Little Dragon return with ‘Drifting Out EP’ their latest release on Ninja Tune, comprising three takes on a central track, with contributions from Kelsey Lu and cellists Yo-Yo Ma and Jakob Koranyi.
The release opens with Little Dragon’s stripped-back original, in many ways a nod to their celebrated early breakthrough “Twice”, the track centres Yukimi Nagano’s instantly recognisable vocals over a beautiful undulating acoustic piano backdrop. This is followed by a remix from classically trained singer and multidisciplinary artist Kelsey Lu, who adds strings and a menacing beat underneath Nagano’s pitched-down vocals and swirling reverb to give the track an eerie spin. The final iteration is a collaboration with two cellists: the renowned, GRAMMY-winning classical artist Yo-Yo Ma and the critically acclaimed Swedish musician and arranger Jakob Koranyi, who deliver a mesmerising duet which gradually swells to meet Nagano’s soaring vocal line.
“It’s been special to work with great classical musicians Jakob Koranyi & Yo-Yo Ma,” say the band. “They fit the song perfectly and lift the story. I think most people can relate to the feeling of having their head in the clouds and wishing to be more grounded. It’s an intimate song, we are happy to let it go and share it finally….!”
The release follows their recent ‘New Me, Same Us Remix EP’—which featured contributions from Ela Minus, Octo Octa, Midland, Andrés, Lil Silva, Georgia Anne Muldrow, Poté and FKJ—and collaboration with Ghanaian American vocalist/songwriter Moses Sumney on ‘The Other Lover’.
Their most recent album ‘New Me, Same Us’ was released last year on Ninja Tune and lauded by the likes of the New York Times, NPR, Pitchfork, The Guardian, Mixmag, Crack Magazine and many more. Entirely self-produced and recorded at the pioneering Swedish band’s studio, ‘New Me, Same Us’ saw the band go back to basics, falling back in love with their instruments: drums, bass, keyboards, harp, guitar and voice, to produce some of their most focused and best music to date. The album hit #5 on Billboard’s Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart in the US, with Mixmag calling it “a futuristic record bursting with lush textures and elevated by lead singer Yukimi Nagano’s sublime vocals” and the Guardian finding them on “on deliciously soulful form”.
The band’s hugely popular and highly regarded live performances have spawned a decade-spanning touring career, including festival highlights such as Coachella, Glastonbury, Lollapalooza, Bestival, Sonar, All Points East, Dimensions Festival, Parklife, Lovebox, Love Saves The Day, Melt and Dour; co-headlining the Hollywood Bowl and Berkeley’s Greek Theatre with Flying Lotus supported by BADBADNOTGOOD and sold out two nights at London’s Roundhouse. While the global pandemic put touring on hold, the band joined NPR Music for an intimate Tiny Desk (Home) Concert filmed at their long-term home-built studio in Gothenburg, Sweden—watch below: