Introducing Malade, the gloss-pop project of Montreal-based singer, songwriter and producer Camille Brown. RnB groove meets crafty pop in this playful, maximalist endeavor.
How would you describe your music?
I like to use the term gloss-pop for my work right now – I’m not sure if I came up with it or if I got it from somewhere. I describe it as girly, maximalist, pretty RnB-leaning with hints of hyperpop. It’s vocal-forward and textured.
If we were to look at the artists you are listening to, who would be on your playlist?
My current rotation includes IDLES, Lolo Zouaï, Phoebe Bridgers, Joao Gilberto, Saya Grey, Tkay Maidza… There is no through-line lol.
Have you written songs for any other artists?
I have! I went to college with RIKII and Mar Emanuel and I’ve written a bit with both those guys. I love what they do. Writing with others and for other projects is one of my favourite ways to work on music. I’m actively looking to do it more.
What has been the most challenging aspect of your current releases?
I don’t know if this gets talked about at all, but making and releasing music is so expensive. And for the first several years, there’s no return on investment. So, there’s a lot of stress involved in haemorrhaging money for years and not knowing when/if you’ll get it back. Of course, music in its essence has nothing to do with money, but when you’re trying to make the best work you can and get it to people who will dig it, money has been the main issue for me. People love to talk about how the internet has democratized the industry, but in practice it feels just as gatekept as ever.
Where was your last song recorded?
Give Up was recorded at my childhood friend Damien’s house. He’s also the engineer/producer I’ve worked with for the last two years. Give Up was one of the first few songs we tracked that had real “single” potential in our eyes. I was so angry and heartbroken over a dumb boy, and I laid down the vocals for it in one afternoon, thinking they were just scratch and we’d retrack them in a proper studio at a later date. When that day came, I just couldn’t get the vocal performance I wanted. The original vocals were so honest, there was no way I would ever recreate them, so I decided to keep them. And that’s what you hear when you listen to the song now!
What is the most useless talent you have?
Falling for broken men (I have a saviour complex).
What would be a good theme song for your life?
What historical figure would you love to see in 21st century life?
Joan of Arc would have gone viral on TikTok, I’m sure. She would be doing the wildest shit online. But I think my final answer is Charlotte Brontë.
Lowkey… Patrick Star. I cried watching the Spongebob movie.
As a kid were you ever frightened of a monster under the bed or in the cupboard?
I’m more scared about that kind of stuff nowthen I was as a kid. I’ve been listening to a podcast called Otherworld and there’s some spooky stuff happening everywhere at all times. Gotta make sure you’re protected…
Give Up” (2023), produced by her longtime friend and engineer Damien Muller, is Malade’s latest single and most earnest girlpop attempt. A hot pink earful, the track exudes post-breakup acrimony, which Malade’s vocals express almost as a mockery. Countermelodies shimmer atop a gloating bass and textured drums. “I’m on the other side of a time where I had to let go of some relationships that weren’t serving me,” she reminisces. “The hyperfeminine pop persona that emerged from that pain was almost like a guardian angel, or a shield to me. The next few releases from this project really reflect that sugar coated, lacquered coping.” It follows the single “My Energy” (2023), a bouncy, boastful summer release that explores the aplomb of knowing one’s worth.
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