Lil Silva, real name TJ Carter, is one of the UK’s most inventive DJs and producers. The underground machine-funk of 2008 white label ‘Seasons/ Funky Flex’, the swerving, rude and rugged Night Skanker EP for Night Slugs and the weighty blended bass of ‘Mask’ from 2013’s much-loved Distance EP are established as huge moment-defining club tracks and mix favourites.
Now 24 years old, he's stepped up as songwriter and vocalist. He’s collaborated with artists including Jamie Woon, newcomer Rosie Lowe and in particular BANKS. His writing relationship with the LA pop-star has only gotten stronger since she emailed him the track that became last year’s ‘Work’, having shaped her sound from the start and as one of the main producers on her forthcoming debut ‘Goddess’. Other collaborators include Sampha, who he shares his endless new ideas and sketches with.
The Mabel EP, recorded and finished between studios at his home in Bedford, London and Los Angeles, highlights this exciting, ongoing transformation. His voice is warm and rich on a bruised slow jam duet about seeing a woman with the wrong man ('Right For You ft. BANKS’) and in the strong stick-in-your-brain-for-months melody of ‘Don’t You Love ft BANKS’. On the EP’s title track, the old familiar Lil Silva is there in the weighty thuds and tinny kick, but the fluid R&B hook shows the new one is in control.
“There are a lot of producers making different tracks to their usual sound, but they don’t put them out there because they’re too worried what people will think” Lil Silva says of the place he’s at now “But that’s what I want to hear. I have no idea how people are going to take this record. But this is precious. This is me”
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