ARTIST INTERVIEW + VIDEO REVIEW: Cocovan “Chic (Someone To Love)”

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Part French, part Iranian Cocovan disappeared for about a year—leaving her fans in the art and music world wandering through empty social media sites. Then, like the reincarnations of Madonna’s various styles, Cocovan reemerged as the glam-pop empress that she is now. She then released “Mirage Of Us” to rave responses. Yesterday, she put out the video for her brand new single “Chic (Someone To Love.”) And, yes—it’s just as electric. Cocovan is the creative drive behind the new material, directing the one-shot-behind-the-scenes video. Besides a few seconds of her holding a white hula-hoop and taking off her glam-ed-up leather jacket, it’s all her—dancing so gracefully, swishing her perfect short black hair, and posing like a goddess. This song puts me in the highest spirits, while making me feel like I could’ve been the coolest chick in the 80s. Check out her BRAND NEW video and lovely interview with Audiofemme below. You can also listen to her track here. Did I mention that she is also the biggest sweetheart? We LOVE her!

Greetings, love! The femmes are super excited to have you featured on our page! 

It’s great to meet you too! And I am equally excited to be featured on Audiofemme, thank you so much for your support!

Q: First off, “Chic” is rotating nonstop, I love it. I’ve been blasting it in my car. I feel like I’m in the movie Drive, and I’m living in an 80s-esque film. If you haven’t seen the movie, I feel like you would totally enjoy it. 

Oh thank you! I’m glad to hear that – It makes me happy to think “Chic” is playing somewhere in Brooklyn right now! I love the movie Drive. It’s funny you reference it, because even though I can’t actually drive (I know…), the imagery of driving is somehow a big inspiration to me. While I was writing my EP, I had videos like this one– playing on loop in the studio on a TV while I was writing, as a visual inspiration.

Q: I read that you are influenced by Madonna, Cyndi Lauper, Prince. How has it affected your own unique style? (Or any other influences)? 

I think it affected me in the way that it liberated me. I can’t find a way to say it without sounding cheesy- but basically to embrace my quirkiness. Beyond the fact that their music and style have inspired me to create my own, all these artists are muses to me- they guide me. My muses motivate me to push myself everyday, to push myself to always try and create better art.

Q. Your recent project was you directing the video for “Chic.” I can’t wait to see it. Can we expect your creative drive in more videos, etc.?

Hehe! The video is out now! I hope you will enjoy it!

I’ve always been very involved in the visual side of my project. From logos, to artworks, to videos… To me, “Cocovan” is both a visual and musical project. In more recent news, I just shot two new music videos for the next singles! I love making videos, eventually I’d love to direct videos for other artists too.

Q. And in your new song, it gives a very confident look into the future of crushed hearts. Does this come from personal experience?

Well, I guess I’m still on the “crushed heart” side for now, I haven’t found “the one” yet. But yes, it absolutely comes from personal experience. I think it’s even harder to find love in the modern dating world. People treat each other like we’re disposable. It’s difficult to find depth. Or maybe it’s just that I’m entering the Sex And The City age! Anyways, I’m convinced there’s a perfect match on this planet for each one of us. So it’s just a matter of time now!

Q. When can we expect “The Club” to be released? And why have you said this EP is your most important yet?

The Club will come out in the fall. This EP is my most important yet because it is my artistic “rebirth”. Indeed I released a first EP in 2012 that I have since taken down from the internet. At the time, I needed to take time to sit at the studio and allow to evolve sonically. So The Club will be the first EP to be released since that break.

Q. Are you coming to the US (mainly NYC) anytime soon? We would love to have a dance party!

I’ll probably be back soon as I always have NYC withdrawals. I miss the 99c pizzas and the JMZ train. You know I have lived in NYC actually? Here’s a list of all the neighborhoods I have lived in in NYC: Lower East Side, East Village, South Williamsburg, Williamsburg, Clinton Hill and Fort Greene (thank you Craigslist). Anyways, I’d love to have a dance party too!

Q. Looks like you love Snapchat. Any favorite filters? And thank you for taking the time out to show us a little bit about you <3

I really love Snapchat, it’s my favorite social media. My snapchat is iamcocovan by the way! Fave filter is the purplish one. I don’t know how to describe this filter, so I figured I’d make a very special exclusive Cocovan x Audiofemme snap just for you guys! See you soon in NYC!

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FLASHBACK FRIDAY: Prince “Controversy”

Controversy Album Cover

Yesterday I spent a long time thinking about Prince. Someone on Facebook declared the lyrics to “Da Bourgeoisie,” a song released in 2013, “homophobic.” And Price has, in the past, made several statements, both in person and through his music, which were anti-queer and transmisogynistic. He still blows my mind with every new piece of music he creates, but since becoming a member of Jehova’s Witnesses in 2001, Prince has not only ditched his healthy respect for sexuality, he’s lost the thing that drew me to his music in the first place—his own, unashamed sexual ambiguity. It’s difficult to separate the person and the persona when opinions make their way into music. With that in mind, I’d like to take us back to the Prince of old, to my favorite Prince album, and some of the most brilliantly crafted, critical, rebellious, and inspiring work of the ’80s: Controversy.

The opening track is “Controversy,” arguably the most popular from the album, and perhaps deservedly. It’s a funky, thumping, personal anthem that questions everything about society and self. He directly brings up his ambiguous identity: “Am I black or white? Am I straight or gay?” But he never actually tries to answer those questions. This seven minute-long song moves between catchy, rolling verses and textured sections meant to provoke “controversy.” Midway through the song, Prince, joined by other voices, recites the “Our Father” over the funky bass line. Then, a final section with some of the best lyrics of any rebel tune: “People call me rude / I wish we all were nude / I wish there was no black and white / I wish there were no rules.” This is a song about breaking the rules, not just for any cause, but for love. Prince, here, desires a world without boundaries on our physical, sexual, and social selves.

From there he moves into three of the most sensual songs he’s ever written. There’s the obvious, “Sexuality,” the fun and vulgar, “Jack U Off,” and the downright erotic, “Do Me, Baby.” “Sexuality” has a similar sound to “Controversy,” pounding and upbeat, and it also has a fairly direct message: “Sexuality is all you’ll ever need / Sexuality, let your body be free!” All the while he’s screeching, yelping, and beckoning the listener to him. Three quarters of the way through there’s the hypnotic mantra: “Reproduction of a new breed / leaders, stand up, organize!” It’s an electrical, in-your-skin kind of song. “Jack U Off” is the final song on the album and it has a crazy synth melody that paints visuals of a disco-lit ’80s-themed circus dance. This is a song about pleasing others. Where will Prince help you get off? In the back of a movie theater, in a restaurant, in a Cadillac. When will Prince help you get off? When you’re tired of masturbating, when you want to lose your virginity, when you’re menopausal.

And of course, there’s “Do Me, Baby,” the longest song on the album. It’s a slow, hypnotic melody in which Prince casts himself in the typically “feminine” role in a sex scene. He croons in a glazed, fragile falsetto, “Take me baby! / Kiss me all over / Play with my love” and his voice is beyond seduction. There’s no suggestion here: Prince doesn’t want to be teased, he demands to be “had.” But the actual erotica comes in at five minutes. A few funky notes pave the way for Prince to talk to his imagined lover. He sucks air in through his teeth and moans and groans, encouraging and guiding his partner. It’s dirty. It might be a little awkward if you play it in the car with your mom. But mostly it’s just entrancing.


Two tracks on “Controversy” are distinctly political or, at least, critical of the American government. “Ronnie Talk to Russia” is an overwhelming force of choral and synth melody and powerful guitar solo. It almost feels harsh, musically and lyrically. The electric guitar vibrates underneath all of the choral pomp. All the while, Prince implores Ronald Reagan to “talk to Russia before it’s too late / before they blow up the world.” At the end of the song, a jarring explosion is heard. Though this has a satirical tone, it’s cutting enough to hurt, rather than make you laugh. “Annie Christian,” though, is the song with the greatest connection to Prince’s new philosophies. It chronicles the actions of “Annie Christian,” a greedy, power-hungry, religious figure against the backdrop of a more minimalistic, experimental rhythm and tone. Prince’s voice, in particular, has an almost mechanical echo on this track. In the first verse, a glory-hound, Annie “bought a blue car” and “killed black children.” He tells her in the chorus that until she’s “crucified” for what she’s done, he’ll live his life in “taxi cabs.” The second verse focuses on the “bad girl” Annie who buys a gun and uses it to kill John Lennon. But it’s only when she tries to kill Ronald Reagan that everyone cries “gun control!” Prince highlights the actions of extremists—Christian, criminal, conservative—with Annie, the anti-Christ, standing in for the many crimes which have slipped under the radar. It was a great time when Prince was pointing out the misgivings and contradictions of American society and what they force people into.

This album, though only 8 songs long, exemplifies the kind of brilliance that can come out of a combination of risk-taking and strong ambition. These are incredibly dynamic, masterfully produced hits that curve around and between genre and theme. Personal ambiguity drips over every word. It’s fascinating. It belongs to a certain point in time, but it’s still very relevant, as a response to what is socially acceptable and as a look into the complexity of political and, particularly, sexual identity.