Musically literate electronica producer Leaps, aka Luke Osborne, acquired exposure to cutting-edge sound from birth; it has never up and left shaping the boy's destiny, answering a calling, "I studied music at Goldsmiths University. I was fortunate enough to be exposed to a variety of music when growing up as both of my parents are musicians," he teaches.
I hear more of the South London based DJ on the cusp of his EP 2002 drop on May 14th as he presses on with his history, "I started learning the drums at the early age of 8, and played in Rock, Jazz and eventually an orchestra at the start of secondary school. This laid down the foundations of my musical experience and opened me up to different ways of interpreting sound."
Derived from his father's intense enthusiasm for synthesisers, of which their home was plentiful, he displayed proficiency by taking advantage of unlimited access and letting Pa educate to illuminate, develivering some A star acts as stimulus. "He really got me into electronic acts such as Air, Lamb, Massive Attack, Aphex Twin etc., along with a diversity of other styles of music such as Joni Mitchell, John Martyn and Pink Floyd. I only really started getting into producing electronic music when starting University."
Disclosing that he is a big fan of artist Four Tet, he shares his admiration of the limit-pusher's production and natural world sounds applied in a club sense climate. "I would say a real inspiration to my music. I love sampling vintage synthesisers and incorporating an element of world music into my tracks." Our entrepreneurial chap craved his music to be independently released, nudging the invention his Leaps & Bounds label at the turn of the new year. He places himself back there, "It just felt right to release like this. The name came from the phrase Leaps & Bounds, which is described when someone or something is improving and growing. Something that resonates with my own personal, artistic journey."
EP 2002 sits on the more shadowy, steely side of the dance floor, minimalist in its unfussy stance yet with multiple technical details. Maybe a tale of two complementing halves: House and Garage. Initial singles Fell For and Miles Apart are not indicators of what else is to come. Osborne considers if he is partial to one more than the other: "I don’t really have a preference as such - I love the intricacies of a garage beat as my background is a drummer, and I love making my own beats." He supplements, "I also love the simplicity of a four on the floor bass drum kick which gives emotive, atmospheric sounds and a sense of euphoria. When visiting Ibiza for the first time back in 2019, it really showed me a new perspective to dance music and the power of House." After evaluation, he concludes he is drawn, like moth to flame, towards both with comfort.
Apparent that the buzz of getting your hands on top-notch equipment stemmed from his childhood, he weighs up which piece of gear he could no have recorded his collection without: "Definitely my SPD-SX. I use this to play drum samples live into Ableton (especially when writing Garage inspired tracks.)"
Leaps' work perches alongside another live duo project storming down a differing avenue of expression entitled NULA. "NULA is a project I have been working on with my partner Nadiah for the past few years, which touches more onto the alternative RnB genre. We met at University and have been creating music together ever since. We recently released a single called Tone Deaf through our label LXN Records via Dummy," he declares.
With forced home discos taking the presidency in our lives over the last year, Luke examines if this is a new way forward? Has this transpired as our melodious spiritual haven moving onwards in dance music? To conclude, he must choose a nightclub or kitchen party; only one answer is strictly permitted. "Nightclub any day. Can’t beat the atmosphere of everyone coming together and feeling as one. Also, the epicness of the sound of a nice big sound system." Amen.
Article by Beverley Knight