Nikki Nair can’t wait so he sings for the first time

The first signs of summer are always arriving earlier and earlier each year, but they still help to raise the mood a notch every year. It usually starts with the sun setting later, birds singing early in the morning, the sleeves on your clothes shortening and a whole host of unmistakably pleasant smells reappearing.

This year, Nikki Nair puts all this frivolity on the back burner and takes on the mantle of the fair-weather messenger with a simple but brilliant idea: he sings on a record for the first time. The vocoder, slow BPM, glitch-pop samples and bouncy keys evoke a picturesque summer scene designed by the Atlanta producer.

Can’t Wait‘, released on April 21st on Stockholm label Studio Barnhus (and recorded in the same venue), is like a pineapple: a juicy, sweet fruit concealed behind rows of sharp, toothed leaves; an analogy that might fit this track with a sweetness that Nair didn’t prepare us for, and which appears like a UFO in his otherwise pummeling discography. In comparison, his latest collaboration with DJ ADHD and Thys entitled ‘Sun’ (so already in the summer theme) released at the end of March has a completely different dynamic. 

The most prolific man of the moment, ultra at ease, Nair rides several waves at the same time, going from roaring productions to unexplored paths like on ‘Can’t Wait’ and revels in the hybrid mixes where his inspirations lead him.

His latest single is as tasty as it is unexpected, with its sugary lyrics written and performed by Nikki Nair, taking the producer’s regular followers into a totally new and, frankly, playful dimension. ‘Can’t Wait’ is about life in the office from morning to night, when you’re just waiting to enjoy the simple pleasures of summer (in other words, getting hammered) wherever you are.

Nikki Nair’s vocoder voice sets the scene: “Sometimes I look back and think of the time I had when I was unemployed – But when I wake up now, I think about how the drink after work will give my joy – I can’t wait to get fucked up with you on the beach…”.

With a slow flow and gamboling melodies, Nair gives some context on his Instagram to his very first track with his own voice on a whole track: “I wrote the lyrics to this song when I had a day job and still didn’t believe I’d ever be able to leave it (I have since left it)”. He elaborates in an interview with Mixmag: “I wrote this track when I had a day job as a radar engineer. It was mid-pandemic and I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to make music full time so life felt pretty empty. The words in the song are kind of what I thought life was going to be forever as a working person”

The original single comes with a remix by a man Nair recently collaborated with on ‘Town Crier’, Peder Mannerfelt. The Swede upsets the lightness of the original track and has fun transforming his American colleague’s voice into something more robotic and aggressive, twisting Nair’s airy vocals into an alienating chorus. Mannerfelt delivers exhilarating techno with bracing house sounds that veils the sun, a deluge of virulent waves that break on the idyllic coastline dreamed up by Nair.


Listen and purchase Nikki Nair’s ‘Can’t Wait (Extended Version)’ and the remix by Peder Mannerfelt on Bandcamp, here