Matthew Herbert's Ones To Watch

“Kwes has been lurking around the London scene recently,” says Matthew. “I don’t mean like a stalker, I mean musically lurking!”

“He has a really unusual, experimental approach. I really feel like he’s got a producer’s vision coming into the process, so I think he could end up being like a studio producer rather than a live performer. He has a quiet modesty which I find very appealing in this day and age. He’s someone at the beginning of his career, rather than established, so he’s still waiting to find a proper public voice. But he’s someone whom I think has potential…” “[With new artists] you never know which way it’s going to go,” Herbert says. “It’s very intriguing to see where people go next; how they develop. Normally what happens is one particular facet of their sound or their persona will become amplified by the process of becoming public. So I like seeing people at the beginning of their careers because you never quite know where they’re going to end up.”

Echoing this impression of a multi-tasking, multi-talented artist, Kwes himself confirms that he’s currently dividing his time between a number of different projects. “I’m just about to do some co-writing/co-production with new Island signing Tommy Sparks, a high master of the pop song,” he says. “I’ve also been producing a remarkably talented new artist called Elan, finishing off her EP. I’ve just done some reworks for Hot Chip, Damon Albarn’s opera ‘Monkey’ and Portico Quartet, and I’m finishing a new one off for Dels. Also, I’m releasing my debut single on XL Recordings/Salvia later this year. As for an album, I have started recording it and it should be done sometime in the new year. In terms of playing live, I’m still figuring my live show out – if I will ever do a live set, I want it to be memorable.”

On the subject of playing live, he agrees with Matthew’s assertion that he is perhaps leaning more towards studio work. “I definitely see myself doing a lot more production for bands/artists/ myself than playing live. Although playing live is a lovely and liberating experience, I just can’t help but feel a little funny about touring incessantly before, during and after the release of an album and singles. I think I would miss my sleep and would miss waking up to create something new in comfort…

Playing live is brilliant though; I would love to do some live shows here and there, once I’ve sorted out how my live show is going to be. I would like the live show to be memorable, so maybe I need to sort something and getrehearsing! I do see production and live performing as separate disciplines, but then, depending on how I’ll carry out my live show, that opinion may change…” His ultimate ambition? “I just want to go deaf happily!” to keep developing.”

Listen to ‘The Coyote Wolf’ by Kwes below –

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