Interview & Premiere: Ou speaks to us about his House Afrika EP release & plans for the future
The South African House scene is alive and well. With strong releases coming from the country, the world is forced to take note and pay attention. Talent is emerging from all corners of South Africa, taking ownership of their destiny, locking down their targets and fearlessly pushing to build a name for themselves in the international arena. Ou, a producer from KZN, is one of the promising acts to come out in South Africa. He has shot up the ranks to be one of the newer acts to take South African electronic music to the world. We got a chance to speak to the talented producer about his new EP dropping through House Afrika, how it all started for him and what he has in store for us for the rest of 2018. Peep the interview below.
We recently came across your work through the lovely people from Surreal Sounds. They put us on to what you were doing and we were blown away. How did it all start for you?
My relationship with Surreal Sounds started last year, I got in contact with the label via Sizz who introduced my craft to Katlego Swizz the person who heard my music and got hooked on working with me straight away. The relationship was organic and then we first started by releasing a mixtape that was mixed by myself and Sizz and after that we followed that up with a collaborative EP which is titled Twin Towers and that’s when my relationship with the label grew.
The music you make is very unique and different. These days it’s becoming increasingly difficult to box or label music. How would you describe the music that you make?
Being unique and different is what I’m fond with and that was my approach to the industry in the beginning. In describing my sound or the type of music I make I would say it’s a balance between electronic and deep house music. It’s not a sound you can pick up any day in the market, to this point some people still find it hard to believe I’m from South Africa and I take that as a compliment because it shows that they can trace the origin of the inspiration of my sound which is not from South Africa.
One can describe you as a newcomer in the music game and you’ve grown immensely in your art. When it comes to the music, what are you in it for? Some are attracted by the lights, the popularity and the fast life that comes with entertainment. What keeps you pushing?
My mission in the game is solely to inspire upcoming producers to widen their scope of creativity and not to conform to what is trending and just deliver the best work they can bring forth. What keeps me pushing is the love I receive from my fans and the people who find it good to expose themselves to new and different sounds.
South Africa is one of Africa’s biggest exports of electronic music and for us to reach that level a lot of people had to tirelessly work and lay the foundation. Who are your local inspirations and influences that are still active in the music industry?
I have only two people I look up to which is myself and my twin brother Sizz who I usually spend most my time listening to and apart from him I would mention two producers which is Da Capo and Jazzuelle who I can say played a crucial role in making me wanna craft my own music and to also choose this genre which is electronic as the one that’s best fitting to my attributes in making music.
You’re releasing an EP through the legendary South African label – House Afrika. A label that is rich in history and has done a lot to push South African house music forward. How did the House Afrika release come about and what does it mean to you?
As you know that it’s not my first time releasing with House Afrika, one track of mine was included in a compilation last year in the House Afrika Sessions 8, and the track is titled Laser Clutch. The Man EP’s plan to be released at House Afrika came to me last year December which is the time I completed the EP and listened to it thoroughly for about 2 weeks after that I sent it to Swizz to get his opinion on how it sounds before sending it to House Afrika, he then listened to it and gave me feedback and than we sent it to House Afrika and they also gave it a thumbs up. Being recognised by a label I looked up to growing up is a priceless feeling and a dream come true and it definitely meant a lot to also work with them for a second time.
You’re clearly breaking down a lot of industry doors. What can your growing fanbase expect from you this year?
There’s a lot to expect from my side this year. To name a few things, I am going to start with remix packages which I will be dishing out of a track I released with Surreal Sounds titled “If I Had To Kill You”. Part 1 of the remix pack will be released on the 18th of May and Part 2 will be released on the 16th of June. I might also appear on some compilations as the year goes and I will constantly be dishing out EPs every month till say September or August on different labels from South Africa and also internationally.
Lastly, where can people buy or stream your new EP on Friday. Where can people follow online?