Daily Discovery is a daily feature that will highlight a new or recently discovered artist that we’re excited about. See the rest of our Daily Discoveries here.
With a placement on the Solange-helmed Saint Heron compilation (as the first track, no less) alongside the likes of Sampha and Kelela, and a new single just released, times are exciting for BC Kingdom. The duo of Logan (kneeling in the gallery above) and Zou (standing), who are based in LA, are part of the new wave of artists taking R&B in exciting directions by mixing classic sounding vocals with modern production techniques. They identify with this movement, and enjoy listening to the likes of Solange, Drake, the Fade to Mind crew (Kingdom, Nguzunguzu etc), SZA, James Blake and, in their words, “of course the queen, Beyonce.”
The duo, who have been working together in various ways since 2008, but formed BC Kingdom in 2010, are heavily influenced by the ’90s, and it shows in the smooth vocals and emotionally honest lyrics. “We were young in the mid to late ’90s and those sounds shaped our ears and musical taste,” they told us. “Growing up in LA, bass was heard bumping down every street so we typically use a lot of bass in our production. We loved the R&B and hip hop of the 90s, but also were huge fans of ’90s pop, dance, and rock. Those elements are also infused into our sound.”
Growing up in LA, bass was heard bumping down every street so we typically use a lot of bass in our production. We loved the R&B and hip hop of the ’90s, but also were huge fans of ’90s pop, dance, and rock.
But how did music from an up and coming duo with a fairly low profile find its way on to one of the most buzzed about (in the world of alternative music at least) releases of the second half of 2013? They explain:
“We have been close friends with Solange since 2011 and we have played her music in the past. She became a supporter of the first release we did with Scion A/V, “Return to Me” and used to play it in her DJ sets which was such an honor to us. From then on we always kept in touch with her whether or not she was in LA. Last year we visited NYC, and met up with her at her shows at Webster Hall. That’s when she dropped the info about her label. We didn’t know any more details but were excited for the opportunity. Fast forward to summer, and that’s when we got word about Saint Heron and us being selected to offer a song. We sent a few options, but “Lock Up” was the best fit for the compilation. It’s a song we had written and demoed but never touched again. We went back into the studio worked on it tediously for about a month and boom, “Lock Up” is the song you hear today!”
Where “Lock Up” is a restrained track, with sparse, bass-heavy production, “DWN4U / JEEPS” hits harder, with crisp percussion and a soaring vocal refrain which eventually drops down into a silky smooth final third. Check it out below.