@The Feldman Agency
Kid Koala and Trixie Whitley Share Interstellar 'All For You' Video: Premiere
A serendipitous meeting with Trixie Whitley led Kid Koala to make her the featured voice on his upcoming Music To Draw To: io, the second in a series of chilled-out, ambient albums from the Montreal electronic artist. A video for the first single, "All For You," is premiering exclusively below.
Koala (nee Eric San) and Whitley weren`t total strangers, as he`d remixed a couple of her songs before she attended one of his Satellite Turntable Orchestra shows in New York last year. He gave her a copy of the first Music To Draw To: Satellite -- inspired by a winter residency he does in Montreal providing ambient sounds for artists -- with singer Emiliana Torrini, which was nominated for a Juno Award. And six months later Whitley sent Koala a fortuitous message.
"She texted me and said, `Hey, I finally got around to listening to (Satellite), and it`s been on for four straight days and I`m really excited about it,`" Koala tells Billboard. "At that point I`d started a lot of the instruments for io, so I said, `Funny you would mention that -- would you be interested in doing the next one?` and she agreed. I had zero idea what would happen, but I`d witnessed her perform live and she`s a very captivating singer, very emotive. She digs in deep, so I thought it could be exciting."
Whitley -- the daughter of the late Chris Whitley and a member of Daniel Lanois` Black Dub and the Concretes -- wound up providing vocals for six of the 18 songs on io. "I knew she was more in that soul/R&B tradition," Koala says, "but she did write me and say, `I`ve been painting to the Satellite record,` so I guess she was open-minded. Ambient was something she could get with. After the first two songs we recorded in our first session in Montreal, I realized it was going to be alright. She was willing to try a lot of different stuff and different feels and really knocked it out of the park, I thought."
"All For You`s" video, which was directed by Karina Bleau, is an impressionistic three and a half minutes that looks like footage from a satellite doing a close fly-by of the sun. "Karina uses a combination of light, chemicals and layered glass in her visual making process," Koala notes. "I am in awe of how she`s able to create these marvelous interstellar scenes with her seemingly `low tech` set-up. What impresses me most...is it`s inherent emotionality and Karina`s wonderful sense of timing. She knows her materials well enough that she can start and evolve these reactions to synchronize with the music. It is a very captivating thing to witness."
With io due out Jan. 25, Whitley is slated to join Koala at special Music For Drawing events on Jan. 24-25 in Montreal. He hasn`t started working on a third edition of the series yet -- "We`ll see who texts me after this one comes out," he says with a laugh -- but Koala does have a number of other projects planned, including "some soundtrack stuff I’m not really allowed to speak too specifically about, although he allows that it`s "a bit of a sci-fi drama." He also has a "new sort of beat-oriented Kid Koala record" in mind, as well as a live show called The Story of the Mosquito, based on a graphic novel he`s written, that he plans to premiere next November.
"I`m doing everything simultaneously," Koala says. "I work better when there`s a lot of stuff to consider and I can move from one thing to the other. That keeps me really sharp."