After recording her 2021 EP What Is Going On? entirely on her iPhone, Hannah Jadagu knew she wanted to go into a proper studio to record her next effort. “I just wanted it to sound better,” she tells Apple Music of Aperture, her debut LP. “I think people might assume that I was trying to do something different by working on my phone, but I think it was truly just a lack of resources—I did it out of necessity.” Once she had some semblance of budget, Jadagu didn’t just book time in New York, where she’s currently a student of music business at NYU. Instead, the Texas-born singer-songwriter made her first-ever trip to France, where she collaborated with producer/songwriter Max Robert Baby at Greasy Studios, just outside of Paris. The result is an album that still feels like it was written in her East Village bedroom—only bigger, lusher. “I don’t want to say ‘grandiose,’ but I think there’s a new element that Max brings that I definitely would not have had sonically without him,” she says. “Because I did everything on the EP myself, it’s hard for me to let other people work on the music that I wrote on my own. But I learned how to collaborate and trust someone else’s instincts—and I learned how to trust myself in general, as a songwriter and a human being.” Below, Jadagu takes us inside a few songs on the album. “Explanation” “‘Explanation’ is a song that, I feel like, is very introspective. Sonically, I was very certain on where I wanted it to go. I didn’t want it to be too big, but I also wanted to use it as a vehicle to hint at what we were going to be doing on the record. So, it’s a short little intro, and I think it asks a lot of questions, which is something I do a lot on the rest of the album.” “Say It Now” “This one is almost a precursor to ‘What You Did.’ I always say it reminds me of the stages of grief, where you have denial. I think ‘Say It Now’ falls in that category, and it’s about a friendship that just had a really bad falling out towards the end, where one person is like, ‘You’re kind of bugging,’ and then the other one is like, ‘I didn’t know that.’” “What You Did” “On this one, I’m finally a lot more secure in my position, on where I stand. And obviously, I’m recognizing maybe a manipulation that was occurring. I think it’s just saying, ‘I’m not going to deal with that anymore.’ It’s a lot louder. It hits harder. Maybe it’s the stage where you could say you’re angry.” “Lose” “That one is basically just talking about starting a new relationship with someone. Or not even a relationship—it’s literally about a crush. And it’s the sort of tiptoeing feeling where you don’t know what somebody’s thinking, but you think you might, but you’re like, ‘If I really want to find out, and I try to get these answers to all the questions in my head, will I be heartbroken?’ Even though it’s just a crush.” “Admit It” “This song is for my sister. There was a moment last year when I felt like they were going through a tough time. It’s just the two of us, so being the youngest, it was weird for me to have to put myself in the role of what my sister usually is to me, which is someone who is a guardian and someone that gives me advice and someone that always comforts me and is there for me. It was exploring what it means to be there for someone who is usually the one that is there for you.” “Dreaming” “This is one where I’m in my Olivia Rodrigo bag, just talking about a little crush or whatever. It’s where you feel like you two are already maybe involved, but then I literally had a dream one day that this person in question was seeing someone else or into someone else, and then it actually happened in real life. And I was like, ‘Damn. That’s tough.’ But that’s literally what the song is about.” “Warning Sign” “I was trying my hand at just exploring what it’s like to be a young person in the music industry. And I think a lot of times it feels like you have to say yes—I’m definitely someone who will say yes, and I’ll do the interviews, I’ll go on the tours, I’ll do a radio appearance, I’ll go to the dinner or whatever. But I think sometimes it’s important to also know your limits, and I think I’m just trying to find the balance on that song and recognizing that I just love to play music. I’m not here for all the extra hoopla. Either your team will respect that and love you for that, or they won’t.”

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