The sounds that make the Melbourne duo tick...

Melbourne cousins Chloe Kaul and Simon Lam form KLLO, an intriguing pop partnership that embraces possibility.

Take the title of new album 'Maybe We Could' - it's a reference to chance and ambition, to the processes that underpin their work.

Out now, it's a bolt from the blue, with KLLO matching pitch-perfect production against some intriguing pop ambitions.

The pair comment...

"We chose the title 'Maybe We Could' because we were unsure if there was even going to be this record, but with some time apart, it became clear how important it was for us to do, regardless of the uncertainty."

"The ten tracks are a pairing of rhythmic dance music to emotive chords and melodies. It’s the most honest music we’ve done to date. An expression of our truest selves and what we went through over the last few years."

Clash caught up with KLLO to locate some key Influences from the new project.

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Yung Lean - ‘Red Bottom Sky’

I was always interested in what Yung Lean was doing, but this was the track that made me a fan of the project. The production on 'Red Bottom Sky' is just perfect. It balances modern rap drums with beautiful ‘hybrid’ elements, sounds that sound both analogue and digital at the same time.

This track provided a blueprint for the level of nuance and detail we wanted the album to have, particularly in the vocal effects. With a good pair of headphones you can hear a lot going on in the background with the vocals, the effects fill so much space and provide so much colour.

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Overmono - ‘Powder Dry’

I love how this song sounds like a distant rave, or even a memory of one. We love dance music, especially the stuff that references the 90’s stuff from the UK, but obviously we didn’t grow up there.

When I close my eyes and try to imagine one this track is how it sounds in my head. Kind of distant, echoey kick drum with the synths poking through the noise. It was a big inspiration behind the track ‘My Gemini’. We were going for that memory sound, or like a tape that’s been recorded over hundreds of times.

It doesn’t sound banging, but if you use your imagination you can picture it being played in a big room. 

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Kelela - ‘Frontline’

We consider all Kelela’s tracks to be perfect modern pop. They’ve got clearly defined structure through powerful melodies, with enough deviation to make the form interesting and a little challenging.

The mixture of a beautiful voice paired with underground future bass producers is the kind of fusion we try to achieve with our music. Wonky synths, lots of vocal effects, it’s just what we love.

Kelela was an artist we both discovered in the early days of Kllo, and the development of the project has always been influenced by Kelela’s releases throughout the years.

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Little Dragon - ‘Twice‘

‘Twice’ is one of the main reasons I got into writing music. This song is just beautiful. The feeling it gives me is instant and doesn’t seem to ever fade away. The minimal piano and low vocal tone easily takes me out of my head and into a tranquil space.

When I was in high school, I used to go to the music room and practise this on the piano there. It taught me very early on that simplicity is key to a good song. When I feel like I’m adding too much to a track, I reference ‘Twice’ to remind myself that the core elements of the song is the most important part. If that’s not sounding right, the additional elements don’t matter.

This song will never get old to me, it’s like my dearest friend in music.

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Julianna Barwick - ‘Wishing Well’

This record was on Pitchfork’s Best New Music and I couldn’t agree more. I’ve been listening to a lot of ambient music recently.

It’s a breath of fresh air for me after many years of solely listening to rhythmic dance music. Julianna’s one of my staples in this genre. Her ethereal voice is comforting to listen to and I am blown away by her technical yet uplifting harmonies. Regardless of how technical it all is, she makes it seem so effortless.

I could honestly fall asleep to her every night. I’m also massively inspired by her production. It’s so cinematic and tasteful. I feel that there are many stories to be told through the selected tones and textures in her songs. Julianna’s music is timeless.

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'Maybe We Could' is out now.

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