Date of Birth: 5th January, 1997
Location: Mosta, Malta
Star Sign: Capricorn
Media-related occupation: Singer-songwriter
Kurt Abela has been writing songs for as long as he can remember. However, he only started taking it seriously about three years ago when he teamed up with Janelle Borg to create music, with the latter composing and Kurt writing the accompanying lyrics.
But it was only when his sister Katia Abela joined in that Oxygyn was formed. They began releasing music as a united project, inspired by the likes of Ed Sheeran, James Bay, Daughter, and Broods, due to the intense emotion that they portray through their work.
Oxygyn released their first single, Corrode, back in December 2015, which was followed by Wolves Without Teeth in September 2016.
Image credit: Wolves Without Teeth Cover, by Carl Tanti and edited by David Ellul
What has so far been your best experience in your music career?
Although all our endeavours have been wonderful opportunities for my growth as a musician, the best experience by far – ever since Oxygyn was launched – was the release of Corrode. This is because for the first time ever, I had the pleasure of witnessing a song which I wrote myself being produced into a track which was well received by the public.
Is there any particular growth in the writing of music in Malta?
Local music in Malta has been growing rapidly, with new opportunities arising constantly. However, motivation and assertiveness are required key personality traits in people who’d like to move forward in the industry. On the other hand, there is much development left to be done in Malta, and more attention to be given towards the arts, yet we are currently on the right track.
Wolves Without Teeth depicts a statement contemporary dance inspired by the famous painting, The Lovers, by Rene Magritte. Could you tell us a bit more about this?
Laura and Lucia Buhagiar are the protagonists of the video, performing their own original choreography with both their faces covered. As they attempt to keep their relationship alive, the lovers fail to embrace each other because of the invisible forces tearing them apart. This is clear in the chorus’ lyrics: “And I run from wolves, tearing into me without teeth”.
Image credit: Mia Sarah
If you had to meet an artist from the past, who would it be and what would you talk about?
I would love to meet the legend that is David Bowie, and talk about his ability to adapt to different music genres over time, and his fluidity to change all aspects of his image over and over again.
What support systems would you like to see for the local music industry?
I believe that all forms of art should be given as much importance as any other occupation, as art is the way through which humanity breathes and lives on to become a complex framework. Art is the way to gain an insight into the inner workings of behaviour and emotion, and is therefore essential to society. So, more support should be given to Maltese talent which is not in the limelight and has the potential to expand.