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Kwesi Sey, aka Kwes. (note the intentional period), is a musician from London whose output drifts from psychedelic avant-pop songs to dreamier ambient compositions. Very active since the late 2000s as a producer, engineer, remixer, and all-around collaborator, he has worked with Mica Levi, Bobby Womack, Solange, and Tirzah, among dozens of other artists. On his own, he has recorded extensively for the Warp label, releasing a handful of EPs, the full-length Ilp. (2013), and the soundtrack for the romantic comedy-drama Rye Lane (2023). Kwes. started playing keyboards and experimenting with recording as a youngster in his native Lewisham. He got his start producing early demos for the xx and collaborating with Micachu (aka Mica Levi) on a project named Kwesachu. As word of his production talent spread, remix requests followed from Hot Chip, the Invisible, and Damon Albarn. A talented multi-instrumentalist in his own right, Kwes. started focusing on solo material, releasing his 2009 debut single, Heart in Home, on XL Recordings/Salvia, and following it the next year with the No Need to Run EP on Young Turks. The musician signed to Warp in 2012 for his second EP, Meantime. His first full-length offering, Ilp., arrived in late 2013, and affirmed his status as a stylistic outlier with material flitting between twinkling dream pop and labyrinthine ambient pieces. The remix EP Ilpix. followed in 2014, but Kwes.' solo career took a back seat to his production work. He produced DELS' 2014 album Petals Have Fallen, and in 2016 he co-produced several tracks on Solange's acclaimed chart-topper A Seat at the Table, as well as songs by Nao and Hudson Mohawke. In 2017, Kwes. mixed Kelela's debut full-length, Take Me Apart, in addition to producing several tracks. Songs for Midi, an experimental solo EP from Kwes., was released by Warp in 2018. His reach extended greatly over the next few years, during which he was extensively involved with recordings from Tirzah, Loyle Carner, Selah Sue, and Nubya Garcia. In 2023, he was behind the soundtrack for Rye Lane, Raine Allen-Miller's feature-length directorial debut. Tirzah and Sampha joined him on the bittersweet ballad "Open Up."
© Andy Kellman & Jason Lymangrover /TiVo


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