It’s the end of July and so it’s the end of Debut Album Appreciation Month. How about we close it out with a brief introduction to (the other) Canadian wunder-producer Kaytranada, who set the standard for album of the summer back in May with the release of his debut 99.9% — which has been in heavy rotation for me, and generally good for my mood, ever since.
To get to know the man behind the music allow me to point you in the direction of this profile by Alex Frank for The Fader, it too is one of the best works of its kind this year. And yes, to really get the full Kaytranada musical experience you have to explore the depths and range of the numerous mixes and re-mixes on his Soundcloud. Soundcloud isn’t what it used to be, and that’s a topic for another day but, seeing “prod. Kaytranada” on a track meant an auto-repost, regardless of who provided the vocals for the track. Trusting Kaytranada to deliver production that’s sharp, capable of surprise and sparks curiosity at times; production that builds upon a groovy, life-affirming bounce hasn’t led me wrong yet.
On 99.9%, Kaytranada has put all of the above together for a complete, original work that, aside from the continued beat-making hitting streak, is unique for how many different guests are brought on and how each guest pulls the production in their own direction. But this is another credit to Kaytranada: knowing who to collaborate with, and knowing when you’ve got a good connection, are major keys.
We’ve discussed on this here blog The Internet’s Ego Death, on which is the song “Girl” produced by Kaytranada. We’ve also talked a bit about Anderson .Paak and his enduring album from earlier this year Malibu. Kaytranada appears on that album as well having produced “Lite Weight” featuring The Free Nationals United Fellowship Choir.
Each of those tracks are among the best on their respective albums, and both Syd and .Paak have returned the favor here on favorites “You’re The One” and “Glowed Up”, respectively. Additional shouts are due to Craig David, AlunaGeorge, Goldlink, Vic Mensa, and BadBadNotGood (whose recent modern jazz release IV I’ve really enjoyed while reading/writing). Kaytranada’s got so many friends whose music I enjoy and he’s produced that I had to make a “Prod. KAYTRANADA” Spotify playlist just to keep up with them all.
Pulling in so many similarly rising, similarly positive vibes only type young creatives gives 99.9% a diversity of tone and flow, all tied together by an overarching urge to move some part of your body along to the music. That said, until you’ve heard it, you never know what you’re going to get when you see Kaytranada credited on a track, but it’ll be good. Do the rest of your summer a favor and give all things Kaytranada a spin, or two.