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Zhala’s haunting melodies recollect the shimmery times when pop music was serious and there were no barriers between fine arts and popular culture. Using Stockholm as her base, but with the mindset of a modern day transnational, Zhala’s music is futuristic, labeled by the artist herself as “cosmic pop.” Zhala (Rifat) was born and raised in Stockholm, Sweden, the youngest of three children. A house full of music ranging from hip-hop to Middle Eastern tunes to alternative rock influenced Zhala to begin writing her own music in her teens. She became very involved in the local art and club scene and she further developed her talents as an artist through dance, singing and her live shows. Eventually, she caught the attention of Swedish superstar Robyn, who signed her to her Konichiwa Records in 2014.
While recording music for her first release, Zhala has continued to tour, including playing at festivals (Bestival, Isle of Wight, Way Out West), a performance at the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit at Stockholm’s Moderna Museet, and an opening slot for Robyn in London, Berlin and Stockholm.
Zhala released her first single, the hypnotic “Slippin’ Around,” earlier this year, and followed it up with her EP “Prophet.” She performed the title track with Robyn at the Swedish Grammys in February. Her next EP, “I’m In Love,” will be released this summer, to be followed by her debut album this fall. She co-produced all music with Mathias Oldén.