Artist to Watch: Keni’s Dazzling “Sid and Nancy” Taps into Passion’s Raw Allure

KENI © Aerin Moreno
KENI © Aerin Moreno
A tender, catchy alt-pop confessional, “Sid and Nancy” burns with inner longing and emotional upheaval as Keni dwells in the visceral depths of desire, intimacy, connection and obsession.
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Stream: “Sid and Nancy” – Keni




Nineteen-year-old newcomer Keni has wasted no time in diving into the deep end with her second single, prompting us to ponder that timeless question: We all want love, but what does that mean? The answer is vast and overwhelming for this LA native, whose heart-on-sleeve song “Sid and Nancy” embraces an intense desire to share an intimate connection with someone special. A tender, catchy alt-pop confessional, “Sid and Nancy” burns with inner longing and emotional upheaval as Keni dwells in the visceral depths of desire and self-reflection.

Sid and Nancy - KENI
Sid and Nancy – Keni
Lately I’ve been looking in all the wrong places
Hoping maybe I’ll win at hide and seek
Behind the corner I’ll find my scarlet letter
When does it get better
Think his name is Tyler
His mom goes to my church and
tells me to call her, even gave me her number
Come over for dinner so we can sneak away
But you brought a girl
I’m still waiting

Independently released February 18, “Sid and Nancy” arrives five months after Keni’s enveloping debut single “Devil’s a Dylan” slipped gently into our lives with its stirring story and stunning sound. A 19-year-old singer/songwriter with a penchant for uncompromising vulnerability, Keni’s songs are each tiny worlds of unfathomable feeling: Her music is a bustling blend of raw alternative and finessed alt-pop that is as perfect for her generation as it genuinely timeless.

A self-proclaimed “drama queen,” Keni describes herself as writing “songs about my friends and romantic encounters… literally every single one…” Her first two releases embody this sentiment, finding the artist diving headfirst into matters of the heart.

Named after (or in reference to) the Sex Pistols’ Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen  – whose notorious, tumultuous, and ultimately tragic relationship has filled volumes of music history texts – “Sid and Nancy” finds Keni yearning for a passionate flame of her own. Her words capture a relatable intense desire to bring inner dreams of romance to life – to meet someone who will fulfill our needs.

KENI © Aerin Moreno
KENI © Aerin Moreno



Keni’s chorus is a cathartic and euphoric overhaul – a moment of zen where she surrenders herself to the feelings consuming her insides:

Someone come ignite me
Cause that’s all that I’m looking for
Need a pyromaniac
I wanna burn like California
I even want the heart break
Drain the blood out of my veins
Craving Sid and Nancy
But no one wants me that badly

Achingly emotive, “Sid and Nancy” evokes the hungry pain of desire, as well as the stinging pain solitude – bringing to the fore a powerful sadness specifically tied to isolation and loneliness, and all those feelings that comes with the lack of a partner with whom we can share our lives.

For Kemi, “Sid and Nancy” is a particularly meaningful song.

“I always used to take inspiration for my songs from movies and TV shows because I just didn’t think I had any experiences that were worth writing about,” she tells Atwood Magazine. “When I wrote ‘Sid and Nancy’, the only thing I knew about love was that I wanted it. The intention with this song was not to romanticize a toxic relationship like the one Sid and Nancy had, but to use that as a metaphor for that obsessive, can’t live without each other type of love that I was desperately seeking during a certain time. This is really the first song I wrote based off personal experience so it’s super special to me.”



Her song’s story continues through poetic lines that conjure up specific visuals:

I frequent the bookstore, I blindly browse the shelves and
Pray for a suitor who needs me more than breathing
Lots of room upstairs whoever needs a place to rent
I’m still waiting….
for you to come ignite me
Cause that’s all that I’m looking for
Need a pyromaniac
I wanna burn like California
I even want the heart break
Drain the blood out of my veins
Craving Sid and Nancy
But no one wants me that badly
I want the desperation
I want can’t live without me
Even just for a minute
Just want someone to need me
Want you to call me crazy
And tell me that it’s too late
Wanna cry til my eyes bleed
still waiting

“Sid and Nancy” is as mesmerizing as it is irresistible: Whether you’ve got love or you want love; whether you relate to that raw desire for connection, or you’re in the throes of a special kind of unabating obsession, Keni’s music speaks to an innate, key aspect of our shared human condition.

We all want love, but what does that mean? For Keni – at least, as far as “Sid and Nancy” is concerned – it means a full mind, body, and soul surrender. It’s infatuation: It’s everything. Someone come ignite me.

A surefire artist to watch, Keni’s ability to convey emotion’s subtle nuances is second to none. Her music is all-encompassing, undeniably intense and utterly seductive. If you’re longing for a love affair, then “Sid and Nancy” is the song for you.

Listen to “Sid and Nancy” out now, and stay tuned for more to come from this rising star.

Someone come ignite me
Cause that’s all that I’m looking for
Need a pyromaniac
I wanna burn like California
I even want the heart break
Drain the blood out of my veins
Craving Sid and Nancy
But no one wants me that badly

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Stream: “Sid and Nancy” – KENI



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Sid and Nancy - KENI

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📸 © Aerin Moreno


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