it. And stress. And coffee-flavoured madness.

I know when I create something I think of something that I could have done better at least 20 times after it has been published. Has this happened to you too?

Haha, I feel you. Yeah a few songwriting choices for sure, and there’s this one 4-second melody at the end of the last song I’d give anything to record in. There’s a saying I love though- ‘Art is never finished, simply abandoned.’ You’ve got to leave your art in the woods to find the gingerbread house at some point. And no-one will know about those secret things you want to change so that’s consoling in a way.

Why the name Mihra? Is there a story behind that?

We chose our own word with a nice mouth-feel – also like a warped mirror. And happy to be sharing letters with the Music Industry Human Rights Association.

Oh I like that! I also really like how your images are dreamy and psychedelic style to fit in with the theme of the album. Who was the genius behind that?

Thanks heaps, our lovely friend Ksenia Sedelnikova took them. I tried to make a kaleidoscope out of mirror cardboard to put around the camera and it really didn’t turn out well but the effect it did make was cool and unexpected. We ended up smashing up a children’s kaleidoscope for the album cover – literally had to get a clamp and saw it open to get to the mirrors inside – and those pictures have a much cleaner classic kaleidoscope look.

You had a small choir join you on singing on ‘Underwater’, how were they chosen? Or was it a case of Nepotism?  J

We asked our cool friends Helena, Nick, Gen and Hannah to come sing with us, who happen to be incredible singers as well! Lucky us! (They have projects that you should stalk and check out J )

How did your single release at The Toff go? Did the audience receive the new songs in a live setting well?

I believe we succeeded in the entertaining of the people yes! A fan fav was the nightmare song – a frantic track in 7/8 including Nathan’s atonal guitar solo, Tearnu ripping it up on the sequencer, trying to follow Oli’s whimsical odd time drum breaks, and some screaming.

Can you describe your new album in 5 words without using the same words as the press release? If that is too hard you can use those words.

Art rock moods / mercurial landscapes

Thanks for your time 🙂 I hope your release goes well. 

Thanks for having us! xX

Girl and her Symbols - Album Art.jpg

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