Who TF are Ora the Molecule?

We caught up with multinational avant-garde pop group Ora the Molecule to shed some light on one of the most unique projects in contemporary music

Inspiration for artists can come from a variety of places, be it a concept, an experience, a vision, a place, or anything and everything in between. Ora the Molecule are a left-field avant-garde pop music group that take inspiration from their fictional namesake. This is the tale of the plight of a molecule, a tiny part of a much larger picture, living within something else, not knowing how or why it is there, but existing nontheless.

This concept may be a little perplexing, but it has left the multinational trio with the basis for their unique sound. Nora Schjelderup, Jan Blumentrath and Sju Smatanova have immersed themselves in the life of Ora the Molecule, and as a result have been crafting emotionally rich pop soundscapes such as latest single ‘When Earth Took a Breath’. We caught up with Ora the Molecule to attempt to gain some kind of deeper understanding of the outfit.

Who TF are Ora the Molecule?

A personified molecule, that is everywhere and nowhere, together with other molecules, constructing our reality.

How long have you been making music?

Nora wrote her first song when she was eight years old, Jan released his first techno track at age fifteen and Sju has been drumming for four years now. 

Why do you make music?

The excitement of making something meaningful out of nothing. It is also a universal language, making the world into a playground without having to learn all the languages. 

What are your biggest influences?

Cocteau Twins, Fleetwood Mac and Kraftwerk. 

What would you say has been your best moment so far?

When the scary looking looking security guard danced to our song during our performance at the Øya festival.

What do you want people to take away from your music?

A feeling of belonging, both in their own body and in the world. Call it unity in diversity.

What’s your dream “I’ve made it” moment?

If we hear one of our songs in the elevator somewhere in Kongo. 

We love your latest single ‘When Earth Took a Breath’, what can you tell us about the track?

This song was made so fast. We were staying in a mouldy basement in London around Christmas time, it was a super cold morning and we were in a rush to go somewhere. Jan has been playing around on logic with this synth melody. Nora insisted on free-styling on top, literally five minutes before we had to go. She sang the whole song in about ten minutes. 

How do you think that having an array of cultural backgrounds and different living environments has impacted your sound?

I like to think that it has made it more diverse and boundary-less. It feels free making it, we rarely confine ourselves by a certain genre, we just do what feels good. Hopefully this free floating process is translated into the listeners experience too. 

What is next for Ora the Molecule?

Releasing more music. And we are just about to go on a EU tour now opening up for the American band Young The Giant. We are mega excited for this, as much as we love their music, they are also good friends.

And finally, who is your biggest fan right now?

Nora’s mother. 

When Earth Took A Breath is out now via Uhh Ahh Records/ eOne Music UK

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