MØ: Today mainstream pop includes elements from all over the world

Looking back on 2017, Danish Singer MØ has had a chance to dig deeper into the artistry of music. She has been on the move for a long time and on November 26th she also stopped by Singapore to do her first ever show here. The singer is amazed how pop music today embraces so many different cultures.

She is one of the biggest artists on the Danish music scene right now and has with hits like “Final Song”, “Cold Water” and “Lean On” also made it big internationally. MØ debuted with her album “No Mythologies to Follow” in 2013 and since then her schedule has been full. Even though 2017 also has included lots of touring and traveling, it has been a year for new projects:

“I’ve started to come more in to my own creative world again after having been in a ‘” Lean On” bobble,’ for a long period. It was ‘The talk of the town’ and obviously you get sucked in to that which is great but this year it has been nice to go back to the roots and back to the artistry of music,” the singer said.

MØ just released the EP “When I was young” with 6 new songs. The songs are written over the last four years and to MØ the EP has been a necessary transition, moving in to her second studio album:

“It is about how I felt during that process of time. But also in terms of moving forward because now I have my second album almost ready and I felt like I had to put something out where I reflect on what has been going on. It is a very heart filled EP and the whole story is just built from a place that feels good.”


“Daydreaming is human thing”

The title “When I was young” reveals nostalgia – something that recurs in all the singer-songwriter’s songs, she explains.

“I think daydreaming and longing are emotions that are always in my songs in general. And the EP is again just really zoomed in on that feeling, so I think it’s just natural to my songwriting.”

As a kid, MØ, or Karen Marie Aagaard Ørsted Andersen, would walk around in her neighborhood on Funen, and daydream – longing for something more.

“At that time, I was just nine years old and so I didn’t really have anything to long for. But it’s that same emotion. It’s just daydreaming. It’s a very human thing – we all long for something and I think that emotion goes in to my process of writing and creating.”

Even though, the singer cannot put a finger on, what exactly that longing is about, she sees it as a positive thing – at least most of the time:

“It’s a super strong drive for me that search for whatever it is, and I am happy I have it even though it can be annoying sometimes because you’re never really satisfied.”


Connecting with people on the other side of the world

In 2015, MØ won the European Border Breaker Award. The EBBA is given annually to ten emerging artists or groups who has reached audiences outside their own countries, and this is something that is significant to the singer:

“The wider you can reach, the wider you can connect with people. And when I can connect with people I’ve never met on the other side of the planet, it gives me a super strong feeling of meaning – and that is priceless.”

Comparing audiences around the world, MØ finds there are more similarities than differences. In that way, doing a concert is a universal experience. The differences she notices are usually smaller things like for how long an audience clap after each song or how much people use their phones during the concert.


Today mainstream pop includes all cultures

However, it is not only during a concert people unifies. MØ thinks in general that mainstream pop music has become more acceptant of different cultures:

“If you listen to pop songs nowadays there are elements from all over the world mixed together into a new form of mainstream pop music.”

Her own single collaboration with Major Lazer “Lean On” is one example. The video for the song was shot in India but this happened more by chance than by planning. At the time, Major Lazer was touring in India so it made sense to shoot the video there.

“It is one of those happy beautiful coincidences that in a way reflects on the lifestyle, where we are both travelling the world, and then you meet in one place and do the video because this is where we are,” the singer explained. “I think we live in a world where it is all getting so connected and especially in this creative industry where you see how everybody gets inspired and feels inspired from everywhere and mix it all together to make it a bit their own. It is all melting butter.”

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