His first album, Cloud Nine, debuted at No. 1 on both the iTunes Dance Albums Chart and Nielsen Soundscan’s Electronic Albums chart. Now the first artist in history to hit a billion streams on Spotify is back with his sophomore effort, Kids in Love, due November 3.
Kygo, who launched his first Las Vegas residency at Wynn earlier this year, has already released two songs from the new collection: the title track, a piano-heavy ballad with an ’80s arena-rock vibe; and the more recent “Never Let You Go,” featuring John Newman, which Billboard describes as “a shot of sunshine to the heart.” We caught up with the Norwegian super-producer to talk new sounds and more.
You’ve spent a lot of time in Vegas this year. How’s the residency going? It’s been great, a lot of fun. There’s always a very good crowd in Vegas. People are there to party and have fun, and you can definitely see that in the crowd. There’s a lot of energy.
How much do you change your set when you’re playing at Wynn? [Vegas] crowds like to sing along, so I try to put in a couple more songs that may be popular on the radio and remixes they’ll know. That’s the main difference between Vegas and a festival [set].
You’re moving away from collaborating with big stars on this new record. That’s accurate. I’m going back to ... trying to find sounds from more unknown people that have great ideas. For example, the vocalist Martin Johnson is on “Kids in Love,” and he’s super- talented and an amazing guitar player. We were playing around with a lot of different stuff and sounds I couldn’t make on my own. It’s fun to work with people who can bring new elements to your production that you wouldn’t think about making yourself.
How has your recent success and those big hits affected your creative process? It’s definitely in the back of my head, that I don’t want to create something that sounds like something I just put out. You always try to go in a new direction, but on the other hand it’s good to have kind of an identity to your tracks that people can recognize. You don’t want a sound that can be made by anyone. I’m trying to make music that sounds like me, something my fans can listen to and, without knowing it’s me, hear that it’s me.