MINED – AMBIENT ELECTRONICA AS YOU’VE NOT HEARD IT BEFORE
Written by /
Published /
February 15
Category /
Features

              By Bex Shorunke

         Mined drops his latest track Mistakes

Emerging talent Mined’s music is imbued with the kind of synth-rich melancholy, that’ll leave you mourning the heartbreak you never had. The Peacefrog signed newcomer, is making introspective ambient electronica that’s carving out its own niche within the U.K musical landscape. In October 2016 he released his hypnotic debut Pangs and now follows it up with the sonically layered Mistakes. Both of which will be on his forthcoming EP Loves Low’s’ to be released this spring.

There is a distinctly therapeutic aspect to Mined’s sounds. For the artist, it’s both creative and cathartic. The South Londoner faces his emotions with a candid sincerity through which he is able to fuel his music. His decision to restrict music making to the solitude and silence of night only adds to its lofty sentimentality. Beats, loops and samples are carefully weaved together to produce quintessentially British electronica. Mined explains, “I tend to start off with quite innocuous loops and then build textures to suit a certain mood”. Atop this, his echoing vocals illustrate a mind dealing with love and loss-the clues in the EP title. The end result? Tranquillity singed with nostalgia.

The visuals for both Pangs and Mistakes are as beguiling as the content. Filmmaking duo The Rest and illustrator Sam Adefe are the brains behind it. The former has directed videos for Jungle, Little Simmz and Kojey Radical, whilst the latter is a Stormzy collaborator. Both visuals speak to the arcane quality of Mined’s music. In Pangs, the dancer’s fluid movements amid the dreamy background aesthetic is spell-bounding. In Mistakes, the woes of heartbreak assume a physical dimension; the dancers interpretatively dance it out. The video likewise zeroes in on the beauty of the black form; further emphasised by stylist Ibrahim Kamara’s panache for blurring black femininity and masculinity.

Mined, whose name is actually ‘denim’ backwards (a reference to a time when he and a pal rolled up to a gig in matching Levi jackets) admits to being a big fan of listening to sad music when sad. It’s a bittersweet habit and many of us love indulge in the self-pity. “Sadness is a powerful emotion and moreover it’s a very honest feeling that you’d be less inclined to fake”, he explains. However Kofi’s (Mined’s real name) aim is to conjure up sounds that inspire such feeling, is done with the grace of someone who themselves is experiencing it.

“One of my friends jokes that I always name about 100 artists as my main influence” Kofi states. Though this is probably due to the multifaceted nature of his sound. He cites the melodic Brian Eno, the techno-cum-electronica veteran Caribou and his own former housemate Jason Nolan, as some major influencers. The complexity of these artists music is illustrated by a shared tendency to let their soundscapes ripple out, revealing a richness in tone and depth. Such intricacy can be detected in Mined’s own music.

So what’s next? In an ideal world, Mined would like to collaborate with neo-soul Queen Connie Constance, or the uniquely sounding New Zealander Aldous Harding. “I just want people to accept my music for what it really is, and for it to find its own spot in the U.K music scene”.

Photo:   Rosie Mathieson