Caturday with Kasbo

Gemma Lacey

Swedish producer Kasbo is celebrated for his emotive and cinematic music. Following remixes for the Temper Trap, Big Gigantic and Mutemath he’s now preparing to release his debut album Places We Don’t Know . He took some time to make us a playlist and talk to us about music, the melancholic nature of Scandinavian sound and why melody and rhythm became slaves to the samples he was working with. He’s also setting off on a US headline tour with a pitstop at Coachella with an ambitious live show he can’t wait to share.

The Scandinavian aesthetic is very clean and considered do you think growing up there has had an impact on how you create music and your sound?
Maybe not so much my music and sound but I feel it definitely has had an impact on my visual aesthetic. Sonically, I think Scandinavian culture has had an impact on me because melancholy in music is very big here, and in all Scandinavian countries. As for my sound, when it comes to music I think I’m rather maximalist than minimalist.
What is your creative process for writing and making music?
It usually revolves around me being inspired by a certain sample or sound. For my album, I was focusing a lot on soundscape and the audio image, so naturally, sample selection played a major role in inspiring songs. Chords, melody, and rhythm were slaves to the samples I had chosen, rather than the other way around.
You’re gearing up to release your debut album Places We Don’t Know this month. What’s the story behind the album?
The album is me trying to mirror a naive world that only exists in your head. The less you experience, the more naive you can stay, and the more beautiful the world can be, in your head. That’s where the name comes from because the Places We Don’t Know are the places that can truly remain beautiful.
What’s your favourite track from the album and why?
I love all of them in their own way. I think my two current favorites are “Over You” and “Bara Du.” “Over You” just captures something I haven’t heard before, and there’s this perfect symbiosis between the vocals and production, Frida Sundemo feels like the perfect vocal counterpart to my productions, we try to deliver that same feeling. “Bara Du” is the same thing there, I feel like I haven’t heard anything like that song. It’s very exciting to be feeling like you’re venturing into ground people haven’t been before.
Your own sound is described as cinematic, if you could score any movie what would it be?
Something surrealist I think. I just saw the movie Annihilation yesterday, I think it would be a movie like that. Something that depicts a surrealist world. I think that would be very exciting.
Your live show is described as ambitious? Why is this and what are hoping to achieve with your audience in live performances that you can’t via recorded music
I think maybe something that’s harder to achieve via recordings is a sense of belonging, that we’re all there together and part of this together. And I think just, in general, being able to deliver the visual aspect, and a continuous story throughout the show just furthers the feeling of the escape. I’m very proud of it.
What are you most excited for in 2018?
Honestly everything, it’s just a jam packed year with touring, making music, and being creative. I think one of the highlights must be going on my first headlining tour. I’m so excited to show it to people.
Finally, what are your top 3 Swedish artists we should watch out for?
Frida SundemoSummer HeartTove Styrke
Buy Kasbo’s new album here

Click to listen to Kasbo’s Caturday playlist