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May/June 2022

by Stephanie Chen

Fresh Talent: Jeivenchy

by Stephanie Chen

Fresh Talent: Jeivenchy

Having released his first EP, ‘Seenzoned’ in 2021, electronic pop artist Jeivenchy has recently released ‘Fatal Attraction’, a new album he describes as a soundtrack to the events that transpired in his life over the past three years.

Angry, sassy, and melodramatic music allows Jeivenchy to express his anger and disappointment safely. The Te Whanganui-aTara-based Filipino singer-songwriter hopes that people will find themselves empowered to rage, and finally get themselves out of a toxic situation.

“I feel like I’m just surviving, not living. I’m working nine-to-five, Monday to Friday at a toxic job. This album is a dramatisation of my struggle to find happiness in the workplace. I believe that sometimes you need to rage to be able to get over your grief or your struggle.”

Alongside singing and songwriting, Jeivenchy (Jeiel Ian Veloria) is a designer. Not to be confused with Givenchy (as his Facebook page notes), Jeivenchy was a nickname given to him by one of his classmates back at university, where he studied spatial design.

“I am a fanboy of Givenchy. At the time I was designing a high-end retail store. My classmate was like, ‘Why don’t you name it Jeivenchy, just like about yourself?’ The name just stuck and I started using it as a stage name! For me, fashion and music come together. Music is a form of expression and so is fashion, and the way we deliver each of them is intertwined with who we are, what we believe in.”

Produced by fellow Wellington electronic pop artist Hybrid Rose, the album traverses all manner of musical terrain, tempos and attitude, the occasional use of Filipino enhancing his naturally catchy vocals.

“When I’m writing a body of work, I can feel the vibe that I want, and the aesthetic that I could use to associate with that. It depends what vibe I’m trying to give off. With ‘Fatal Attraction’, it’s quite chaotic. Sometimes I’m in the shower, and I can hear a melody, and I will fill it out with lyrics. And then I have my hook. I always start with the hook.”

Sandwiched between catchy dance singles like No Money, Mario Kart and the breathy Baggage Drop, Rain is one song Jeivenchy says he would never be able to write again, and wouldn’t want to.

Rain is about me processing grief with the loss of my aunt who was tragically lost to cancer, abruptly in the middle of Covid. The song initially was just my disbelief of her being gone and it eventually became my source of comfort. She holds a space in our hearts, in our minds of those that love her.”

Having grown up in the Philippines his writing is influenced by some major American artists because of the heavy American influence.

“I listened to a lot of Lady Gaga. I always go to Born This Way. I’m part of the LGBTQ community, so that song resonates for me in everything I do.

“Lana del Rey really inspires my writing. I relate to ‘happiness as a butterfly’. Not to glamourise it, but there’s a beauty in embracing the sadness. Right now, with this album, my music was the expression of rage. But for the future, I am still thinking of what I have to say next.”