Surrender to your desires with System Olympia’s “Sanctified”

System Olympia “Sanctified” artwork

We caught up with multi-talented producer, DJ, songwriter, and vocalist, System Olympia as she makes her highly anticipated return with the “Sanctified” EP. System Olympia’s unique blend of retro-futurist sounds and cutting-edge production has attracted a global fan base, offering listeners an immersive experience through pulsating beats and captivating atmospheres. Based in London, System Olympia draws inspiration from various sources, creating a timeless sound that has been well-received by critics and fans alike. She also hosts a monthly residency on NTS, showcasing a mix of genres and unreleased music. With her distinct style and successful label, Okay Nature Records, System Olympia solidifies her position as a standout artist in the industry.

KALTBLUT: Can you dive into the creative process behind your latest EP, “Sanctified”? What inspired its themes of love, longing, and emotional depth?

I didn’t really have a theme when I first started writing the EP, I never do. My records are like chapters of my life, they write themselves like the days that I live. Every once in a while I stop and look at what I have been living/writing and they become records.

KALTBLUT: The title track “Sanctified” features Working Men’s Club. How did this collaboration come about and what did they bring to the table that was unique?

Me and Syd have a friend in common (the talented music producer and multi-instrumentalist Tom Sharkett from the band W.H.Lung) . We were fans of each other and as soon as we started talking we immediately connected creatively. I sent him the instrumental and he wrote his beautiful lyrics and the song became “Sanctified”.

KALTBLUT: The EP is described as a fusion of passion and redemption. Can you elaborate on how these elements are explored in your music?

It’s sort of the old, ancient game between desire and guilt. The limbo between repression and liberation – which is not necessarily a bad place to be. I personally thrive in it. 

I guess redemption is the step after liberation. It’s the acceptance of it all and being able to surrender to our desires and the ones of others.

KALTBLUT: Your work is often inspired by erotic literature, late-night drives, and dance-floor romances. Could you share how these elements influence your songwriting and production choices?

I kinda live in my own world, which I create daily by reading, listening to music, and these days, flying much more than driving. My music writing comes from the life that I want to live, rather than the life I was given.

KALTBLUT: How does your monthly residency on NTS Radio influence your creative output? Are there any particular ways that this platform has shaped your music?

My NTS is an outlet for me, one I enjoy greatly. You know the feeling of discovering a new song and being excited to play it to your special friend? My NTS show gives me that feeling. I used to do that with Femi – he was always one of my very trusted “ears” like Benji B 

KALTBLUT: “Sanctified” and your previous works have a very immersive and sensory-driven approach. How important is the listener’s experience in your music, and how do you craft your sounds to achieve this?

The approach is not something I plan to do, I’m just a very sensitive person and I can only function at a certain depth. The same way I struggle with small talk, I’m not comfortable writing or playing music that doesn’t reach a certain depth.

I want my listeners to meet me down there, wherever that depth is within them.

KALTBLUT: You operate your own label, Okay Nature Records. What motivated you to start your own imprint, and how has it changed the way you release music?

Not getting paid by labels, giving my music to people for them to just upload it to a server and not doing anything with it, having to take conference meetings and writing lots of emails to explain my vision, were all big motivations for me to start my own label and do whatever I want, whenever and however I want, and getting paid.

KALTBLUT: With your distinct blend of sounds and lyrics, how do you see your music evolving in the future? Are there new territories you’re particularly excited to explore?

I would like to score a whole movie. 

KALTBLUT: You’ve achieved recognition on platforms like Pitchfork and through collaborations with icons like Pete Tong and Mount Kimbie. How do you feel these endorsements have influenced your career?

These things don’t influence me but they feel like hugs. A warm, encouraging hug from someone that knows, and tells you to keep going cause you’re doing a good job.

KALTBLUT: Finally, for those new to your music, how would you describe the essential experience of listening to a System Olympia track? What can new listeners expect from your body of work?

I hope my music can do for others what the music I love does for me : enhance our emotions and assist in carrying them in and out of us. 


Sanctified is out now on Okay Nature:

System Olympia