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Deconstructing genres with Slikback

November 20, 2018

I heard one Slikback‘s track one day and immediately wanted to know who was cooking in the studio.

Slowly lurked through the window like a six year old and i saw this young kid just making music. His music was so futuristic and melodic. His music was his voice and I could hear it loud and clear.

Let’s meet Slikback

My name is Fredrick Mwaura Njau aka Slikback and I am a producer/dj from Kenya. I mainly produce Club/Electronic music by deconstructing different genres and combining them into a dark presentation. I work with Uganda’s Nyege Nyege crew and I have recently released my first EP “Lasakaneku” under their Hakuna Kulala Label.

I think the awareness of my love for music started during my post primary school holiday when i heard Dungeon Dragon by Nicki Minaj and Eminem on the radio. The beat was so hard and it had some crazy switch-ups. During the time I didn’t have a music player so i would just scroll through different stations trying to catch that song. That led me to listening and discovering other genres i was into most notably EDM and trap.

I then began to write melodic lyrics in high-school with my friend who would write rap verses. This kinda gave me an idea of track progressions. Later my classmate invited me to his house to play me some tracks he was making in logic at his brother’s in-house studio. He also played me an Avicii track plus some other EDM songs. That was the first time i was truly exposed to the production aspect of music and i was hooked, even though i had no equipment/pc.

My main inspirations at the moment are the crazy, interesting, experimental sounds people are presently making throughout the world. I still remember how much Amnesia Scanner, Errorsmith and jlin’s sounds blew my mind when i first heard them. Currently so many producers from around the world are inspiring me so much by how they are pushing boundaries and I am truly blessed to get to meet and work with some of them.

– All I can tell future producers is: stay true to your path, whatever that musical path is and don’t let go of your dreams because they will keep you going much further than you anticipated. Also keep pushing boundaries and prove negative stereotypes wrong.

– It is truly East Africa’s time now. We are lucky to have more eyes on us than ever with the music coming out from the region and the different collectives within. People are now witnessing the rise of many talented producers like Bampa Bana, Sisso and Leo Palayeng from the region who are pushing local and international sounds to fit their own unique aesthetic.

– Being an artist is not as challenging at the moment because now the only limitation is the mind. This is possible through the rise of technology and the connectivity that comes with it. All an artist needs now is to have something relevant and interesting to add to the global music scene

– I truly believe that East Africa can have a distinct sound but why should it. The region has so much to offer, from unique takes on r&b to the darkest tribal sounds. What I think is that dozens of producers will have their own takes on what East African music is, with no distinct/technical link between them, and that’s cool. We have producers like Zilla, Rey Sapienz, Suraj, and Jay Mita all having sounds that sound nothing like the other, all from different backgrounds, but all having fun doing what they love. There is no need to limit that.

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