To say it’s been a massive year for the cinematic bass duo known as Koven would be an understatement. In addition to a stacked 35+ date festival touring schedule that has led them from Glastonbury, Tomorrowland, EDC Las Vegas and the forthcoming Nocturnal Wonderland in SoCal, the duo have also been releasing an unholy amount of music on the masses that has been hitting in all the right ways.
From singles like “Take it Away” to “Lions” and “All We Needed”, the top of the charts both in the U.K. and the U.S. has been impressive and the buzz around the duo shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon.
Returning once more to Monstercat, the imprint that launched both their highly acclaimed ‘Butterfly Effect’ and ‘Butterfly Effect (Deluxe)’ LPs, Koven release the first part of their ‘Higher Ground” EP series with untouchable precision. With each of their tunes as much about the vocals and songwriting as it is about the world-class grooves that bring it all together, their unique brand of “drum & bass with empathic emotion” continues to move audiences around the globe.
With the lead single from the EP project, “Industrial Strain”, already noteworthy for the jaw-dropping reaction of the tens of thousands in the crowd at Belgium’s Rampage Festival earlier this year, the rest of the EP paves the way for the eagerly awaited Part 2 of the project.
As Koven tell us: “‘Higher Ground’ has been a really fun and unique experience for us. Historically all of our writing happens remotely but this time around, the music was written over a few days at a writing retreat. This also presented opportunities like working with Max’s old music theory teacher, Simon Dobson, who helped us with all the string arrangements alongside the Parallax Orchestra. That wouldn’t have happened if we didn’t accidentally bump into him whilst on the writing retreat. Since the album [‘Butterfly Effect’], we set ourselves a new mantra of ‘leveling up’ and being the best version of ourselves, and that’s the meaning behind ‘Higher Ground’. We hope you enjoy ‘Part 1’ and we have even more to show you on ‘Part 2.’”
To celebrate the continued success of the duo we thought it would be a good time to touch down with Max and Katie for a peek behind the scenes as well as a preview of what we can expect when they touch down for the Bassrush fam at Nocturnal Wonderland next month.
So check Part 1 of the ‘Higher Ground’ project below followed by a proper Q&A with Koven and keep it locked as the duo promise the best is yet to come.
First of all, would love to hear from you guys on just how exciting this year has been for you! You’re on such a roll and I can only imagine how you’re already envisioning the coming year.
It’s all been a little crazy and we are just making the most of it. I’m (Katie) really enjoying getting to play new destinations I’ve never reached before and play in front of brand new audiences, like places in Canada and the US. Even though everything feels totally wild right now, it still feels like we are just scratching the surface.
It’s so hard to believe we’re not quite a year out of the pandemic and lockdown and all that craziness – you seem to have come out of it with a renewed sense of urgency and energy. Have you had time to stop and reflect on just how wild the past year has been? What’s it been like from your perspective, with all the releases, festival appearances, and general hype pouring in after COVID solitude?
We haven’t had time to reflect yet, haha, it’s still going at such full speed. I’m constantly on the road and Max is always in the studio. I think by the end of the year we will take a proper moment to look back and give ourselves a pat on the back for all our hard work….but we aren’t there just yet.
With ‘Higher Ground’ hitting the streets and being received so well, we can’t help but ask where you see yourselves headed from here artistically and otherwise? What kind of projects are on the horizon? Do you see or feel a continued evolution in your sound and in the Koven project in general?
What we’ve really loved so much about the ‘Higher Ground’ project is all the real elements we were able to add, like the strings and choir, and we would love to keep focusing more on that with the live stuff as well. It’s both of our ultimate dreams to perform with a live orchestra at some point.
Last but not least, any final shout-out to your old-school fans who’ve been with you from day one and all the new listeners you’ve no doubt converted into fans over the past year?
I’d like to think of something more original than ‘thank you’ as it’s so overused but it’s also so genuine. We wouldn’t have a career without the people who continue to support our music, old and new. You guys are the best!