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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: Tomu DJ

The California producer on the enduring appeal of some soft rock icons

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

Tomu DJ is an American producer and DJ best known for her self-released albums on Bandcamp. She imbues her music with a gentle yet driving emotional force, creating intricate but comforting melodies across her discography. Tomu draws inspiration from her inner self—her memories and her past—and seamlessly infuses these reflections into her music. She released her latest LP Half Moon Bay earlier this year, which is yet another plaintive, thoughtful collection of tracks that straddle house, breaks, ambient and electronica with impressive assuredness.

For her One Track Mind selection, Tomu DJ has picked a track from one of the most iconic rock outfits of all-time, the mesmeric Steely Dan.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: Bad Flamingo

The US duo sing the praises of a Scott Joplin classic.

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

US duo Bad Flamingo are without doubt one of my favourite musical discoveries of the last couple of years. Swaggeringly cool and pretty much anonymous online, they make sleazy, sweaty, dusty tracks that swing between alternative rock, country and something altogether less easily defined. Their latest run of singles has been faultless, and hopefully they will be following up their brilliantly titled 2018 album I Said A Prayer Twice for Both My Faces very soon.

For their One Track Mind selection, Bad Flamingo paint a typically vivid picture about their time with a track by American composer and pianist Scott Joplin.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: Joy Helder

The London-based electronic artist reminisces about the melodic Italo-stylings of Skatebärd’s Why Now?

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

“Miniature soundtracks for moments in life, created electronically in London” is about as much concrete information I can find about Joy Helder. But whatever lack of identifying detail there might be available in regards to his background is more than counterbalanced by the depth and richness of his productions. Latest EP Joy moves through both ambient and more rhythmically structured experimental electronica, with field recordings, haunting melodies and muted percussion combining to create an atmosphere that’s at times claustrophobic and foreboding, others expansive and calming.

For his One Track Mind selection, Joy has picked a track by Norwegian artist Skatebärd that soundtracked many a bus journey shortly after he arrived in London.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: Hinako Omori

The classical pianist and synthesiser obsessive discusses the timeless beauty of Ryuichi Sakamoto’s Energy Flow

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

Born in Yokohama, Japan, Hinako Omori moved to the UK when she was three years old and currently lives in London. She began her musical path learning classical piano, later training as a sound engineer, and has since moved into working with analogue synths. Previous to releasing her own solo material she toured with and played on records by a raft of critically acclaimed musicians including Kae Tempest, Georgia, and Ed O’Brian. However it is her experience in sound engineering that form the foundation for her new album a journey…, a deeply meditative electronic project that encompasses binaural field recordings, analogue synthesisers and augmented vocals.

For her One Track Mind selection, Omori has picked a track by arguably Japan’s most celebrated and influential musician of all time, Ryuichi Sakamoto.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: DJ Sabrina The Teenage DJ

The queen of nostalgic dance music waxes lyrical about a track from The Avalanches timeless debut

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

DJ Sabrina The Teenage DJ is a London-based electronic music producer. Named after the TV series that pretty much every child of the 90s will be familiar with, her music is deeply evocative, mixing samples from TV, film and music with lo-fi beats and a huge amount of affection for her source material. As Amaya Garcia put in in their fantastic profile for Bandcamp Daily, DJ Sabrina creates music in which listeners can “revel in the intensity of falling in love, experiencing heartbreak, weathering deep crushes, and dancing their worries away in the warm glow of the dancefloor.” Released last month, her latest single Under Your Spell perfectly encapsulates this joyously singular sound, and would be a perfect jumping off point for anyone looking to get stuck into her expansive back catalogue.

For her One Track Mind selection, DJ Sabrina has chosen a song from an act that shares both her penchant for sampling, and her ability to hammer our emotional button, The Avalanches.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: Emily Wells

The singer, composer and multi-instrumentalist on the educational perfection of Harry Nilsson

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

Emily Wells is a multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, composer, arranger, and producer, whose extraordinary music incorporates elements from experimental, electronic, chamber pop and classical, and has been variously described as “dramatic, meticulous and gothic” (New York Times) and “visionary” (NPR). Released earlier this year, her latest album Regards To The End was inspired by the often radical actions of AIDs activists in the 1980s as seen through the lens of the current climate emergency. Intricate, sobering and quietly powerful, it is an immaculately atmospheric body of work from a breathtakingly talented artist.

For her One Track Mind selection, Emily has chosen a song from American singer-songwriter Harry Nilsson, that for her transcends the artistry of songwriting and becomes a lesson for storytellers, regardless of the medium.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: John Moods

The Berlin-based artist talks in depth about the enigmatic beauty of Townes Van Zandt’s Highway Kind

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

John Moods is the musical solo exploration of Jonathan Jarzyna from the Berlin based pop band Fenster. Released back in August of this year, I came to his 2021 album So Sweet So Nice a little late, but it’s one of my favourite releases of the year. Tackling questions about mortality in an often light-hearted and delicate fashion, it at times evokes the hazy melodies of 80s acts like Steeley Dan, at others diving off into Paul Simon-adjacent territory, but all the while maintaining its own strong, distinctive identity. It’s a beautiful, beguiling body of work, and I one I highly recommend if you’re not already familiar with his music.

For his One Track Mind selection, John describes a song that seems to him to channel something from beyond this earthly plane.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: Cousin Kula

The recent Rhythm Section signees talk about a record that relentlessly soundtracked a memorable tour.

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

Today we welcome Bristol-based jazz/psych outfit Cousin Kula to TPW. With co-signs from the likes of BADBADNOTGOOD, their debut album Double Dinners landed last week and follows previous EPs OODLES and STROODLES along with their 2020 Casa Kula Cassette, which caught the attention of Bradley Zero who subsequently signed them to his Rhythm Section label.

For their One Track Mind selection, Cousin Kula talks about their touring obsession with a record by a fellow Rhythm Section artist.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: Corrina Repp

The Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter delves back into a song that soundtracked a memorable roadtrip

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

Currently based in Los Angeles, Corrina Repp originally emerged in the Portland scene and has, across six albums and two decades, carefully and patiently developed her sound. Fragile, delicately crafted, and often stripped down to the very barest of bones, Corrina’s music explores universal themes through intimate and often personal narratives that gives it real emotional heft. I first became aware of Corrina via her 2006 album The Absent and The Distant and still go back to it on an almost weekly basis, especially the track Afloat, which is, without doubt, one of the saddest and most beautiful songs ever written. Her brilliant new album, Island, is out now, and if you’re a newcomer to her work it’s a great place to start.

For her One Track Mind selection, Corrina talks about the transportive experience of hearing a song from a titan of US jazz and pop music for the very first time.

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Interviews Music

One Track Mind: Ora The Molecule

Nora Schjelderup delves back into her childhood via a track from the Spanish pop act Mecano.

The premise of One Track Mind is pretty simple: I ask artists to pick one track that means a lot to them – either something they’ve discovered recently, something that’s been with them for years, or one that reminds them of a specific time in their life or career – and tell me what makes it so special to them. I get to talk to the artists I love, and they get to talk about the artists they love. Love all round!

Ora The Molecule is the musical moniker of Norwegian-born artist Nora Schjelderup. Released earlier this year, her debut album Human Safari is a pretty much perfect electro pop record, combining buoyant melodies with robust, 80s-inflected production: bascially tailored-made for me to completely love. Tracks like Helicopter and Creator are among the most exuberantly wonderful tracks you’ll hear this year, and she’s also recently released an EP of remixes of Beat Beat Beat from Gillian Gilbert – the founding member of New Order – Moon Boots and OTON which are all well worth checking out.

For her One Track Mind selection she’s chosen a track from a childhood favourite band, with a message she’s felt a deep connection with for many years.