w/ Lou Phelps, Sahar Habibi, John Simmons
Thursday, October 6 | 8PM Doors | More Info
Haitian-born, Canadian-raised DJ/Producer KAYTRANADA has had quite the year. Born Louis Kevin Celestin, KAY began DJing at the age of 14. After first making his name as a stream king on Soundcloud, he released his debut album 99.9% earlier this year via XL Recordings (the famed English label who has released music by M.I.A., Adele, and The Avalanches).
The album was released two years after penning the deal with XL, and the wait for 99.9% proved worth it: the album received rave reviews from Pitchfork, Fader, and many more critics. It was also recently awarded the Polaris Prize this summer, the top prize for albums by Canadian musicians.
The wait can be partially blamed on heavy touring, but in a feature with Fader, KAYTRA discussed the other pressures that were weighing heavy on him, particularly surrounding his sexuality. Growing up in a hetero-centric circle in Montreal, and the homophobic nature of Haitian traditions within his family all led to the musician often feeling frustrated, prevented him from coming out, and feeling comfortable in his own skin. After coming out to his sister, mother, and brother, KAY finally felt somewhat relieved. 99.9% is an exciting declaration of this weight coming off his shoulders, and the musical results are as exciting as his message is inspiring.
KAYTRANADA's beats and musical inspirations span multiple decades and genres, reminiscent of Madlib and J Dilla. He utilizes crates of soul, funk, hip-hop, and R&B records when playing live. While his original creations reflect these genres significantly, 99.9% retains a contemporary feel thanks in part to the subject matter and guest artists in the songs. The album features multiple collaborations, including Anderson .Paak (below), Vic Mensa, BADBADNOTGOOD, AlunaGeorge & GoldLink, Craig David, and Little Dragon. Each featured artist assists in keeping the album fresh and genre-spanning, keeping you on your feet throughout its entirety.
Look over KAYTRA's Soundcloud or mixes, and it's an apparent diverse list of musicians such as: Janet Jackson, Danny Brown, Erykah Badu, Disclosure, Flume, Pharrell, and Beyoncé, along with many more. When listening to these edits and remixes (or "KAYTRAFLIPS" as he calls them) one thing remains constant - they are all purely his own. This type of consistent musical auteurism can lead to massive success and a huge following, and 2016 is just starting to show the tip of the iceberg for KAY's potential.
When performing live, the best DJs or producers don't just create mixes, they create atmospheres, and it's up to the crowd to take hold of the ambiance on the dance floor. KAY will bring his KAYTRAFLIPS as well as his original material to a SOLD OUT crowd at Concord Music Hall this Thursday, October 6th with a vibe that is sure to be extraordinarily unique.
Written by Kellen Nordstrom
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