A Chat with Nicolaas Walle (07.03.22)

Drawing together elements of indie-rock, alt-rock, art-pop, blues and a ton of other genres, Irish-Dutch multi-instrumentalist Nicolaas Walle has a unique, eclectic style. We speak with Walle about his new single ‘This Is Me Telling You’, creative processes, future plans and bad habits.

OSR: What drew you to music?

Walle: I’ve always been drawn to music and the way it makes one feel and think. I think it’s more of a cumulative effect and I don’t think I could pin it down to one specific event. I always wanted to be and do something creative and music was where my aptitude and interests lay from a very young age. After years of asking, when my parents gave me my first guitar, I was completely hooked.

OSR: What can you tell us about your single ‘This Is Me Telling You’?

Walle: Like each song on the album, it’s an attempt to fuse styles. I was trying to mix my own musical style with that of the vocalist and also package it in a way that wouldn’t be too niche and alienates people. I was trying to do something that drew on this unique mix of influences whilst being a cohesive and enjoyable whole.

OSR: Did you face any challenges when writing and recording the track?

Walle: Although it was a relatively smooth process, I feel that this was partially down to Ciara’s help with the lyrics. I would have struggled to write such engaging and catchy lyrics on my own in the same period of time, which was actually quite short.

OSR: What do you hope people take from ‘This Is Me Telling You’ and your music in general?

Walle: I hope people take a positive experience from it. That’s what I want from all my music in a general sense. I don’t want to make music that makes people unhappy. Why would I? I hope people enjoy it and that it makes them feel something good. If it makes them think or wonder, even better.

OSR: What is your creative process?

Walle: I often record as I write and write as I record. This way, things don’t get lost in my scatter-brained adventures into music. My writing process is instrumentally very improvisational as well. I also write the music before the lyrics about 95% of the time as that’s what comes most naturally to me. Lead guitar parts and solos are usually compiled together from several parts which I come up with by simply playing. I feel like playing with feeling, spontaneity and emotion is important to me and I doubt I’d get the same results without throwing myself in the deep end in terms of my playing, and if I don’t like something I can literally just record it again, but better.

OSR: Which is more challenging – lyrics or melody?

Walle: 100% lyrics.

OSR If you could change anything about the single, what would it be and why?

Walle: I wouldn’t change it. I like the way it turned out.

OSR: Do you have any bad habits? If yes, what are they?

Walle: All my habits make me who I am and it’s hard to pick them out myself when asked as I inevitably have a biased perspective but, with that said, I have atrocious handwriting and I tend to subconsciously tap rhythms on tables and other surfaces much to the annoyance of some.

OSR: If your life had a theme song, what would the song be?

Walle: ‘Sound Chaser’. A song by my favourite band, YES.

OSR: Do you have future plans as a musician?

Walle: 100%. I’m full of plans, more plans than I could realistically fit in a lifetime and inevitably some will fade away before coming to fruition, but I’ll probably have come up with hundreds more by then. That’s just my nature.

Many thanks to Nicolaas Walle for speaking with us. For more from Nicolaas Walle check out his Facebook, Instagram and Spotify.

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