Kaiit talks opening for SZA and new music at Laneway Festival 2020

The neo-soul artist also discusses her One Direction fandom and which Aussie artists she loves

Before Kaiit performed to her fans – and her family, whom she quips are all “reluctantly” at the “hectic” festival – at St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival in Melbourne this year, NME Australia got time with her to talk her momentous ARIA win, what new music she’s working on and playing festivals.

Laneway is Kaiit’s first touring festival (“Consecutive days scare the crap out of me”). It’s taken the Melbourne singer some time to come round to music festivals in general: the first fest she was ever at was one she was booked at. Her first concert? One Direction – and before you ask, Harry Styles’ her favourite.

Last year, Kaiit released her breakthrough project ‘Miss Shiney’, which nabbed the Best Soul/R&B Album title at the ARIA Awards – a triumph she pronounces “wild”. Now, she’s working on the follow-up, and the recording process has so far taken her to both Bali and London. The new music, she says, is “more reflective of what I’m doing and where I feel like I’m at at the moment.” It will, she promises, be “fire”.

In 2019, Kaiit also notched another career milestone when she opened for SZA – what she recalls as a “super, super surreal” experience. When asked to put on artists she loves, she named Adrian Eagle, Agung Mango – whom NME Australia also sat down with for a chat at Laneway – and Tones And I, who put on a stellar homecoming set at the fest’s Melbourne stop.