Unlike most pop stars, Natalia Kills is a performer with more of an interesting and intoxicating edge. Signed to Will.I.Am’s Interscope imprint, the Leeds born singer has developed her own brand of what is now known as “dark pop.” Her eccentric and sexual image, make up and attire help bring her extremely addictive sound to life, and the video aspect of which she plays a major role in, can’t help but keep the viewer entertained.
Recently, Natalia released her debut album “Perfectionist,” which has received a wealth of positive reviews.
She is currently heading around North America touring and promoting the album. Look out for her to perform at Osheaga in Montreal on July 31st.
Interview conducted by Hugo Lunny
MVRemix: You’ve stated that the “Kills” portion of your name refers to your drive in not letting anything stop you. How much does your moniker provide in terms of motivation and how often is it misinterpreted?
Natalia Kills: A lot of my songs are about revenge and have confrontational undertones so people assume it’s the murderous sense, like, “Ooh she killed another ex boyfriend…” or something. But when we give 100% of our passion to something that defines us, like Michael Jackson on stage, or Naomi Campbell on the catwalk, we often say, “You killed it.” That’s the reason “Kills” is the most fitting description for me, because I’m a perfectionist and I always try to give 100%.
MVRemix: Are you ever likely to resurrect your other monikers “Natalia Cappuccini” or “Verbalicious”?
Natalia Kills: My real name is Natalia Cappuccini, so it’s something I get called in the bank or when I book a flight. It’s not going anywhere.
MVRemix: Now you’re not from an area in England with an accent that North America tends to hear much of, does it surprise you that more performers and entertainers from Leeds aren’t as successful over here?
Natalia Kills: Leeds is quite small so I’m not surprised. The whole of England could fit in one state, and some of our accents are extremely musical and hard to understand.
MVRemix: The internet has had a great impact on your career, being in the music industry at it’s current state – how do you feel as an artist about the now clear impact of downloading music vs sales?
Natalia Kills: The internet is great. Stealing music and downloading films illegally is obviously not great. The logic to it is simple; if everybody stole Coca-Cola instead of buying it, eventually they’d run out of money to keep making it. At first the packaging and advertising would suffer; you’d hardly hear of it and they might start selling it in awful paper cartons. Then eventually they’d have to stop and you’d never see it again. That’s what happens with music; the quality of videos and production can suffer because the budgets aren’t being recouped, and eventually if enough albums aren’t legally sold it looks like the artist is less popular than they are, so they don’t bother making a new record. It’s tragic.
MVRemix: In one sentence, describe Perfectionist to me.
Natalia Kills: I’m selling my soul. On iTunes and CD form. All my heartbreaks, struggles and life experience, everything that makes me passionate and who I am. It’s pop with an opinion. Oops that was 3 sentences… Sorry.
MVRemix: How does the album Perfectionist compare to your Wommanequin EP?
Natalia Kills: It’s like a well evolved sequel.
MVRemix: You played the drums, the saxophone and other instruments when you were younger. Any plans to revisit those for use in future songs?
Natalia Kills: Drums are still a part of my musical process. I like to be there and make the beat with the producer as we go along so everything is interpreting the same message as the lyrics.
MVRemix: Which artists influenced your live show performances?
Natalia Kills: I love Prince and Vanity 6 – there’s something so sexy about caring enough to do it right, but not caring too much about what people think. And of course Freddie Mercury was one of the best performers of all!
MVRemix: As a fan what was your best concert experience and why?
Natalia Kills: I recently saw Hurts perform along side Adele and Bruno Mars. I’m mean… Wow!
MVRemix: You’ve stated that flirting is your favourite thing to do, as you’re a fan of engaging people and connecting with them. In contrast what behaviour do you loathe?
Natalia Kills: I hate unprovoked meanness. It’s a huge sign of insecurity and bitterness, but it’s a form of bullying that stays with some people way past school days.
MVRemix: What are your feelings on the much publicized arts funding cuts in the UK?
Natalia Kills: Give the people what they want. Or at least let them think things are getting better. It’s the only way to restore balance without riots and revolution. I’m all for a good riot though…
MVRemix: How is your relationship with the Black Eyed Peas? Are there any plans to collaborate in the future?
Natalia Kills: I’m excited to join them for some European tour dates over the summer! Will.i.am has been so good to me, it’ll be a pleasure opening for them!
MVRemix: Any larger scale directing or film writing plans you can talk about?
Natalia Kills: Film is definitely a world I’d like to submerge into in the future. I’ve written a few film plots over the last year or two, but I’d rather write music than a script for now.
MVRemix: A la “Fight Club,” if you could fight any celebrity, who would you fight and why? Now I’ve had answers from Gary Coleman and Elizah Mohammed to Oprah and George W. Bush. Who would Natalia Kills fight?
Natalia Kills: Fight? Me? Never! [smiles]