Age of L.U.N.A are the rising stars everyone is talking about. Having formed a few years back, the band are set to lead the new wave of soulful, hip hop inspired music in 2015, with festival appearances booked (Boom Bap 2015) and more shows scheduled for this year. Their soulful vibe and production made us stop and listen, so we met up with them recently to shoot some stuff and have a chat.
So, Who is age of L.U.N.A?
Hi, Im Daniella [D]. The Age of L.U.N.A are a bunch of young artists doing what we love together, I'm in second year studying photojournalism and documentary photography. I like to write songs/poetry/entries and read novels. I also play the saxophone.
I'm Wafemé Alofoje [K] also known as Mr Valentine or Puccini better/mostly known as the art figure Kyote Noir. I am a visionary artist and expressionist. I like making things, pitching things to my brother Ishmael Joseph who designs and can put my ideas into art form when I'm not able to. I love directing videos and photography fascinates me; all that camera fascination came from studying creative media. I'm as young as a blossom leaf blooming in spring.
My name's NK-OK [N] I'm 16 years old and I produce the music for the band. Age of Luna, we are an old school hip-hop group mainly based in West London but I come from Northwest London. My hobbies, I play drums and I like to practice piano when I can fit in the time.
When did you guys form the group?
D: Roughly a year or two ago.
K: We actually found it in summer 2011- we're just a group of friends who were bored having a fascination with Lunar's bold presence in the sky, but if you mean the band then yes what Dan Dan said.
How did the band get together?
K: The band came together in 2013 when myself and Butch worked on an EP with NKOK [unreleased], and Daniella was on a few hooks; we had fun together that's what made it work.
N: My manager used to manage Butch and Kyote when they were their own duo (and they still kept that going) then they got on my beats through our management and their friend who was Daniella wanted to come in the studio session to sing the chorus- it just worked from there.
What was the motive behind unifying your talents?
D: To compliment each other's talents and create art and music.
K: To inspire or lead a generation coming up in today's corrupted society.
N: Well when I heard Butch and Kyote's rapping style I just like really liked it straight away and just wanted to work with them. Then when they showed me Daniella on the track I could really see a group forming from that.
How long have you been knowing each other?
K: I've know Butch from age 11, Daniella from 16 and NKOK from about 17
Where do you draw inspiration from?
D: Art, whether that's in the form of visuals or music. People I love doing well around me inspiring me to do better.
K: Hmm, my mum. My dad. They're both very cultural, my dad had loads of African sculptures. My cousin inspires me with his LuvLust brand. Rene Magritte, Salvador Dali. Stars, Lunar, Solar. There's a lot of things that inspire me, layouts inspire me. E.G. If I like the way a house is designed etc. That stuff inspires me. Apple inspire me. It goes on [haha] but if we're talking in the moment, lunar over everything; the moon is beautiful to look at and reflect.
N: Well my dad used to play a lot of 80's/90's hiphop in the house, same with my mum but I got my jazz inspiration from my grandma. She bought a jazz compilation CD to my house one day and I think there was people like Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Charlie Parker and Nat King Cole on it and I just loved to hear how the chord progressions worked and what the drums were doing rhythmically.
What makes you different than any other bands out there?
D: The massive diversity between us as individual characters, different influences and inspirations that we draw from different places but our ability to come together and create well.
K: We're not them, and also the fact that all of us have our individual influences coming together.
N: Well I think every band wants to think they're different - that's a bit hard to explain!
How does the creative process (for example from writing a song to the video shoot) look like for you?
D: The ideas and visions come and then we begin to create the piece.
K: For me it starts with visual, I see it in my head while collecting energy for when I'm able to step to the mic and spazz out.
N: So normally i'll make a bunch of drum beats then show them to my keyboard player. He'll pick a couple of them then put some chords around them then he'll add a bass line and guitar line to it. When he finishes I'll arrange the track, and maybe make some of the melody stuff slightly simpler or I'll ask him to just add a bit more. So yeah that's the production side and then yeah of course I'll let Butch, Kyote and Nella talk about the lyrical side
Does everyone have a different role in the team?
D: Depends on what we are trying to achieve, with writing I usually start the concept idea off with the chorus.
K: I like to direct videos so when our homeboy Rosco on cam gets the call for shooting I'm always down to co-direct. From pre-production to production im all in.
N: We just all take turns in each tune. Like maybe Kyote will be the person to have first verse or Butch might be the first verse or even Daniella, and it's the same thing with choruses- but yeah for the production side that's mainly just me and my friend that plays the Rhodes or other keyboards on the tracks.
Are there any projects you guys working on?
K: There’s something.
Any album release or mixtape?
K: There's something.
Mysterious! Do you have any plans regarding the future or what do you think the future holds for you?
D: We’ll see.
K: I like this question but I never answer it. I will this time. I just want to try new things and explore the world and my hidden talents.
N: Yeah were really looking forward to gigging we will be at the Boom Bap festival in June which is exciting.
What are you guys doing besides Age of L.U.N.A?
N: Yeah for me I'm working on my instrumental album which is mainly very jazz influenced and a lil cheeky bit of bossa nova in there- and some 5/4 hiphop in there.
Do you work on solo projects as well?
D: Yes but the main priority at the moment is the collective Age of Luna creations.
K: I don’t.
N: Well yeah the only other solo projects I'm working with is just with my keyboard player
Thanks for talking with us guys!
Interview & Images by Barb for COZYMAG. (@Flygirlbarb)
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Watch Age of L.U.N.A's 'Six Feet Deep' video Here: