“I try to bring light to this world of darkness”, Juriji der Klee states in typically dramatic fashion, when I ask him about his niche within the Belgian music scene. True to his word, a listen to Juriji’s distinctive sound introduces the listener to a brand of music that in one word can be defined as mesmerizing.
The combination of this classically trained countertenor’s elegant tones of voice with all-encompassing baroque melodies underlined with electronic beats makes for a goosebump-inducing auditory experience. The mystery surrounding his persona is closely linked to his ties with Belgian fashion. “I am inspired by the strength, freshness, freedom and surrealism that I find in the creations of Belgian designers with whom I have worked, such as Jean-Paul Lespagnard, Louise Leconte, Gioia Seghers, Pablo Henrard and Fabien Verriest. I think everything is connected. Clothing helps me in the narrative process of my project. Fashion and music intersect all the time.”
Though he cites as inspirational films Truffaut's ''The Bride Wore Black'' and Resnais’ ''Last Year at Marienbad”, Juriji’s musical influences and references are mostly taken from the Eighties. “It was a very rich period for music as well as for fashion. I've always been inspired by artists with a strong look like Nina Hagen, Klaus Nomi, Madonna and David Bowie.” No surprise then that Juriji’s performance style plays with gender. “Even though in my vision of things, the garment is not sexual”, he stresses. “It’s more that I use it in order to sublimate a silhouette that is either feminine or masculine.”
Just last week, on the 30th of June, Juriji released his first EP, titled ‘ Broken’. The four tracks mix seemingly opposite musical styles, but their hybrid quality results in harmony rather than discord. The response has been overwhelmingly positive. “The Belgian public is certainly warm and very open. I look forward to meet new audiences abroad as new pages are written in this wonderful story that I have just begun to live. For now, I'm just like a flower in springtime and I am blooming.”
Juriji der Klee's EP ‘Broken’ is available on iTunes.
Director / Editing / Music & Vocals - Juriji der klee
Co - Director / DOP - Laetitia Bica
Concept / screenplay by Carole Baillien & Juriji der Klee
Fashion Designers - Jean-Paul Lespagnard, Louise Leconte, Pablo Henrard, Fabien Verriest
Make-up Artists - Patricia Grant & Sarassou Vanden Driessche
Management / Production - Carole Baillien
Set photographer / Backstage - Carole B.
Set Assistants - Cindy Damen & Ana Rivet Jimenez
Special thanks to Sebastien, Angy, Julio, Julie, Fabou, the crew.