(Image Credit: Lisbet Dauterive)
Aeon Fux is a unique talent. She prefers the proclivities of the off- beat, with interests you wouldn’t think a young singer would have. She proudly asserts her love of all things reptilian and related to insects. Some might say she’s a “black weirdo,” a title I’m sure she would proudly flag. Her music is one that’s been on my radar for some time; “it grabs you, chews you up and spits you back out,” as the artist proclaims. Her sounds are eclectic, chalk-full of unexpected and delicious possibilities. A song might engulf you with pure tenderness, while others are solely vibe to music–tracks with catchy electro beats that you can dance along to. The college student and I had the opportunity to chat about all things music, as well as her unusual hobbies and interests–and I was happy to step inside Aeon’s peculiar world.
“I like the idea of songs that grab you, and kinda chew you up and spit you back out.”
Andrea: So thanks for chatting with us. I wanna first talk about your style because it’s most definitely unique. How would you describe your style?
Aeon Fux: Ohh boy! I’m kind of going for this sort of disco-future look [laughs]. I’ve always had a taste for a more futuristic styles but I like bringing the retro into that.
Andrea: I’ve seen your different looks where you rock your afro, then you also rock the braided look. What look(s) do you most enjoy sporting?
AF: I pick out my fro when I’m not wearing wigs or doing braids or something. I do like sporting braids. My aunt braids my hair and I love that I can braid my hair in whatever color I want– I like the versatility of it. It was also great in those initial months of growing out my hair, after I had shaved it all off last year.
Andrea: How was that experience–shaving your hair? The change can leave some women feeling very fragile while empowering others.
AF: After I did it, I kinda had this huge wave of regret, like, oh my gosh!-there’s nothing on my head but at the same time I was able to back it up with sometimes wearing wigs when I felt like it.
Andrea: As far as your moniker Aeon Fux. Where did that name derive from?
AF: That’s just directly from “Aeon Flux,” (the movie). That era of MTV where they were showing liquid television. Just kinda that nineties throwaway culture, of like a nice little cyber punk revival. And so I kinda liked the idea of having a name that’s kinda sexy.
Andrea: You don’t disclose your real name, which I totally get. Why did you choose a moniker as opposed to using your real name?
AF: I think I’m personally really into the idea of being another character. When I was growing up, I was really into cosplay and I was going by another name, Princess Neptune, when I first started making music. I’ve just always been into the idea of having a separate identity that I can kinda put on and take off.
Andrea: And you’re currently in college. Are you enjoying the college experience?
AF: My college experience has been interesting. I’m at a liberal arts college that’s pretty different from most mainstream schools. We don’t have a traditional grading system or anything but it’s been good for my education. I’ve had a few setbacks with trying to get my degree but I’m almost done so I’m excited about that.
Andrea: College is said to be the best time of your life. Do you feel like your making lifelong memories?
AF: If I’m honest, no. I’ve met some really cool people while in college but I think life will definitely get better after I graduate college. Here at school, in Washington, I’m kind of isolated. The school I go to is in like the middle of the woods. There’s really not a lot to do in my town.
Andrea: And that’s Olympia, Washington.
Andrea: How would you describe Washington?
AF: Washington is beautiful. It’s got one of the most beautiful natural landscapes in the country. It’s very quiet, some might say quaint. But I’ve lived here for pretty much my whole life, and I’m definitely ready for a change in scenery.
Andrea: Where do you see yourself after school? Somewhere more fast-paced?
AF: Yeah, at least for a little while. I’m planning to spend sometime in New York in the spring. I have family in Fort Greene.
Andrea: Ohh, nice. I was just there in August for the Afropunk Festival.
AF: Yeah, very cool. I hope to make it there next year.
Andrea: Weren’t you involved in Afropunk’s “Battle of the Bands?”
AF: Yes I was. I ended up at the #19 slot or something in the voting process.
Andrea: How was that experience and process?
AF: It was interesting. You know I’ve never been a part of an online voting process like that before, and I was actually really surprised by how far I made it. So yeah, it was a really cool experience.
“ I got a lot of inspiration from Polly Styrene from X-Ray Spex… just being able to see a woman of color in that punk scene was important”
Andrea: Let’s get into the music. When did you start making music?
AF: I first started making music that I was putting on the internet when I was like eighteen (now 22). I was still in community college. I wanted a platform to share my music so when I first started I was putting my music on MySpace. I was initially doing A cappella beats, doing more of an operatic, more Gothic type of music. After getting a lot of practice in, I became more comfortable making music and getting a wider range of influences. I transitioned to making more of what I make now. I started to really listen to myself, experimenting with weird sounds and such. I started to really listen to what’s there.
Andrea: Who are those people who influence you?
AF: I got a lot of inspiration from Polly Styrene from X-Ray Spex. I was watching a documentary on her some years ago and that was a pretty big influence on me just being able to see a woman of color in that punk scene was important, because it kind of paralleled my relationship to the metal community. I also take inspiration from Donna Summer and Nina Simone.
Andrea: You tend to have some interesting song titles, “Devil Summoner’s Dilemma,” “Too Far For Horses,” to name a few. I’m assuming it’s just a random, kinda how you feel in the moment type thing?
AF: I honestly just base them from what I know. When I first came to college it was for Natural History and Environmental Science. I use to have a huge taxidermy collection and I’m just into really weird stuff, so the titles are based on my personal experiences.
Andrea: Tell us more about those weird interests.
AF: I’m really into reptiles and I’m really into insects as well, I had a pet cockroach for a while, that was pretty fun. My old school had a pretty cool taxidermy bird exhibition there. Yeah, those kinds of things interest me.
Andrea: And the length of your songs. Songs like “Wet” (1:05) pull you in but it’s so short. Was that a conscious thing, making sort of snippets of tracks?
AF: I think for a few songs I have plans to make them into full length songs. Like “Reptilian,” I have a whole second verse written for it. But really, it was just the limitations of the computer I had at the time, it was like, a really shitty floor model that would restart every time I went to make something. I didn’t have a really solid way of saving my music, except for like drop box. When I was starting out, I was writing in the mark of three to four minute so I know it’s something I’m capable of but it’s not a priority for me. I like the idea of songs that grab you, kinda chew you up and spit you back out.
Andrea: Plans for an EP or an LP?
AF: I think so. I’ve been wanting to release an EP for quite a while but I’ve just been putting out singles. I think I might compile them and re-record a few if I went in the direction of an EP or LP.
Andrea: What’s next for you?
AF: I’m going to be doing a couple of live shows in New York. We’re looking to set something definitive for around March and May.
Thank you Aeon Fux!