Unseen Plays: Hey Gabrielle! Welcome to Unseen Plays. We’re ecstatic to showcase your music and thankful to have you with us. Let’s begin this interview by getting to know you better. For those that haven’t heard your music, tell us your story. When did you get started with music and how long has music been in your life? And when did “Gabrielle Ornate” music start?
Gabrielle Ornate: Hey guys, thanks so much for having me! In terms of my story, I’ve pretty much been singing all of my life. When I was a toddler, I used to make up melodies and sing to myself in a buggy all the time. I’ve been writing songs for most of my life too (however silly my primitive songs might have been when I was younger). I eventually taught myself the piano when I was about 11 in order to accompany myself. However, I used to jam on my grandparents’ upright piano when I was a toddler, probably thinking I sounded so avant-garde at the time! I definitely knew from the get go that music was what I wanted to pursue as it has always been a form of escapism for me to let my imagination and creativity run wild. I also taught myself bass guitar when I was 18 as I used to be part of an all-girl trio where I played the bass in this band.
Although I have been writing my own songs for most of my life, I officially formed “Gabrielle Ornate” back in early 2021 when I released my first single ‘The March of the Caterpillars.’ Since then, I’ve released eight further singles and have made ethereal music videos to go with each song.
Unseen Plays: For those reading this, Gabrille Ornate has a really awesome hard rock and pop blended sound. So this question is about that hard rock part of your music. What inspired that part of your music that we love so much?
Gabrielle Ornate: I’m so glad you like my fusion of punchy, riff-laden rock and catchy pop sensibilities. Growing up, I’ve always been obsessed with the Beatles and the way they merge so many different genres and influences whilst still creating super memorable, anthemic tunes. I’ve also been brought up on classical music as my dad loves this type of music and I feel like my ambiguous, colourful harmonic choices are inspired by the darker cadences within classical music. Bands like Radiohead and artists like Jeff Buckley speak to me a lot because their choice of harmony also harks down a similar dark and ambiguous tonal path.
Unseen Plays: What is your music creation process? Do you write all of them and how do you go from demo to full production?
Gabrielle Ornate: My writing process changes depending on the song. It’s like completing a jigsaw puzzle – sometimes the pieces find their counterparts easily but, other times, it takes longer to fit everything together. Most of the time, my musical partner, Orlando, comes up with a riff and I jam a vocal melody to it, and then we write the lyrics to fit that melody whilst making sure it fits with my intended lyrical theme/message. Production-wise, Orlando and I join forces in our shared music studio where we let our minds wander down experimental rabbit roles of soundscapes and analogue goodness!
Unseen Plays: It’s refreshing to hear your music! We just wanted to say that out loud. Your music feels really raw and we feel like you stay real throughout every track we’ve heard through Spotify. Yes, we listened back to all of your tracks. We’re fans. What helps you stay real and authentic to yourself and your music?
Gabrielle Ornate: Thank you for your kind words; it means a lot that you think that. I remain authentic to myself and my music by trying not to compare myself to others as that can lead to unproductive feelings of self-doubt and lack of confidence. The message of my music is all about empowerment so I seek to live by this philosophy; everybody should be what they want to be and make the music they want to make without worrying about whether it fits the mould.
Unseen Plays: We know you are poetic in hard rock / alt-rock form. How do you release poetry into your music? What stimulates the poet inside you?
Gabrielle Ornate: I certainly am an alt-pop rock poet, and my inner poet is stimulated by quite a few things…Firstly, surrealism and fantasy – I’ve always been drawn to fictional worlds such as Frank Baum’s Oz and Lewis Carroll’s Wonderland, so I find myself visiting these mystical places in my mind and exploring these themes in my songwriting.
Next, bohemia – I resonate with the bohemian aesthetic of the women pictured in Pre-Raphaelite artwork. However, I seek to take the male vision of passive womanhood and completely turn it on its head as my music is all about female empowerment and channeling one’s inner goddess.
Lastly, ancient mythology and folklore – I love absorbing the vast array of historical folktales that exist in British culture and incorporating those stories into my work, often creating a new meaning to the original idea by writing from a different perspective.
Unseen Plays: Looking at your discography, we see that you’ve released a lot of singles. Do you plan to release an EP or an album soon?
Gabrielle Ornate: My main aim at the moment is to carry on releasing a steady stream of singles with the idea of gaining more exposure with each release. Most of my singles fit very much in line with each other as they all embody the themes of empowerment and self-discovery, so I’d love to collate them all into an album at some point soon – when the time is right!
Unseen Plays: Let’s discuss your latest single “Delirium”. Tell us how this song came together, the background story, and the message behind it.
Gabrielle Ornate: My latest single ‘Delirium’ is all about letting go of control and surrendering to a world of uninhibited rapture. It was actually the last track that my partner and collaborator, Orlando, and I created in our old house before moving to our new space here in Suffolk.
This song sprung upon us when Orlando came up with an initial guitar riff that we worked on together until it became the final intro riff. I then jammed some melodies over the top which eventually morphed into the final melodies. And that’s how it came to be!
Unseen Plays: Delirium has killer guitar tone. They are almost in your face and your vocals sit perfectly in that mix. How was the studio time for this? Did you walk into the studio knowing you wanted this sound or is this something that happened during the session? We think it’s your toughest sounding jam so far.
Gabrielle Ornate: Ah, that’s so great to hear! As I’ve mentioned, Orlando and I are the brains behind my music (both songwriting and production-wise). We live together and share a studio, so producing ‘Delirium’ followed a similar pattern to how we created our previous singles. The song was written before it was taken to the studio but the diverse soundscapes, tones and effects that were created in the track were very much born in the session.
Unseen Plays: On a very serious note, do you have any shows coming up or festivals you will attend this year?
Gabrielle Ornate: I’m planning to perform at Spiritual Bar in Camden Town on Tuesday 9th May. Expect to see a fiery performance from me with buckets of power and attitude. If you want to hear a set full of tunes that you can’t get out of your head, then this is for you.
I’ll also be attending an amazing tribal festival in Hungary called Ozora that I’ve been going to for years; it’s such a unique place where so many different cultures come together in harmony. As well as a varied selection of musical genres, there are lots of different arts and craft activities you can partake in, and fascinating philosophical/sociological talks you can absorb (among many other things to do). I highly recommend going!
Unseen Plays: What are your plans for the next 3 years for your music? Anything you wanna share with us or put out into the universe?
Gabrielle Ornate: Over the next three years, I plan to develop a solid following; fans who listen to every release of mine and come to see me perform live every time. Manifesting ever more radio play and traction on the streaming platforms.
Having developed a bigger following, I envisage myself supporting bigger bands/artists on a number of different tours, as well as performing at a multitude of festivals and headline shows. I plan to carry on releasing a steady stream of singles which will eventually result in the release of an album or two.
But, for now, I’ve got a few singles up my sleeve which I’m really excited about. Amping it up one song at a time – watch this space!
Unseen Plays: Okay, we’ve reached the end. We’ve got a fun and random question for you. If you could get a 1 word tattoo anywhere on your body, what would that tattoo say? And why one word?
Gabrielle Ornate: I don’t know if I’d ever get an actual tattoo; I like experimenting with semi-permanent tattoos and henna though. But, if I had to get a one word tattoo, I think I’d get the word “equilibrium” because I believe living in a state of balance is the best and healthiest way to be.
Unseen Plays: Finally, where can listeners find you online? What’s the most convenient place to listen to Delirium?
Gabrielle Ornate: You can find my music anywhere and everywhere. Just type in “Gabrielle Ornate” on any of the social media platforms and music streaming sites. The best place to listen to ‘Delirium’ is either on Spotify or Apple Music, however I’ll be sharing my music video for it on YouTube in a couple of weeks so stay tuned for that.
Here’s a universal streaming link to ‘Delirium’ – https://song.link/gb/i/1676718608