tropics: music to... get tropical to with friends

Press play and get tropical.

by i-D Staff
30 April 2015, 12:49pm

Multi-instrumentalist Chris Ward AKA Tropics makes really great music. His magical electronica inspired by the Beach Boys, Rhys, Peter Gabriel and Little Dragon exists somewhere in-between deep sleep and REM, managing to be drowsily lucid all at once. We jumped at the chance to feature Ward's "Groovy, funky, soulful, danceable" Tropical mix, created especially by him for i-D. Says Ward of the mix: "Tropics & Friends is a monthly night myself and Joseph Russell (Early Sounds Collective) started putting on at various venues in London last year. It's a great vibe and I love getting people involved to feature alongside us. The night is kind of an excuse to get all our friends together who live around London and have a good knees up! We have no genre exclusivity, we just play what we're influenced by and believe to be good music. Groovy, funky, soulful, danceable."

Who is Tropics?
I am Chris Ward, a music producer and songwriter. I make sounds with my soul.

Why is Tropics?
I always have done; it's easy along the way to forget why you do this. But it's for anything: my friends, family, myself, healing, adrenaline, peace. If it resonates in a certain way with someone other than myself, then that is what it's for; a connection.

What is Tropics?
Tropics is an ongoing project and title. I have been making music as for quite a few years now, only most recently releasing this music in the form of two albums, Parodia Flare and Rapture. I guess I'm just trying to combine the excitement and therapy I get from writing music with it being an ongoing accessible project that's out there for people to connect with. The lyrics are usually personal; about my day to day, ambiguously about my character, other people, fictional characters occasionally. As for production, I like to evoke layers of texture through synthesizing sound, usually with laptop and sometimes analog sounds. This week I've been finding enjoyment in the sound of scrunching up paper and layering it in my clap sounds. There's screwed up paper all around my desk, but some of those are from bad songwriting, too.

When is Tropics?
I have a handful of live shows this summer including headlining the Tradiio stage at Field Day on the Saturday. Also this Saturday I'm having a Tropics & Friends party at Oslo Hackney, where I get together with a bunch of friends and DJ. It will be a lot of fun.

Music to shift your mood from staying in to staying up all night...
SBTRKT - New Dorp New York

Music for fiery arguments and emotional goodbyes...
Tigran Hamasyan - Entertain Me

Music to kiss and make up to...
Tropics - Blame

Music to heal a broken heart...
Denai Moore - No Light

Music to get high to...
Lapalux - Midnight Peelers

Music to change your night from mediocre to magnificent...
Gil Scott Heron & Jamie xx - I'm New Here

Music to take a long drive to...
John Cale - Amsterdam

Music to walk down the aisle to...
Dirty Beaches - Lord Knows Best

Music you'd like played at your funeral...
Taylor McFerrin - Postpartum

Music to have sex to...
Shlohmo - Places

Music to celebrate your birthday to...
Donnell Jones - U Know What's Up

Music guaranteed to give you serious swagger...
Marvin Gaye - Inner City Blues

Music to make even the wallflowers dance...
Kaytranada - Leave Me Alone

Music to play at the afterparty when it's 6am and the sun is beginning to rise...
Nick Hakim - I Don't Know

Music that could put even an insomniac to sleep...
Fever Ray - Coconut

Tropics' debut album Rapture is out on Innovative Leisure.

Chris Ward
music to
get tropical
music to get tropical