At the age of only 18, Australian producer Gab Strum, a.k.a. Japanese Wallpaper just dropped his new hit Cocoon, the first track released after his debut self-titled EP. With over a million streams on SoundCloud, the single has already received a lot of positive recognition. The delicate electronic sound, vibrant vocals and beautiful lyrics, deliver the perfect chill-out vibes. After collaborating with numerous artists, such as R&B belter Airling or his good friend Wafia, Strum has now decided to go with his own vocals, showing that he is a real multi-talent. In August Strum will go on a national tour around Australia, bringing his tunes to festivals such as CHVRCHES, Thundercat and Beach House.
Listen to Japanese Wallpaper’s captivating sound below and find out more about the Aussie wunderkid’s career, inspiration and collaborations in our exclusive interview.
Which influences inspired you right at the beginning of your career?
In the beginning I took inspiration from producers such as Toro Y Moi and Washed Out, even though my early output didn’t really sound like those artists. Now my horizons are much broader in terms of what I listen to and derive inspiration from, although i feel that those artists still inform my taste and compositional style in a big way.
Why the name ‘Japanese Wallpaper’?
No particular reason – it came up on a band name generator website that I was flicking through one day while I was bored.
What drives your creativity?
I think a big factor that drives my creativity is living and working in a city like Melbourne, which has an incredibly tight-knit music scene comprised of – in my opinion – some of the most prolific, innovative and hard-working artists in the world. I am always driven by my friends.
Which one has been your favourite collaboration so far?
It’s hard to choose – I think I love them all equally but for different reasons…
With whom would you like to collaborate in the future?
I don’t know, I am singing a lot on the record that I’m working on at the moment – I think I closed that chapter with my last EP.
How would you describe the sound of ‘Cocoon’ and your debut EP?
I like to think that it’s electronic music for people who don’t like to dance.
What’s it like to sit in the cinema and suddenly hearing your own song?
It’s crazy! I don’t think the prospect of music ‘working out’ for me really hit until that point. Also it was just a huge honour to be included in that soundtrack, alongside so many people I respect.
What are your future plans for the next year?
I haven’t thought too much about it beyond hopefully just finishing some more songs and playing lots of shows – I guess we’ll just have to wait and see…
Listen to ‘Cocoon’ below…