“’Nylon’ is the most minimal track off the album,” Kllo say of the song. “It was originally a production driven uk-inspired pop song but as we progressed with it, we stripped it back more and more to eventually end up with a piano ballad. It is about disorientation when growing older, but with a mind still too young to take on the serious commitments of what’s in front of you – and how suffocating it can be to try and hold yourself up to those expectation”
Kllo – an electronic pop collaboration between Melbourne cousins Chloe Kaul and Simon Lam – waded in figurative backwater for much of 2016 amid an extensive world tour. These were exciting times; the duo’s Well Worn EP furthered the promise of 2014 EP Cusp, receiving millions of streams and landing Kllo on festival stages as well as Artists-to-Watch lists. Nonetheless, the stretch kept them far from home, isolated and vulnerable, treading through perpetual uncharted territory while yearning for the comforts of the familiar.
As a result, Kllo’s full-length debut depicts inner adjustment to outer change. Songs were written partially on the road and developed back at Lam’s bungalow, a haven that harbours creative spontaneity and catharsis.
“It’s the first time we hadn’t felt like kids anymore,” says Kaul. “We were really able to dive in deeper and bring out a lot more of us into the music.”
Kllo are set to release their forthcoming debut studio-album Backwater on October 20 via Different Recordings. Pre-order here.
For the making of Willowbank, Yumi Zouma’s members — Charlie Ryder, Josh Burgess, Christie Simpson and Sam Perry — settled on a plan to reunite for the New Zealand summer. To complete what would become their first significant work written and recorded entirely in their home country, they rented a studio in Christchurch’s semi-demolished CBD, on one of the few remaining blocks that still characterizes the city from before it was destroyed by a series of earthquakes.
“It was as though there was a brief pause in all of our lives and we finally felt like a band from New Zealand,” said Burgess. “We were on home turf and creating from a place that felt fundamentally natural.” When you know it’s there, the feeling of rootedness is undeniable on Willowbank. Being connected to their origins on the bottom of the earth allowed the band’s members to craft another essential chapter in the Yumi Zouma storybook.
Willowbank is out October 6 on Cascine. Pre-order here.