Q&A with T.O.L.D. – Talks Working With SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO and More!
Posted On 01 Mar 2016
Tag: Alan Watts, allaccessmusicnicole, Andrew Weathers Ensemble, Barn Owl, Birmingham, Brian Eno, California, Classic, classic soul, Craig David, Dance, dance music, Dangerous, Dr. Dre, Drake, Drake & Future, Dre, Echo Park, EDM, electronica, Eminem, Eminem’s Slim Shady LP, Future, Griffith Park, Hassan Rahim, Heal The World, Hip Hop, Hollywood, Indian, iTunes, Jas, Jas Shaw, Kanye, Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar, L.A., LA, London, Los Angeles, Mac Miller, mathematician, Michael Jackson, Nietzchean, Nina Lee, old school hip-hop, Pavement, Pigeons & Planes, Rabindranath Tagore, Return Forever, Shorefire, Shorefire Media, Shorefire PR, Simian Mobile Disco, Slim Shady, Slim Shady LP, Soul, Soundcloud, Spotify, Stars of The Lid, Sunset Blvd., The Religion of Man, There is Always Light, Tim Hecker, TRAVIS $cott, Travis Scott, What a Time To Be Alive, Yeezus, Yeezy
T.O.L.D. introduced himself towards the end of 2014 with the brilliant “Lucifer’s Eyes”, which was followed by a three track EP Heaven, released via IAMSOUND. Now he’s back with “Return Forever.”
“The disembodied voice from ‘Lucifer’s Eyes’ appears again,” T.O.L.D. explains.
“I wrote this one with Jas from Simian Mobile Disco. We spent a day in his studio in London fucking around with synths & drum machines, three years later this song emerged from a studio in Echo Park. A kind of Nietzschean dance song.”
The song’s slow start—spare percussion and moody lyrics reflecting on subjects like mortality and religion—doesn’t prepare you at all for the huge chorus which breaks out suddenly, a ray of golden sunlight after dark storm clouds. “This record is my attempt to say what cannot be spoken with words,” T.O.L.D. adds. “I thought ‘Return Forever’ was a good lead track because it deals with the infinite, and that’s usually a good place to begin.”
All Access Music writer, Nicole DeRosa had the pleasure of catching up with the funny, engaging and well read T.O.L.D. Enjoy their chat below!
Hey there, Dan! Where does our interview find you today and what’s on the agenda today besides our interview?
Hey Nicole! I’m at home in sunny Hollywood, my dog woke me up because he needed to piss, I walked him down Sunset Blvd to the soundtrack of Drake & Future’s What a Time To Be Alive . It was a good morning, I spent the rest of it reading a book called ‘The Religion of Man‘ by the Indian mathematician Rabindranath Tagore. It blew my mind & I found myself deep into writing a new song inspired by his book called ‘There is Always Light’, then my manager texted asking me to do this interview.
Later, I have band practice. I want to go on a hike in Griffith Park because my dog gets anxious if he doesn’t exercise enough, so do I.
For those that are not familiar with you and your music, who or what was the catalyst for you to want to live the life of a musical gypsy?
Michael Jackson was an early teacher, When I was 3, my older brother started going to school everyday, so I would stay home and listen to “Dangerous” on repeat. That CD contained all these words I could escape into.
When I was 10, I realized I could make those worlds myself. Seven years later, in a math lesson, a buddy of mine wasn’t allowed to go piss in the middle of a college math lesson. I realized that scene was far too silly for me, so I walked out and spent the next 3 weeks recording my first EP.
You just premiered “Return Forever” off your upcoming release (via Pigeons & Planes) which you wrote with Jas Shaw of SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO and calls a “kind of Nietzchean dance song.” How did that track come about…did the lyrics or the music come first?
“Return Forever” had been bouncing around my head for a long time, it was the name of this holy book I discovered in a dream, the sequel is called ‘…And Ever’. The track began with an 808 loop in Jas’ studio. It’s more like a spaceship actually, that dude is a madman.
Speaking of working with Jas, how did you guys meet and know you wanted to collaborate with one another?
Like anything from around that time, the specifics are vague. I’ve always been a massive fan of Simian Mobile Disco. I think that may have had something to do with it.
I understand you are a fan of classic soul, old-school hip-hop and modern electronica production. Who have been your inspirations growing up that also inspire you today?
You’ve been experimenting with music from early on throughout the Birmingham and London underground scene but have recently been writing and recording out here in Echo Park, California. How are you enjoying the music scene here?
The music scene in LA is amazing, it’s part of the reason I moved here. It feels more vibrant, free & independent out here on the west coast.
Nowadays, everything is so instant…you press a button and it’s yours ala Spotify, Soundcloud, iTunes etc. What was the first album you saved up your hard earned money as a kid and bought for yourself?
Eminem’s Slim Shady LP on tape…. I was 9.
What was the first song you fell in love with (or made a lasting impact) on you and why?
Michael Jackson’s “Heal The World”. I still listen to it and feel like I did when I was 3.
Who is in your current playlist? What artists or bands are in current rotation for you?
Andrew Weathers Ensemble
Stars of The Lid
What’s on tap next for you? What are you most excited about for this year?
Releasing my album… It’s better than Kanye’s.
To stay connected to T.O.L.D. , visit his socials below:
Website / Facebook / Twitter / YouTube / Instagram