10 Questions with... Josef Salvat

The Australian electropop musician has just released his second album 'Modern Anxiety'

Our new Q&A series sees us throwing rapidfire questions at musicians to get their most instinctive answers. There's no beating around the bush here - just honest, straightforward insights into their creative minds.

Australian electropop artist Josef Salvat has just released his second album 'Modern Anxiety'.

The 32-year-old got his big international break when his cover of Rihanna's 'Diamonds' was picked up by Sony; he has since collaborated with numerous artists like GRYFFIN and Tourist, and released debut album 'Night Swim' in 2015.

'Modern Anxiety' is about “the search for empathy and compassion, kindness and connection, and the conclusion that it is quite absent in our social exchanges these days.”

1. What’s the music that you listened to growing up, that you still listen to today?
Most of it, actually. I was listening to Art of Noise - ‘(Who's Afraid of) The Art of Noise’ just last week, which was on in the house a lot as a kid. Nina Simone, Billie Holiday and Blondie are also all regular returns and soundtracked my childhood

2. In three words, describe the minute before you walk on stage.
Focus to devastate.

3. How do you wind down after a gig?
Once upon a time, it would be by meeting people who had come to it and talking with them, as the adrenaline subsided. Now it’s a drink or few, and talking to people.

4. What’s the one song you wish you’d written or recorded first?
Probably 'Diamonds'.

5. You can only have three albums on your phone/in your house at any one time - what three would you pick for today?
Perfume Genius - ‘Set me on Fire Immediately’
Angel Olsen - ‘All Mirrors’
My own obviously, but also Rosalia - ‘El Mal Querer’

6. Name one record, one book and one film that everyone should hear / read / see.
Book - ‘The Overstory’ by Richard Powers
Film - Thelma and Louise - I only watched it this year and I feel like it’s near perfect and completely uncompromising.
Record - Josef Salvat ‘Modern Anxiety’.

7. Pick the director and lead actor(s) for a biopic about your life.
Almodovar and Paul Mescal (the guy from Normal People)

8. You’re ordering take-away, what do you get?
Vietnamese (Pho) is usually the go-to.

9. Describe your perfect day off.
Out in the middle of nowhere, away from the city, exploring with someone I love and my dog.

10. Tell us, in one sentence, why we should come to your next gig.
I mean, after Corona, it’s going to be a unbelievably epic exorcism and spiritually cathartic experience for everybody in the room I think, and I wouldn’t want to miss that personally.

BONUS QUESTION: Recommend a podcast and tell us why we should subscribe to it.
Just started listening to a new one called ‘True Spies’ (each episode about real life spies, for example Valerie Plame and the sorts of skills they developed and the sorts of hijinks they got up to) and was legitimately not bored once - but my safe bet is ‘Seriously…’ from BBC4 which is an episode a week about a new interesting topic and almost always delivers the goods and has a huge back catalogue to plumb.


'Modern Anxiety' is out now.