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Mystical, desolate, resounding and experimental: these are the multinational wails of the sixteen strong collaborators on Kinlaw’s WELD. Shouty rap, punktronics and crunchy textures reign supreme. It’s a wild ride. Hailing from a small Dorset town the producer, now based in Bristol, is highly collaborative and his latest album reaches from across Bristol, Palestine, Togo and Uganda. National boundaries are skipped over easily in this global-facing noise album that borrows from the pagan drumming traditions of the British isles and the lilting quality of Moroccan music in Dali de Saint Paul’s vocal drones.

WELD’s album cover features what looks like a stone fossilized tree with a metal shaft welded onto it. It talks to adapting nature to make something hybrid or cyborg. What was the thought process behind it?
This photo was taken close to where I grew up, it’s a broken column of a folly on the grounds of a castle. A lot of the artwork references futures of desolation, pasts being broken apart and distorted. Much like the Roman ruins that you find around the place it’s relaying a time where modern interpretations and imposing post war structures like the Barclays Building lay to waste.
Cyborg is one way of describing your musical identity. I wonder, do you relate to synths as conscious collaborators, like Arca, or more an extension of yourself?
I see myself more of an amateur alchemist working with 28kps mp3 rips.
Collaboration is key to this album. What was your process for finding all the 16 artists who feature on the record? How do you relate to each other?
Lots of the artists on the release are people I know closely from Avon, people I’ve collaborated in some form with before or people played shows with like Yao Bobby and Elvin Brandhi, yeah you. Drowned by Locals pulled strings and graced us with a slew of very sick MCs from Jericho, Tunisia, Egypt closer to their HQ, it was a collaborative selection process, building an army that spanned as many borders, to create the most wholistic fighting force possible.
Did Ecko Bazz visit the UK for his contribution, or did you collaborate across the Internet with the artist in Uganda? How was it?
As much as I could I recorded in person however Ecko Bazz and the others not so local, we conducted things via the web. It was smooth though, Ecko Bazz is the perfect example. We sent the track and I couldn’t imagine anyone going on this beat. He made it sound like it was meant for him.
You describe the album as “a bedrock for multilingual messaging”. It’s pretty de-colonial of you to avoid using only English in the album, was that a conscious choice? What’s the reason you wanted to involve multiple languages?
Everyone has something to say and some way of saying it.
This local and global album is said to be “steeped in the mystery and folklore of a small town in Dorset, England”, can you tell us more about this town?
It’s just like any other small market town with an industrial estate. Morris dancers and mummers hassle people in pub gardens, everyone’s in their lane.
If WELD was a parallel world, what would the landscape look like?
Its beautiful outside, green and lush but you won’t see it because you’ll be in a tumbling down cottage on the Internet.
You seem to almost always release on tape. What is it about the cassette tape as a format that makes it such a classic for Kinlaw?
I grew up with a backpack full of tapes and naturally ended up releasing on this format. Mainly because I didn’t care for CDs and records seemed expensive and out of reach.
Your live shows are a feast for the senses. Do you have any pre-show rituals? What is it that draws you to music that is on the edge of discomfort?
I’ll usually sink a few drinks, I’m quite shy and nervous. I like to have the lights off and preferably not be centre stage as I feel like a sitting duck. I tend to let the sound do the business and of course it’s handy having a mic assassin on hand.

Bella Spratley

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