In conversation with Amelie Lens on her recent collaboration with INEEDAIR
The Belgian DJ, producer, and Lenske head-honcho, Amelie Lens, has released a T-Shirt with the vegan fashion brand INEEDAIR. The t-shirt is a visualization of Amelie’s heavy, yet energy-driven sets and acts as part of her merch. INEEDAIR focuses on producing cruelty-free fashion and donates part of the proceedings to charity. KALTBLUT caught up with Amelie to discuss the inspiration behind the collaboration, activism and what it’s like being a DJ in times of Corona, when touring is completely off the table.
KALTBLUT: How and when did the idea to collaborate with INEEDAIRon an exclusive T-Shirt come up?
Amelie: I’m close with the team behind INEEDAIR, and have supported them since day one. When they asked me why I never had any real merchandise of my own, one thing led to another and we decided to try to work on a nice T-Shirt together, without it being typical merchandise.
KALTBLUT: Why the brand ‘INEEDAIR’?
Amelie: It’s a young brand, but I really value what they stand for and how they work. Their products are animal cruelty-free, they go for high quality for reasonable prices and it’s all made in Europe. The labels inside the T-Shirts are made with recycled threads. They also donate to charities I personally care for as well, and they also invest in giving a platform to upcoming artists by doing interviews and spreading their message.
KALTBLUT: What’s the inspiration behind the T-Shirt’s design?
Amelie: Since I did not want it to be typical merchandise, I wanted to use a track name that meant a lot to me. So I chose ‘Energize’, as it’s one of my favourite tracks that I’ve made. It’s simple, but effective on the dance floor. I also feel that Energize, as a word, fits very well with me, especially within my DJ sets and what I try to create on the dancefloor, as well as my personality. This, in combination with the trippy visual, some words from my tracks that remind me of the trajectory I’ve made as an artist, and the cute smiley face just adds some positivity.
KALTBLUT: 5% of the profits will be donated to a charity. Which charities are those and how are they chosen?
Amelie: Hand in Hand(anti-racism organization) and Cavaria (LGBTQ+ organization), these charities have been chosen by INEEDAIR, I think these organizations are doing important things in Belgium so I wanted to keep these for the collaboration as well.
KALTBLUT: With this being your first fashion collaboration now, do you think you’ll ever delve into the fashion world?
Amelie: Not really, I do not see this as me doing ‘fashion’ since it’s just one T-Shirt. I’ve always loved fashion, but I’m really happy to be able to fully focus on my music. So, for now I feel like that’s what I want to focus on.
KALTBLUT: You’re very active on social media on animal rights and sustainability. How are you planning to incorporate this into your music career?
Amelie: Veganism is the most important thing in my life and I feel that most people confuse this with ‘eating plant based’, but veganism is not a personal dietary choice. To me, it’s very simple. It means that one life is not worth more than another, it’s about equality, compassion, love and fighting for a world against any kind of violence or oppression.
I became vegetarian for the animals, but after educating myself more, I became vegan not only for the animals, but also because I realised it’s a much deeper issue, it’s a social justice issue. Once you know and understand the truth about these matters it’s hard to look the other way and to find a balance on how much I should speak up about it, because people really misunderstand the very basics of it.
KALTBLUT: I’ve already touched on music. You’re a DJ, producer and label-boss. What’s it like for you at the moment to not be able to tour? Do you feel more or less inspired?
Amelie: I have very mixed feelings, and it’s almost as if I feel different every day! Most of the time I’m truly enjoying being home, having so much time to myself and for my friends and family. But I really miss touring, I’ve only played two shows over the last 8 months.
I started making music because I knew what kind of track and tools I wanted to play during my sets. Even up until today, all my tracks were made for the dancefloor, so I’m struggling to feel inspired and finish my tracks. For the label it’s great to have all this time, since I can really take time to listen to the track of the artists over and over! But it’s also weird to release an EP without getting to play it for a crowd.
KALTBLUT: What’s your favourite track right now?
Amelie: I’m sorry but I really cannot answer that.. I have soooo many favourite tracks. Even if I would have to give 20 that would be difficult!
Pre-order Amelie’s collaboration with INEEDAIR here.