Sydney singer songwriter Montaigne.
Sydney singer songwriter Montaigne. Contributed

Montaigne, the story behind the spellbinding voice

ONE of the most powerful and spellbinding voices to come out of the Australian music scene for years, Montaigne is still a teenager but her voice promises.

Montaigne's fresh and powerful vocals showcase talent beyond her 19 years, especially after releasing her latest single, Fantastic Wreck.

We spoke to Montaigne while she was at Centennial Parklands in Sydney, writing new songs, ahead of her Clip My Wings tour.

Where do your vocal skills come from?

I just sang a lot. Ever since I was a kid, I have been singing and singing and singing.

I always sang.

It's a subconscious thing I do when I am walking out in public or with friends, I'll sing to myself.

My friends will be like, 'do you know you are singing?' and I'm like, 'no!'

I read this interview that Bjork did. She never had singing lessons.

As a child she walked to and from school every day and living in Iceland it was isolated. She just sang out loud to nature. So she just kept on singing and she grew into a talented human being who can probably sing better than anyone in the world, quite frankly.

So you never had singing lessons?

Yeah, I never had singing lessons up until a few weeks ago just to teach me how to do warm ups and how to look after my voice on tour.

To be honest, my voice is all right.

I don't want to over-think the things I'm doing with my body.

I'm comfortable with the way I sing without being tutored.

Are you from Sydney?

I was born in Malaysia. My dad is Argentinean and my mum is Spanish-Filipino.

My dad was a professional soccer player in Malaysia. My dad was playing in the league in Malaysia when I was born.

We moved to Canberra when I was two years old and then to Sydney when I was five, so I grew up here.

What is the story behind Clip My Wings?

There is a very particular story behind the song that I cannot divulge or I would be in big trouble.

It's a quite a fresh story. I am not at the point where I can look back and laugh about it yet.

It's about something that happened to me and was an ongoing thing for a few years.

This song gives particular details about one pivotal moment which kind of changed my life earlier this year.

In Clip My Wings you sound different to the way you did in your previous releases. Why is that?

My vocal range has increased since my EP was released.

I was actually sick and with a sore throat when I recorded that EP and my voice wasn't at full strength.

This time there was nothing like that and also I am more confident in the studio and singing in front of other people than I was before.

At the Mullum Music Festival on Saturday, November 21.

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