With chills in my body and an infatuated attraction that grows fastly by the second as I listen to “Apartment” —the debut single by Australian up-and-coming alt-pop artist Bobi Andonov — I think to myself, What kind of sinister story lays behind this broken soul? I just know there a very substantial and unforgiving history behind this voice, a history of lust, failed love and self- induced misery. Just with listening to the first 30 seconds of this track, the heartfelt contrast between the low and scratchy vocals and the smooth and effortless falsetto, I was already hooked into the storyline and I’m ready for the next 5 tracks to come.
In contrast to your typical pop singer’s sleek persona, Bobi’s is, rather mesmerizingly, obscured. “I found my identity through music I listened to,” he explains. Growing up in Melbourne (but now living in Los Angeles), the now 23 year-year-old gravitated towards artists such as Prince, INXS’ Michael Hutchence,George Michael and Terence Trent D’Arby, with deep understandings of how sexuality impacts those around them. “They all had charisma. You couldn’t help but look at them,” he says. “Musically, they were all so fucking sexy. None of these guys were scared to play with masculinity.” He’ll gamely attribute his omnipresent falsetto—which brings songs like “Apartment” to ecstatic heights—to Prince. “The way he makes his songs so poetic when he’s talking about sex,” he says, admiringly, “is just amazing.”
Directed by Ellis Bahl, the black-and-white visuals for the track captures the narcotic intimacy between two lovers, until it progresses, Twilight Zone-style, from a tableau of boudoir paramours to an illicit fever dream, spiraling into increasingly chaotic snapshots of broken glass andominous shadows. “Head under water, keep holding me down,” he sings on the track. “Playing with fire, please don’t pull me out.” The video is a fitting introduction to the darkly alluring world of Bobi Andonov, whose thrall lies in clandestine, slow-burn narratives. Make sure to keep up with Bobi Andonov via Facebook and Instagram.