Lo-Fi Beat Producers Nathan Kawanishi & Fletcher Reed To Release ‘Recycled Tape’ Album
May 6, 2022 BY Penny Palmer
Today, lofi producers and multi-instrumentalists Fletcher Reed and Nathan Kawanishi release two singles – “Together” and “Queued Up” – from their forthcoming collaborative album, Recycled Tape (out June 17 via Nettwerk Records).
For the album, the two labelmates swapped unfinished material and added their signature stylings to complete the work into a cohesive blend of ten tracks. The end result is a dreamlike form of lofi instrumentals touched with notions of nostalgia at the forefront.
“This mixtape consists of a bunch of unreleased songs that Fletcher Reed and I had laying around,” reflects Nathan. “We sent them to each other to finish (or salvage), hence the name of the tape. There was really no formula, sometimes only minor tweaks were made, and at other times, the new track sounds entirely different from the old one.”
Fletcher Reed reflects, “the result is a project that hopefully feels very much like an organic mixtape instead of a linear album. Using our combined creative efforts, it became a fun way to re-invigorate some excitement in old songs and demos that were feeling incomplete. Both of us enjoyed the process so much that Vol. 2 is now nearing its completion.”
Speaking about his Fletcher Reed collaborative single “Together,” Nathan Kawanishi says – “Fletcher Reed sent this track to me to work on—the original was a bit more ambient, but I decided to really lean into the hip hop side of it. I added things like the rhythmic synth beeps, ad-libs, scratches, and a keys riff. I added some heavy compression to really make the track bump. This is one of my favorites on the album.” Continuing on about “Queued Up,” Nathan adds, “this song was originally going to be on an upcoming album, but I decided against it. Andrew added a lot of nice sonic elements to bring it to a place that I’m really proud of.”
1. To Put Everything
2. Cloud Forest
4. Cactus Garden
6. Queued Up
7. French 75
8. Half Past Noon
9. Solar Child
10. Essential Mystic
“Together/Queued Up” is available at all digital retailers; click HERE.
About Fletcher Reed:
Fletcher Reed, the nom de plume of the Amsterdam-based American music producer Andrew Smith, grew up learning various instruments and playing in different bands at an early age. A few years back, he and a friend took off for Zimbabwe, their first destination on what would become a mostly non-stop journey across several continents for two years. While the trip would influence his perception of the world and its people and cultures, another very specific inspiration revealed itself. Though instrumental, Reed’s music is injected with a specific sense of place and geographic spirit to represent the worldly appreciation Reed developed while traveling. “While I was traveling, I was discovering and falling in love with instrumental artists like Tycho, The Album Leaf, and Sigur Rós,” Reed says. “I was amazed at how well their music enhanced my travel experiences and how the music—without lyrics or traditional structures—did not distract from but rather enhanced my hikes and city explorations. It felt like a big inspiration taking off, and it was a driver in realizing what I wanted to do in life. Coming back from that trip, I realized I didn’t want to do anything except music.”
About Nathan Kawanishi:
A graphic designer for most of the last decade, Kawanishi is used to cultivating an aesthetic in his work and art. But despite having grown up playing music—and having gone to audio engineering school—his beat-making path is a new one, having started in 2018, driven by the careful study of a lot of mid-2000s Kanye West. “It’s all been pretty recent, relatively speaking,” he says. After quickly picking up steam in the chillhop community, it was during the winter of 2020, at the height of the pandemic, when Kawanishi focused on making his forthcoming album Nostalgia, his most ambitious project yet. Whittled down from a group of 60 or so song ideas into the final 23 that make up the album, Kawanishi did nearly everything himself—from the writing to the playing to the producing—with careful precision. But it’s still a DIY project at heart, with its creator proudly declaring himself as part of the lo-fi scene (even though his beats sound anything but), even doing the mixing on a pair of no-frills 10-dollar headphones. “A lot of my popular songs were made in a couple of days,” he says. “So I do like that act of not overthinking, not being so self-aware of everything.”