20 YO Bonzai creates a pop art, flouro-take on R&B, with elements of jazz, hip hop, dancehall, grimey square-synth bass and even Irish folk music; delivered with a punky rave energy.
If the musical style is an innovative electric soup of influences, it might be to do with her dual Irish/American background. Born in Indiana to a jazz singer mother and raised in Wicklow near Dublin by her drummer father, she moved to London at 17 to start a degree at Tech Music School. She found a job as a backing singer for rising star NAO, whose management introduced her to Mura Masa. The producer was blown away by her talent and released two EPs – ‘Royah’ in 2015 and ‘Sleep Hungry’ in March 2016 – on his label Anchor Point. The EPs saw Bonzai gain fans across the board, with Pitchfork giving a glowing review to Faze and Radio 1 awarding two ‘Hottest Record’s and a playlist.
Now signed to Columbia Records, the next blast from world Bonzai is the ‘Lunacy’ EP, filled with metallic digital clinks, clunks and pops with her songwriting showing an amazing sophistication both melodically and harmonically.