Hello, dearest readers! As some of you may know, I often make art. Sometimes, though, I’ll completely stop making art and just toss it all away for a bit to kind of go floating around other artists, checking out what they’ve got going on so I can say, “Oh! Hm… wow, that’s really nice, they should keep doing that!”
It’s the best way to meet people and stay inspired. Usually, they have no idea of what I’m doing, though, because I’ll be floating really high up, hiding amid the cobwebs in the corners of their ceilings. Every once in awhile, however, I’ll feel compelled to gently lower myself using a complex rope and pulley system, which enables me to have a nice chat with them about the art they are creating and feel very near weightless.
I recently flew to New York City to have one such chat with UK-based artist Esther Greenwood, who composes music under the name Leaked Period, among other aliases. It was fun and fascinating, relaxed, entertaining, and really a whole slew of positive adjectives. We’ll call it an interview, since that’s a lot easier than calling it “two people throwing words back and forth at each other for several minutes” in a lavish New York apartment.
I hope you will enjoy!
Alex Spalding: So, how does menstrual blood cycle into your creative musical arts? 🙂
Leaked Period: Hmmm. well, I’m ill prepared for woman hood so tend to bleed everywhere. Also, I just generally like doing my make up with my period blood. All these things are seen as massive taboo, and my music is pretty out there as well for most people, so the name fit the music. And, another main reason was I was writing a lot of my favourite songs while menstruating. Not because of the “creative moon energy”, but because I was locked in the house in absolute agony on those days so was making use of my indoor time. With the pain, I don’t know how I actually manage, though.
Alex Spalding: That’s actually really cool! I wanted to ask you, also, what some of your influences are, musical or otherwise, as far as the sounds you make.
Leaked Period: I’m not sure if I have any musical influences, but I must do (I don’t think I compare to any of the musicians that I adore, though), but the bands and musicians I love are: Babes In Toyland, Lolita Storm, Nirvana, Warsaw Village Band, Brooke Candy, Gvcci Hvcci, PJ Harvey, Jack Off Jill, JB Nelson, Bjork, NIN. I basically love trashy music. Grunge, sleaze and folk music. I like drones, and my first recording of my early teens was of… a thunderstorm (how obvious!!!). Things that generally influence me are anger. I often make music just for the purpose of zoning out and not thinking for a bit (can’t you tell!!!!) . I suppose I would have more influences if I were able to better emulate these styles, but I’d need a drum machine to do that, and I am technologically backwards so getting the right tech to make what I really want to make hasn’t happened, as I am clueless.
Alex Spalding: Man man man… I’ve been really liking your sound, though! Trash culture is great! Ok… another question… have you ever played live? If not, how do you think the perfect Leaked Period performance would go?
Leaked Period: I’ve never played my solo music live. I cannot even imagine how I could do this live except either with using technology like a loop pedal or what I would actually end up doing is like a popstar and play the backing track of everything and just sing or play one line from it. I would have a mannequin as lead singer to be cliched and I’d hide behind it perhaps pretending to be male so it was more appreciated. But, in an ideal world, I actually want cuties at the front blowing bubbles like a human bubble machine and glitter and flamboyance. I would want to dress up ridiculously glamorous but would need a good music show to be able to do that. I would want to drag up as uber femme. If I get beats, shows might be more of a possibility.
Alex Spalding: OMG, I can imagine already all of this…
… oh, you have a self-parody project as well, I never hear of artists self-parodying themselves, what inspired this?
Leaked Period: I always take the piss out of myself, and the name just fitted. Grouxsome Catface was the original, and then I’m quite self deprecating and thought I may as well be Grouxsome Twatface because my music is probably nobby, it rhymes and I’m no doubt a twat, too. Oh, and I had found an apple mac in a bin, this dick head house music producer who is really rich and shit had thrown it away, so it was my first time recording with a computer and everything was coming out with his spirit of arsehole in it somehow. I couldn’t get my vibe into this machine, so I became this nob Grouxsome Twatface. Then it became really useful because I’m quite critical of my music, and there were some songs I wanted to put out there because I liked bits of them, but they were majority shit or embarrassing, so I pretended it was a joke so I could put them out with less shame. Which is again where Leaked Period sprung from, just me thinking, well, I will put out any song I make under this name and try not to care if I think they are crap. Which I am right to do, as some people really like the songs I was most embarrassed by.
Alex Spalding: Thank you so much for all of your nice answers so far to questions! I’m going to come up with more, but first… if you’d like to have a seat on the couch, we’re going into the: Rapid-Fire 20 Questions to Determine Your Psychological Personality Profile! I will calculate your personality based on your answers, though it may end up jamming the psyche calculating robots here and cause a massive explosion or rip in the space-time continuum, but if so, we’ll just fix that later, sweep it under a rug or something.
Leaked Period: Omg rapid fire rapid fire!! Yeehaaaaa!!!
Alex Spalding: Question one, What color of wall is best to gaze at for several hours?
Leaked Period: That 70s dirty green and orange geometric floral colour wallpaper. Wait, that’s not a colour, it’s a kind of wall. Ok, deep red.
Alex Spalding: What is the most inspiring food to eat?
Leaked Period: The most inspiring food right this second I have to say is totally out of character for me, but I made a salad the other day, and juiced some fruit and veg, and it made me feel so happy and middle class (even though I prepared it in a damp scary bassment). I hate the idea of salad and can’t bring myself to make it normally, but I feel so good having salad with everything, I am genuinely actually very inspired by it at the moment.
Alex Spalding: If you could live on any planet, which one would you conquer and rule with an iron fist or soft glove, if need be?
Leaked Period: Oh god. Planets. They’re far away. Er. Earth? Or, one with no spiders.
Alex Spalding: Pink Flamingos, Desperate Living, or Female Trouble?
Leaked Period: Definitely Desperate Living, followed hot on it’s heels by oh god wait I love them all!
Alex Spalding: If you were magic, not that you aren’t, what would be your magical power and how would you use this power?
Leaked Period: Thanks for the “not that you aren’t”. 🙂 I used to want to teleport really badly because I liked visiting other places and suffer from travel sickness. I think now I would settle with a more basic magic power, like, erm, well, I’m just going to go with teleportation still because I’m boring now and can’t even think, except for the magic powers of being consistently happy.
Alex Spalding: What was the title of the last book you read?
Leaked Period: I’ve been re-dipping into Lydia Lunch’s “Will Work For Drugs”, and I’m always reading plant reference books, but the last real book I read was embarrassingly a children’s book by Jacqueline Wilson, “Double Trouble” or something like that.
Alex Spalding: What was the last dream you remember having?
Leaked Period: I’ll get back to you tomorrow about dreams, I can’t remember them at night.
Alex Spalding: What is the meaning of life?
Leaked Period: The meaning of life is cats and bats and rats.
Alex Spalding: If you were a television, what would be the name of your channel?
Leaked Period: Channel your hatred.
Alex Spalding: What movie had the best zombies?
Leaked Period: You presume I watch zombie movies. But, I don’t! (I know I look like one but…)
Alex Spalding: What is the most ridiculous thing ever?
Leaked Period: That picture up above.
Alex Spalding: If you could change anything about society, what would you do to it?
Leaked Period: I would kill most people off, after forcing them to do a meticulous questionnaire and character test to see if they fit with my eco fascist and politeness and no ego fascist society.
Alex Spalding: What is the best sounding sound?
Leaked Period: The best sounding sound…. you know those big metal things hippies play with and they are like space ships? They are amazing.
Alex Spalding: Would you ever skydive?
Leaked Period: I would not even like to sky dive if my life depended on it. Would you, you bloody weirdo?
Alex Spalding: What is your spirit animal?
Leaked Period: My spirit animal is most likely a squirrel.
Alex Spalding: Cake?
Leaked Period: Have you got some cake for me? I really need some cake right now. Give me cake. Yes, cake. Chocolate and orange. Thanks. Tea as well, while you’re there.
Alex Spalding: What are you thinking about right now?
Leaked Period: Well, I’m wondering where my cake is, aren’t I? What do you expect after a question like that?
Alex Spalding: What is your favorite word?
Leaked Period: Chocolate cake.
Alex Spalding: If you were a necromancer, would you go full lich?
Leaked Period: I had to google what “lich” meant, and it means just like a hollow body, and so no, I don’t think I would, thanks. 🙂
Alex Spalding: Favorite style of hat?
Leaked Period: A big brimmed tall witches hat is the only hat for me.
Alex Spalding: Best answers ever!!! I’ve marked them all on this punchcard and I’m sliding it into the robot right now. I’m sure he’ll spit out an answer, soon. It might speed things along if I plugged it in, but I’m pretty sure it’s got batteries.
Leaked Period: Sorry if I have broken any of your robots, I hope they sweep up nicely. I hear that they fit behind the back of the sofa nicely, and if there’s any excess breakage, just put them in that cleaning closet we were in before.
Alex Spalding: If the robot explodes at any point, I think shoving it into the closet is probably a good idea, because we can’t let anyone find out. Like, I’ll get some pillows from the couch in the main room and kind of stick them in the corner where the robot was and put a wig on it. I really don’t foresee anyone discovering the truth.
Leaked Period: Aw, thanks!!!! Good luck, Robot!!!!! Didn’t realise they could be replaced with pillows, that is great!
Alex Spalding: Yeah, nobody will be able to tell the difference, it will be absolutely fine…
… the robot is definitely having some computational errors that could cause it to explode. I’m still hoping that won’t happen. Anyway, while we wait on that, I’m going to ask you if you ever collaborate with other artists or if you like to keep things solo?
Leaked Period: I’m shit at collaborating. Occasionally people ask me over the internet and I say yes and then never get round to it because it doesn’t exist. I wouldn’t rule collaborating out, though. In fact, you have just reminded me, I have a friend who is this amazing singer, really talented, she sings Hindi songs and her voice is out of this world. I would love to have her singing on my tracks, so I need to ask her soon!! Also, always up for having more talented vocalists than myself if I come across them and manage to do it. Or, somebody to make me drumbeats, seeing as I don’t have machinery to do that. Yup. So, I would, but I don’t. Oh, but I used to play violin in things that weren’t mine.
Alex Spalding: Also, I feel obliged to ask, how do you feel about the current state of things with like, the music industry? Do you like streaming, the free scene, or are you in the camp of people who wish things were like back in the day with label contracts and all that?
Leaked Period: The music industry: I have no idea really. On one hand, it’s nice to hear music for free and then decide if you want to buy it. On the other hand, I can’t afford all the music I want to listen to. Bigger rich artists I can’t be bothered paying for, smaller ones I would like to where possible, but also, I’m pretty poor so… I personally don’t mind people having my music for free, but would like feedback from them if they listen. I would like to be rich enough to afford somewhere to live and record where my piano and violin didn’t freeze or go mouldy, but I realise that I will have to fund that by other means apart from music. It’s not like my music will ever be popular anyway, so that doesn’t really concern me on a practical level.
Alex Spalding: And, what would be your ultimate music achievement be, or what are your greatest goals/dreams with the directions you’re going with your music?
Leaked Period: My ultimate music achievement…. hmmm. Doing gigs and having people come to them would be nice, but fairly far fetched. My dreams and goals would be to be able to record and play music regularly and get rid of all the bullshit and impracticalities getting in the way. To live properly, so I can do this, and improve my skills, including figuring out Technology! I need to make more coherent music. Probably sentences, too. I wouldn’t mind having more than three fans either, but I suppose I’ve got to work for that!
Alex Spalding: Thank you so much for such an awesome interview!
In the end… I feel like the robot probably exploded before it had a chance to really tell us anything. I don’t know, because I kind of wandered off after the interview ended looking for cake and tea. I never did find the cake, but on the plus side, I learned so much! Leaked Period is an awesome up and coming artist producing amazing work that everyone needs to hear, and so I can only imagine what sort of cool things are in store for future! I also learned that zombies stink, salad concepts can be a pleasure after all, and pianos full of moldy spiders are a very real and frightening possibility if you’re not careful… so take heed!
Anyway, as is customary, I will leave you with links to this prolific artists’ works and encourage you to give it all an ear, because it’s great stuff and I’ve been enjoying listening to it. Bye, for now!