Daryl Donald : Kept


If you’re as into chilled instrumentals as much as I am you need to get Kept asap. This 21 year old Scottish producer takes vibrant percussion, warm, glowing samples and aggy rap lines then gently heats them until they form a smooth, smokey blend of instrumentals that coats your ears in a soothing glow. He’s come along way from looping drums over old soul on a demo of Fruity Loops at the age of fifteen; now incorporating Akai’s MPD controller into his workflow as he finds his own style, with an outlook aligned with ‘it’s not what you use, but how you use it‘. Planets evolves throughout it’s short incarnation, propelled by the percussive pulse of it’s wooden clicks that lead into the short chops on Science; with the producer creating a calmness that envelops your headspace. On Aura he loops a lumbering drum beak over mellow piano chords and adds some synth lines to lift the song’s  middle section; whereas Softly sees him taking a more reserved approach to sampling; riffing off one clean, layered loop off crisp drum sounds. Human Condition begins with a thought-provoking sample; before clicks and claps linger over rap lines, punctuated by an occasional use of Charlie Sloth’s favourite Run DMC sample.

The clean snares and laidback hi-hats that drive Rain add an urgency to the emotive piano samples; before the EP closes with a more upbeat groove as Gato‘s smooth sax resonates through a kick-heavy mix that stays a short while before fading out and leaving you wanting more. His sequencing throughout is excellent, the songs are brief and catchy with crystal clear loops and drums that punch; and his use of vocal samples is minimal, but lend Kept that Hip Hop edge. With his range of influence constantly expanding; Daryl’s music has the capacity to grow into any style he pursues, and is sure to provide many more serene listening experiences as his particular brand of chilled instrumentals finds it’s voice.

Keep an eye on his soundcloud for more beats being added regularly; and get Kept for free, here.