AVIV Discusses Teenage Love, Her Love for Arctic Monkeys and More 

By Leah Black

Photo: Mike Mazza

15-year old Canadian indie pop sensation AVIV crafts vivid narratives of young love and suburban life. Her music is both intimate as it is intricate, featuring an immersive blend of folk, rock, indie pop and blogwave soul.

Recently signed to Photo Finish Records (SHAED, Marian Hill), the teenage prodigy has just unveiled “love of your love,” a laid back and contagious alt-pop single. The single follows her track “Black Coffee,” where she collaborated with rising up-and-comer OCTAVIO the Dweeb who contributes vocals. The pandemic inspired indie- pop gem “Black Coffee” struck a chord with listeners, attracting attention from around the globe with its relatable theme of lost connections.

We talked with singer/songwriter AVIV about her new release and love for all things nostalgia here.

Tell me a little about your new single “love of your life.” What inspired the song and what’s the message behind it?

“love of your life” delves into the purity of a first “relationship”. My experience was with an older boy and my gullibility for artificial love and validation. As the “relationship” continued, I became more aware of the maltreatment, which oddly enough, excited me. Not knowing what was to come. But as I grew older and progressed, I realized that I couldn’t be treated that way.

The visuals are an interesting mix of vintage meets suburbia. Tell me more about the concept of your video.

I wanted to use youthful colors and feelings to convey innocence. The pink backdrops and lucky charms, for example. The retro look was intended to evoke feelings of nostalgia. Which symbolizes the relationship’s innocence.

Wow, I can’t believe you are only 15 years old. You are very talented. When did you start making music and decide to pursue a career in music?

Thank you!!  I began playing the piano when I was six years old. I’ve always despised performing classical music and preferred to focus on my arrangements. I became an avid music listener and lover. But,  I fell in love with the songwriting process during the first lockdown. Every day, I would write for hours. In June of 2020, I released my first song. Songwriting has become a habit and a therapeutic outlet for me since then. I made the decision that this was a passion worth pursuing, and I’ve been giving it everything since.

What top 5 artists are on your playlist right now?

I just finished making my fall 2021 playlist! It’s flooded; with Eliott Smith, Bob Dylan, Car Seat Headrest, Leonard Cohen, and Joni Mitchell. I know it’s fall when I listen to these lovely people. 

What are you most inspired by when you write songs? Is there a specific time and place where you feel most creative?

Boredom is when I get the most creative. When I have nothing to do on a school night, for example. When you’ve sat in boredom long enough, you’re compelled to think of innovative methods to pass the time.

If you could do a duet with anyone in the future, who would it be?

To say the least, it’s a far shot, but I’ve always wanted to collaborate with Paul McCartney on a song.

What’s a typical day in the life of AVIV?

I wish I could tell you about some wild day… However, I usually get up early in the morning. I’ve never been a fan of sleeping in. After that, I go to school. After school, I mostly devote my time to my music. I’ve recently been interested in cooking,  I’ve begun to prepare dinner for my family.   I either listen to music or write music at night. But before I go to bed, I have a music hour. That is all there is to it.

You are asked to perform a cover song in front of a massive, sold-out show. Which song do you choose and why?

Anything Arctic Monkeys. Those songs were made to be performed. If I  can perform “Do I Wanna Know”  in my room at the top of my lungs, I couldn’t begin to fathom it in a front of a crowd.