Interview With Viper Recordings Artist, LoKo
Hailing from Glastonbury in the UK, LoKo is no stranger to laying down some serious beats. From playing his first club gig at the age of 14, to starting his own label Scrweloose Records and clocking up quality airtime on BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra, LoKo’s insane production skill has gained support from the likes of Matrix & Futurebound, Andy C, Sub Focus, London Elektricity, Fred V & Grafix and Crissy Criss to name but a few. LoKo previously destroyed dancefloors everywhere with the massive single ‘Rage / Failure to Communicate’ on Viper’s sister label Viper VIP, as well as the hard-hitting ‘Rage VIP’ on Drum & Bass Summer Slammers 2014 and ‘Who Are You’ on The Sound of Drum & Bass 2016. Now he’s once again showing us why he’s giving some of the biggest names in drum and bass a run for their money with this new single ‘What You Do To Me / Time Flies’.
DNB◉UNITED RECORDS is proud to interview LoKo about his upcoming release and career going forward.
Q- What was the first drum and bass album that you ever listened to that caused an instant emotional connection to drum and bass and left you wanting to go deeper into the genre? A- That's actually a really interesting question. I mean the first ever Drum and Bass album I remember listening to properly was New Forms by Represent and there was albums like Wormhole by Ed Rush and Optical and Cyberton, Speed Of Sound etc but I was mixing these albums rather than sitting back and appreciating them for a body of work. High Society by High Contrast was probably the first album I remember opening me up to the more melodic side of Drum and Bass. I mean Return For Forever is still very much on my USB stick and regularly comes out at parties but the album I remember literally blowing me away was “Hold Your Colour” by Pendulum. I mean I'd already been into Drum and Bass a while at this point but the production was like nothing anyone had really heard before and I think that opened my eyes to just how far the music could go. I've never been really one for a particular style of dnb, I just love it all.......if its good. Q- Who is the female vocalist on “What You Do To Me” and was it your choice to pick that vocalist for your song? Do you have plans to work with her again?
A- It's actually a vocal sample I bought it from Beatport I think. I like to collect vocals and samples. I'll sometimes spend days searching the internet for free stuff or buying packs etc. So I think its highly unlikely I'll use that vocalist again to be honest but I kinda built the tune around the vocal rather than just dropping something on top, the original version was a lot more rolling than the released version but I wanted to switch it up a bit and make it more dancefloor. However, I love working with vocals and I am always looking for vocalists, so if anyone is reading this and fancies getting on a tune, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.
Q- Is this EP a single release or is it a preview to a full release that will follow? If so, when will the full release be available? A-Ahhhhh the age old “whats next question” hahaha, this isnt part of a bigger project unfortunately. I've toyed around with the idea of doing an EP or an album but it's not that simple really. You and the label have to agree on tunes and then certain ideas get scraped and the process starts again so at the moment this will be it for a while, I have a bunch of new tunes that are about 80% done at the moment, a lot need vocals and some just need better mix downs but hopefully I'll get at least another single out before the end of the year at the very minimum. Q- Who designed the album artwork, and what was the inspiration behind it?
A- A very very very talented designer called “KOYN”, absolutely love his work, as soon as I knew that the release was confirmed I asked Viper if we could use him for the artwork and they thankfully said yes. I'm not a designer, I don't like giving specific direction with artwork projects as its a bank manager telling me about how the compression on my snare isn't to his taste. I mean, yeah the bank managers opinion is valid but come on... I'm more about colours, so I asked for certain colours to be used and then let KOYN get on with what he does best. He smashed it to be honest. I actually have one of his other designs as my background on my computer. Facebook link → https://www.facebook.com/itskoyn/?fref=ts
Q- Have you released any remixes as of 2016? Are there any remixes planned from this release? A – Not had anything out yet but I actually have three I'm finishing at the moment (to the point where I've had a break from working on one to have this chat with you) and all of those will be out later this year. I really like remix work, it gives me poetic licence a bit to switch up styles more than say a single does.
Q- Will there be a video to accompany “What You Do To Me”? If so, who is producing it? A- Video projects are definitely something I'd love to venture into with future stuff, I think its very unlikely for this single though. I'm massively into film and scores so if I was going to do a music video for something of mine it would probably cost a fortune and most labels would straight up say “no” hahahah. We'll see though, never know what the future holds.
Q- What drum and bass artist would you like to work with, but have not yet had the opportunity to? A- Bloody hell, the list is honestly endless. I love working with other artists, bouncing vibes is always fun but DAW's are always the ball-ache in these situations as I use Logic and I hate using stems so unless the other artists are on Logic it gets pretty tricky. As I've mentioned previously, vocalists are top of my collab list at the moment but I cant deny I'd love to work with loads of artists. I actually think labels should get more of their artists to collab with each other, like for example could you imagine a Brookes Brothers and Insideinfo collab? Brookes' melodies with Insides bass... be sick! I'm all about pushing the boundaries of the sub-genres when it comes to colabs. I'd rather with work someone completely opposite than someone who has a similar vibe.
Q- Will you be attending or performing at the Let It Roll festival coming up at the end of July? A- Unfortunately not :( I'd absolutely love to play Let It Roll and equally love to go as well. It's right up there on my list of festivals I must play at some point but see these are the things that make me want to work harder and release more music so I get these opportunities. Q- As a producer, I always like to ask a technical question when interviewing another drum and bass artist. The one that I have chosen for you is a favorite…how do you get that bass sound? What is your favorite music production software?
A- The bass sound from which tune? I'm assuming you mean “What You Do To Me” that seems to be the one everyone is asking about. I mean that bass is in about 4 or 5 different parts, the first bass took me an absolute age to get as close to right as I could, then there are some other little cut bits that I think are from something I bounced out and have a folder and the second main bass is a sample. I'm a firm believer in the vibe is everything so if you use a sample and it works don't get hung up on it. As for software, I'm a Logic user, I really like resampling stuff so I use ESX24 a lot and all the obvious synths like Massive, FM8, Serum now. I really wanna get into the hardware game soon though!
Q- This is a standard question we ask all artists…You are on a desert island, and you have been allowed to take your five favorite drum and bass albums. What are they? A- Well at least this will go better than the last time I was asked a question similar and decided to not take food or water on my desert island trip just music production kit hahah! This isnt actually as hard as I thought it was going to be! I have pretty big stand out albums when it comes to Drum and Bass. 1. Commix – Call To Mind (Greatest Drum and Bass album of all time in my opinion) 2. Pendulum – Hold Your Colour 3. Marky – The Brazilian Job (Kinda cheating but this holds a place in my heart) 4. Matrix & Futurebound – Universal Truth 5. High Contrast – High Society
We at DNB◉UNITED RECORDS thanks you for taking the time to interview with us. Good luck to you and your future. Music is a gift, we thank you for sharing yours.
Don't forget to check out the Album in Review for LoKo's latest release.
LoKo ‘What You Do To Me / Time Flies’ 1. What You Do To Me 2. Time Flies Label: Viper VIP Cat# VPRVIP030 Genre: Drum & Bass Released: 8th July 2016 Buy or Stream: viper.lnk.to/vprvip030 More Info: bit.ly/vprvip030info LoKo Online: https://www.facebook.com/LoKoUK/ https://twitter.com/LoKoUK https://soundcloud.com/dj-loko https://www.instagram.com/lokouk/