Brazilian singer-songwriter Kelton is back with the release of his long-awaited fourth album, “Esperar That Dance”. Celebrating his 40 years of life and 10 of his solo career, the artist presents his fans with captivating and surprising alternative rock. The album, which took five years to complete, brings Kelton’s experiences and experiences, intimately connecting with the lives of listeners.
In “Esperar That Dance”, Kelton dives into sound influences from the 70s and 80s, which were part of his artistic training, seeking a mature identity far from his previous album. With compositions that reflect universal issues in a personal way, the work reveals a new phase of the artist, full of contentment and happiness. The album also features special appearances by Adriah and Ian Fonseca, from Supercolisar.
With a consolidated career, Kelton has already released two EPs and three albums, receiving critical recognition and awards, such as the 3rd Festival de Cinema Curta Brasília, where the video clip of his song “Sem Concerto” was awarded. In addition to his solo career, Kelton is also renowned as a music producer, signing praised works by artists such as Joe Silhueta, Beto Mejía and Profissão de Urubu. “Esperar That Dance” promises to be another milestone in the trajectory of this talented artist.
How was the process of creating and composing the album “Esperar That Dance”? What were your main inspirations?
The process for this album started in 2018 and it was similar to my previous works: usually I have a certain number of compositions in the drawer and when it comes time for a new album I take a look at these files to see what makes me want to record. That’s how it was with EAD, but this time I wanted to put together a set of songs that would allow me to explore sounds that I hadn’t been putting in much on previous albums – hence this profusion of guitars, synthesizers and everything else that made me want to record over these five years of maturation.
The new album reflects their personal experiences over the last few years. How do you seek to connect your experiences with listeners’ lives?
There is no specific desire on my part to communicate with the lives of those who listen to me. On the contrary: more and more I believe that I need to listen to myself better to understand what I want to express artistically. On the other hand, I also believe that listening to myself and respecting my feelings, my “drive”, is the best way to connect with other people. Empathy depends on a very high degree of emotional honesty.
Compared to your previous work, how would you describe the sound and lyrical approach of “Esperar That Dance”?
I spent some time not knowing how to describe this record, perhaps because it took so long to record it. But today, after the launch and seeing other people’s perceptions of it, I feel that the EAD is an observation record. A visual, imagetic record that invites you to stop and observe – life, the world, your home, your family, your loves, your feelings… It’s a record that points out paths but lets you decide where you want to go. Lyrically, I think it’s a different record from the previous ones because it’s less romantic, on many levels. Today I feel it’s a new challenge for me to talk about love and relationships without anchoring myself in a certain ideal of romantic love that doesn’t seem to be good for anyone.
The record features influences from the 70’s and 80’s. How do you seek to bring these references to create a mature musical identity?
I think these influences have matured as a result of my own trajectory as a musician. It’s been more than twenty years intrigued by the muse, trying to understand and feel something playing an instrument, singing. Today, a little more experienced, I look favorably on the things that led me here, so I feel free to add bits of everything I’ve seen and heard along the way, progressive rock, MPB, new wave, more experimental stuff, etc. In a way, EAD is an album that synthesizes my years of music.
The music video for “Sem Concerto” was awarded at the Curta Brasília Film Festival. How was the experience of producing this clip and how do you think it complements the song?
Sem Concerto was a great gift for me. Work from the head of my friend and director of this clip, David Murad, who carried out this work with a wonderful team of friends who embraced this project beautifully. It’s a clip that’s almost 10 years old, but to this day people talk about it aged well.
In addition to his own compositions, “Esperar That Dance” features guest appearances by Adriah and Ian Fonseca. What was it like working with these artists and how did they contribute to the album?
Adriah is a dear friend and a very talented musician from Brasilia. We’ve been partners for a long time. I felt that I needed a special voice to color the end of “Flores” and at the time I thought of Adriah, who sings like an angel. It is perfect. As for Ian, I met in 2017, I was organizing a compilation in honor of the tenth anniversary of the release of In Rainbows, my favorite Radiohead album. I called Ian and his band, Supercolisar, to participate in the compilation and from then on we became friends. When we started producing the song “Distante”, I realized that I wanted a duet and I felt that a deep voice like Ian’s would give a special and intimate flavor to the track. For me it worked a lot!
You mentioned that this is your first record that isn’t sad and that you’re happy with your choices. How is this feeling of contentment reflected in the songs and messages conveyed by the album?
I think there’s something about developing a less romantic look at life – and I think that makes everything lighter. It is a happier album because they are songs that propose other ways of relating, with yourself and with the world. Waiting is a time when we visualize things, a time to feel, to be with you and with things. Right now, I’m living a particularly happy period of my life. Maybe the EAD is the end of a phase of life that lasted ten years – it started there with my first EP, in 2013. Now that I’m already starting to look forward again, thinking about new jobs, I feel that my desire and my happiness already point to other paths, other ways of making music, other challenges. I feel that the next record is going to be very different from the previous ones and that makes me very happy too.
How do you see the role of music in difficult times, like the ones we’ve been through recently, and how do you hope “Esperar That Dance” can impact listeners in this context?
I’ve been telling people to take the time to listen to this record slowly, cover to cover. There’s a very specific feeling of listening to it in its entirety like this, I think it’s the best way to experience it in these days of rush and little attention.
In addition to being a musician and composer, you are also a music producer. How did that experience influence your creation process for the new album?
My experience as a producer makes the recording process much easier and richer, as there is a certain intentionality in the producer’s work that the artist often lacks – and this sometimes harms the result of the recording as a whole. At EAD I worked in partnership with Diego Marx, a friend and music producer, we have a very productive work dynamic and this exchange also ends up contributing to a more solid end result from a musical and technical point of view.
With “Esperar That Dance”, you complete 10 years of a solo career. What are your plans and expectations for the future and how do you see your evolution as an artist over these years?
As I said before, I think EAD closes this ten-year cycle by discovering myself as an artist and interpreter of my songs. I feel that the next jobs will be very different from anything I’ve done. I’ve been thinking about random things: I’ve thought about making an electronic music album, pisadinha, music with orchestra and wind, covers album… I even thought about composing a musical! What can come out of this cauldron of ideas I don’t even know, but I’m curious to find out.
Follow Kelton on Instagram