Cozway is a recent addition to RL Grime’s label Sable Valley. He’s been creating absolute fire in the trap, drum & bass scene with releasing remixes of Quix’s Riot Call and RL Grime’s Shrine. If his recent minimix is anything to go by, we know great things are coming from him. We caught up with Cozway to chat about working with RL Grime, being influenced by nature and his new single Ambush.
First of all, congratulations on getting signed to Sable Valley! What was that like?
Hey, thank you. It feels great, and at first quite surreal. RL Grime has been a big inspiration to me since the beginning of my career so signing to his label means a lot to me.
How did you and RL Grime link up? What’s your experience been like working with him?
I initially connected with RL Grime by sending him music for his Halloween mixes. He played my remix of Quix’s Riot Call through his 2018 Nova Tour and put two of my tracks in last year’s mix. I met him in person when I went down to LA last May. He’s been a pleasure to work with!
What are you looking forward to the most about the Sable Valley Research & Development Tour?
I’m really excited to bring my sound and vision to bigger audiences, and to play on such a monumental tour. Shouts to RL for supporting new talent.
How did the name ‘Cozway’ come about?
When I was 9-12 years old I was really into birdwatching. My folks often took me to the sea island causeway by the Vancouver airport to watch birds. When it came time to choosing a name, I wanted something that invoked “cosmic” but was also related to nature, since my sound is very much a mix of both. Cozway fit the bill perfectly and also felt like a fitting homage to my past.
You grew up in Singapore and currently live in Vancouver—how have these places influenced your sound?
These two cities are both very integrated with nature. Singapore has jungles and tropical beaches. Vancouver has mountains and lush coastal forests. Being around that much nature definitely influenced my sound. I like listening to all music, but I find myself inexplicably gravitating towards more organic, realistic, warm sounds. I think that it shows in my music.
Most of the time people tend to focus on the end result. Can you take us behind the scenes. What’s your creative process like?
My creative process is perhaps a bit unusual. I’ll sometimes hear songs or sounds that don’t exist in a dream, get up and make them. Other times, I’ll be going about my day and an idea will come to me. I’ll record myself humming/beatboxing it on my phone and then try to re-create that in the studio. When it comes to songwriting I almost always start with the drop/chorus.
What was it like working with Jon Casey on your latest release, Ambush?
Jon is a good friend of mine and a brilliant producer. He really helped inject some life and swing into Ambush. At one point I felt like he hadn’t put enough of himself into the track so I asked him to make a second section for the first drop. It came back the next day, absolutely banging and thematically consistent to the first part. (Man also makes a mean kick drum gotttdamn) Working with him felt very natural and smooth.
In reference to this tweet:
Any chances of a Tunak Tunak remix?
Haha to be honest I did start something but I’m not sure how in line it is with my current sound. Maybe one day.
Lastly, what are you working on right now? Is there an album coming?
I’ve been working on a lot of music this year, more to come soon!
Listen to Cozway’s latest release, Ambush now.