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WPGM Commentary: Kayowa Fuses Emotions And Technology On Her ‘Cyberflexx’ Album

My name is Kayowa and I’ve always enjoyed the idea of world-building. I’m also a graphic designer and I love getting lost in photo-manipulation (playing around on Photoshop) because I can create my own universe just by shifting a few pixels here and there.

This is why I made Cyberflexx. I was spending a lot of time using technology; often to procrastinate or distract myself from my innermost thoughts. To literally break it down, I named the album Cyberflexx; Cyber relating to digital medium and Flexx in relation to my talents.

Moreover, I opened my web design company earlier this year and named it Cyberflex Ltd… so the title also pays homage to my recent achievements. I had a go at fusing two elements together (emotions and technology), and the album is what I came up with.

Cyberflexx is an insight into the stuff in my mind that I have tried to suppress for a while, almost like a personal diary that I would never even dream of sharing with anyone. As an empath, my feelings are so broad, and the best way to share them with others in a way that they could understand was to create an entirely different world/environment to accommodate my sound.

People seem to always expect the same type of songs from artists, and I hate that! I’m so all over the place and extremely imaginative! I can’t just stick to one genre of music or keep making variations of the same song. I’d like to think of myself as enigmatic because I haven’t seen anyone doing what I’m currently doing in the underground scene.

I listen to almost every genre of music, which is why I can jump on any type of beat – as long as I like it and it speaks to me. I personally believe that music is a diverse language that has the power to unite the world, so there’s no need to only stick to making one type.

I hope to dabble in every type of genre (at least once in my life) so that things don’t get too boring. I have ADHD so my attention span is short; and if I find myself engaging in something I’m not passionate about, I will lose interest very quickly.

In regards to the technical process, I struggled at points. Mixing and mastering took longer than I had anticipated, thus delaying the time I uploaded it to DSPs.

At first, this stressed me out but I’m someone who works well under pressure so amidst all the stress, I knew everything would turn out fine as it always does. It took a completely different change of perspective and a lot of trial and error to get the mixing to a high standard.

In comparison to my debut album, King K, Cyberflexx was harder to mix because of the different styles and themes explored in the project. For example, I used autotune (“lookin 4 da chune”) and a variation of different plugins on Logic Pro X that I had never used before, the majority of them being used incorrectly.

To overcome this, I spent a lot of time doing the research for mixing tutorials on YouTube and spent a week completely sober, and technology-free to enhance my listening capabilities. It almost felt as if I was on a spiritual retreat just to get the album done… but that’s what happens! That always tends to be the process.

As an artist, sometimes you have to ghost without warning to ensure the highest quality piece of art is created. Once I realised that I had to make sacrifices, everything got easier.

Listen to Cyberflexx below and stream it everywhere else here.

Words by Kayowa // Follow her on Twitter + Instagram

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