The Short Wave Craft project brings together London based producer and mix engineer, Dominic Owen, who has written music for The Notorious B.I.G, Lil Kim, Rakim, and Julian Marley among many others, and Tom Carr, a songwriter, recording artist and session musician who operates between Prague and Berlin. Owen also fronts his own project The Love Theme, while Carr is also part of the Italian collective, The Airbags. Together Owen & Carr, as Short Wave Craft, bring a chilled-out sound, influenced by the soundscapes of classic film soundtracks, late 60s ‘wall of sound’ recordings, as well as post 70s disco and electronica. Their debut single “Why” is out now, and a follow-up EP is set to release this summer.
“Why” sounds like some kind of dream therapy rather than a simple music track. And a dream is really the closest analogy to describe the single — a collage of sounds that create an overall experience without articulating any specific information or purpose. Leaving you an open source to figure out the personal why’s in your life.
With any intention aside, this track showcase Short Wave Craft’s prowess as technicians. They layers samples, ambient-sounding vocals and instrumentation to create a relaxing atmosphere which moves into consistently hazy textures. They’re at their best when they focuses on the softer side of the electronic spectrum.
In the current days of producers born from Garage Band, iPhone apps and MacBook-powered productions, there is more pressure than ever to prove you have skill and the ear to create something more than a mashup of random sounds with equal beat signatures.
Just like filling in a color-by-number painting doesn’t make you an artist, squashing loops together and slapping an epic drop on it in the middle doesn’t make you a producer. The Short Wave Craft collaboration push themselves out of the glut of the emerging EDM artists’ aesthetics, and are ready to accomplish something special by rising above the noise found on dance floors and rave parties across the globe.
The song Short Wave Craft create, is intriguing and hypnotic. You could imagine a crowd slowly swaying back and forth like a neon sea, eyes closed and lost in their own shared experience, listening to “Why”. It can be a crowd pleaser, but is mainly aimed at being a highly personal trip.
The song is driving, but understated. The atmosphere is mellow and accessible, and there is very little time wasted on an intro or build-ups. This reserved quality gives the track something of a dual identity.
When played over a loud system with heavy bass, it could sound like a perfect thing to slow-move to. If played over a small pair of headphones or a car stereo, the music relaxes to the point of being meditative. It makes an already adorable piece of work like “Why”, even more accessible.
Dominic Owen and Tom Carr of Short Wave Craft have manipulated and controlled each aspect of “Why” with dexterity and delicacy to create a magical soul-warming experience.