Earlier in the year we introduced Retro Kid describing how rewarding his epic track “Fool” is. We were more than happy to take a few minutes of his time to find out what makes him tick.
Cougar Microbes: What time did you wake up today? Was it out of choice or necessity
Retro Kid: I woke up at 10:30 today because it is the weekend! Unfortunately, I do have to go to work.
CM: Describe your sound to the uninitiated?
RK: Melodic hooks sitting on a bed of scuzzy electronica – not forgetting the occasional splash of funk.
CM: What have been the highlights of your year (musically and not) so far?
RK: At the beginning of the year my debut EP ‘Retro Kid’ was named as one of The Vinyl Factories ‘Top vinyl’s of the week’. It was really nice to mentioned alongside some great artists! Aside from music I have recently discovered that my favourite alcoholic drink is a Negroni. Hats off to the Italians.
CM:Tell us a little bit about your recent release:
RK: ‘Time Waster’, is not for the faint-hearted. It combines folky vocals with quite a fast paced banging bed of electronic sounds. A track for marmite fans.
CM: How do you kill time on the road when on the road? hobbies/games?
RK: The road is usually me flying between Copenhagen and London. A music production magazine goes a long way… Accompanied by a sausage, bean and cheese melt. Who can say no to Greggs?
CM: What have been your favourite venues to play? Any Venues you hated?
RK: My favourite venue has to be at the back of a pop-up shop in Soho. I was playing for the launch for a swanky new clothing company M.C. Overalls. Nothing beats curating the vibe of a launch party! My less favoured venue would be a youthful Copenhagen spot that I can’t pronounce the name of… Never quite the right crowd.
CM: Are you able to write on the road or do you do this in your off time?
RK: Very often the best place for me to generate ideas is back in my family home in North Yorkshire. There is something about the feeling of home, countryside air and a cup of Yorkshire tea. The songs just keep on flowing.
CM: What is the songwriting process like for you?
RK: A batch of very magical Scrambled eggs driven by loops, hoops, analogue synths and a decent catchy vocal hook. On a good day.
CM: What came first, the lyrics or the melody?
RK: The melody comes first, but the lyrics are the icing on the cake.
CM: Do your songs go through many revisions and demos before recordings?
RK: Too many revisions are pretty dangerous and can generate multiple versions of the same song. Very often the initial demo is the strongest and just needs fine tuning with a solid mix and bit of analogue goodness.
CM: What is your favourite track of yours?
RK: You haven’t heard it yet.
CM: Is there a song of your own you are simply sick of playing live?
RK: It has to be the self-titled ‘Retro Kid’.
CM: If you could record any cover in the world what would it be?
RK: I did this for a charity called CALM. I reworked Smokey Robinson’s ‘Track of my tears’ to raise awareness of male suicide. I would stick to the original though.
CM: Any other artists/bands from your local scene we really should know about?
RK: A band called Bleached Bones. We grew out of the same place and they definitely carry a strong melody in their electronic vibe. The frontman Zan carries a very haunting lead vocal. I think they have a show coming up in Manchester, you should definitely check them out.
CM: What is the most flattering thing you’ve read about yourselves?
RK: “Retro Kid are one of the finest new discoveries of summer 2017” – Barry Gruff
CM: What was the first record/tape/cd you ever bought?
RK: John Lennon – CD – Imagine. I heard it in the shop Borders when you could listen to music in store. I was actually drawn to the track ‘Woman’.
CM: What was the last song that got stuck in your head?
RK: Arcade Fire – Put your money on me. When Abba became cool.
CM: What was the last show you paid and queued up for?
RK: LUH or Lost Under Heaven. I saw them Copenhagen. A band with a really cool atmosphere and crazily powerful voices.
CM: If you had to bring on artist back from the dead in exchange for sending a living artist down, which artists would it be and why??
RK: Ian Curtis back for Interpol/ Editors. An example of how you can be influenced a little too much.