Anytime I have a bad couple of days, I get a haircut. It’s a simple solution for a sometimes complex problem. Once my favourite Vietnamese hairstylist with broken English often interrupted with a rich, earth shattering cackle, gets her finely manicured hands to work with her trusty rusty scissors and buzzy, shavy thingy, the world changes for me.
I see those clumps of detested grey follicles fall to their gentle death on the barbershop floor, like that of a slow motion hitman after getting his final burst of karmic retribution in bullet form from a once scorned criminal element. Hey, remember me? Billy Blanco from the Bronx, sucker. I always feel a sense of relief with that last death rattle from follicles that have seen way too much for one brief lifetime.
Sometimes, if I feel especially generous with myself, I may buy a pair of slacks. This time of year however, more appropriately calls for a t shirt with a logo that really spells out who I am, and shares it with society. Like, I’m with Stupid.
I currently have my eye out on one that features a close up of Matthew McConaughey’s gloriously moustached character in the 1993 film Dazed and Confused, with his catchphrase, Alright, Alright, Alright. Just don’t tell anyone. I’m pretty sure I’ll be the only one wearing it and it will really capture pretty much all I want to convey to the outside world that day.
It’s important to be able to transgress one’s identity. To explore new boundaries. It gives people new perspective, renewed vigour. Whether it’s altering one’s appearance, learning a new language or a new instrument; both by the way, proven methods for altering your mood and improving cognitive functions.
I think of all of this when I listen to Aphty Khea. Aphty is the latest reincarnation of Chloe Boleti, a former youtube star previously known for belting out cover tunes over the interwebz before recently transforming into an alien hybrid, producing gorgeous, slow and deliberate trip hop beats punctuated with haunting, passion tinged vocals.
Aphty Khea performs with (left) Roats Miguel
According to her latest press release,
While on a daring quest of self-enlightenment, Khea descends from her starship Peacebloom as an outsider looking in on a world marked by banality. Armed with a visual mix of art and music, she is a “sonic healer” in the form of a chameleon humanoid – reflected through the vivid body paint seen in the EP’s accompanying video – who stumbles upon Earth from a parallel galaxy to find the planet gripped by omnipresent staleness; poisoned by a myopic perspective and destructive world view, and makes it her mission to breathe life into it.
Whether Aphty’s transformation came after a peyote soaked vision quest in the desert, or a strategic lightbulb moment over cornflakes and tea, we’ll probably never know. But with the recent loss of everyone’s favourite starman in the sky, it’s comforting to know there are others out there unafraid and brave enough to shed their uniforms of normality for genuine, NASA designed, bonafide space suits. In the meantime, I’ll have my haircuts. And maybe a new T Shirt.
Aphty’s debut, self-titled EP comes out July 8. Listen to it below, and pre-order it today on Itunes.
All photos courtesy of Aphty Khea on Facebook.