We had the chance to catch up with icecolddiamond, who told us a bit more about his creative project and ‘Shattered’, the single off of his album ‘High/Life’.
Keep on reading to know more.
Hi Fran and welcome to the Nova Music blog. Thank you for the time you dedicate to this short interview.
Hi! Thank you for this opportunity. It’s a pleasure to have a little talk with you.
icecolddiamond is the moniker for your solo music project. What is it about?
I’ve been playing music since I was a child and started recording some songs at the end of my teenage years. When I listened to this music I felt that releasing it under my real name sounded too big and too personal and I felt the need to create a character.
Furthermore, my music shows the inner parts of my mind, and they are so different from what I usually show to people when I am just Fran.
So icecolddiamond and Fran Jiménez are two sides of the same coin? Two opposites that attract each other? Images mirrored on opposite sides? What’s the encoding and the relationship between the two?
icecolddiamond cannot live without Fran and vice-versa. While icecolddiamond is made out of the darkest parts of my persona, it has some bright parts too. The line that separates my alter ego from my real me is really difficult to find. I don’t even know it.
Actually, this last year I felt that I wasn’t able to know when I am Fran or when I am icd. Sometimes I even feel that icecolddiamond is eating Fran.
Singer, producer and pianist, your debut came in 2019 with the EYES album. What is your legacy and your musical background?
I remember being a child and telling my mother that I wanted to play piano. When I was eight years old, my grandfather, who used to play piano when he was young, bought a little keyboard and I learned how to play it by ear. Then, I started going to classes.
Later, I learned how to play the guitar and started doing singing lessons with a soprano. She taught me everything I know. I started to learn music production when I was fifteen and two years ago I started a university degree in Music and Sound Production here in Barcelona.
I never finished the degree because of a lot of different reasons but it was the moment when I decided to focus on my solo music career even if don’t have have a label or a team working with me.
You sing about mental health, rage, political issues, city life, not fitting in society, family problems, growing up too fast … while your musical inspirations range from Björk to David Bowie, from Kraftwerk to Marilyn Manson. What’s the order in this seemingly cacophonous chaos?
I write everything I live and everything I see. It’s the only way I know to put my mind in order. Making music has been the way I found to face traumas and express my ideas.
It’s also been a way to deal with anxiety and my mental health. I’ve been battling with depression for years and not being able to talk with people and isolating from everyone has been an issue I had to deal with and making music has been therapeutic.
I’ve always listened to lots of different music. Madonna, Dire Straits, ABBA, or Depeche Mode has always been sounding while I grew up at home. When I started high school I used to visit music blogs and I discovered artists such as Björk, Kraftwerk, or iamamiwhoami. The electronica they made really blew my mind. It was a whole new world to discover for me. Then, I had a little phase in which I was really interested in heavy metal and bands such as Marilyn Manson or Rammstein.
Icecolddiamond drank from all these influences and I created my very own sound. If you listen closely to my music you can hear heavy-metal guitar riffs but being played with synthesizers or pianos breaking in the middle of electronic chaos. I guess you can also see these influences in my image and visuals.
Let’s come to your latest project, the Shattered single and video. Here the tones are raw and dark, I would also say particularly explicit especially in the video. The message is strong, perhaps even too strong for some. So here’s the (provocative) question. Why is this heavy dose of dark rawness necessary to address certain issues?
Shattered was one of the last songs I wrote for my new album (which I really consider my first album). I wrote the song while quarantining alone in Barcelona. I spent almost three months at my house without barely talking with anyone. It was just me, my pianos, and my head. So, during the first weeks, I wrote some songs about everything I was thinking.
I really missed partying and meeting new people, getting wasted, and then ending up the night I-don’t-know-where. The last parties I had before the COVID-19 stroke on I really put myself in places I’ve never been before.
And, even if now I can say that I was doing wrong, during that moment I’ve been missing it. So, yes, the lyrics and the video are really explicit. In my head, everything is always really raw and I needed to reflect it that way on the music video. If we are going to have a sex scene, then we’ll have the hottest sex scene you will see.
I must confess that the first idea for the video was even more hardcore: we had different guys, prostitutes, and substance abuse but we decided to cut it down the day before shooting. When you listen to the new album everything will make sense.
The song seems to want to remove a veil from the most hypocritical do-gooders, while the video seems to want to go much further. Provoke to break the chains?
Art is meant to provoke and, consequently, to break chains. Everything seems to be done and if I can do something that shocks people I will definitely do it. I’ve been the shy and good guy all my life and sometimes it’s good to be a little wild. I want to break chains. I want to break stigmas. I want to do something that can be remembered in the future.
Any upcoming projects you are working on?
I’m releasing my album High/Life the 16th October and I have one more single to be released before it. I also want to shoot one or two more music videos for it. I have lots of ideas.
I’m really proud of this project because I can finally find that this is my sound, this is my work and these are my lyrics. If you listen to High/Life in full you can get to know me well. Also, I’m playing two gigs in January in Barcelona and I’m willing to play around Spain and Europe as soon as possible. The people who have come to the shows I’ve done before have said that I sound even better live.
Furthermore, I started writing some new things but it’s gonna take a really long while to finish. By the moment, just mark on your agenda that High/Life is coming in October!
Where curious and fans can find more about your music?
You can listen to the music I’ve been releasing on every music platform (Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal…) and YouTube, where you can find my music videos. I’m playing my music live in Barcelona on the 23rd and 24th January of 2021 at Art Lover Ground, an art exposition.
And, of course, you can follow me on my Instagram or Twitter, where I am called icecolddiamond_. And you can preorder the physical copy of High/Life at my webpage icecolddiamond.bandcamp.com
To know more about icecolddiamond and his music, find and follow icecolddiamond all over the web by checking the links below: