2019 was the last time we talked to Western Sydney darling, A.GIRL aka Hinenui-Terangi Tairua. Back then, fresh-faced and on the rise, her latest single ‘Play’ was doing the rounds on tastemakers lips, and was just her second release since her debut track ‘2142’. Though her discography was small in size, it was with her high quality-over-quantity hip-hop production and sultry voice, that led her to nab the winning spot in Triple J’s Unearthed Listen Out competition, landing her on the same stage as talented heavyweights Doja Cat, Denzel Curry and ScHoolboy Q. An enormous achievement for a then 19-year-old.
A year and a bit later, now 2021, A.GIRL continues on a similar trajectory, despite the barging shoulders of COVID-19. Lockdowns provided the young artist with new space to experiment with sound, honing new bars, a new mentality and learning lessons in the quiet that you wouldn’t normally in the bustle. ‘Luv Drunk’, her fourth and latest track, is proof of this. Surrounding the idea of infatuation, the single dips into a retrospective outlook, providing catchy hooks while swivelling around a story of seeing red flags too late. And so, in celebration of the new release, we got to chat to A.GIRL about the past year, what’s changed, and what we can expect for the future.
Hey A.Girl, Last time we talked to you was for New Locals in 2019. You’d just played your first festival, Listen Out. What’s changed since then?
Hey guys! Damn that seems like a lifetime ago now! A lot has changed since doing my first festival gig at Listen Out. As we all know COVID came through and messed the whole game up, but it really allowed me to have the time to myself, and I was able to dig deep into my music and personal life. I spent most of my time in studios the past year and I’ve had so much fun finding my new sound and experimenting with my bars during lockdown. A lot of hard work is happening behind closed doors, working towards some great things in the near future. It has been a pretty hectic journey so far.
‘Luv Drunk’ is your latest track. All of your songs differ in sound but ‘Luv Drunk’ seems to bring out something new, including a new look for you. Can you tell us a bit about it, but also what inspired this change-up?
The new look was really inspired by feeling like I had found something new within myself and anytime I feel like I’ve taken the next step in my life everything around me changes with it. Obviously, the biggest physical appearance change is my hair! She’s bald now, and I absolutely love it! It’s hella fucking liberating.
From your song ‘All Over You’ to ‘Luv Drunk’, there’s a bit of a switch in attitude, from being in love to it being over. Are the tracks connected? And is there a story behind it?
I didn’t intentionally mean to make these two tracks connect. But I definitely see the connection and love how that all accidentally came about. The story behind both tracks is just me explaining my personal love life. I feel many can relate to both because we’ve all met that someone that gave us butterflies in the pit of our stomach, we were at one point all over them. But then ‘Luv Drunk’ comes in to explain how being so infatuated with someone can stop you from seeing those red flags you skipped because you were too blind in love.
You’ve mentioned before that you have different alter egos, from ‘Lola’ (your third release) to Angel, to A.Girl herself. Do you try and hone these different personalities on different songs, or when do these personaslara come out?
I have MANY alter egos! It keeps me sane, believe it or not. Switching them up, I definitely hone into my ‘LOLA’ persona when I’m dressed in my best fit and I’m about to step out somewhere, and A.GIRL comes in when it’s business time. So that could be when replying to emails, stepping on stage or heading into the booth.
On a lot of your tracks, we can hear you singing but for one of your latest performances of Triple J Like a Version with Taka Perry, you’re spitting bars. Can we expect more of this from you? Or what kind of music are you looking to make in the future?
One hundred per cent! You can expect some more hard-hitting, heavy bars from me and my next couple of releases! I can’t keep teasing you’s forever.
You started coming up in 2019, and then 2020 was a write-off for many artists. After last year, what’s your approach to 2021 been so far in regards to your music and just you personally?
In regards to music, my approach has been to work as hard as you possibly can because COVID made me hungry! It also taught me to be patient and pace myself. Before COVID I was very impatient and eager to drop with no plan and only excitement, like many young artists are when they’re on the come-up. But I’ve come to learn that patience is key and to pace myself when the hype gets real. And personally, I’m just going through a big shift right now and learning a lot about myself, the things and the people around me. Big spiritual awakening this year for sure.
What music has been inspiring or influencing you lately?
Honestly, a lot of Australian music. Cult Shotta, Kid Laroi, Baarka, Free Souls, Lara Andallo, Ronin, Maxine Champ and so much more. I be listening to more and more Aussie artists and I love it. If I did have to pick one international artist that has been hella inspiring to me lately I’d say Coi Leray for sure she is steezy.
What’s on the cards for A.Girl in the future? Perhaps a debut Album or EP?
Hm perhaps perhaps. I know I said before I can’t keep teasing y’all but I can’t help it. But trust when there’s something you should know about my music you’ll know about it for sure.
Follow A.Girl here for more and check out her new single ‘Luv Drunk’ below.