Kyle Hall, Kaychunk/You Know What I Feel


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In a city with a rich and diverse cultural heritage like Detroit, it’s not difficult to understand how so many of its native electronic music producers have avoided being penned into a single genre like techno. Following in the footsteps of artists like Kenny Dixon Jr. and Anthony “Shake” Shakir, Theo Parrish and Omar-S, young turk Kyle Hall is the latest to throw off the yoke of listener expectations and create without concern for categories. Hall was raised by a creative clan who engulfed him in house music at an early age and fostered his innate talents with an education at the Detroit School for the Arts. Add to that unfettered access to a world’s worth of music care of the Internet (something his predecessors could only dream of) and you’ve got a free-thinking, well-equipped producer for whom genre boundaries are as outmoded as landline phone service. So far in his relatively brief discography he’s offered everything from delectable house melodies and grinding techno grooves to loose-limbed hip-hop beats and sprawling jazzy excursions. The genrebusters at Hyperdub proved keenly aware of his capabilities when they asked him to remix Darkstar’s “Aidy’s Girl Is A Computer” and positively prescient in nabbing him for his own 12″, Kaychunk/You Know What I Feel. It’s easily his most accomplished release to date.

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Varied as Hall’s past releases have been from cut to cut, those inclined to categorize each would have little difficulty doing so. Yet his latest jams seem immune to definition, floating freely through the porous membrane of bass musics while retaining distinct Detroit flavors. Each element seems fully considered in its relationship with the rest of the song, allowing listeners to focus on single instrument and hear something new with each subsequent spin (eg. the kick drum, which seems to shift patterns every few bars or go missing altogether). Bustling snare patterns, widely reverberating snaps and periodic, pitched up shouts of “want it!” impart a nervous energy to “Kaychunk” that’s somewhat alleviated when thick, colorful bass tone works its way through the din and ushers in sumptuous pads. Hall unspools ravishing synth vamps which move like silk fluttering in the wind, cloaking listeners in reams of melody. Don’t be surprised if you end up yearning for more when they finally recede into the hazy chords.

Thankfully, B-side “You Know What I Feel” hits just as hard. Incandescent chords beckon listeners inside its head-rocking breakbeat frame before releasing an ascending keyboard riff — a gorgeous staircase to the stars that wiggles mid-note. With your head above the clouds, Hall strafes the horizon with stinging single pitches as he switches up the rhythms and prepares a bassy slide to let audiences down easy. His productions are so intricate but feel effortless to enjoy and never get tangled in their own complexities. They operate in a space that can only be called “dance music” yet feel immediately familiar and cry out for repeated airings. I can say without exaggeration that I’ve listened to Kaychunk/You Know What I Feel more than any other record so far this year, and its appeal is so great I can’t foresee shelving it anytime soon. It’s no wonder Planet E, Warp, and Nonplus have all added Kyle Hall to their release schedules; you should do similarly for your vinyl collection.

kuri  on March 23, 2010 at 11:00 AM

yep. so much musicality coming through on this release, just blows me away. I also noticed that he’s got an upcoming release coming out on Third Ear. the future is bright.

Jordan Rothlein  on March 23, 2010 at 3:41 PM

You hit the nail on the head, Steve. These are essential tracks. Any idea when the vinyl’s due?

littlewhiteearbuds  on March 23, 2010 at 3:43 PM

Boomkat says Friday, but the release date has changed twice already so who knows when it will actually land. Hopefully it meets a different fate than SCB001.

Chris Miller  on March 23, 2010 at 3:46 PM

still can’t decide which side is better.

kyle hall on nonplus? reeeeallly looking forward to that.

tom/pipecock  on March 23, 2010 at 8:15 PM

i really don’t know how i feel about Kyle Hall. i think the one i really like is the third Wild Oats, but i was not too impressed with the rmx on Hyperdub nor this one. also, i haven’t been really impressed by any of his online mixes i’ve heard. it’s good to have young people doing some shit, but how much of his popularity is because of his youth? if a 35 year old guy was doing this, no one would give a shit.

littlewhiteearbuds  on March 23, 2010 at 8:32 PM

I would be all over this record if someone’s uncle made it. In my opinion the age criticism holds much more for the Martinez Brothers than someone like Kyle Hall, who has produced some really creative and varied music with his musical chops.

I’m almost surprised you couldn’t find something to impress you on this record: it’s beautifully composed, rooted in Detroit and far from repeating his predecessors. I have to ask, what else does it take?

As for his DJ sets, I’ve only heard two: the 30 hour Fabric one which I really enjoyed and the hour long URB one which was less awesome. I think he’s a young guy who is well on his way to an incredibly fruitful music career. I bet by the end of the year he’s got a record out that rings your bell.

ghd20  on March 24, 2010 at 7:04 AM

I have to say I’m a huge fan of Kyle’s simply because of his passion for music. I was lucky enough to meet him and I can assure you that he really knows his stuff, which I think translates into his own productions.

He’s definitely got his own sound, that sort of lo-fi wooziness especially in the basslines, which is admirable in the Ableton era. And check out his RBMA mix, it’s tight.

tibal  on March 25, 2010 at 4:05 AM

This is a very nice release but the stuff he releases on his own imprint Wild Oats is way abobe this.I can’t understand why you say it’s his most acomplished work to date, it doesn’t make sense unless you’ re a dubstep fan.

b-ran  on March 25, 2010 at 7:09 AM

i dont get what is so special about this. sounds like shit to me.

Anton  on March 25, 2010 at 9:20 AM

It’s sad to think a record couldn’t be someone’s most accomplished work to date because it’s not rigidly house (and it’s certainly not “dubstep” either).

I adore this record; it makes me really excited for the string of new 12″s mentioned above.

Marcus  on March 25, 2010 at 9:23 AM

What an awesome tune!! I can’t wait for this to finally come into my local shop.

3i3  on March 25, 2010 at 9:25 AM

If this sounds like shit you might want to get your ears checked. Earwax candle or something. Dope record from a really talented dude.

Blaktony  on March 25, 2010 at 3:16 PM

Flat out; Kyle Hall should be be celebrated for his musical chops & indifference,especially in a time where copying anothers style is considered to be cool…. As for his age to keep commin’ up, a lot (not all) of youth from our city (Detroit)still haven’t made it over the wall of achieving their dreams & accomplishments the way he has. He’s got a lot on his shoulders (musically) ,carries it well, and i’m proud of him if no one else is.

harrison  on March 25, 2010 at 8:44 PM

these tracks aren’t my style, but i just love him for his raw, rough and ready (but fresh) approach to making music. and im sure i’m not the only one, loved all the wild oats 12″s so far!
he is getting a lot of hype but it is for the right reasons and not just because he is young.

meh  on March 26, 2010 at 12:36 PM


shake shakir  on March 26, 2010 at 4:48 PM

so nice, i bought it twice.

Shawn  on March 26, 2010 at 9:06 PM

yeah you are right. this is his best release

Slipdress  on March 29, 2010 at 12:54 PM

love this! both tracks are really nice. first release by him im properly into actually.


Tweets that mention Kyle Hall, Kaychunk/You Know What I Feel – Little White Earbuds --  on March 25, 2010 at 12:32 PM

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Sarah Joy, Little White Earbuds, Stewart Fernandez, ImaHouseGroupie, Jamie Slater and others. Jamie Slater said: RT @lilwhiteearbuds: Steve Mizek describes Kyle Hall's Kaychunk/You Know What I Feel as "easily his most accomplished release to date." […]

uberVU - social comments  on March 26, 2010 at 7:36 AM

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This post was mentioned on Twitter by lilwhiteearbuds: Steve Mizek describes Kyle Hall’s Kaychunk/You Know What I Feel as “easily his most accomplished release to date.”

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