Image credit: Jarvis
With rebellious energy, intentionally warped, underrated is the music of techno hybrid duo Cousn, who have just released their latest EP Movement. This is the third solo EP release of several to come. We cannot wait to see what the future has in store for this talented pairing, as 2020 has seen the duo sign with Kobalt and The Other Songs.
We chat with Alfie & Billie, who make up the production team Cousn below.
How did you get into music and for how long have you been involved in the arts?
We both grew up around music, Alfie’s parents were both in bands in the 90s and Bill’s Dad directed music videos. When our Dads were younger they were in a couple of bands together too. They were called The Fallopian Tubes and then The Jennifer’s. We used to perform at weddings as The New Fallopian Tubes when we were 12/13, doing covers of things like The Smashing Pumpkins. We started the Cousn project aged 16, so we’ve been doing this a long time together!
What inspires you and what makes you want to keep making music?
Making music that doesn’t sound like anyone, being completely unique in what we do, it is what drives us.
Which artists are you currently listening to? And is there anyone of these that you’d like to collaborate with?
Jasmine Infinite is doing bits at the moment, as is Pezzner, we played both of them in our latest ‘2020 Selections’ Rinse show. We’d love to collab with our best mates Manami and Luca Manning. Luca just won Jazz Newcomer of the year and has the voice of an angel.
How do you separate yourself from other artists and producers right now?
We do everything DIY. Our music’s on our own label, we make the videos and artworks with our mates, it’s all in-house and that’s how we like it. We don’t particularly look at what anyone else is doing. In terms of our sound, it’s very live. Every tune has some live drums, instruments or original vocals woven into the electronics, we operate more as a band.
What do you consider a really successful or high point in your career so far?
Last year we opened for Fatboy Slim on all 7 dates of his UK Arena Tour, so playing at these massive venues was mad especially Wembley. The stage was raised in the middle and span around 360 degrees. The whole tour itself was the funniest couple weeks of our lives, sleeping on the floors of our mates Uni halls and following Fatboy’s massive Tour bus around the country in our mate’s 2 door Golf, it was really special.
For aspiring musicians, what advice would you give to simplify making music?
Always strive to make your own unique song, it’s so easy to put together a tune nowadays with all the loop packs floating about. Record something yourself, whether it’s a weird sound or your own vocals, no one else will have that exact sound and it makes it completely yours.
Which piece of hardware or software would you consider the most essential in your setup, and that you would be a little lost without?
We use the Microkorg the most for sure, but a new bit of kit we’re always using now is the Behringer Poly D, a Moog emulator. For the price, it’s solid and really great to create warm basslines.
Which is the one piece of software or hardware you’re still looking to add to your collection?
An Akai MPC Live II and Eventide H9 are next on the list.
Tell us about what your upcoming releases or projects?
We’ve just released our latest EP ‘Movement’, it’s a 2 track EP with the lead track featuring our drummer Tom doing some drumming madness we recorded in the first take. It’s the start of a busy release schedule coming 2021, we’re looking to release an EP every 6 weeks from January, all with music videos written and directed by us, so keep your eyes and ears peeled.
Also from Tuesday 14th of December, we’re doing ’12 Days of Cousn’, a 1-minute snippet of a tune every day released on our Instagram, fitted with an animation. It’s going to be a busy Christmas…