Pardon the Introduction: Kidnap Kid


Already a well-established DJ/producer in his native country of Britain, it won’t be long until Matt Relton – better known by his stage name Kidnap Kid – will be a celebrity among American audiences.

His single “Vehl” has claimed the “Best Electronic Song of 2012” title on iTunes US, plus he kick starts his 16-date U.S. tour in March that features a pit stop in the highly coveted Ultra Music Festival lineup (performing alongside the likes of Snoop Dogg and Major Lazer). Fans also wait in anticipation for his next release So Close, available on March 4 through Black Butter Records.

Matt sat down with VIBE to chat the origins of his name, some dream collabos and more.

VIBE: Describe your sound in three words.
Kidnap Kid: Colorful, melodic, considered.

Kidnap Kid. Where’d the name come from?
The short answer is – I got taken to court for faking a kidnapping when I was 17.

On Facebook, the only band you list under “Artists We Like” is the Beatles. Who would you do a collaboration with: Paul or Ringo?
Why, I’d go for Ringo, as he’s always been the least celebrated. I’m a drummer myself so I feel his pain.

Which artists today would make up your ideal collaboration dream team?
I actually find that collaborations between artists you’re a fan of individually never turn out as you’d hope. But to be a good sport, I’ll go for Daft Punk, Chilly Gonzales and Michael Jackson. That could be pretty epic actually…

What was the inspiration behind your upcoming EP So Close?
I wanted to write something that was a departure from my last EP, but still had a level of stylistic continuity. Something that was recognizable as a piece I had written without just repeating myself. I also wanted to make it as simple as possible.

Describe the journey fans will get out of listening to the new EP.
It’s just a two track, so quite a short journey to begin with. Apart from that, I would hope it’s an emotive one. For me “So Close” has a heart-wrenching element to it, whereas “Animaux” feels quite playful.

What are your expectations for your first U.S. tour?
I’m actually very unsure of what to expect. I’m hoping that the music is well-received out there. I know that some of the shows lined up look pretty incredible.

How does it feel to be performing at Ultra Music Festival alongside Snoop Dogg and Major Lazer?
Pretty incredible, it’s such a huge platform. However, I find sometimes that with so much amazing stuff happening, you can become a little numb, or at least desensitized to the excitement. So I try to put myself in my shoes a couple of years back, when this project was starting out, and think how I would feel if I knew then.

What advice would you give to aspiring producers out there who are starting out?
It’s a little bit cliché, and obvious maybe, but I believe that honesty is key. No one is interested in hearing someone’s rehashed amalgamation of his or her iTunes “recently added” list. What is interesting is genuine emotion recorded in sound. So I’d say, play around with notes until you get a response from your stomach, not from your head; until it makes you feel something, and not just sound correct. That’s not to say that other music shouldn’t inspire though…

If you could kidnap a celebrity for a day, who would it be and why?
I was going to say Jennifer Lawrence, but that sounds a bit creepy. So I’ll go for Christoph Waltz. I feel like he would be good drinking buddy.