vōx | I Am Not A God

by Megumi Murphy

ALIONA KONONOVA   coat and stylist's own hat and bottoms.

ALIONA KONONOVA coat and stylist's own hat and bottoms.

A perfect harmony of raw, vulnerable and strong. This is vōx. An LA-based singer-songwriter who doubles as a fashion icon. She has been on the journey of finding her self-worth and let me tell you, she has been growing. Possessing the voice of an angel, she contrasts it by exploring distortion in her music because although life is beautiful, it isn’t always smooth sailing, right?

Anxiety and depression can distort the way people see life and vōx creates her music as a way to connect with those who are struggling with something similar. I Am Not A God is an EP for healing. It is a voice for the issue of mental health. It is a collection of songs made in hopes that people will no longer feel alone.

Within all of the distortion, her ethereal voice shines through, and we are greeted with tranquility. In the same sense, vōx hopes that her music helps her listeners find moments of tranquility in this world that can feel so distorted. 

We had the pleasure of speaking with vōx to learn about her spiritual journey, fashion style, and EP. Check it out below.

ALIONA KONONOVA   coat,   WESTERN AFFAIR   boots,  and stylist's own hat and bottoms.

ALIONA KONONOVA coat, WESTERN AFFAIR boots, and stylist's own hat and bottoms.

Vōx is Latin for “voice,” but can you explain the reasoning behind choosing that name?

The name, I took it from this phrase that I had tattooed many years before I started the project but it’s basically ‘a voice and nothing more’ in Latin. I just knew that I wanted a name that was short and strong and gender neutral. It just occurred to me probably because I had it tattooed. 

You’re also known for you fashion style. What inspires your style? What do you think about when choosing what you are going to wear?

It’s mostly just a gut feeling. It’s hard to explain and I think. You know, friends will send me things that they think i’ll like and I don't like them at all, and it’s just that I like what I like. And I mean that is style right? It’s so specific and it’s like I see it and I feel it deeply. 

What is your favorite song to perform live?

Cry Me A River, it’s a Julie London Cover. The one from the 1950’s, the jazz standard. When I perform it, I do acapella and its just a really beautiful song. 

RUI ZHOU   bodysuit and legwear

RUI ZHOU bodysuit and legwear

What is your relationship with religion and spirituality? How has it evolved over time?

When I was younger I grew up in the church and I would say it taught me a lot of bad things. It taught me to not see myself as worthy and like messed up my relationship to my sexuality and my body and all these other things. I think Im almost only at the very beginning of my journey with my spirituality. I wish that I was further along and could explain how I feel about it but it’s like first I have to unpack all of the things I was taught when I was younger before I can really discover what it’s going to mean in the future. So it’s like, I have no idea where I'm going with my spirituality but at this moment it’s much more like a feeling. I would say I feel the most spiritual when I'm connecting with nature and when I feel that I am a very tiny piece. When you feel really small when you're looking out into the ocean. I think that feels like spirituality to me because I feel like I'm just this tiny piece of this huge world. 

I know that this is something that is a continuous process and experience, but how have you found strength against the anxiety and struggles that you mention in your songs?

I think the thing that gives me the most strength is connecting with other people. Because I feel like the beginning of me writing songs and connecting with music when I was much younger was all in like a lot of anxiety and a lot of depression with music being the thing that got me through that. So now being able to be very vulnerable through writing songs and telling my stories and have the full circle of people coming up to me after shows or sending me a DM telling me their stories and us all connecting and not feeling alone because of that, I think that’s the most healing aspect of sharing the art. 

RUI ZHOU   bodysuit,   HARDEMAN   boots, and stylist’s own hat.

RUI ZHOU bodysuit, HARDEMAN boots, and stylist’s own hat.

You have such a uniqueness about you. Since starting your career where have you seen yourself grow and where have you struggled?

The biggest one would probably be performance. Before I had this project I was just playing piano and singing and that was everything I did on stage and I remember I would just go on stage and sit at this keyboard and not be able to look out int the audience at all. That growth has been really insane. I mean the strength that Ive gotten from being vulnerable and telling my story having reflected back with love from people has just opened up performance for me in a huge way.

What is the general vibe of the room when you are performing? 

It’s probably quite intense. My show is a bit like “performance art-ish” and I try not to break character when I'm on stage so I think like it might be a little intimidating as an audience member. But, I hope that they feel the love that I'm trying to share and when I leave stage I always try to be the most ‘me’ possible because I don't want people to feel intimidated to come up and say hi. 

What experience do you want people to have when they listen to your EP, I Am Not A God?

I hope that they can connect to it. I hope that they hear the stories and they see themselves reflected back. Maybe they feel less alone or maybe they feel like they understand themselves better. 

PHLEMUNS     jacket.

PHLEMUNS jacket.

Photographed by Lucy Sandler.

Styled by: Silken Weinberg.

Makeup: Alexandra French.