Global Vinyl Community

RPM: Kalimo

Born & raised in Lesotho, Southern Africa; Kalimo’s love for the music he digs the most – Deep House, started early on when his Friday night ritual was spent sitting in front of the stereo home taping the sounds that were coming across the airwaves on the radio to cassette tapes. Kalimo moved to Ireland for school first and then on to Leeds, UK to study Architectural Engineering at University. This time would go on to forge his connection to records, regularly frequenting clubs such as Wire and Mint and often promoting with longstanding Leeds crew Butter Side Up. Whilst at Leeds he would encounter a handful of people who would go on to be some of his best friends and closest musical allies. These included Chris, Owen, Gabriel, Stephen & Spiritland / Soho Radio regular Max aka Leopold who shared many late nights together spinning records & sharing stories. Following a move to London, he reunited with Leopold around 2015, the home gatherings evolved and the gang set about taking their collective love for similar soundscapes out of their living rooms, to a space where it could be enjoyed by many of the connections they had made along their respective musical journeys. In 2017 their club event Resonate was born which went on to name-shift to Constellations in 2018. This gave Kalimo & Max the space to share their eclectic melting pot of sounds. While rooted in House music, their inspiration comes from many avenues such as Jazz, Hip-Hop, Soul, Funk, Broken Beat and traditional tribal sounds. While Leopold & Kalimo held it down for the most part, in their true community and collaborative spirit the Constellations crew invited another part of the Leeds connection, Sam aka Berkeley Hunt who hosts culture traversing show Berkeley’s Travels on Balamii Radio to join the fold. They have also invited esteemed guests along too for the journey, these include Will Lister, Al Zanders, Ben Hauke, Born Cheating, Simbad & Al Dobson Jr + more.

Kalimo has also been writing his own music and his debut dose of deepness, a four track EP entitled “Locations” was released on Okan records back in 2019.

Each week we will be taking a dip into the crates and minds of some of the digging scenes most prolific collectors.

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DIGGR: What is is about vinyl that makes you dig it?

KALIMO: “We live in a world where it feels like everything‘s about fast culture – fast food, instant gratification, more stuff.. and constant distraction towards the next shiniest 5 second gimmick.

For me vinyl embraces the fact that good things take time. It’s imperfect but it’s tangible and lets you take your time with it. It’s not just another algorithm vying for your attention. I find it also helps me be more present, the same way a good book does.. And let’s face it – It’ll be much cooler to give your grandkids or nephews and nieces a few records than giving them a hard drive.”

D: What is one of your favourite pieces of sleeve art and why?

K: “Anything from Firecracker Recordings. Those guys really put a lot of effort into delivering the full package. They’re not just releasing amazing music. They’re releasing amazing art.”

D: Where were your earliest musical influences?

K: “Stuck in the house on a Friday night recording house music onto cassette off the radio. I think I’d commit a small crime to get some of those tapes back!”

D: Motivated Mondays.. What tune gets your engine going?

K: Delano Smith – Nebula

D: Favourite record labels of all time?

K: “It’s too difficult to say. And it’s constantly evolving. For me I’ve had different labels soundtrack different seasons of my life.. all of which I’d like to think are leading up to something bigger and better every day.

Bullshit aside, I’m a pretty simple guy. There’s loads of cool, clever and obscure stuff out there, but throw me a Smallville record and I’m pretty content.”

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