It seems like with the overwhelming accessibility the internet brings to musicians across the globe, we’re seeing artists create music that they want to, rather than what the labels want them to. The ability to get these songs to the masses is easier than ever, making the backing of a label something that is helpful, but certainly not necessary.

Dia Frampton has tried going the label route, and she’s done with it. After years of Meg and Dia and some additional side projects that stemmed from her time of the Voice, she’s ready to make what she wants to make. Teaming up with composer/film scorer Joseph Trapanese (Tron, Oblivion), they’ve created a cinematic musical journey that is anything but pop music.

We had a chance to speak with Dia for a few minutes to ask her about this project. Check out what she had to say about Archis.

TMN: Hi Dia. Thank you for taking a minute to chat with us. Talk to us a little bit about your new project.

Dia: Archris is an entirely new project. This is the first track to intro the new EP. I’ve been writing with so many people in LA and working with so many different producers, and I got a little burnt out. I called up my friend Joe and I said “I really want to make a new EP. It’s been 3 years since my last release, and I really want to do something special. Are you interested?”

This is a project between Joseph Trapanese and myself. To tell you a little bit about him, he’s not a pop producer. He’s a composer.

TMN: He does film scoring, correct?

Dia: Yeah, he did TRON with Daft Punk and Oblivian with M83. I said I wanted to have that feel to a movie…I want it to have that climax. I want it to have those moments where the music says something for you as well. It didn’t have to be as busy as a pop song with so much production. Joe is so good at just putting in what needs to be there, not adding in stuff.

One thing I love about this EP is that so much of it is done live. It’s so amazing to have an EP that has so many souls in it. It was so cool to watch a nine piece string session go on! We got a live harp player in there. A lot of the album is live, and in this day in age, it’s hard to get live strings and brass on a record. We wanted it to be it’s own thing.

I had been so used to people saying, “we can’t do that because it won’t get on the radio.” Joe never says that. In fact, he usually takes it over the top.

It was great to make this with someone who is basically family to me. He’s such a close, close friend.

TMN: Talk to us about ‘Blood’ in particular.

Dia: This song is very personal. I wrote it on my own, in my room at a not so good time in my life. It’s really special. It’s like producing a diary entry. This whole EP is an adventure, but it’s also going through some changes. I always had a problem with the pop world because I would be writing, or going in to talk to a producer and I would always hear, “the girls want to hear about strength and girl power.”

I always wanted to sing about sad stuff, or painful things, or being afraid. They never wanted me to write about that. I believe in strength, but I believe in vulnerability. I’m a very vulnerable person. There’s things that have happened in my life that have just caused change and I’m never the person who has been super optimistic about it.

It’s about overcoming something but not coming out on the other end looking like Beyonce. It’s about coming out and having those dark sides with you that you endured along the way.

TMN: In theory, having someone who scores films makes a ton of sense, based on the fact that scoring a film is meant to to add a dramatic effect on what you’re seeing visually. So, this is adding that dramatic effect to adding what you’re hearing with your lyrics.

Dia: Absolutely. He did such a good job with that. That’s really what we wanted to do.

TMN: Your experiences with Meg and Dia, solo projects and The Voice – what elements of those have you taken with you into this project?

Dia: Going through the Voice, getting into the songwriting world, Los Angeles, Hollywood…it’s really sparkly and cool. At the same time though, it’s like, “Let’s write a song about female empowerment!” There’s something different about writing something in your room; writing about something that happened to you. That’s what we did with Meg and Dia. Sometimes we wrote very obscure, but very intimate lyrics.

There’s a song we “Let Me Love” on the EP that I could not write lyrics too for the life of me. I had a conversation with a friend that was extremely intense. It was about my life and my past. I literally went straight to my notebook after that conversation and wrote all the lyrics for that song within 10 minutes.

It’s all the words that I wish I could have told that person in that conversation, but I just couldn’t say. Even rehearsing that song, I get teary eyed because…if they only knew this song was about them…

There’s been times in my life where I’ve felt a little phony, to get a little Catcher in the Rye on you. There’s been times where I’ve thought, “what am I even doing here?” I finally feel like this is what I want to say.

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