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Kai Whiston

Biography

18 year old Kai Whiston comes from the town of Shaftesbury, in rural Dorset, just south west of Glastonbury; population 7,314.

 

A teenager armed with a laptop and a wild mind, he’s been bending sound waves to his metallic fwd thinking will. Following his 2016 EP ‘Houndstooth’ EP being championed by Mary-Anne Hobbs and being featured as a producer alongside Grimes and Jam City on Taiwanese rapper Aristophanes mixtape ‘Humans Become Machines’, the teen has signed to Ninja Tune imprint Big Dada for the ‘Fissure Price’ EP. The EP will feature as part of the iconic UK label’s 20th anniversary celebrations.

 

Like OG electronic God Aphex Twin, who hails from the equally rural South West English county of Cornwall, Kai looked out over the green hills of Dorset and has pulled some jagged, fearsome musical shapes out of the air. He was on Youtube from the age of 8 teaching himself how to use digital tools “with Google Chrome and 50 tabs open” at first visual ones like Photoshop and then stumbling on music production.

 

His first love was punk before he discovered electronic music, with his Mum being a ‘huge raver’ too, that pointed him in the righteous direction. He was also inspired by Brainfeeder producer IGLOOGHOST, who bizarrely also comes from Shaftesbury but following being discovered by Flying Lotus signed to his iconic LA beat label. Specifically the moment IGLOOGHOST commented ‘BIG’ on one of Kai’s early Soundcloud tracks gave the teen the boost to get his music out there.

 

Early in 2017, Kai DJed for RADAR Radio, with a show he titled Atrophy FM and mixes that allowed him to display the full range of his taste from a grime-adjacent aesthetic, to the sound design conscious labels like PAN and Editions Mego. He is also influenced by the distorted rebellious energy of Death Grips and The Prodigy as well as FlyLo’s cosmic braindance.

 

EP artwork was created by Dallas-born NY-based artist Sam Rolfes. Sam has created his signature surreal digital work for artists as diverse as Kingdom, DAWN, Rihanna, Danny L Harle and Caroline Polachek.

 

Kai says about his forthcoming EP “This is an unveiling of some of the grim and humorous sounds I’ve been up to. More than anything, I wanted to portray a playful and juvenile sense of humour that I felt was missing in the music I was making and hearing, which ended up being a total blast to make. I was thoroughly intrigued in using aggressive sound as a mark-making tool and explore the malleability of sonics in a painterly & silly way. Actively running away from my direct influences & creating a universe around this sound was a really great process that had me laughing the whole time. Sam Rolfes was a heavy inspiration and perfect partner during the whole process. I can vouch that the visual stimuli, conversations and friendship we built were a big factor in making this project possible.”