K.I.D.S. is duo Rosanna Munter from Sweden, and Charles Cave from the U.K. Together they create lush synth-pop sounds with a serrated rock n’ roll edge. They sat down with mxdwn during their first set of live shows ever at SXSW music festival in Austin, Texas to talk influences, coming together to make music, recording, and their debut album that is currently in the works.
How did you guys meet and start making music together?
Rosanna Munter -We actually met through friends in Sweden.
One of you is from Britain and the other from Sweden?
Charles Cave– Yes, I’m from London, and Rosanna is from Stockholm.
Your appearances here at SXSW are actually your first live shows ever? How has your experience at SXSW been so far?
Rosanna & Charles – Yes!
Rosanna – It’s been good, we survived the first day. It feels great; we’re so excited to be here. We’ve really gone into festival mode, and you don’t feel like you’re sleeping when you are actually sleeping, and you just go on to the next day.
That’s very exciting. So, tell us about the live band setup for your first shows.
Rosanna – It’s the two of us, Charles on guitar, and me singing. Then we have Jeff on bass, and Victoria on drums. So, we’re a four-piece band for now.
How has it been bringing your music to a live setting?
Charles – Pretty good, actually. It’s been nice with the music to have a little bit less control. The energy you get from people playing through it, and having a live drummer as opposed to recording where you have program drums, things like that. That’s been a really exciting new element. The guitars are a lot louder than they are in recordings. And it’s just really, I think it’s really powerful. We’ve always had very melodic strong pop songs, but playing it live like this gives it a little bit more edge. It’s just been really good.
Rosanna – Yeah, the live drums make it so much more organic, and add some contrast as well.
Since we are currently surrounded by all this great music at the fest, what are you guys listening to right now?
Rosanna– I’ve been listening a lot to a band called smile, which is a krautrock band that’s really good. Also Delta 5, and Kendrick Lamar.
You guys make really beautiful music, but it definitely has an element of darkness to it. Can you tell us about that contrast? It’s a very unique sound because it’s pop elements with an edge of chaotic rock.
Rosanna – I think we’ve just written music, and it’s ended up there. It’s just what comes natural to us. Like when we were writing the new album, nothing was forced, we just kind of played around, and it’s the results of that pretty much.
What was the recording process like for this new set of songs?
Rosanna – When we first started working together, we didn’t really have a plan to start a band. We started writing songs, and created our own world, and found our references and influences together, and now here we are putting together this new album.
Charles – It’s been a very interesting project, 75% of it was done in my bedroom. That’s been really exciting to me to see how far you can take that kind of or work. I’m not going to say we had limited resources, but we managed to do so much in a very humble space. We’ve now taken those recordings to a proper studio and polished them up. It’s been a really great process.
What is the official status on your debut album?
Charles – It’s well on its way to be finished. We’re going to try and tie it up before the summer, and then probably release early next year. The whole process so far has been so relaxed. There’s been no pressure of trying to get things released at a certain time or anything like that. We’ve been taking it where we want it to go in a very natural and honest way.
What is next for K.I.D.S.?
Charles – We’ll mostly be working on the new record back in London. I think being here at SXSW is going to open some doors for opportunities, so hopefully there will be somewhere to go to from there whether it’s touring or anything else, really. I think a schedule will come together in the next few weeks following our time here.