To celebrate our anniversary, we’ve created a series of articles around the idea of freedom featuring some of the cultural iconoclasts who have defined the last 25 years of Dazed. Head here to read them all.
Grimes has starred on the cover of Dazed & Confused twice. For her first cover, in April 2012, we travelled to Vancouver to speak to the then-23-year-old musician while she was on the cusp of releasing her breakthrough album Visions. “It was my first big cover shoot, and there were Givenchy jewels there that literally had bodyguards and things like this,” Grimes later recalled, “I was also humbled to be wearing McQueen. It was shot by Hedi (Slimane), who was using this really fascinating camera and had a real vibe going on because he rarely spoke and was wearing a suit.”
The second time, in September 2015, we met up with her in New York City as she was preparing her follow-up, Art Angels. Here, she discussed her whirlwind rise in the intervening years, as well as her wary embrace of the pop industry. “I hate that all music right now has to exist in the context of the Top 40,” she said, “I just want to make music that’s good. Some good music is pop, some good music is not pop. Everyone is so driven by career stuff now – ‘Can you reach the most people? Can you get on the radio?’ It’s just like, maybe I don’t give a fuck?”
Needless to say, Grimes holds a special place in our hearts, so to celebrate our 25th anniversary we asked her to put together a special playlist of music new and old. She sent us back a mix featuring bold K-Pop from BLACKPINK, nu-school UK rap from Nadia Rose, and exquisite modern pop from Christine & the Queens. There’s even a bit of Muse in there. “Happy anniversary Dazed!” Grimes says, “I made a playlist of calming jams to soften the nerves on dank evenings.”