Charm Offensive

SCINTILLATING radiance seems to shine through anything Jake Kulkowski touches, his project, Charm Offensive is living, breathing testament to this, providing anthems for many midnight crawls. One of the amazing Tilt Shift's artists, Charm Offensive is constantly building barriers to only then knock them down with each and every desirable art formation he crafts.

Hailing from North Wales, Kulkowski flaunts an astonishing back catalogue of work, ranging from producing to performing. It was when he working with the likes of the equally talented, Luke Cusato, of which absolutely cemented The Music Manual's belief within him as an artist in his own right. 

Hauntingly addictive, all faith is placed upon this young man's shoulders as we delve into a world so abstract although all the more realistic, definitely savouring our ridiculous imaginations to fall for a graceful car crash of emotion and power. The joining of such diverse feeling certainly sets up a phantasm of chaos, however, in Charm Offensive's defence, this is yet to cause issue, with each speck of artistry being kissed by a wondrous bug of selfless content, graciously tipping our craniums into glorified mayhem. 

Recently released free download, Porcelain, has received a massive response from many of CO's devoted followers, falling for the carefully crafted marvel which has turned my dickensian view upon experimental music on its head. The old school key-notes have you wrapped up, helplessly holding you to an alarming charm of multi-tonal rage and fear, all bundled within this tightly cuddled nest of human meets machine. Incredibly fascinating, we find our ears tracing the beat for a pulse, feeling the desperate need to find life within the elegant veins of the track.


After taking the East Village Arts Club's stage last night, Charm Offensive has most definitely crept under the watchful gaze of us music fanatics and with the guidance of Tilt Shift Music and Kerry Turley's ears, we are going to be most definitely blown away by the next instalment from Kulkowski. The Music Manual grabbed an interview with the talented muso to find out more about Charm Offensive...

What started off the Charm Offensive idea?
I just wanted to portray how I feel with music. I want to show people that electronic music doesn't have to be brainless party music, it's a very powerful medium of expression. I just want to be the soundtrack to your break up/breakdown. I want people to be able to use my music as a soundtrack to the cool parts of their life. I want to be the music you listen to when you think of your first/last kiss.

How do you know when a track feels good? 
I often work on a tune starting with the chords, then work on some percussion, and if i'm grooving with that basic structure then i'm happy to carry on with a tune. Then i'll work away with all the melody ideas I have, and then I have a break, I normally go make a cup of tea and listen to some other music...Then if i go back to my track, hit play and just listen to it as a whole and it works, that's when i'm happy with it. A lot of people don't give themselves that break when they're working on tunes, and it can get ruined because the main concept gets drowned in little creative ideas they have at the time. I try and keep it as natural as possible, and if i've got myself grooving to the track, it's sounding good so far. 

What's the most exciting thing to happen to you within music so far? 
So far i'd say it's just getting to speak to artists whose music I love, and for them to like my stuff back. It's great when you're a big fan of someone as an artist and they're now your friends, you get to ask all the questions. I love collaborating with other artists and I guess the most exciting thing to happen to me so far is working with my friend Luke, it's just that we constantly push each other, and we get on great outside of music too, so when we sit down to work on a track it always sounds great and i'm just pleased to be working with people I really like, that's the most exciting thing.

How do you get psyched up for a gig?
Well i've performed with my other music project but with Charm Offensive i'm yet to play. But how I usually do it is to check out all the acts on before me, I love standing in the crowd and getting the energy/atmosphere from them before I step up, not really into chilling backstage. I like being with the crowd, getting their energy and thinking/hoping that i'll be making them dance with me in a few mins. Maybe with Charm Offensive it'll be a little different though, who knows?


Do you think downloads have killed music?
Not at all, I think it forces artists to focus more on live shows. Music being easily accessible is a blessing. If people like the music they hear that much, they'll want to support you other ways, coming to see you live or buying your merch. So give your music away for free or let the fans choose how much they want to pay. That's the way I see it.

What's the music scene like in North Wales?
Non-existent. We've got a bunch of bands that play pubs here, the same 4-5 bands in my town regurgitating oasis covers and folk songs. It's good vibes, but nothing serious. We have a music festival in my town now, which means progress?


Who are you listening to at the moment?
At this very second? Wolf Hunter by Sabrepulse. Lately in general? I'm into the new La Dispute record Rooms Of The House, Sunbather by Deafheaven and To The Beat Of A Dead Horse by Touche Amore. I listen to a lot of post-hardcore/black metal, I don't really listen to much electronic music when i'm not making it believe it or not.

Where was the best venue you've ever played?
Kazimier in Liverpool was a cool venue.

Are we going to be hearing big things from you this year?
Yes. I've got a solo EP in the works, a bunch of remixes and collaborations and hopefully a big tour! Following that I plan on invading Liverpool at least once a month for gigs soon, come watch me, you deserve a nice fun gig time.


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lauren@themusicmanual.co.uk