The wonderful thing about music is that it is constantly evolving. An artistic language which finds itself morphing along with the people of planet Earth, music has become more culturally integrated as global communication has become instantaneous. The music genres of today are not confined to a geographic area or country, often to great benefit of the genre itself. From the Grime of the UK to the romance and criminal underworld themes of Russian Shanson and countless others, cultural influences outside of the birthplace of a musical style have created exciting new musical forms with adoring and dedicated fans. You might not expect artist/band “thecolorfractal” to originate from Singapore; singer-songwriter and guitarist Weiwen Seah’s voice and sonic palate sounds like he is a product of Philadelphia or Atlanta rather than Southeast Asia. While the compositions and musical stylings are directly from Seah, an essential part of achieving the sound of thecolorfractal comes from producer/engineer Nick Kodonas. Hailed by many as one of the most exciting new musical acts of 2019, the relationship between Kodonas and Seah is another example of the ideal pairing of musical talents that brought the world collaborations like Daniel Lanois & U2, Nile Rodgers & Chic, and Rick Rubin with everyone from Slayer to Run DMC. The extraordinary results of the Kodonas/Seah collaboration need only one hearing to convince, the story behind it requires much more.
Kodonas is known for his work with Grammy Nominated producer/engineer/DJ Mark “Exit” Goodchild, the force behind Justin Bieber’s Purpose and Outkast’s Stankonia among others, but that’s not why Weiwen Seah aka thecolorfractal approached Nick to produce, mix, and master his music; at least, it’s not the only reason. Seah reveals, “Nick is a super talent, that’s widely known but, I was simply lucky in the fact that we are friends. I’m not a big name so it would’ve been hard for me to get someone of Nick’s stature but I had the good fortune of being his friend and he liked the music I’ve been working on. I was in the right place at the right time.” Working with Weiwen from guitar/vox demo stage to the full blown and lavish production of the final iterations of these songs by thecolorfractal testifies to the importance of the collaboration of a music artist with a professional like Kodonas who understands what the artist’s endgame is.
The professional outcome of this friendship has catapulted thecolorfractal’s popularity. The resulting album In Metanoia is featured on Singapore Airlines in-flight music playlist. The album’s first single “Twenty Three” has achieved 135,000 streams on Spotify. While definitely leaning further towards modern R&B, In Metanoia evokes audible imagery of John Mayer’s album “The Search for Everything” with its sincerity and vulnerability. One of the most popular songs Nick worked on for Seah was “Untitled (What’s it Gonna Be)” by thecolorfractal featuring Gail Belmonte which is currently up to 200,000 streams on Spotify and has become an instant hit in Asia. Kodonas describes, “While I did not know Gail and her music before this, I was extremely familiar with Weiwen’s music. His vision and the producer’s vision was definitely a very RnB oriented mix that would sonically work very well in the contemporary radio.” He adds, “There are certain balancing and sonic decisions that will dictate the overall aesthetic for a song like this. I mixed ‘Untitled (What’s it Gonna Be)’ more aggressively than some of Seah’s other music because that’s what the song dictated. Just like a musician, a producer/engineer has to allow the creation to be what it wants to be; it’s a very creative role to work with an artist this way.”
Though the music of thecolorfractal isn’t as ubiquitous as some of the other artists Nick has worked with (as a mix engineer of FOX TV’s singing competition The Masked Singer which featured Lil Wayne, Bret Michaels of Poison, Bow Wow, and others), the increasing popularity of this artist/band’s music appears to be headed in the direction of international notoriety; thanks in no small part to the contributions of Nick Kodonas and his incredible ears.
Writer: Angela Cooper