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Nite Jewel

Idioma disponible: inglés
As Nite Jewel, Los Angeles musician and multimedia artist Ramona Gonzalez makes synth-based compositions that twist 1980s R&B through an experimental filter. The balance of lo-fi production and a particularly abstract approach to groove on her 2008 debut full-length, Good Evening, would help create the template for the chillwave movement that followed shortly thereafter, but Gonzalez progressed significantly with each new album. Nite Jewel collaborated with artists like Dâm-Funk and Julia Holter as she dabbled with pop, funk, and dance-oriented approaches to her always-morphing sound, delivering both highly accessible, bright work like 2017's Real High, and more stylistically challenging material such as 2021's No Sun. Born in Oakland and raised in Berkeley by musically inclined parents, Gonzalez studied philosophy at Occidental College. She remained involved in music throughout her studies, playing in a series of rock bands with her husband, Cole M. Grief-Neill (later a member of Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti), creating ambient synth pieces for sound-based installation art, and eventually starting her solo career as Nite Jewel. Despite production help and occasional co-writing assistance from Grief-Neill and live reinforcement from Emily Jane, she records exclusively on a portable eight-track cassette recorder, building up her songs with layers of analog synths and drum machines before adding her heavily processed vocals. After a self-released six-song CD-R titled My CD, which caught the ear of New York's taste-making Other Records, and the What Did He Say 12" in 2008, Nite Jewel issued the full-length Good Evening through Human Ear Music. In 2009, Nite Jewel's profile grew among the indie rock community with the release of the Want You Back 12" on Italians Do It Better, a self-released CD of demos called You F O, and two 7" singles. In 2010, she collaborated with Dâm-Funk on a single for Stones Throw and released a late-summer EP, Am I Real?, on her own label Gloriette. 2011 saw Gonzalez busy with more collaborations. Various 7"s and the It Goes Through Your Head EP on Mexican Summer added to her discography, along with collaborations with sound artists Julia Holter and Jason Grier. Following this slew of tracks on various labels, Nite Jewel inked a deal with Secretly Canadian and began work on her least-murky set of recordings to date. The highly polished full-length One Second of Love arrived in March 2012. The following year, Gonzalez worked with Bay Area rapper/producer Droop-E on the song "N the Traffic"; they expanded their collaboration as the duo AMTHYST, releasing the Euphoria EP in 2016. Gonzalez also returned with her third Nite Jewel album, Liquid Cool. Released on Gloriette, the set reflected the more independent, experimental side of her music. Later in 2016, she reunited with Dâm-Funk for the Nite-Funk EP, and worked with him again on the following year's Real High. A more pop-oriented set, the album also featured contributions from Grief-Neill, Droop-E, and Julia Holter. The companion EP Obsession, which featured alternate mixes and B-sides, arrived that year via Italians Do It Better. In 2018, Gonzalez began a PhD in musicology at UCLA, and it wouldn't be until 2021 that she returned with her next album, No Sun. Recorded after the end of her 12-year marriage, No Sun was darker, moodier, and more experimental than much of Gonzalez's earlier Nite Jewel output.
© K. Ross Hoffman & Fred Thomas /TiVo
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