London based electronic stalwart Kel McKeown – aka Kelpe – celebrates ten years of sonic boundary pushing with new maxi single, DRUT001/ 'Answered' - out April 15th preceding new LP 'Fourth: The Golden Eagle'.
The 7-minute white noise drenched 'Answered' is the epic final track of the LP and is being released as a 3 track “maxi single” here with two like-minded B-sides.
Kelpe says this of the lead track: “It was put together using a selection of analogue synths – Moogs, Korg Polysix, Korg MS10 and Doepfer Dark Energy and all three Korg Monotrons. It's a track of all seasons, perhaps because I worked on it for so long and threw everything I knew at it. The proggy twinkles and textures make me think of Christmas but the guitar and four to the four feel are also a touch balearic.”
“I used some vocal samples as a texture but they are not fully formed words, I tried to use them more like an instrument, cutting them up, reversing them and blending and dissolving them into themselves. The vocal samples and textures are Norwegian and make me think of Scandinavia. There's a video being made by Jonathan Lieb that he is filming in Denmark about a girl becoming obsessed with lsearching for jigsaw puzzle pieces. With the upcoming LP, I was trying to make the warmest and most analogue sounding thing I've done, and I think it came out best on 'Answered'.”
Opening the flipside of the maxi single is 'Haunt' - which Kelpe credits with a similar mood to the 'Answered' but describes it as more pastoral, uptempo and heavier, with a slightly distorted 4 / 4 kick drum and sharp sawtooth bass.
Serving as a mellow finale to the record is Barney's Dream. This is the most recent production on the record and is “sort of an ode to a lovely looking old ginger dog called Barney that my Grandparents had many years ago, although I only remember him from photos. It's a mellow track with a sad / happy feel that builds slowly with one element at a time adding one by one over a repetitive piano line.”
This is to be the first releases on Kelpe's new label DRUT. He says: “I'd been thinking about starting a record label for a few years but my original motivation was to release other people's music - something to focus time and effort on other than making and pimping my own music....After a while it dawned on me that since I had my new own album that I was finishing and looking to release, the best way to launch the label would be to release that and hope it blossoms from there.”
Kelpe began his musical foray in 2003, releasing his first 12″ EP ‘The People are Trying to Sleep’, on the DC Recordings label. His debut LP 'Sea Inside Body' of 2004 was heralded by The Wire as “one of the most engrossing listens in recent electronic music”, and this was followed four years later by 2008's 'Ex-Aquarium', both released on DC Recordings. Third offering - the wobbly, warped and wonderful 'Cambio Wechsel', with its spiralling technicolour cover – came out in 2009, also on DC Recordings.
Aside from his longstanding relationship with the aforementioned hip-hop electronica label, Kelpe has sown his oats further afield, putting out releases on some of the electronic sphere's biggest hitters including the 'Margins' EP on Black Acre in 2010 and 2 highly regarded EPs for Svetlana Industries in 2012
Trailing the live circuit from California to Lithuania alongside diverse acts such as Aphex Twin, Ghostpoet, Squarepusher and Daedelus Kelpe has made a name for himself both as an explosive solo act and as a duo with longtime collaborator Chris Walmsley (Gruff Rhys, Neon Neon, Psapp).
Published: 14th March 2013