StanLei – Love + Belief

StanLei - Love + Belief

 StanLei - Love + Belief

StanLei – Love + Belief

ARTIST NAME: StanLei

 

SONG TITLE: Love + Belief

 

ALBUM TITLE: AIPOD

 

RELEASE DATE: August 2021

 

GENRE: Alt-Pop/Indie

 

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StanLei (‘stan-lay’), also known as Jennifer Stanley, is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer based in Toulouse (FR) who makes ethereal, conscious alt-pop with diverse influences from UK garage to jazz.
After a childhood of cello lessons and a decade soaking in the rich scene of her adopted hometown Bristol, StanLei spent years traveling worldwide as a nomadic seasonal worker before buying studio gear and launching into learning music production. She began to focus on her own musical identity in 2019, during which she released two indie-folk singles, Crystals and Alameda, as well as playing two European tours spanning 30 dates in Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands.
StanLei used the downtime of 2020 to her advantage to finish off her self-produced debut album AIPOD (July 2021), including a co-production with Toulouse artist Oz.
The first single released from the album, Wild Womxn, drew praise from many independent music blogs; ‘irresistibly catchy and alluring’ [GigGoer]; “undeniably intoxicating” [HRMNY Presents]; and “an experimental wonder filled with rich textures…a feminist punch of empowerment” [MoggBlog].
The second single Wake Up (November 2020) gained an equally effusive response from indie blogs including The Sound Sniffer’s Kevin Coakley: “not only catchy as hell – it’s lyrically spot on, each word chiseled and sung with a supreme sense of sincerity” as well as immediate radio traction in France and the UK, with BBC Introducing presenter James Threlfall describing StanLei as “an artist who absolutely pulls no punches”.
StanLei’s collaborations include deMon, a neo-soul project with producer Nel Gabriel, and a dance single with Marbella-based house producer duo Momo Khani and Meindel, which is due for re-release in summer 2021 on Deepalma Records.
StanLei has played several live sessions on local French radio stations including France Bleu Occitanie and her music has been played on BBC Introducing and on rotation on Yorkshire-based indie station Smile Radio.
Her latest single Love + belief is the third and final release ahead of her debut album, AIPOD (August 2021).

 

 

LYRICS:

 

I learned to seek refuge
Instead of dancing with the tide
I learned to take shelter
To curl up and hide
I learned to perform for you
Or anyone who might love me

 

I learned to hide behind a screen
Never let my light turn green
Wells of self-esteem lie covered
Don’t know how to fill them
I learned to give
Up all of my time if
It meant that they might love me… yeah

 

But this generation we’re breaking the chain
Turning tables going against the grain
Fighting against old programming
And we will get free
With love and belief

 

I learned to prefer
A dream a fantasy an escape
Over my day to day
I learned to give
Up all of my time if
It meant that they might love me … yeah

 

But this generation we’re breaking the chain
Turning tables going against the grain
Fighting against old programming
And we will get free
With love and belief

 

Breaking the
Breaking the (chain)
Breaking the (chain)
Breaking the (chain)
Breaking the (chain)
Breaking the (chain)
Breaking the (chain)
Breaking the (chain)
Breaking the chain
Breaking the chain
Breaking the chain
Breaking the chain
Breaking the chain

 

Feedback:
“Mysterious and enigmatic, but still sweet and welcoming.”
“Not only catchy as hell – it’s lyrically spot on. This is not just a song, it’s a call to action.
“Irresistibly catchy and alluring.”

 

Writing: I’m mostly about the mood and movement of the song. I write a lot of dark lyrics so in that case sometimes it’s better if the overall mood of the song is more upbeat. I like when the lyrical message and the mood are somewhat in contrast, I think it makes it more powerful.

 

Production: I’ll often start by laying down guitar chords and vocals, or cello. If I don’t have chords yet then I’ll start with sound design finding a lead instrument sound that I like, then fiddle around with chord progressions on the keyboard.
Usually, I go with chords and rough vocals, then build the rest of the elements around it, so the beat/percussive elements and extra harmonic layers like synths, etc., sound effects, maybe a lead instrumental line, then re-record the final vocals at the end.

 

Mood: Introspective.

 

Collaboration:
Bristol Reggae Orchestra
Rotem Sivan
Momo Khan & Meindel
Nel Gabriel
Oz

 

Performance and Recording: I don’t remember my first time performing on stage as I started playing the cello so young; I was probably about five years old the first time I performed!
The first time in the studio was awful – I was recording lead vocals for someone else’s project, in a style that was really not at all my style, plus I had zero studio experience. So the songwriter/producer was getting really frustrated at not getting the takes how they wanted and I left feeling like a total failure.

 

Songwriting: Random lyrics will come to me at random times and I write them down or record them in voice notes… then I’ll either finish writing them later by getting inspiration from re-reading them, or find groups of lyrics that somehow go together.

 

Multi-Genre: I think these are a big part of creative innovation – especially in the context of modern technology, but I think all pioneering artists have been called to experiment and find new sounds.
However, making something that perfectly captures the sounds of a particular genre can also be a very satisfying exercise and one should probably do more to improve one’s production.

 

Inspiration: It’s always been a part of my life and music appears in my head all the time … lyrics come randomly whenever I’m in a meditative mode, or when I’m surrounded by white noise like in the shower…

 

Vocals: I have a Rhode mic with a vocal shield – standard home studio set-up – and currently, I record in my attic studio which is all wooden cladding, low ceiling, and lots of sloping angles.

 

Software: Ableton Live.

 

Song: ‘Love + Belief’ is trippy, slow-burning synth-pop with a self-love message – somewhere between Portishead and Billie Eilish. A vulnerable memoir, carried in by a haunting synth hook, flips into a drivingly hopeful chorus about breaking patterns of inherited pain and realizing your power for positive change.
I’ve struggled with self-belief and feeling disconnected, and when I wrote this song I hoped it could help other people like myself. It’s about finding a way to self-love and finding that conviction in yourself, that you can transform inherited pain into progress and find new paths.

 

Artist’s Name: I wanted a name that isn’t instantly obvious if it’s ‘male’ or ‘female’. We are all made of light and darkness, stardust and flesh, and I wanted the artist’s name to evoke this contrast and duality. Stan or Stanley represents the masculine, Lei is feminine. Lei is the name for the feminine essence in the creation of a very dear old friend, and the name of a soul journeying through many lifetimes in a story that I was once entrusted with translating. Stanley was an old nickname of mine; it was also my late grandpa’s name. Grandpa Stanley was the reason that I received a musical education.
Album’s Title: AIPOD is an acronym for Artist in Process of Development. This album is a collection of tracks that span many years of songwriting, from my teenage years to just now. As it’s almost completely self-produced and these are my first years of learning music production I’m very aware of my ongoing development and consider this is a snapshot of where I’m at right now in terms of my sound.

 

Press:
Right Chord Music

 

York Calling

 

 

This third and final single from her upcoming debut album is trippy, slow-burning synth-pop with an empowering self-love message.
Carried in by a haunting synth hook and teased by reverberating vocal chops, the hypnotically vulnerable lead vocal flips into a drivingly hopeful chorus. This is a more minimalist, electronic piece from the Toulouse-based artist whose evolving indie sound started from folky roots.
Love + belief is about breaking patterns of inherited pain and realizing your power for positive change… StanLei said, “I wrote and produced this song hoping that it would help other people like me who struggle with self-belief and emotional connection. It’s about finding self-love and that conviction in yourself, that you can transform inherited pain into progress and find new paths.”
StanLei is a singer, songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist based near Toulouse (FR). After a childhood of cello lessons and a decade soaking in the rich electronic scene of her adopted hometown, Bristol (UK), she spent four years traveling worldwide as a nomadic seasonal worker before buying studio gear and launching into the production of her debut album (July 2021).

 

 

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