In recent years, there’s been a steady increase of producers and songwriters stepping out to explore their own individuality as an artist, and Norwegian singer, songwriter and producer Lido is a prime example of that evolution. After crafting hits for some of the biggest names in the industry like Chance the Rapper, Mariah Carey, Halsey, Ariana Grande and even a hit anime series (Carole & Tuesday) it’s time for Lido to share his artistry entirely on his own — and the 27 year old’s journey feels full of promise. We recently spoke to the well-rounded artist ahead of the release of his upcoming sophomore album PEDER about the album’s meaning, collaborations and what he’s excited for people to hear from a project that deviates from traditional rules.
Contrast Magazine: I understand that PEDER is about a boy born on a spaceship who stumbles across music, and attempts to recreate the sound with the tools available to him. What inspired that almost sci-fi tinted concept?
Lido: I played some of the early ideas for Chad Hugo and he called it Galactic R&B, but it was also very inspired by one of my favorite books, The Little Prince. I wanted to make music that felt naive and without boundaries, as if having just discovered the world of music without context or rules. Plus, I love otherworldly sounds so I tried to use sounds that I think would exist on his spaceship. It’s not a concept album about the boy, but rather a set of guidelines that helped me make decisions whenever I’d get stuck.
Contrast: Your last album Everything was released four years ago in 2016, so at what point did you begin to work on PEDER?
Lido: The concept came together about two years ago, but there are songs on it that were originally written a few years before that. Most of the music was recorded over a 6-month period between Strongroom in London and Shangri-LA in Malibu.
Contrast: You have a few collaborators on your new album that’s pretty impressive including JoJo and Brandon Arreaga. Is there something in particular you look for in an artist before working together?
Lido: I try to stay open to all different types of collaborators, but I guess I look for someone who is down to take things a step further and experiment. And just go crazy, to be honest. I’m lucky to be surrounded by a lot of really talented people and some of my favorite creative relationships aren’t even with other musicians, so I think staying open minded is key to cool stuff happening.
Contrast: A few of the songs on the album like “Rise” and “Postclubridehomemusic” have been released already, but are there any particular songs that we’ve yet to hear on PEDER that you have a special attachment to?
Lido: “University” is probably my favorite right now because it’s a really fun journey of a song and includes contributions from so many of my friends.
Contrast: You’ve written some great tracks for yourself and a long list of heavy hitters. Is there someone that you would say is a dream-collab? If not, was there an artist that you had that moment with already?
Lido: I have already been lucky enough to work with a couple of my favorite artists and there’s so many artists out there I want to work with, but I’m also sure that my greatest collaborations are going to be with people I don’t even know yet.
Contrast: Carole & Tuesday was a brilliant combination of two different mediums and you contributed to two songs that have been streamed by several million already. Considering something like that hadn’t been done before, what was it like to work on original music for an anime?
Lido: It was really fun and something that I’ve been wanting to try for a long time. It was so cool actually seeing the character sing one of the songs in the show the way I had imagined while working on it.
Contrast: With your second album debuting and so many achievements across the board as a producer and songwriter, do you ever find yourself envisioning what comes next for you — or are you someone who lives more moment to moment?
Lido: I have a lot of ideas and a lot of things I want to do creatively in my life, and I’m sure I haven’t thought of everything yet. Right now I’m just trying to stay inspired and enjoy the process. Lido’s album PEDER will be available starting September 18, so check it out on all streaming services and enjoy a dose of “Galactic R&B.”