Tag: interview

After collaborating with Rihanna on Stay, Mikky Ekko took time out to create what can only be described as a musical masterpiece. A project so emotive and special, that we defy any listener not to be sucked into his world. Ekko by name, and echo by nature, this project lingers long after listening - not only sonically; but lyrically and intellectually.

Complexity in the most intriguing way, Mikky Ekko's album Time left us with a few questions. We caught up with the man himself in High Street Kensington to talk about the album, concepts of spiritual time and growth, and influences.

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Your album is called Time. What can we expect?

It's really diverse. There were three things i wanted to accomplish; keeping it as diverse as the music i love listening to, keeping the songs as vulnerable or as edgy as possible, and that i give people a window into who i am as an artist.

So who are you?

I'm such a sponge. I feed on other people, experiences and everything for inspiration. At the end of the day, it's a blend. I'm the type of singer, where if i fall in love with a voice (just like i fell in love with Victoria Le Grande from Beach House, Santi Gold, etc) i'll wind up emulating them. I see it as learning from masters. That for me is what's important.

What are your views on 'time'? Time is in our opinion, the one thing that gets us all. 

That's something i think about all the time. It's just a funny thing. I mean, i don't know how deep we need to get on that right now - i really enjoy talking about that type of thing; but really, time doesn't exist... but we've given it a name and a place. This album is very much the opposite of that. It was 250 songs, shaved down to 12, with a couple of bonuses.

Pressure Pills. We love this track. It sounds like a different vibe from you. Tell us more?

Yes it is. That's why it's not on the American release. It was really hard for me not to put that track on the album. It's a true story and it was really hard for me to write. It took me back, and the production reflects the feeling i felt then. Justin Parker did some, but it was primarily me and Clams. When i hear that song i go back there.

So is music therapeutic for you?

Absolutely. It's really the only pure form of communication that i've got.

When a musician puts something into a track, the listener doesn't always feel the same thing; but they will always feel something. Pressure Pills did this to us. 

I love that. I love working with Clams - everything i get to do with him, we have so much fun. We work really hard to make the music feel really visual. I'm a big fan of films... Scarlett Johansson is in this movie called 'Under The Skin', and when i saw that, and the movie was over, i knew i'd seen something i'd never seen before. When i get together with Clams, this is what i'm trying to create. Something that leaves people with that feeling.

Do you know any UK producers, or acts you'd like to work with?

I always love what Epworth does; but i've worked with him - although i'd love to work with him again. I really like Labyrinth, Jamie XX... he's incredible. Everyone who hears Jamie XX, wants to work with him. I think we'd have fun.

What about advice for people who want to sing?

You've got to find the one thing that you can do, that nobody else does. And if you don't know what that is, then you need to create it. All the greatest artists know how to create a place where people can go to get a very specific thing. Thats why people get scared when great artists change up their sound, or when Bob Dylan went electric. The most important thing is growing and evolving and being the best... you have to be better than everyone else at what you do.

So, how do you like to make music? What's your process. Does it start with lyrics, or sounds?

All those things. For me there's no right way. There's only what needs to be said, or what doesn't. The most important thing is a point of inspiration.

Does it take a long time for you?

Sometimes, it really varies. Pressure Pills was half the song in 5 minutes, and then the other half, was about three days. I think that's a pretty long time to write a song. We started it and then came back to it several months later - so i guess in reality it was several months; but i try not to work on a song for more than 2 days. Unless i know it's got something that's really important to say - because i feel like the momentum of the emotion you were feeling can be lost. It's like a fire starting, and you come back to it three days later, and instead of it getting bigger, it's just burnt a lot of shit. It's like getting lost in a forest and not being able to find your way back.

We are Who's Jack Magazine. Do you have a special Jack in your life?

Maybe Jack from Fun/ Bleachers?

 

We caught up with emcee of the moment COCO to talk all things music, "Target Practice" and more. Read on to find out a little more about this burgeoning talent…

Tell us how Emceeing started off for you?

I started MC’ing around the age of 13 when a friend approached me in school, him and a few others just formed a music group called ‘Youth Camp’.

Where did the name ‘Coco’ come from?

I got given the name by some other friends I’d made when I moved house, we were playing with a flat basketball, when I headed it it made a funny sound so they called me Coco bean head lol, eventually the Coco just stuck.

Who are your musical influences?

Being a UK artist I think Skepta is one of my main influences, I listen to a range of different music just as long as it's good.

 

Tell us about your latest release ‘Target Practice’?

Target Practice wasn’t really planned as such, me & Toddla just got together in the studio and he showed me a beat he’d been working on, I just put a few lyrics down, he tweaked it and then asked me what I wanted to call it. It is just me warming up to be honest so Target Practice seemed like a fitting name.

 

You just released some visuals for ‘Target Practice’ on GRM Daily, what was the inspiration behind the video?

Well the video was mostly directed by Andy Nicolson from Clubs & Spades, shout out to Clubs & Spades, he had the idea of the black and white attire theme against the simplistic wall backdrop, the XOYO shots were Toddla’s idea, we already knew we’d be performing the track there so we thought we’d get some footage for the vid.

 

If you could collaborate with anyone dead or alive, who would it be?

Dr.Dre, he’s just a veteran in the game, he more or less birthed Eminem, and put 50 cent on, not to mention he’s probably one of the worlds biggest producers. Being in the studio with him would inspire me a lot!

 

Where can we see you live? Any upcoming performances?

I’m at the Coronet in London on the 24th of September, I’m also in Manchester and Birmingham with Toddla on the 7th and 8th of August. The best way to keep up to date with my tour dates are to follow me on Twitter or Snapchat which is @CokesM3.

 

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What can we expect from coco, this year – are you currently working on any upcoming projects?

Just more music really, I’m taking it all as it comes, my manager and Toddla are always working hard to put me onto the next step, but definitely more wicked music.

 

We are Who’s Jack Magazine, do you have a special Jack in your life?”

No not that I know of haha.

We caught up with Robert DeLong to hear all about his latest offering "Long Way Down"... read on to find out more.

Tell us about yourself. Where are you from, and what do you do?

My name is Robert DeLong, and I was born and raised in Bothell, Washington (about 15 miles northeast of Seattle). I now live in Los Angeles, California (for the last decade), and I am a drummer, producer, audio engineer, songwriter, and live electronic music performer who tours and performs 100-150 shows a year. I just started season 6 of the X-Files, have trouble converting from miles to kilometers in my head, and I don't own a car any longer, but I did buy a bike last week.

Can you tell us a little about the meaning behind ‘Long Way down’?

I am sure people have ascribed more potent personal meaning to that song than I could ever communicate here, but I was thinking about anxiety from mortality, and how to find joy in nihilism while writing the song. Or something like that. Most people transcribe my lyrics wrong, however, so I'd just as soon go with their meanings over mine.

We saw some great pictures from your tour this year, what was the best show of the trip?

Touring is sort of a constant part of my life, and as my amazing crew and I have only had about 2 months off from touring in the last two years it's hard to know where one tour ends and another begins - but things have been great, in short, though I don't know if I can pinpoint any one standout show. Hangout Festival is this amazing concert on the beach in Alabama Shores, and given that is an almost tropical locale and featured a bunch of dope music it's right up there, but in truth, every show is great in its own way, usually.

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Do you have any dream collaborations?

I'm often asked this question, and my default response is always "Brian Eno," though some more practical collaborations I would want get in on would be with Flume or a cool singer like the girl from the Wild Ones or Hundred Waters, or with that guy Deptford Goth  (he's from London, right?)

Who is your favourite producer? Do you get any influence from them?

I guess my favorite producers are Eno, Lucy, and Boards of Canada, and though I glean bits and pieces from their sound sets and some of of their textural sonics, I find that I enjoy their music for being sort of the opposite of what I do: meditative and featuring patient musical development, which is, in a lot of ways, a nice break from my own compact productions.

If you were at a party and ‘Long Way Down’ came on, would you dance?

As a rule, no, but given the right combination of beer and liquor, I could be convinced. Come to my show, you will see something akin to dancing on stage when I perform that song.

We’re coming to see you at Birthday’s in London on July 2nd. Are you looking forward to it and have you been before?

I've been to London 3 times before, and I am very much looking forward to debuting my new and improved show, complete with integrated visuals, game controllers(including wiimotes, a steering wheel, joysticks, and more!), drums, vocals, lots of pictures of cats, and with a special guest appearance by Seal as a seal.

We are Who’s Jack Magazine. Do you have a special Jack in your life?

I know a guy who is a house DJ that goes by the moniker Jack Lndn, from London. He is special in that he shares names with your publication, and also in that he is a nice dude and makes some cool jams.

As My Baby have now released a stellar album [ http://www.mybabywashere.com ], and just shared the stunning "Seeing Red" (below), we thought it only right that we had a quickie with the three-piece. Find out more below...

Describe your sound...

It's a sound inspired by old blues and folk music, but played with the rawness of sixties/seventies soul and funk​.​ ​It's got ​an edgy trance like infusion of electronic dance without having to branch out​​ into using samples and loops. What you see is what you get!

If you could collaborate with anyone alive, or dead, who would it be?

There would be a whole list​! Sly ​S​tone, ​S​easick Steve, Jim​i​ Hendrix, ​J​ack ​W​hite​... I could go on. ​
But perhaps the best thing would be to be transported back to 1936 and jam with Robert Johnson when he cut his first tracks in a make shift studio in the Gunter hotel in San Antonio.

Tell us about your latest release?

Shamanaid is our second album.
The title is an interesting one. People often ask what it means.
Shamanaid is in our imagination a drink or magic potion used in a shamanistic ritual.
Music is also an important part of those rituals. Repetitive beats and melodies are used to get into a trance, we always try to achieve something akin to that with our music.
The previous record "My Baby loves Voodoo" was more of a protest album with socially conscious lyrics. There was a lot a venting of frustration concerning society. We have not done away with those ideas but have focused more on songs reflecting on the journey of the inner self, matters of the heart and narrative driven fairy tales and murder ballads.

What can we expect from you in the future?

Touring the world, playing festivals, recording a new album in 2016 or perhaps we will sit amongst Buddha statues in Chinese gardens and listen to raindrops falling on leaves and in puddles. It's orchestral. Music is everywhere​.​

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Is 'Live' where it's at? Where can we catch you performing?

Our live act hangs somewhere in between a theatrical voodoo ceremony and a dance rave. The whole ritual of performing is an important one. The collective consciousness that vibrates throughout the crowd is such a joy. Connecting with the audience in such a way is a powerful thing. What we live for.

We will be returning to the UK quite a bit in the coming year. After the Seasick Steve tour we will do a UK release show in '229 the venue' in London on the 12th of May, followed by performances at the Great Escape, feature on festivals such as Rhythms of the World, Glastonbury and Wilderness. And ​o​f course a UK venue tour in autumn.

We are Who's Jack Magazine - do you have a special Jack in your life?

Well ....we have a bottle of Jack in the beverage cabinet in our studio​, that's pretty special​ ​b​ut​ can we be​ honest ​and say​ we prefer tequila​?​

At just 18 years old, and after premiering his debut record on i-D Magazine, we knew we had to grab some time with mysterious producer of the moment Foodoo. With two songs online to his name, but a plethora of growing new fans, this male producer is making the kind of music that takes you back to the 90's... with genre-bending sounds and an aura of happiness.

In a corner of North London, we sat down with Foodoo (faceless for now) to speak on his music making, a little more.

Tell us about yourself. Where are you from, and what do you do?

I'm from West London, I work at Tesco and make music.

Where did the name Foodoo come from?

Well I love food and my favourite album ever is Voodoo by D'angelo so I just put them together.

We see you premiered your debut track on i-D Magazine. How did that feel?

It felt crazy having so many people hearing my music, I've never really had that before, seeing the plays go up so much felt really good.

Do you have any dream collaborations?

It has to be D'Angelo it would be mad if I ever worked with him.

Who is your favourite producer? Do you get any influence from them?

It's hard to say but I'd probably go with Hudson Mohawke, I think I definitely get influence from his old stuff.

 

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If you were at a party and ‘Help Me’ came on, would you dance?

I would not dance.

We are Who’s Jack Magazine. Do you have a special Jack in your life?

I barely know any Jacks but shouts to Jack Moore, known me since I was born.