For Iranian-American producer Mikey Maleki (known in musical circles as Kodak To Graph), the old adage "your first album is your life's work" is truer than for most. Mikey's debut LP, ISA, is a 10-track journey through the thoughts, experiences and moments in time that made him the musician he is today.
"I always try and sample some sort of real-life sounds that originate from the period of time when I'm writing a track," Mikey tells THUMP. "Whether it be birds in the backyard or the rustling of leaves you hear when walking through the woods; I feel like it helps bring the song to life and gives it a sense of narrative."
Progressing through ISA from "Belong," a powerful and exalted intro, to "Los Angeles," a lively, quirky tribute to his new hometown, and on to outro "Arc Lantern," you really do feel that each song is telling its own unique story.
Throughout ISA, the listener is guided by the familiar percussive elements of hip-hop's early beat machines and entranced by ethereal sounds of unknown origin. Mikey explains that the idea was to paint a picture that was both both dynamic and boisterous. Something delicate, gloomy, and pensive, but danceable throughout.
"It really doesn't matter if people like it or not," says Maleki. "It's something that's an extension of me and I'm just happy to share it. It feels like a sense of closure to the past few years."
Kodak To Graph is on Facebook // Twitter // SoundCloud
Catch him on tour beginning March 24th. More info here.
Ziad Ramley is on Twitter (and not on Facebook)