Naked Woods
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Naked Woods

Budapest, Budapest, Hungary | Established. Jan 01, 2008 | SELF

Budapest, Budapest, Hungary | SELF
Established on Jan, 2008
Solo Alternative Pop




"Video of the month"

Watch this month’s featured video of the month by Naked Woods. It’s a mesmerising animated clip for the song FIRES.

FIRES, by Hungarian singer-songwriter Eszter Polyák (aka Naked Woods), features an animation video created by pabloslam, a Venezuelan artist living in Budapest.

Naked Woods is about to release a new video in March, for the song Freer. -

"DISCOVER: Naked Woods"

Naked Woods is the work of Hungarian singer-songwriter Eszter Polyák. If you like Bat For Lashes, boy are you in for a treat.

Based in Budapest, Naked Woods explores a heady mix of orchestral vibes, a classical wide-ranging vocal and modern effects for an exquisite brand of lo-fi chamber pop.

Eszter released her debut album on New Year’s Eve in 2013, with the simple aim of ticking off her bucket list but the Hungarian blogosphere got wind of it, she was a semi-finalist in 2014’s International Songwriting Competition, and hasn’t looked back.

Soundscapes take in delicate strumming, the odd chime, sometimes an ocean wave – whatever it may be, it’s understated, focusing the entire (home) recording on Polyák’s mostly sweet and choral, sometimes guttural vocal.

Our favourite track ‘Fires’ is taken from second album ‘Darkness’, being a particular highlight track filled with eerie vocal highs and perturbing primal drumming.

Watch the dark animated video to haunting track ‘Fires’ above.

‘Darkness’, released in October 2014, is a collection of intimate, vocal dominated songs with acoustic arrangement, but also using a wide range of classical and exotic instruments and sound samples. New track ‘Freer’ is coming later this month. - Kimberley-Marie Sklinar Green

"Fresh Faves: Batch 142"

Opening with ocean waves and some delicate strumming really will not prepare you for what this strange folk-meets-electronica track has in store. This track Fires by Hungarian singer-songwriter Eszter Polyák aka Naked Woods‘ is as soothing as her project’s moniker. Ghostly yet beautifully serene, Fires transforms into something quite perturbing as Polyák’s absolutely gorgeous vocals swirl upwards as if ashes rising to the sky. Tribal beats complete this sensuous setup to total up this moreish bit o’ music. - Kimberley-Marie Sklinar

"Naked Woods - Undressed"

Intinet: Since your experience with your former band, Down The Dayz, your music has developed into new musical landscapes, how do you feel that evolution in professional terms?

Eszter Polyák: The sound of Down The Dayz was a joint effort with all the members contributing to it in their own style. It was a mix of electronica, downtempo and trip hop. When I started Naked Woods, I wanted a pure, acoustic sound with simple arrangements using acoustic guitar, cello and cajón only. Later, we started to play with drums, bass and electric guitar and we got closer to sounding like a kind of folk-pop band. Creating the arrangement in this lineup remained a shared task and limited to the instruments we had in the band.

Then, after a little break, I decided to continue as a solo artist. It was mainly because I felt that organizing things around the band took too much energy out of me, and by that time I had some ideas I wanted to try out. I only play acoustic guitar, so I started using software synths and instrument samples.

Musicpress, the Hungarian music blog where my album debuted called it chamber pop. I like the label, but the truth is that I never really thought about what my style is. I write songs, and the rest is just arrangement, which is an important part, but I think about it as a dress. You want to put something different on from time to time, experiment with what fits you, what doesn’t and what the best way to express yourself is. So, the next thing I do will probably be different again.

I: What drives you to finally publish your tracks as an album? Usually Naked Woods presents their work as singles.

EP: We had two EPs in 2010 and when I do something, I like to put it out on the internet immediately because I like getting feedback. All my tracks have been out there, everybody who wanted could listen to the versions as they were being developed. With this album, I wanted to collect the songs I wrote over a longer period. The oldest one is from 2005, the last one is from 2012. It's a bit like a best-of album.

I: The first thing that we noticed when listening your new studio album was the voice work done in "Undressed" and "Pretend" has also a quite elaborated and elegant orchestra in it. We are kinda intrigued about how you have done it?

EP: I always create a lot of vocal parts: so many that from ‘Undressed’ I even had to delete some at the end. Usually, I sing all of them alone but for the chorus, I wanted a real choir sound so I asked some friends to do it.

For ‘Pretend’, I recorded a solo cello track with our former cello player in the studio and this is what you can hear in the second verse but the big orchestra is not real, unfortunately. I mixed the real cello track in it but the violins, double basses, horns and timpani are only sound samples. I'd love to record something like that some day, though.

I: Most of your lyrics are deep and focused on life experiences, are they inspired in your own life? What inspired you to create such stories? Which of those stories do you feel more connected to?

EP: I write when something moves me emotionally. The songs are inspired by things that have happened to me, people I have met but I usually take these stories further in my head. I think the songs are more than lyrics with music, the melody and the overall mood are very important for me, too. Maybe I’m most connected to ‘I Don’t Wanna Wait’, and Pretend has a strong atmosphere, too.

I: Let us know about future gigs and projects, where and when could we catch you playing live?

EP: It takes some time to find the possibilities. I'd like to do it well and it hasn’t been easy. I don't believe in finding audiences in small clubs anymore. At least in Hungary, it has become rare that people go and check out a band or artist that they don't already know as the radios don't play their songs. So for now, it remains a dream. Until the day comes, I will put my energies into other plans. I will work on a few new songs with a Hungarian composer/producer, Attila Áts, who also writes music for trailers for Hollywood blockbusters, and Tom Lumen, who is an internationally recognized guitarist and one of the most talented guitar players in Hungary.

I also have some unreleased songs in Hungarian, so I am thinking of collecting them for another album. I am also planning to make a video before the summer too. - intinet (Inti Pérez Minaya)

"Naked Woods: Clouds Of The Storm"

Hungarian artist Naked Woods (aka Eszter Polyák) makes unassuming mini-epics that are difficult to classify. They sound comfortingly familiar while remaining remarkably original. On the new single “Clouds of the Storm,” some New Order-esque musical changes, a bit of Cyndi Lauper vocal inflection, and a wholly modern electronic groove make for an engrossing listen. Polyák creates, records, and mixes her music herself, and with each release sounds increasingly confident. Listen below. - Ramona / OurStage


2017 No Remedy
2014 Darkness
2013 2013



Naked Woods is a solo project of Hungarian singer­-songwriter Eszter Polyák. Her first album (2013), written, recorded, mixed and produced by herself, was released on 2013 New Year's Eve, with nothing but the wish to have recorded several­-year­-old songs. Encouraged by the positive reviews and the number of views, she released the second album in less than a year, October 2014, titled Darkness. The album release gig took place at A38 Ship, supporting Emilíana Torrini.

Naked Woods was a semi-­finalist in International Songwriting Competition (ISC) with Pretend (2012), Can’t Be (2013) and Fires (2014, Video, Adult Contemporary). Fires was also semi-finalist in Unsigned-Only, in Adult Contemporary and Singer-songwriter category, and featured on BBC6 host Tom Robinson’s Fresh On The Net blog in 2015 March, based on the votes of the editors and readers of the blog. The animated clip, created by a Budapest-based Venezuelan artist, Pablo Campos, was the video of the month on OurStage in June 2015. Naked Woods was one of the three acts representing Hungary on Best of U, a new project’s site of Europavox. In October 2015 she has appeared at Waves Central Europe Festival, in Vienna. In November, a remix of her song Retry, created by Attila Áts has been released by British publisher Really Slow Motion Music & Sound Design, under the label Giantapes Music.

In 2016 she opened for Árstíðir and Fear Of Men, and started to release her 3rd album song by song. In October, Share (I Had Dreams) appeared in the trailer of the long awaited game Final Fantasy XV.

The third album No Remedy has been released on 31 March, 2017.

Band Members