In the age of the internet, cross-continental collaborations are commonplace, web lingo pervades daily speak and everyone and anyone virtually has a how-to-produce kit at their fingertips at all times. If you’re looking for an act that defines this age of mass information intake, look no further than Drew Kim and Brendan Neal of Grown Folk. While Drew and Brendan met and began to work as Grown Folk at McGill University in Montreal, they’ve rarely been in the same place at the same time. Whether because of family (Drew’s live in Hawaii while Brendan’s live in Vermont), or visa issues, they’ve been forced to use Skype, iChat and Dropbox as a means of sharing long-distance ideas. With critically acclaimed releases on Australian label Templar Sound and San Francisco’s Icee Hot, the duo has completed collaborations with artists from across the sonic/geographical scale, including everyone from Oakland’s Main Attrakionz to Sydney’s Dro Carey. Unlike other acts grouped under the internet label though, Grown Folk have a strong affinity to the hip hop community (Drew has functioned as Main Attrakionz’ tour DJ in the past) and to visual art and fashion (they both would like to soundtrack a runway show). Grown Folk is that rare act that blends the stream-of-consciousness creativity of the file-sharing era with a distinct IRL grounding, whether that manifests itself on tour, in their fashion choices, or in their kaleidoscopic production approach.
Hit the jump for more on Main Attrakionz’ tour habits, the cohesiveness of the Montreal scene and, of course, aliens…
On April 23, Friends of Friends sister label Young Adults will release a compilation called House Slippers. The compilation will feature label stalwarts Suzanne Kraft and Permanent Vacation, as well as brand new tracks from relative newcomers NYCPARTYINFO and Chamboche. Today, we receive a treat from the comp in the form of brand new Grown Folk. Whether they’re producing for Main Attrakionz or riling up dancefloors across the U.S. and beyond, the duo of Drew Kim and Brendan Neal have been absolutely tearing it up. “Just Wear It” sees the duo combine a number of their influences including trance and old school Chicago house into one sexy-as-hell groover that should probably soundtrack your next nocturnal adventure. For now, we only have a four minute clip available, but that just means you’ll have to snag the entire compilation come the 23rd. Stream a new Mark E joint that will also appear on House Slippers after the jump.
Despite living nearly 10,000 miles apart, Sydney’s Dro Carey and Montreal’s Grown Folk have more in common than you might be lead to believe. For one, they’ve both released quality choons on Australian imprint Templar Sound and have a fondness for the rougher edges of hip hop. Carey produces under a number of pseudonyms and traverses the worlds of hip hop, grime, house and techno with effortless aplomb while Drew and Brendan of Grown Folk have cut their teeth as Main Attrakionz’ tour DJs. “Limbo Limbs” draws from all corners of the three prodigious producers’ vast range of influences, but can safely be called grime and is certainly an ode to the genre’s roughneck origins. Stream “Limbo Limbs” below and download it here.
Photo by Kane Øcean
Most producers who stretch themselves across multiple disparate genres sacrifice some quality in their overall production acumen, but the few who excel at this difficult task often elevate themselves to new levels. It’s fair to say that Montreal duo Grown Folk have achieved the latter, succeeding in the dance music world (with an EP out on Templar Sound and joint work with LOL Boys) and proving influential in the hip hop world (with production work for Main Attrakionz). Next week (Feb 11), the duo will release The Boat EP on Icee Hot (which you can preview here), but to add some icing to the already tantalizingly sweet cake, they’ve let loose “Cornelia”, a light-hearted attempt at the rave sounds of yore. Stream and download “Cornelia” below and look out for The Boat on February 11.
Grown Folks have been inextricably linked with Main Attrakionz for the past few years, acting as their tour DJ(s) and handling a good amount of production work, so it only makes sense for the Montreal duo to handle production on what is probably the last single off of Bossalinis & Fooliyones. The album drops in a few weeks (October 22) via Young One Records and should be Mondre and Squadda’s magnum opus. On a side note, it’s really nice to see their songs actually, you know, mastered and shit. As much as I love (and hate) the whole “cloud” aesthetic, lo-fi is almost always a bad look for hip hop artists. Just ask Blu. Stream and download “Cloud Body” below.
If you’ve even remotely followed our social media activity, you’ve surely noticed we have somewhat of an obsession over the Leeor Brown headed Friends of Friends label. When I heard that Brown, along with DJ David Fisher, was starting up a more house oriented label, I could barely contain my enthusiasm. One of my favorite facets of FoF is its broad style and genre sensibilities, but some straightforward four on the floor madness is also good in my book. Young Adults will celebrate its first release, courtesy of Grown Folk and LOL Boys, on June 19th. Yesterday, the first track on YA001 was let loose on Soundcloud and the two production duos went bananas on this one. For the uninitiated, Grown Folk are a Montreal duo who have begun to get their name out, both based on their production acumen and their spot as Main Attrakionz’ DJ’s. I believe you already know Jerome and Markus of LOL Boys. “Ghostpath” relies heavily on the TB-303 for the majority of the track and before long it fully takes over. The track is more complex than most acid tracks, but still far more understated than most of LOL Boys previous work. I can’t wait to hear that bassline destroy the dancefloor in a live setting. Stream below and cop YA001 on 12″ June 19.