- Words Notion Staff
Techno producer and musician, Kelly Lee Owens, pick 10Trax that have had the biggest impact on her throughout her life.
Gearing up to release her sophomore album, ‘Inner Song’, on 28th August, techno producer and musician Kelly Lee Owens has dropped a collection of ambient tracks, titled “On”, “Melt!” and “Night” to enjoy whilst we wait.
The upcoming LP sees Kelly trawl through some of the most difficult experiences she’s faced over the last few years and transform them into something new. Speaking on the record, it was a product of the hardest three years of her life; “My creative life and everything I’d worked for up to that point was deeply impacted. I wasn’t sure if I could make anything anymore, and it took quite a lot of courage to get to a point where I could create again.”
The title – ‘Inner Song’ – was inspired by the free-jazz ace Alan Silva’s 1972 composition of the same name. Kelly said that the name “really reflects what it felt like to make this record. I did a lot of inner work in the past few years, and this is a true reflection of that.”
‘Inner Song’ follows on from last year’s “Let It Go / Omen” 12” and her recent collaboration with Jon Hopkins. If you can’t wait until 28th August for new music, dig into Kelly’s eponymous 2017 debut record and her remixes of St. Vincent and Björk.
Dive into the playlist below!
Nina Simone - How It Feels To Be Free (Live at Montreux Jazz Festival 1976)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5dlrXCYrNYI
"When I first saw this performance on YouTube I balled my eyes out. The deeper meaning behind it, the presence in the performance that Nina Simone delivers is unmatched by any other performer - she fully embodies the sound, commands your attention, makes you think more deeply & forces you to question yourself. Thank god she existed."
Alice Coltrane - Journey In Satchidananda
"Whew this whole album is a trip, but this first track in particular blows my mind, it's fully transportive. Alice's harp sounds so cosmic! - the bass line is so simple get strong, then there's the sax by Pharoah Sanders - which just adds that extra layer of richness to the track. Alice consistently delivered mind-bending records in an unconventional way again and again and I am so grateful for her art."
"I love everything about this track - the production for one! But this track particularly inspired my music arrangements, in that it starts more song-based and by the end has broken into a full on dance track!"
Cocteau Twins - Iceblink Luck
"I could literally name any Cocteau Twins track here as they have inspired me so much. Elizabeth Frazer is one of my vocal idols. Her voice is seemingly from another planet! I love the fact that she doesn't use real words most of the time, yet her music still carries the full weight emotionally. This track in particular though shows that they had that cross over weird-pop potential, whcih is something I can relate too a little, especially with my new record."
The Knife - Heartbeats (Live - Silent Shout Tour)
"The arpeggiated synths, the lynchian sounding bass line, Karin's voice, their production, ugh just the whole thing - The Knife are one of the early bands for me that sort of crossed over into some kind of dance-sphere yet maintained their pop-sensibilities AND weirdness at the same time. Visually this track live is also a dream - super simple but heartbreaking."
Radiohead - In Rainbows
"It's hard to pick a track here, because the whole record is one of my favorites ever made. The production is mind-blowing, the song-writing understatedly-epic, Thom's voice is heartbreaking yet unafraid to go into the depths of emotion, everything about this record I love. I did an instrumental cover of Arpeggi on my new record in homage to this record's influence on me, though I didn't DARE replicate the vocals - if you're not Thom Yorke, don't bother! Haha."
The Prodigy - Fire Starter
"I nicked this CD single from my mum to give to a boy I had a crush on in primary school. So I technically count this a "my" first record ever haha I also picked the prodigy here because the track 'On' from 'Inner Song' was originally named 'Spirit Of Keith' because it was made on the day I found out he had passed. I also got to play a wav. of this track at the end of my DJ set in Fabric a few weeks later and it BANGED on that sound system - felt like a proper 90's rave!"
Daniel Avery - Drone Logic
"An obvious one in a way - but this was the first studio session I'd attended where I got to see synth/analogue production in action. Once i layed down the vocals to this track, I felt like a lot of things were about to change, and doing this with Dan & James opened up my confidence to finally start making my own stuff, with James' help. Also, not many people know this but I'm secretly in the video a couple of times. I listened to the whole album again recently and it still sounds incredible- we also ended up doing Knowing We'll Be Here together and writing Keep Walking together which ended up on my album. Making music with mates is the best thing when you all bring something different to the table."
This Mortal Coil - Kangaroo
"Heartbreakingly beautiful. 4AD as a label have had a huge influence on me, from the music to the artwork created by Vaughn Oliver. With this track in particular I love the spaciousness, the sound of the bass and the verb on the vocals, and the strings kill me."
Talking Heads - Stop Making Sense (Live)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xL7Ilh1DFI
"I love Talking Heads - this live album was the first record I ever bought, weirdly before I watched the film - but once I saw the film it blew my mind! The level of thought and detail that went into the live shows production is unreal, down to them taping the shiny drum stands black, so that no light would be reflected back to the audience causing distraction from the performance and sound. The live version of Slippery People is a favourite here but the whole thing is iconic."
Listen to Kelly Lee Owen’s ‘On’ release below: