In an interview with FADER last year, Kelly Rowland praised the DJ/producer ToKiMONSTA. “She was super cool,” Rowland said. “I love everything about her style of DJ-ing, the way she makes music, how she puts different rhythms and beats and melodies together. I just felt like [working with her] could be something special.”
Tokimonsta’s latest project involves production on a full-length with the singer Gavin Turek. Gavin tells FADER that she “wrote the lyrics to ‘Hemisphere’ a few years ago.” “The song was completely forgotten until I dug up the acapella and sent it to Toki,” she remembers. “[Toki] made the emotion I felt truly come to life musically.”
To help the track stand out, Toki picked an unusual drum sound that’s far from the trap programming that dominate so much of contemporary pop, regardless of genre. Gavin’s vocals are wounded and melancholy—the song stems from “loss and loneliness.” But her voice swirls and climbs in a layered mass, suggesting that she won’t stay mired in the past forever.