Kwes is best known as a hot young producer from the underground of East London. Having worked with Damon Albarn, Micachu and the Shapes, The XX, Speech Debelle and many more, his production work (as well as remixes for Hot Chip, Zero 7, Jealous Guys ..etc.) has garnered him ‘in-demand’ status. But it’s his own music that is going to put him in the ears of the global music loving population in 2012. His Warp Records debut, Meamtime, which releases May 1st, sees Kwes’ finest collection of compositions yet. An EP that twinkles to life by layering synths over rustling field recordings and sparkling xylophones. It’s smart pop music, ready for the radio but void of pandering; home-schooled but meticulously studied.
Kwes has faired quite well in his 23 years – with production on early demos for The XX, followed by official remixes for Hot Chip and Zero 7, as well as having a big roll in the 2011 OXFAM benefit album for the Democratic Republic of Congo – DRC Music. He’s currently working with Micachu and The Shapes on their new album – as well as the 2nd in a series of mixtapes with Mica herself – dubbed Micakwes, both of which will be released this spring.
‘Free Pop’ is the genre that Kwes describes his own compositions by, and it fits quite well. It is a philosophy of creating popular music that knows no bounds, shuns no eccentricity and values inventiveness over any kind of rules that came before. However, between the disco shuffle of “Bashful” and the lazily swaying “Honey”, Kwes shows he can be quite the understated new-soul vocalist as well. Some will be drawn to the tape crackle, others to “Honey”‘s springtime hooks, but Kwes’ Meantime proves there is nothing wrong with being brought up on a strict diet of popular music, imagination and loads of talent.