The former Ou Est Le Swimming Pool band member marks his return to songwriting with a new set of slick, inward-looking jams that position him as a future-facing pop star primed to cut through the noise. “I’m not for the fame or social media hype...I feel like I have experienced that before with the band, and it never ended up bringing any real joy. I’m just here to make meaningful pop music that people can relate to or connect with.”
Caan’s first new solo material in six years is co-written and co-produced with London-based producer Mkulu, with whom a meeting three years ago served as the confirmation he needed to start making music again. Prior to that, Caan’s creative career had been up in the air following the tragic suicide of his bandmate Charles Haddon in 2010.
“After Charlie died, I wasn’t sure whether or not I even wanted to do music anymore. I took some time out – I just needed to assess the whole situation. I think there was obviously a grieving process that I didn’t quite understand at that point in time,” he explains.
When his manager introduced him to Mkulu, it was one of those “instantaneous clicks” and the pair began honing the art of songwriting together, laying down tracks until Caan felt “comfortable and ready” for people to hear the results. First single ‘High Tides’ is the result of this collaboration; a slow-burning electronic-soul jam that is as straight-up as it is submerged in narcotised introspection.
‘High Tides’ celebrates the natural flow, euphoria and comfort of getting high. However, it mines a deeper message that transcends pure hedonism. “I was at a point in my life about four years ago when I used to stay out all weekend, recalls Caan. “I’d get home and question my behaviour - and it used to make me worry about what direction my life was going in”
He continues: “Looking back now those are some of the most profound, introspective and educational parts of my life. ‘High Tides’ is actually about enlightenment and learning from the highs and lows that we experience day to day. It’s about the romance we all share with escapism. No matter the consequence, these experiences are how we grow and evolve..”
Caan produced the video – which was filmed at Camber Sands in East Sussex and directed by Chas Apetti. He explains that the track will form a linear narrative with two other incoming singles; electronic twister ‘Ghost in My Head’ and the climatic, piano-led ‘On & ‘On’.
Music has been in Caan’s life since birth – his grandfather used to play clarinet in the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Both of his parents were avid music lovers, playing an eclectic mix of music in the Turkish & Irish household. His older brothers handed down there love of hip-hop, acid house, jungle and R&B and to an impressionable teenaged Caan. At the age of 13 he had started MCing and DJing at the Acland Burghley after-school project Bigga Fish. “I’ve always felt like I’ve had music in my DNA,” quips Caan, who filters elements of these inherited styles through a hyper-melodic musical sensibility that any pop fan in 2018 will instantly recognise – and love.