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Fresh off the back of their well-received interactive video game launch, multi-hyphenate LA-based act BIIANCO (they/them) returns with a chilling visceral visual for new single “checkmate” available across all digital streaming platforms HERE.
The non-binary producer, singer-songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist impressed music lovers and horror fanatics alike with their choose-your-own-adventure style video game in tandem with “that’s what friends are for” (released April 9th), garnering praise from American Songwriter, Billboard, Cool Hunting, LA Weekly, The Line of Best Fit, and Under the Radar, just to name a few. Now BIIANCO continues to challenge the industry and dismantle pop traditions with their latest offering “checkmate,” rallying their team of fellow creatives—director and editor Scott Fleishman (Machine Gun Kelly, SZA), manager/producer Erin Hinojos, and set designer Christina Roseann Ray—for a supernatural thriller filmed just outside of Big Bear Lake, CA. Deeply inspired by hauntingly provocative films like Ari Aster’s Hereditary and Midsommar as well as Robert Eggers’ The VVitch, the cinematic is set in a cabin in the woods to capture a ritual and love spell gone awry. BIIANCO’s self-destruction as she is consumed by the darkest parts of her mind amplifies the core message: love will be the death of us all.
“‘checkmate’ was written about being engulfed by limerence—that feeling where you’re so infatuated with someone at the beginning of a relationship that you can’t eat, sleep, or do anything but think about them. It feels like a drug you’re addicted to, especially when you know this intense love is headed for a trainwreck and you just can’t stop yourself from falling,” explains BIIANCO. “The video was specifically inspired by this wild experience I had once where I howled at a full moon and was met by a coyote howling back and eventually showing up where I was standing. It was a vividly powerful moment.”
On “checkmate,” BIIANCO puts their infatuation of another to rest and opens a door to self-discovery through love and loss, while “that’s what friends are for” ultimately shines a light on the friend you need to be for others and yourself—accepting of the scars and the intricacies that don’t fit into a cookie-cutter mold or a black-and-white world. There’s no doubt BIIANCO is primed for alt-pop stardom and their DIY approach never cuts corners. BIIANCO’s music comes with a compelling message of feeling and healing despite the madness life throws at you. Listeners of their discography are seen, accepted, and given hope to flourish as who they are unabashedly.
“I have spent 30 years unpacking my relationship with my feminine, masculine, gender, privilege and my queerness. But the past year has been a crash course into the most intimate parts of my identity. I’m finally able to grasp why it’s felt like I’m wearing someone else’s body at times. I’ve started to better understand how much of my overt femme appearance was motivated by a subconscious desire for patriarchal value and approval, and how me in my most natural is much more complex,” BIIANCO admits, “My hope is that maybe others in similar circumstances will be liberated to come out when they hear my story like I was when I heard Amo Amo’s Love Femme and Demi Lovato’s stories.”
They elaborate further, “Here I am—a non-binary pansexual artist and self-taught producer—in a field that is dominated by 95% men. I possess traits and interests that have been unfairly delegated to men throughout history like synths, EQ, motorcycles, drum pads, video games, dating women, etc. I have always encompassed a myriad of masculinity and femininity and it naturally translated to my presenting appearance—blending menswear with ornate fake nails or working on my motorcycle in lingerie. Continuing to challenge these binarisms in my fashion and appearance is a way of me reclaiming my identity back from toxic masculinity.”
Since their arrival in 2019, BIIANCO has been an unstoppable force at the helm of a new generation of downtempo electronic music and already heralds support from the likes of Billboard, DUMMY, Flaunt, Hunger, Ladygunn, Ones To Watch, Penthouse, among others. Formerly of pop-duo Smoke Season, BIIANCO began their solo journey into producing after a life altering rebirth at an all-womxn Ableton retreat in Joshua Tree, alongside LA greats such as Madame Gandhi. Now their single “13 Dead End Drive” with Madame Gandhi is featured on Netflix’s Tiny Pretty Things while “life as we know it now” landed on HBO’s In Treatment, their club set played on Diplo’s Revolution station on SiriusXM, and they’ve performed at London and New York’s Fashion Weeks, for starters.
A rising voice in self-taught contemporary production, BIIANCO has collaborated with artists including Chong the Nomad, Cassie Marin, Jax Anderson, Kaleena Zanders, Luna Shadows, tiLLie, TRACE, and the list keeps growing. In 2020, BIIANCO released 5 new original singles with accompanying music videos, 7 covers, and launched a series on TikTok educating fledgling bedroom producers, proving that even the throes of Armageddon couldn’t hold BIIANCO from their purpose. No, they added fake blood and honey and turned it into a forthcoming full-length mixtape, a book of poetry (This will wreck your heart out now), and many more projects to come in 2021.
BIIANCO is an explosion of light and passion—thundering and raucous as a technicolor lightning storm. BIIANCO channels vulnerability into a language understood by any who have walked through a world in transition, faced their inner demons, and turned their trauma into innovation and beauty.
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