Working under the moniker ‘twobox.’, Preston-based producer Nicholas Langdon is creating and sharing a unique type of music. His debut EP Kiss Politics is a reflection on Nicholas’ relationships during his twenties and documenting the fickle nature of young love. We had a chance to speak with twobox. about the single ‘Fireflies’, how to stay motivated and much more!
Why did you decide to enter the music industry?
Music has been something I’ve been passionate about for a long time, really since my early teenage years when I became conscious of music as a thing for me rather than listening to stuff my parents had on. I’ve always been creative, so the idea of making music myself was very natural and is a process I really enjoy. Deciding to try and make a career out of it comes from a fundamental desire to enjoy life and find a career I love so I “never had to work a day in my life”.
Can you tell us about your single ‘Fireflies’?
‘Fireflies’ is a love song first and foremost. It focuses on that young love feeling, the honeymoon phase of a relationship, and looking back on personal experiences of being out on the town and having a great time in those settings as a couple. I often felt that with some of my relationships that was when we were at our best, so it’s a rose-tinted look at that.
What was the recording and writing process like?
Stressful! The whole process took a lot longer than I’d originally planned. It’s easy to think that you can get things done in a relatively short amount of time, but when you want things to sound and feel right there’s a lot of time and effort that goes into the production and mixing. COVID pushed the whole thing back by at least three months due to not being able to access studios after the lockdown went into effect. It’s been really hard work, but I’m pleased with the results.
Does the single have a significant meaning for you?
Yeah. All my songs are written from personal experiences and, whilst I like to use metaphors to keep things ambiguous, every song on the EP has a grounding in an experience or set of experiences. ‘Fireflies’ is about a great relationship that blossomed on the dance floor of nightclubs in my early twenties, so it definitely has a real meaning to me.
What do you hope people take from your music?
I hope it’s something that resonates them and that they can relate to. One of my drives to write music was that when I was in my late teens and going through a tough time I could turn to music. Somehow I could find songs that really captured how I felt and I really connected with. Since that point, I’ve always held that as my ‘north star’ so to speak. If I can write a piece of music and a stranger can listen to that, feel a connection and find meaning for themselves in it, then that would make me happy.
What is more challenging for you – melody or lyrics?
Lyrics. I usually write the melodies first and then work on the lyrics to fit, although recently I have been working on some which were the other way around. I always try to be honest and talk about real events and real emotions so sometimes that can be a bit tricky. I’ve started keeping a lyric journal to try and help the process, like if a random line just pops into my head while I’m out and about or doing something I make a note of it on my phone. I’ll journal it so I can go back to it later if I’m stuck or need inspiration.
How do you keep yourself motivated?
I enjoy it. I think that’s the only way you can stay motivated in the long term. It’s not easy to lay your soul bare and capture the right emotions within a song. It’s not uncommon to get really stuck during the creative process and feel like you’ll never get the ‘right’ sound. If I didn’t really enjoy it I think I’d have given up long ago.
How would you describe your sound?
It’s definitely ’80s inspired, but I’ve tried to put a more modern twist on it. I feel like of all the various genres and sub-genres out there I identify with ‘alt-pop’ the most. When I listen to other music which is described as ‘alt-pop’ I tend to feel it resonates most with the sound I’m trying to create.
What do you think is the best way to discover new music?
I think indie music blogs are a really good resource. So many super talented artists would go unrecognised if it wasn’t for the indie music and blog scene. I’ve also become a fan of going to gigs of bands/artists I’ve never heard of or listened to; it’s a really rewarding experience.
What does the rest of the future hold for you?
Tough question! I don’t know about life as a whole, but musically I’ve got about eight tracks at the demo stage which I’m working on at the moment to release throughout the rest of the year. I’d like to think I’ll have at least another four tracks out by the time the calendar rolls round to 2021.
Do you have a message for our readers?
Thank you for continuing to support independent music and for putting in the time and effort to find music on your own.