Australian up-and-coming alt-pop artist Bobi Andonov possesses one of those rare powerhouse voices that both punches you in the gut and tears at your heartstrings. His debut single, “Apartment” is equal parts soulful and soul-crushing, with the young singer-songwriter radiating a full spectrum of emotions—pain, sadness, longing—all impeccably delivered through a smooth, almost effortless falsetto.
Today, Bobi dropped his official video for his debut single, “Apartment.” The Ellis Bahl directed black-and-white video 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 and ominous 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 ofBobi Andonov, whose thrall lies in clandestine, slow-burn narratives.
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.”
Where the sensual swagger comes from his musical touchpoints, most of the darkness comes from the mood Bobi sets before songwriting. “I write a lot while watching movies,” he says, (Bernardo Bertolucci’s bohemian, erotic The Dreamers was a big inspiration.) He notes that with “Apartment,” the powerful lead off track written by Bobi and co-produced by Dylan Williams, “It started with an idea of an intensely vocally driven song. Dylan and I just got each other instantly. He amplified the idea with dark, minimal, sexy sounds and with ‘Faithful,” the theme is that you shouldn’t really get involved with me,” he says, laughing. “
With today’s release of “Apartment,” there’s no doubt that Bobi Andonov is a name you are going to be hearing a lot in the future. Stay tuned for more music coming soon.