Multi-instrumentalist OAKLND is delighted to unveil his breezy, California-inspired pop music through the release of his debut single Hold On, out now via AWAL.
Combining elements of the dreamy west coast pop produced by acts like LANY with the chillwave, R&B sensibilities of acts such as Astronomyy and Thomston, Hold On sees OAKLND craft a mellow electro-pop sound meshed with personal, biographical lyrical content, that is as rich in texture as it is in atmosphere.
In this interview spotlight, we chat with OAKLND about the latest project, challenges, influences and more.
Full Q&A along with links and a stream of Hold On below.
Let’s dive a little deeper into You, the artist and your music. What attracted you to this genre(s) or style(s)?
A lot of how I wanted the songs to sound came from places that I’d been, particularly west coast USA. I wanted them to sound mellow and chilled, but still have a pop sound to them. A lot of bands are starting to mesh indie sounds with pop, Fickle Friends have been doing it for a while and it’s a really cool sound. Bands that I listen to like Fickle Friends, The 1975 and LANY all sort of drew me towards that style as well.
What led you into this journey with music? And further, what drives you to push it out to the public?
Hearing songs that you really connect with, and feel something for is something I always loved, and something I really wanted to try and do with these songs. I wanted to make them quite personal and make something people can relate to.
Who or what influences your creativity? Have your tastes in music changed over time?
The whole west coast thing was a massive influence on how I wanted these songs to sound. Trying to get the way it looks and the vibe to come across with the music was a big thing for me. And again, bands like Fickle Friends, The 1975 and LANY have all had an influence on how I wanted it to sound. I’d say over the past year and half I’ve been writing my taste has changed massively. Before, I was very focused on guitar bands, but the more I opened that up, the more sounds and influences I wanted to incorporate into my own songs.
Were you trying to accomplish anything specific on this new project? Creatively or otherwise?
Trying to portray the whole west coast over into the music was important to me. Creatively, that really was what is was about. And making something personal that people could relate to.
What was the last song you listened to?
LANY – ILYSB
Which do you prefer? Vinyl? CDs? MP3s?
How about this one…. Do you prefer Spotify? Apple Music? Bandcamp? Or something else? Why?
Spotify. It’s such a massively player in music now. I’ve found so many bands that I love on Spotify, it’s literally a machine for new music and discovering new music.
Other than the digital era overwhelming us with access to an abundance of music, what is the biggest challenge you face when trying to connect with or find new fans?
Trying to stand out. It’s not just about the music anymore, it’s about the visuals, what your social media looks like, and everything else. They’re all so important for standing out. Having access to so much music is amazing, but as an artist trying to stand out is definitely the hardest.
Where is the best place to connect with you online? Discover more music?
All the socials. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Anything else you’d like to add before signing off?
My debut single is streaming now over on soundcloud
It’s out now and available to stream via Spotify.