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Courtesy of the artist

PÖ, the French-Ghanaian artist making urgent, border-shattering club music

The Nyege Nyege artist shares her ultimate ghost outfit, her favourite new meme, and why her debut album sounds like audible edibles

There’s an urgency to PÖ’s music that demands your attention. The French-Ghanaian artist and longtime Nyege Nyege affiliate makes psychedelic new-age music as seen through a Pan-African lens. When she’s not tending to her garden in a forest near Paris, or performing as part of electronic pop duo Poko Poko, she’s behind the decks in Kampala as well as Nyege showcases in Europe, where she draws on various afro-mutations from Luanda to Bogota, Accra to Sao Paolo. 

On Cociage (a mistranslation of ‘coquillages’ meaning seashells in French), the artist’s debut album, PÖ turns to vocal experimentation in the form of quick-fire industrial rhythms and assertive chants that crash against one another with machinic strength. With multi-layered, hyper-rhythmic soundscapes created almost exclusively with her voice, there’s a hypnotic quality to the album; its ritual chants and pitched-down rapping are positioned against jagged production, and possess a bubbling intensity that breaks down all barriers – and borders. It’s no wonder that PÖ lists “emancipation, nightmares and pillages” as the main inspirations. 

When describing the album, Bedarida likens it to “fishing into a worldwide mycorrhizal-electrical network of sounds crawling in the collective consciousness and fructifying in my mouth as heavily twisted-out-of-shape yet somewhat audible edibles”. Below, we catch up with Bedarida about Cociage, her cornershop snack essentials, and her ultimate ghost outfit.

Hi PÖ! Congrats on the release of Cociage. Where did the name come from?

PÖ: It’s from the Chorus: “Pose lascive extatique sur la plage entre coquillages et bouteilles de plastique”. It‘s a satiric misspelling of ‘coquillages‘, which means seashells in French, but misspelled it can mean ‘coaching‘.

Can you guide us through your inspirations for the album?

PÖ: Fishing into a worldwide mycorrhizal-electrical network of sounds, crawling in the collective consciousness, and fructifying in my mouth as heavily twisted-out-of-shape yet somewhat audible edibles.

What is your earliest music memory?

PÖ: Me jumping up and down on my parents’ bed, listening to rock n’ roll.

What song could you not stop playing growing up?

PÖ: Jacques Brel – “Au suivant”, Deeba – “Deeba“, and Nirvana – “Tourette’s”.

Please share the most recent note from your notes App!

PÖ: Je suis un noeud marin (I‘m a sailor‘s knot).

Duck nests are square. Sticks sticking out. Ego is the plague of humanity.

And the last meme you saved?

What’s your favourite cornershop snack?

PÖ: Chips and a chocolate bar. At the same time.

What’s your ghost outfit?

PÖ: If I die right now: Afrisocks, striped pyjamas, red silk nightcap.

The worst advice you’ve ever been given?

PÖ: Trust me.”

What conspiracy theory are you quite into actually?

PÖ: Not that many but Chat GPT came up with a good one: “Why did the conspiracy theorist refuse to wear a seatbelt? Because they believed it was part of a government plot to control their movements!”

What do you put on your rider?

PÖ: All-I-can-drink coffee, elvish tea, and a cake cooked by a local grandma.

Cociage is out now via Nyege Nyege