Taking Flight



Bird Songs of a Killjoy

Listening to Bedouine feels like riding a bike down an empty street on a warm evening. L. A.-based singersong­writer Azniv Korkejian makes peaceful folk songs that move with ease. On her second album, Bird Songs of a Killjoy, she picks up where her 2017 debut, Bedouine, left off, combatting the harshness of heartbreak and loneliness with softness. For Bird Songs of a Killjoy, it’s hard to not make a connection between the song’s motions and how birds move. Like a maple tree dotted with red buds in early spring, birds flock to this record. Their presence is a constant, emphasizin­g the freedom that Korkejian sings about: “I’ll look away so that you can fly away,” she sings on the stunning “Bird.”

Another constant is how sublime Korkejian’s voice sounds. A warmth radiates from her as she fluidly moves between sadness and playfulnes­s. On “One More Time,” a relationsh­ip ends and loneliness feels enormous as she sings, “I don’t think I could really say leaving has felt different from staying.” But when the chorus hits, her grief turns into acceptance and she lightly repeats, “I’m gonna let you be.” On brighter-sounding tracks like “Sunshine Sometimes,” “Matters of the Heart” and album highlight “When You’re Gone,” Korkejian moves buoyantly alongside bouncy instrument­ation, determined to get somewhere, but willing to enjoy the journey along the way. And what a beautiful sounding journey it is. (Spacebomb Records)

Why were you inspired to use bird imagery in your songs?

I don’t really know why. In some ways it felt like lowhanging fruit. It’s a really easy metaphor to make, and at times I felt kind of guilty about it. That’s partially the reason why I named the record what I did, because I wanted to wear it as a reaction to being insecure about it. I certainly didn’t set out to make a bunch of bird metaphors.

What do you want listeners to take away?

I feel like there’s only so much that I can do, and [the album is] truly just me expressing these really deeply personal feelings. If people relate to it, that’s great, if they don’t, that’s okay too. But I wanted the album to be really fluid. I wanted to be a little bit more conscious about the ways the songs transition into each other, and I think that’s something that I will continue to be more conscious of.

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