WPGM Interviews: Tristan de Liège – ‘Kosame’, Exploring Sounds And Trip-Hop Inspirations

Tristan de Liège is a Los Angles based, creative multi-instrumentalist who recently released his new album Kosame on Loci Records, which is an album compacted with experimental and emotive tracks, each being wonderfully unique. There is a hugely spiritual feel to this album, creating a calming aura that makes you want to relax in peace, with a calm energy.

Born in Belgium, but raised in Oklahoma, de Liège reminisces about how he has always loved music and how this inspired him to begin experimenting with instruments and sounds. “My parents used to have those cheesy Yamaha keyboards with hundreds of unrealistic sounds imitating real instruments and I’d play on those for hours, making little songs on them. Later, I learned about recording and producing with a computer and playing bass and keyboard in bands”.

There is a seriously intriguing element to de Liège’s music that makes you wonder exactly what instruments you are listening to within each song, because of the way he manipulates different sounds, strings and beats, with melodies, until he completes and perfects each track.

My sound is downtempo/trip-hop. It’s very produced in one sense because there’s a lot of editing, layering, resampling and so on. But it’s very organic and instrument based and kind of sounds like one band when you are listening to it”.

But creating such beautiful music and producing his albums all alone doesn’t come without years of experimentation and practice. “I took piano lessons and electronic production courses here and there, but in general I’ve learned things on my own as I’ve gone along. Just exploring sounds and synthesis, and eventually got into electronic music at the end of high school when I discovered remixing and DJing”.

His latest album Kosame, became available on Loci Records in April, capturing the feeling of transience and nostalgia that was felt by de Liège himself during a series of light rains that came through Los Angeles, Kosame representing the different rain-concepts in Japan.

Inspired by a wide range of music, it really does explain the individual sound that each track holds, with his influences ranging from early 2000’s electronic music, like Cinematic Orchestra, Bonobo, Quantic, Nostaligia77, as well as jazz, film soundtracks, minimalistic classical music, post rock and folk music.

I get inspirations from trip-hop vocalists, early jazz vocalists like Billie Holiday and rnb vocalists like Solange, who think with an amazing writing style”.

He worked on the album for a period of 8-10 months and recorded it in a house in Los Angles, in West Adams neighbourhood. “I write music wherever I am. Sometimes in my room, sometimes outside, in cafes or in transit. Although a lot of it is in my bedroom studio for sure. I haven’t written many tracks with lyrics but when I have, the themes tend to be about nature and our leadership to nature”.

If you loved Kosame and want to know when the next lot of music will be revealed by Tristan de Liège then you’d be happy to know he revealed to us, “I have another album for my solo project finished, but am just looking for a good label fit to release it. I really want to develop my live performance so that I can share my music with people around the world and continue to incorporate a lot of different genres into my music, to add to the uniqueness“.

He concludes, “It’s important to be really clear about what’s important and interesting to you about your music. Never forget why you are doing this; it’s because you love music and you love learning about, and being inspired by music, and creating it”. Keep tabs on Tristan on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and listen to Kosame below.

Words by Mia Woloszczynska

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