Melbourne-based, New Zealand-born singer/songwriter Lakyn has returned with another genre-defying single ‘Long Distance’. Following on from ‘Superhuman’, his second release of the year is yet another confident step in his musical journey. For close to a decade, Lakyn has been carving out his own lane and his latest release highlights an artist in their creative prime.
Recorded on a writing trip in London, ‘Long Distance’ was produced by Ed Holloway (Lewis Capaldi, Dean Lewis) and co-written by Nick Atkinson (Lewis, Gabrielle Aplin). It’s a shimmering, emotionally dense record influenced by everything from R&B vocals to vintage rock guitars. It effortlessly sits alongside recent releases ‘Choir Boy’ and ‘Superhuman’, as well as his breakthrough 2018 EP ‘& Pains’, extending his experimentation with both organic and electronic sounds.
‘Long Distance’ was born from a conversation with a friend in a London cab. Following a sleepless flight from Australia to his first overseas writing trip, Lakyn found himself ruminating about, as he puts it, the “disconnection of human contact” thanks to the ever-advancing state of technology. During the following writing session, that conversation would mold into ‘Long Distance’.
Not that he knew at the time but the song would take on another shape, being released in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. “It’s more relevant than ever right now,” Lakyn says of the song. With lyrics like, “I wanna see more than just a face,” it’s a strangely apt depiction of a world gone virtual.
Throughout his career, Lakyn has been tinkering with his sonic aesthetic, landing on a sound that’s uniquely his own. HIs aim has been to acknowledge the influence of the masters he grew up with from Bob Dylan to Jeff Buckley while keeping a firm eye on the future.
“I don’t want to be time-stamped,” he says.
“I don’t want to sound like a particular time. I want to sound like the past, present, and future by taking that emotion and depth of love with the music I grew up with while moving forward at the same time.”
Lakyn grew up soaking in the music that his Dad introduced him too while also watching him play guitar and sing. It wasn’t until he suffered a skateboarding accident that the talented skateboarder turned to the guitar. The rest is history as he’s gone on to become one of the country’s most consistent boundary-pushers.
Over his career, he’s received accolades from the likes of triple j, The Music, Pilerats and Happy. He’s also collected more than 16 million streams on DSPs without having even released an album yet. In the live arena, he’s supported Vera Blue, Eves Karydas, and LAUV while also playing his own sold-out headline shows.
There’s plenty more to come too. Lakyn says 2020 has been, “seriously one of the most productive years I’ve had,” despite the global situation. He’s an artist that can’t help but use creative expression to react to what’s going on around him. This year, he’s been writing music, working on his own clothing line, and working on his artist visuals, gearing up to share more with the world.