Drawing on influences from lo-fi pop, folktronica and deep house ‘Lumina’ is a soundtrack for chilled and happy times. Taking a break from DJing and his Psychotropical Soul podcasts, composer Jay Woods has delivered a superb collection of chilled and positive electronica full of little production surprises and layers of sound. Designed for any programming that needs a gentle, uplifting but still contemporary vibe.
We caught up with Jay to get some insight on the latest NOVA release:
Hi Jay! Can you tell us a bit about yourself? E.g. Where you’re from, how you got started in music?
I’m a music producer and composer based in London and I occasionally DJ and play live in a couple of side projects. I got started in music tinkering on my mum’s piano. A few years later I got into programming a very basic computer with just 16k of RAM. I never imagined the two worlds would combine one day but hey, here we are and here I am!
You have a background as a DJ & podcaster, can you tell us a bit about how that influences your compositions?
Sure. I was raised on a diet of world music, reggae and rock and so have always been intrigued by global sounds. I don’t DJ out so often now but still buy a lot of music and hence the podcast is my outlet for that. There is some truly amazing electronic music emerging at the moment from places like Columbia, Ecuador, Mali and Indonesia.. the production values are often second to none and mixed with traditional organic sounds. That whole scene really inspires me so I guess I’m taking a lot of influence from this combination at the moment.
What are the main influences or themes behind the new album, Lumina?
Not world music directly although I have drawn on organic elements along the way. I’ve been listening to a lot of Northern European producers such as Christian Löffler and Ben Böhmer who use melody quite prominently in their tracks as well as someone like Stimming with regards to innovative percussion. I feel these producers in particular are taking the deep house/ techno template in interesting directions.
Can you tell us what makes this album stand out? What is special about it?
I wanted to make something that was predominantly major key, hopeful and uplifting without being too sugar sweet. I always keep one ear to the underground so the lo-fi house scene was another influence as far as themes such as hopefulness and nostalgia go, as well as those lo-fi textures. Hopefully I’ve made something that’s contemporary as well as being a bit different and very useable at the same time.
Finally, can you tell us about your favorite track on the album?
They’ve changed throughout the process, but I would say Blossom as it sounds to me, very pastoral and nostalgic, like a childhood memory of summer warmth and blue skies.
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