Singer-songwriter wonderkid Kilu talks his musical firsts: from opening for Flowerovlove to the brilliance of Billie Eilish.

When I check in with Kilu on the week he’s heading out on a tour supporting Feux, he’s understandably giddy with excitement. Close friends and collaborators, their brotherly bond is about to take them on five dates across the UK, including a show at London’s revered jazz café. “It’s a big full circle moment because Feux inspired me to start making music,” he says down the phone while making a Bolognese pasta; the clanging of a pan and spoon ringing around his voice. “It feels like a good way to close this chapter of my life”. Having opened for Flowerovlove and other emerging artists in his creative network, he’s ready to focus on his own headline shows and build on the fanbase he’s cultivated over countless single releases. 


Kilu acknowledges that putting on shows isn’t enough if you’re to win over the dwindling attention spans of Gen Z. Sometime soon, he plans to debut kilusworld: the first in a series of installations and listening parties that offer his audience an immersive and coalescing experience. For now though, he wants us to take in a new single, ‘similar minds’, which dropped this week and features production credits from his trusty musical accomplace, Sam Ellwood. On the track, he explains, “This one flowed so naturally. I’d say it’s one of my favourite songs that I’ve made; it’s about soulmates and love that’s not meant to be but you wish it was.”


Last year, Kilu released his debut project, 2: a tear-jerking journey that maps out the emotional complexities of life as a twentysomething still figuring things out. Stripped-back guitars echoing his sentiments of love and loneliness are ladened with looping pianos and his strangely soothing vocals. Racking up over a million plays on the breathtaking ‘out of the picture, Pt. 1’, is another testament to the Londoner’s lo-fi melancholia, which is making all the noise of someone who’s set to reach dizzying heights. Catching him on the cusp of this sentiment, here, Kilu talks his musical firsts: from opening for Flowerovlove to the brilliance of Billie Eilish.

First time you fell in love with music?

It was at my lowest point, when I was at uni. I just hated uni. There were a few artists, including Feux, his music honestly saved my life. I was like, ‘How does music have this affect on me?’ XXXTentacion and Radiohead too, I just fell in love with it and started making it myself. That’s when it became more of a purpose than a passion.

First song you were infatuated with?

For me, I was obsessed with albums: In Rainbows by Radiohead and Montel Fish’s JAMIE. They taught me that you don’t need a lot of equipment, you can do it with what you’ve got.

First gig you ever played?

My first proper gig was opening on Flowerovlove’s tour, that was cool. I then did a show every month opening for people that I really rated.

First time you worked with someone who you admired?

I only work with one producer and that’s Sam Ellwood. After releasing one of my first singles, I was going to message him and see if we could work together but he beat me to it! He just believes in me and we have a similar taste, so it feels good to work with him. I’ve learnt a lot about production from him too. The circle that I’m in, the artists are so nice and supportive and cool. It’s really inspiring.

First person you’d recruit if you had a band?

I would love to build a band. If I was to have my dream band, I’d have Johnny Greenwood in there. Then maybe an orchestral keys player like Phillip Glass or maybe Hans Zimmer, why not.

First time you felt starstruck?

I haven’t really been starstruck but the day I do, it’ll be because of Billie Eilish. That would be pretty cool.

First thing on your rider?

I’d bring a piano around, like a proper upright or grand piano.

First track you play when handed the aux?

I don’t really want the aux, I’ll dead the vibe; I’d have you in your feels. Right now, I’m really loving this Australian artist called Them & I and I’d go for the song, ‘A Tape for What I Couldn’t Say’.

First artist you’d add to your dream festival lineup?

I’d have to put Billie Eilish, Paulo Nutini, Radiohead or even King Krule up there.

First purchase after a major music cheque?

I’d buy my parents a house, either in London or a holiday home in France somewhere.

Listen to 'similar minds' now:


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