Cosmo Pyke releases debut EP Just Cosmo - premiere

Something for the weekend

Roisin O'Connor
Music Correspondent
Friday 24 February 2017 12:40 GMT
Cosmo Pyke
Cosmo Pyke

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Louise Thomas

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Cosmo Pyke has released his debut EP Just Cosmo which you can hear first via The Independent.

The 18-year-old songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from Peckham stands out thanks to the fact that he's less interested on drawing on explicit influences by other artists, and more from what he sees around him in everyday life, resulting in music that is carefree, warm and a tad psychadellic.

Listen to our exclusive premiere of Just Cosmo below:

Pyke says of the EP: "It's a documentation of my youth as an ode to my thoughts and feelings, with personal experiences and personal samples. Such as the last track 'Great Dane', which begins and ends with a clip from 'Just William' that I listened to and loved as a child. My mum is also sampled so it's a family thing I guess.

"Fraser T Smith and I really worked with creating a live sound, and working in his studio was a mad experience. I'm happy with the outcome and new material is on the way at this moment in time. I can't forget to mention and thank Eddie Amos, the drummer, who's the only other musician on the EP. And of course Fraser T Smith and Manon Grandjean."

Read our interview with Cosmo below:

"Through my mum and my primary school, my mum used to be in a feminist punk band - still is really - and she taught me some chords from when I was about eight."

Cosmo Pyke is explaining where he began as an artist, after performing a rooftop session for The Independent at Kensington Roof Gardens.

"My mum didn’t really show me a lot of punk music," he says. "I listened to reggae, Jimmy Cliff, Bob Dylan, Michael Jackson with my dad..."

Pyke attended Brit School but found he didn't enjoy the experience as much as he thought he might.

"I hated it, I thought it was horrible," he says. "Now I look back and I’m happy I went. I like it now I’ve left. You learn so much cool stuff like how to pay tax, but it was more the people at the school... The people in the older years were cool but they left… they’re just really annoying kids who think they’re really good at what they do. They’re quite good at what they do as well," he adds, deadpan. "I kind of wish I’d made more out of it."

The 18-year-old is refreshingly blunt about pretty much everything - his ex-girlfriend ("she knows I wrote a song about her. She's probably cool with it"), what he writes about ("it's about where I am. Because it's true"), and how he feels about the rush of attention that greeted the release of his first song online.

"It’s cool… it’s mad. That people care about the first song I ever put out on the internet," he says. "It’s kind of weird that everyone cares about it - a lot of other artists have to really work to where they got to. But I guess I’ve still been doing music for the past 10 years."

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Several artists have been attempting to get him into the studio - some fellow Brit School graduates, some bigger artists - but it sounds as though it'll take a lot to get him away from his solo work.

"I feel like if you don’t know someone and go into the session it’s gonna be s**t," he says. "That’s why I write songs on my own. I’m doing this session with Craig David at some point and I have no idea what I’m gonna do." He adds in a disbelieving voice: "He’s a fan of my s**t.

"We’re gonna bring it back to old school days. I’m gonna be like 'listen Craig, straight up, I didn’t listen to your music when I was a kid. We’re gonna do it like this'. Maybe I’ll write some raps for him," he says with a lazy grin.

He's interested to see the progression of artists from the area where the Brit School is based: "Section Boyz were from there - like from around where the school is, so we used to see them at lunchtime and shit. And now they’re doing shows with Drake!

"Stormzy as well," he observes. "My EP is coming out on the same day as his album. I hope I get more sales than him."

Just Cosmo - the debut EP from Cosmo Pyke - is out now.

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