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Jalen Rose by Kai Tak x Draag

Ambition and Longing in the Neon-lit Streets: Kai Tak's 'Jalen Rose' Featuring Draag

In the dynamic world of shoegaze and trip-hop, Kai Tak, an LA-based collective led by producer Chris King, has emerged with a striking new track, “Jalen Rose,” featuring Draag. Released just four days ago, on December 31, 2023, this song is a mesmerizing journey through themes of ambition and longing, set against the vivid backdrop of Hong Kong’s Wan Chai neighborhood.

The genesis of “Jalen Rose” lies in email and text conversations between Chris King and Draag’s Adrian Acosta & Jessica Huang during the lockdown of 2020. Initially released as a demo in 2021, this track paved the way for Kai Tak’s performances with renowned artists like Tamaryn and Blonde Redhead. Now, as a studio-recorded version and the third song from their forthcoming debut LP, “Jalen Rose” showcases the evolution of Kai Tak’s sound. The LP is anticipated for release in late Spring 2024 via La Carte Records.

Drawing on the inspiration from nocturnal strolls through Hong Kong’s bustling Wan Chai district, “Jalen Rose” is imbued with shoegaze atmospherics laid over a syncopated beat. The track perfectly captures the essence of Hong Kong’s restless energy and neon-lit charm, a tribute to both the cinematic and the real-life vibrancy of King’s birth city.

Named after the iconic, now-retired Hong Kong airport, Kai Tak’s music is akin to a soundtrack for wandering the city’s gritty alleyways. Their soundscapes are moody and immersive, reflecting the paradoxical nostalgia of a time-warped Hong Kong. The project features a variety of collaborators, each bringing their unique perspective and enriching the collective’s sound.

The visual aspect of Kai Tak’s music, crafted by artist Paige Emery, complements their sonic identity. Emery’s hopeful impressionist style captures the time-warping, paradoxical reminiscence at the core of Kai Tak, offering a full sensory immersion into the hazy, neon-lit Hong Kong.

For those eager to explore the depths of Kai Tak’s creative universe, their music is available on Spotify, SoundCloud, YouTube, and Bandcamp. Additionally, fans can connect with them and stay updated on their latest projects via Instagram.

“Jalen Rose” is a multi-dimensional experience. It’s a testament to Kai Tak’s ability to blend sonic landscapes with visual storytelling, creating an immersive experience that resonates deeply with its audience. With its intricate soundscapes and evocative themes, “Jalen Rose” is a must-listen for fans of shoegaze and those captivated by the mystical allure of urban nights.