• Biography


    When Kel McKeown (AKA Kelpe) was a young teenager, he decided that sampling
    and sequencing might provide him with a safer past time than bone splintering
    skateboarding mishaps. He got set up with a Commodore Amiga, a sampler and a tape
    player and began to create some primitive rave rhythms. These initial efforts are all
    long lost, but they provided him with a discipline and focus that is of fundamental
    importance to the creative process that he currently employs in the execution of his
    distinctive beat creations.

    Kelpe’s influences range from the bleeps & bass of classic Warp artists to the funk of
    Sly Stone, and the minimalism of Steve Reich + Harmonia to the percussive space-
    scapes of Tortoise + Do Make Say Think. The diversity of the music that inspires
    Kelpe finds reflection in his own sonic adventures, informing his ever evolving sound,
    combining as map and compass to guide his lunar-bound b-boy throw downs.

    Coming to the attention of DC Recordings in early 2003, his first release for label
    was the 12″ EP ‘The People are Trying to Sleep’, a wide eyed carnival of fractured
    hip hop beats and warped electronics. This was followed by the critically acclaimed
    album ‘Sea Inside Body’ (September 2004), an album described by The Wire as “One
    of the most engrossing listens in recent electronic music”. Kelpe continued on DC
    Recordings with second LP ‘Ex-Aquarium’ (2008) and third ‘Cambio Wechsel’
    (2009) as well as several EPs on the label and an official mix CD “Death Before
    Distemper 4 – Mixed by Kelpe”.

    Since 2009, Kelpe has branched out from DC Recordings and released with
    heavyweight electronic labels. In Autumn 2010 he released 2 EPs “Margins EP” on
    Black Acre, securing a place in Bleep.com’s top 10 EPs of 2010. And Chocolate
    Money, (on Fremdtunes) recieving a lot of support and airplay from BBC Radio 1’s
    Huw Stephens and BBC 6 Music’s Tom Ravenscroft. 2011 saw the 7” “Same New
    Era” on Coco Bryce’s MYOR imprint and due in March 2012 on Svetlana Industries
    is 6 track EP “I Felt Fuzzy” with a fourth LP to follow close behind.

    Making a name for himself across and beyond Europe for solo live sets and as a duo
    with long time collaborator Chris Walmsley (Psapp, Broadcast, etc), the live setup
    incorporates MPC style beat manipulations, tiny analogue synths and a lot of bass.
    With or without the addition of live acoustic drums from Chris Walmsley (AKA
    All Traps Set), the explosive live act has travelled far and wide, from California to
    Lithuania, playing alongside diverse acts such as Aphex Twin, Ghostpoet, Gaslamp
    Killer, and Daedelus.


    Chris Walmsley