Home // Music // Electronic // Interview: Mount Kimbie

Interview: Mount Kimbie

It has been a busy year for multi-instrumentalists Dom Maker and Kai Campos, the better known duo behind Mount Kimbie. After releasing their second offering of offbeat electronica in the form of Cold Spring Fault Less Youth, the two have been touring for what sounds like a 6 month continental trip, soundtracked by their own tapestry of electro-acoustic vignettes. We called up Dominic Maker during a cross-country trip through the Alps to have a chat about a packed tour schedule, working with King Krule and the ASOS All Nighter…

Planet Notion: Hey Dom, how’s it going?
Dominic Maker: We are just driving through the Alps from Italy to France right now. We are going to Lyon; we have a night off tonight and then playing tomorrow. We had three shows in Italy, one in Milan, one in Rovena and one in Rome.

PN: How would you describe your different roles as Mount Kimbie?
DM: There isn’t really different roles as such, we tend to work separately when we are producing and then come together to work out the direction of the tracks and finish the ideas we both had individually. Then, in the live shows it is slightly more separate in that Kai does all the singing and we have our own stations on the stage, so it is separate in that sense. When it comes to writing it is very much a split thing but we both get excited by the same sound and I think we both know when an idea is strong enough to become a song.

PN: What have you been up to in the time since Cold Spring Fault Less Youth?
DM: Literally just been playing as many shows as possible, we did a whole summer of festivals and then we did America, UK and we are about 5 shows off the end of the European one. We have just been playing live shows really.

PN: Do you have any destination highlights?
DM: London and New York were really good. In London we had King Krule come along and do the song ‘You Took Your Time’ and then in America we had John Wayne supporting us and he came on stage for ‘You Took Your Time’ as well and did his own thing over it. Both of those were really good shows.

PN: What was it like working with Archy Marshall (King Krule)?
DM: Kind of, the Archy thing was pretty much an accident because we were big fans of his but we didn’t particularly want to work with anyone else. We invited him down to the studio just to have listen to what we were doing and it was decided then that he would sing on those two tracks. Those were the two he picked out from all of the songs and it was just great to have him involved. When it comes to live stuff it is pretty similar in that he will turn up whenever he wants. It wasn’t a planned thing, just a spur of the moment. It feels very natural.

PN: British music has had a massive year on the electronic side of things, why do you think that is?
DM: I don’t really know to be honest, really for the last year we have been in our own world. When we were writing the album we didn’t listen to much other music and we don’t really pay attention to much journalism in music anyway. We don’t pay too much attention to trying to sound a certain way or trying to tap into a certain scene. There is no interest from our side at all, our main focus is trying to find sounds that we find interesting and sound different to us. The sort of headspace that we had for the latest album was a very bizarre one and it was very different from what we had for Crooks & Lovers, it was a bit more of a reaction to a certain time in our lives. We had just moved to London and were soaking up all the music that was going on in London. For the latest record, we spent a lot of time in complete isolation and it was a way more personal album to me. That really came through with the use of vocals, it felt a lot more natural to put our own voice on what we were doing and have a little more of us left on the recordings

PN: Another side that is different is that you are a band?
DM: We tend to say to people that we are in a band. It’s weird because you feel as if you are in a band for six months a year when you are touring and then when we are back at home it’s quite an alien thing producing music again. We have tried to keep up writing when we are on the road but it is just not quite right for us.

PN: How has your live show developed?
DM: We now have a third person on stage, we have a drummer and he also plays the keyboard and bass guitar. Over the course of the last two or three years there have been some big changes. We are always trying to develop the show as best we can. With the instruction of live instruments we naturally want to incorporate that into the show. It’s more about tailoring it to what we need to do, all of the equipment that is on stage is integral to the sound that we need to achieve for certain tracks, there is never any excess.

PN: Why did you want to get involved with the ASOS All Nighter?
DM: Having stuff filmed is sometimes quite fun to do and stuff like this has a big reach and it means our music can be heard by a lot of people that wouldn’t necessarily come across what we are doing. When a big brand like ASOS comes and says that they are interested, we had to do it. Also, it was nice because the whole team behind it were very disconnected from the idea of it being a brand thing. We went in there and recorded four or five songs and it was great. Stuff like that is not stuff that we do often and we don’t want to milk it too much.

PN: That live side to electronic music and putting it on the web is an exciting direction for music…
There is definitely something to be said about being able to see what is going on with electronic acts as opposed to seeing just the front of the stage. You have loads of angles and you can see what is being used, it works and it makes people want to watch more of it. Times are changing so quickly and all of these ideas and ways of listening to music are constantly changing. It feels like a really positive thing, it doesn’t feel like it is compromising the music at all.

- James Embiricos

ASOS will be throwing three house parties, taking place in Australia, North America and the UK, all hosted on the ASOS website here.

The event will be live in the UK from 1800 GMT on 12th December.

Leave a Reply