Louis the Child Have a Ton of Fun Breaking Down New 'Kids at Play' EP: Exclusive

Cameron Postforoosh
Louis The Child

Life these days can be hard. It's scary, frustrating, stressful and sometimes mean. Louis the Child want to break your scroll cycle, brush away the dark clouds and invite you back to the playground of childhood wonder, and with primary-color dance-pop like this, you won't be able to say no.

At nine tracks, the Chicago duo's latest EP could have been a full-length album, but LTC aren't ready to give up that title just yet. Kids at Play is, however, almost as conceptually cohesive as any LP we've seen from the group's peers. It's filled with adorable samples of real-life kids at play and loving moments that give the whole release a warm glow. Let it be your daily dose of joy and ride its euphoric waves to a happier place.

Billboard Dance caught up with Louis the Child to hear how they put all these feel-good tracks together. There's a lot of sonic ingenuity at work, a lot of smart sonic synthesis. Genres blend and technique takes center stage from start to finish. Hear the behind-the-scenes realness of each track on this exclusive EP breakdown.

"Interstellar"

This one started on tour last year. It started with the idea of the main synth melody, and the strings building behind it. The drop sound came from setting the cutoff filter of the synth to move randomly, while the synth played a rhythmic 16th note line. 

"Breaking News" feat RAYE

We met RAYE a in London a few years ago when we got set up to write some music together. We fell in love with her energy and loved working with her. She’s super talented and so fun to be around. We wrote the song in LA with Sarah Aarons and sent it to RAYE. We're so excited to have her on the song. We’ve written a few other songs with RAYE in the past that we’re excited to finish soon and hopefully get out. We love how the synths in the chorus roll in the same way that a high hat would. 

"Better Not" feat. Wafia

This is the first song off the EP that we released and is one of our favorite songs we’ve ever made. The whole process of making it felt so natural and fun. It was one of those sessions where everyone felt this great energy, and we all were super in love with the song. It’s such a happy song with a really great message that feels very central to the idea of Louis The Child. Wafia sounds like an angel on it, too. 

"Ohhh Baby"

Freddy started this one on a plane ride over the summer. We love how a lot of different sounds rhythmically weave together and create this organized chaos. The sample at the end is from a video we found on YouTube of a little boy saying goodbye to his grandma. 

"LOVE" feat. Elohim

This was the last song we made for the EP, and it might be the quickest we’ve ever created and released a song. We had a day booked out to work with Elohim and were really excited for it. We hadn’t worked with her since the "Love is Alive" session a few years back. She texted us that morning saying that she had written and recorded a top line already that she thought we could produce around. When we got to the studio, she played it for us, and we were in love (no pun intended). We spent the rest of the day producing it out with her and Danny. We all came up with the idea of having a children’s choir help sing the bridge and parts of the dro, and luckily, we were able to get the West LA Children’s Choir to do it. The whole experience of recording the kids was really fun. 

"Dear Sense" feat. MAX

We wrote this song on Robby’s 21st birthday over a year ago, and it sat around for a bit before we were able to find someone who could hit all those notes and deliver that kind of vocal performance. We’re huge fans of MAX, and he’s an amazing friend of ours, so we sent it to him to see if he’d want to sing it. We’re so happy with how he sounds on it and couldn’t imagine someone better to sing it. The production of the song has a very LCD Soundsystem feel to it, which is a side of us that we hadn’t expressed until this song. We love the simplicity of it. 

"The City" feat. Quinn XCII

We started this song with Quinn about 2 years ago. Quinn came on tour with us, and we had been talking about how we all needed to make a song together. We gave Quinn some instrumental ideas, and he started writing to the beat that turned into "The City." We were staying in the Phoenix House at Harvard for a few days while we played Boston, and Quinn spent a bunch of time there with headphones in listening to the beat and writing to it. A few nights later, he came to us in our green room after a show and sang us what he had written. We all worked through more lyric and melody ideas. We linked up again in Chicago a while later and wrote the second verse. After that, we kind of left the song alone for a bit, then came back to it this past year to finally finish it. It’s probably the longest journey a song has had for us. 

"Save Me From Myself" feat. NoMBe and Big Gigantic

We had a few days booked out with NoMBe to make some music, and we were really excited about it. We’re huge fans of him and felt we could make something really cool. We made a bunch of ideas with him, but this one stood out the most. We went through a lot of different revisions and tried a lot of different ideas with this song before finally getting it right. Big Gigantic didn’t hop on it until later when we had some days to hang with Dom. We asked Dom to just play ideas on a bunch of different beats and songs we had at the time. 

"Space Jam"

We started this one on laptop speakers in Freddy’s kitchen one morning. It has a very classic LTC synth style and feel to it. We love how the synths in the post-drop section are almost playing with each other, going back and forth. This song also includes the sounds of children playing on a playground that you hear at the beginning of the EP during "Interstellar."


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