29 Aug 2023

Electronic/R&B artist KELELA at The Metro

KELELA hit the Metro Theatre Sydney in a special one-off Sydney show on Tuesday 29 August 2023.
 |  Canberra Theatre  |  Sydney
Electronic/R&B artist KELELA

American electronic/R&B artist KELELA has announced her return to Australia in two weeks for her special one-off Sydney headline show at Metro Theatre!

Skilfully straddling the frequencies of R&B and dance/club music, American singer, songwriter and producer KELELA has established herself as an artistic interpolator of music, art and fashion.


Kelela Reclaims Dance Music

Alternative R&B and electronic polymath Kelela has always sounded like the future. In the last decade, the American-born artist has exhibited her dedication to the avant-garde on debut mixtape Cut 4 Me, EP Hallucinogen and 8 full-length album Take Me Apart. With dance-worthy remixes given to the latter two projects, Kelela has redefined musical innovation with industrial soundscapes and groundbreaking visuals, a nod to Afrofuturism.

Kelela’s otherworldly vision fulfils the groundwork that R&B and pop icon Janet Jackson laid with her third studio album, 1986’s Control. Helming the “Black girl pop” universe, a barely 20-year-old Jackson reintroduced herself — and Black femme artists — through state-of-the-art rhythmic production and unapologetic songwriting.

“It was a mix of those two things — that kind of honeyed, sweet soprano sound over these aggressive, adrenalizing electronic R&B beats with incredible melodies and harmonies,” says Jason King, chair of NYU’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music. “[Kelela’s] definitely in that legacy. She's part of that genealogy. I hear that in her work, but I also think she's an experimentalist who's not defined by genres of formats.”

As a post-genre R&B artist in the early 2010s, Kelela, birth name, Kelela Mizanekristos, met her rise alongside Black women contemporaries Solange, Dawn Richard, Aluna Francis and Laura Mvula. Perhaps the most idiosyncratic of her peers, Kelela shifted her artistry to honor antecedents in nu-metal, grime, UK trip hop and jazz. Like English bands Portishead, Massive Attack, and genre-bending soloist Björk — all which serve as Kelela’s inspirations — the singer-songwriter has refused to conform to music industry expectations of Black women in pop.

“She's an artist who's always questing and searching for new and different sounds that are ambiguous and challenging and often weird,” says King. “I think she embraces that weirdness and that's part of her charm, and it's also part of her power as an artist. She's had a lifelong commitment to experimentation, innovation and thinking outside of the box, and challenges us to think about why we have those boxes at all.”


More Coverage

WorldPride First Nations Gathering Space

Here at FUSE Magazine, we're excited to spread the news about the first four shows announced at Sydney WorldPride 2023's Marri Madung Butbut 'First Nations Gathering Space' so start your engines, because Drag Race Down Under star Kween Kong is bringing the glamour to Sydney WorldPride Klub Village!

Kim Petras Joins Sydney WorldPride Line-Up

Rainbow Republic will be Kim Petras' only performance during Sydney WorldPride 2023.

© All rights reserved FUSE Magazine. Website designed by Lithium.

Back to Top