Shannon Cosgrove // Publicist
Swedish/Ugandan singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and dancer Pheeyownah explores lust, empowerment, love and insecurity over atmospheric R&B harmonies and poetic lyrics. Her debut album SILVER comes out on May 3 via Labrador Records.
With an aura reminiscent of Björk, SZA, FKA Twigs and Flume, Pheeyownah gets more personal, extroverted and vulnerable than ever on this album. She explains, “I’ve written straight from the heart with SILVER but kept the poetic traits I’m so fond of. Writing in riddles has been a way of hiding behind words, but now I’m stepping out to expose myself fully.”
Pheeyownah took a DIY approach before, releasing music on her own since so many of the record label proposals she got wanted control over her and her sound. After her debut single “Strugglin’” came out in 2012, she teamed up with Labrador Records for her zero9zero9 EP in 2016, getting to do things her own way. “Mountain Peak, Sea Deep” from the EP is now closing in on 1 million streams on Spotify.
Born Feyona Naluzzi in southern Stockholm, after her parents fled from Uganda to Sweden in the 1980s, Pheeyownah sang gospel and discovered she wanted to be an artist at a young age. She soon joined the all-female Swedish dance crew JUCK (named after the Swedish word for a grinding hip movement), provoking and exploring contemporary debates on gender, sexuality, femininity and ethnicity by moving in ways unconventional for a woman. She’s also been doing solo one-woman shows.
Pheeyownah provokes in all of her art and this album is no exception. With rich and heavy beats infused with melodic, spacious landscapes and hints of industrial sounds with no-filter lyrics, it flows with musical and spoken interludes throughout. Produced by Juliann Julian, the album is about coming to terms with the fact that life doesn’t always turn out the way you want it to but making the best of things, from title track “Silver” to second single “Gold” and beyond. In her own words, “It’s about the ups and downs of love, insecurities, self-doubt but also empowerment and finding the courage to be vulnerable without feeling less than or weak.”