Women Who Kill presents his third and latest EP, Yuri
As a boy Johan Venter loved sound, and so he played violin in the school orchestra and then the Kwa-Zulu Natal Youth Orchestra until his teenage angst got the better of him and he switched to drums and guitar. In university he learned that he enjoyed getting people to sing along with him but it was his love of dancing, and trying to emulate Aphex Twin, The Real Estate Agents and Felix Laband, which resulted in his taking his “weird little beats on Fruity Loops” professionally around 2010.
As Women Who Kill, he’s since won the A-trak/5Gum remix competition, remixed Lindiwe Suttle, whom he then toured and performed live with, has been invited to record at the Red Bull Studios and has played in all three cities he's lived in.
Johan recently moved to South Korea with TWoU contributor, Serisha Letchmiah Venter, and because we miss them we’ve shared his third and latest EP, Yuri, which he describes as “a place in deep space where the hypnotic and layered elements of house and techno meet the warped world of electronica.”
Read our interview with Johan after the jump.
What’s the story behind your name, Women Who Kill?
Around 12 years ago I moved to Pretoria for a year. Anyway, I went out with a couple of homies to this club, which Brooklyn Mall had set up on the bottom floor. After hours of partying the lights come on and bouncers are telling me it’s time to go. My friends had left me and I had to find my own way home in a city I‘d only known for about a week. I hit the long road home on foot, and on the way I saw a newspaper billboard which had 'Women Who Kill' on it. The next day I looked everywhere, but just couldn’t find the newspaper or the article relating to the headline. It just stuck with me.
Tell us about your latest offering, Yuri.
I like to create music that tells a story and takes you on a journey. I think that Yuri (follow up to 2015’s Yaoi) has the perfect amount of house, techno and electronica to make it something new, exciting and worth revisiting time and time again. There are so many layers and elements to Yuri waiting to be found. I wanted to create something you can space out to on the couch or get down to on the dance floor. If you listen closely, each track has multiple characters which all have their own little story to tell. A Choose Your Own Adventure – if you will.
Yes, it’s quite a chill sound, but you can also vibe to it - do you enjoy creating music that can be used in different ways and settings?
Most definitely. It’s like I said, we all have ever changing moods. I like music you can listen to on repeat and get lost in the journey – whether it’s lazing around your apartment, a dinner party, or at the club spilling your drink on everyone. I think it’s the ultimate compliment to have your music heard everywhere, in different situations and settings. It shows you aren’t a one-dimensional artist.
You recently moved abroad, why?
We’ve been in South Korea for about a month now. Serisha and I had been toying with the idea of an Asian adventure for a good couple of years. The food, fashion, music, culture and language side of East Asia have always intrigued both of us from a very young age. We almost took the leap a few times before, but this time the stars aligned and it all fell into place for us with an opportunity in South Korea. The amazing thing is that our work schedule allows us to learn Korean, travel, make and perform music, do some video production work and still dabble in fashion and photography in some way. The possibilities are endless.
Why do you think Yuri works so well for a Monday morning?
Nobody likes Mondays. Yuri has the perfect combination of dreamy, groovy, laidback goodness with just the right pinch of uptempo to not give you flashbacks of Friday night’s losing face and name-throwing escapades. It’s like this guardian angel giving you a hug and telling you that everything’s going to be okay.