Cole Koch is an emerging Toronto-based producer. His debut single, “Lockdown NYC” was part of a batch of material originally conceived as a way to keep busy and sane during pandemic-related restrictions and lockdowns. The project began to take a life of its own — to the point that it became a full-time endeavor.
Centered around scorching guitars, tweeter and woofer rattling 808s, squiggling synths and a rousingly anthemic hook, Koch’s urgent and forceful debut single manages to nod at The Pleasure Principle-era Gary Numan and John Carpenter soundtracks. Fittingly for a song that sounds as though it could be part of the soundtrack for our dystopian present, “Lockdown NYC,” is inspired by real life events: Last March, Koch was booked to play The New Colossus Festival. While the festival mostly continued as planned, with the occasional venue closure and cancelled artist, it wasn’t until he finished his set, which was coincidentally at the end of the festival, when the urgency of the moment snapped into focus. With shops, restaurants and most travel shut down, Koch and his friends found themselves in the middle of pandemic-related lockdowns without food, money or their passports.
After a handful of nights sleeping whenever they could, Koch and his friends decided that the only way they could do to get back home was to hitchhike — but with the complete lack of traffic on the roads, that was easier said than done. Eventually, the group of friends came upon a young couple heading back to Toronto. That couple snuggled them across the border under blankets and suitcases.
The new single, which was released by Kanine Records is a the beginning of a batch of material the Toronto-based producer will be releasing throughout the year. And I’m looking forward to hearing what’s next.