After making her debut into the world of dark, deconstructed club music on Infinite Machine in late 2017, Ani Klang is releasing her latest hard-hitting, genre-blending EP on Russian label Hyperboloid Records to round out a busy year of releases in 2020.
‘BURN THE EMPIRE’ is a powerful statement piece seeking to disprove the pervasive belief that womxn and queer people are primarily working and creating music to “empower others.”
After growing frustrated with commentators deeming every bold piece of womxn-made art as an “outspoken feminist act” and forcing political causes on female/non-binary compositions when none are intended, Klang has challenged this trend and created a piece of work that is emphatically not an “empowering anthem for womxn everywhere.”
Klang believes the notion of empowerment through music – especially between womxn in the music industry – has begun to feel forced and inauthentic, not to mention largely ineffective and burdensome. What’s the most effective way to enable other womxn in 2020? BURN THE EMPIRE of bogus, commodified empowerment.
She began grappling with this idea several years ago when she felt pressured by the underground club community to be “outspoken” to have her music heard. In a 2018 Instagram post, she explained her frustrations as follows:
“I feel like being ‘outspoken’ is almost a prerequisite for being a successful woman at anything these days. It’s not enough to just be an artist who happens to be female – you have to empower women somehow and put your political opinions at the forefront of your art to be considered ‘relevant’. To be completely honest, I find it frustrating as hell. […] I want women to feel empowered but there are so many other creative ways to do this than just talking about feminism. We should be allowed to just BE artists who make records about death, masturbation, chocolate cake, or whatever the hell we want! For a long time, I thought this EP I’m working on will have to be some sort of “voice for women on the dance floor” so I can get noticed and respected as a producer, but I don’t think this is the right strategy. If we keep recycling the same points to the same people who are already on our side, nothing will change. So in this record, I’m not going to be tackling issues of feminism, I’m not going to try to empower anyone, I’m not going to use it as a vehicle to show everyone that ‘women can produce too.’ That’s not why I make music. […] There are douchebags everywhere, but I refuse to dedicate my music to extinguishing their stupidity. And to me, this is the most empowering thing I can do.”
Armed with frustration, pain, and a little irony, Klang has built her own empire on the outskirts of genre, and all who are open are invited. She is releasing this record with hopes to begin dismantling the notion that womxn’s music is only meant to serve as a political weapon to fight misogyny. There must be something more meaningful womxn have to say to each other besides ‘you can do it too.’
‘BURN THE EMPIRE’ journeys from 145-160 BPM and showcases punchy, fluttery, footwork-inspired kick patterns, layers of heavily manipulated industrial textures and ironically political self-recorded samples (i.e. feminist podcasts, orgasms, and ex-girlfriends crying and singing) bound together by a rave-friendly mentality. Featuring scorching remixes by formidable artists like A.Fruit, Daniel Ruane, and Pixelord, ‘BURN THE EMPIRE’ is an intense sonic excursion through the mind and body of a female artist, eager to set the underground club scene on fire.
With match in hand, Ani Klang urges listeners to fully understand the following before organizing a livid mob armed with extinguishers on her front lawn:
“I am not intending to belittle or invalidate any collective or artist whose primary premise and passion is to empower others. Rather, I am encouraging commentators and listeners to understand and appreciate our unique concepts and technological capabilities before lazily assuming our artistic motivations.
It’s time we Burn the Empire of exhausted empowerment and construct our own domain, fortified by authenticity, legitimacy and resiliency. We’re are not examples, we are exasperated, and we’re gonna burn shit.”
* ‘womxn’ inclusively refers to any female-bodied or non-binary individual, queer or an otherwise unique human who deviates from standard cisgender identities.
Listen to Burn the Empire: