Los Angeles-based producer TOKiMONSTA teases her fourth studio album Oasis Nocturno, due for release on 20th March, with her new single “Fried For the Night” featuring Atlanta hip-hop duo EarthGang. The Grammy-nominated artist calls the opportunity to work with EarthGang “amazing,” adding, “Love those guys. They’re such amazing creative people and the energy always feels perfect.”
The single, which follows up her track “Love That Never,” is the perfect prelude to Oasis Nocturno. TOKiMONSTA describes the album as “body of work I am the most proud of.”
“There wasn’t any specific message behind this song other than the thoughts that roll through our mind when we are ‘fried’ at night,” the Asian-American talent says, speaking about the track. “Fried from the life, fried from substances, really anything.”
Following 2017’s album Lune Rouge, which saw TOKiMONSTA become the first Asian-American producer as well as the first woman to be nominated under the Best Dance/Electronic Album category at last year’s Grammys, her latest work is set to be an exploration of feelings and stories, all of which come together to create a world of its own.
Inspired by her mother, whom she fondly talks about “as her example of strength” and tapping into new parts of her own creativity, TOKiMONSTA wants her music to remind people “it’s OK to start from scratch. We may like our new story even more.”
It wasn’t simple for TOKiMONSTA to arrive at this simple message. She struggled through intensive surgeries to treat Moyamoya, a rare brain condition, in 2015. The condition left her unable to speak, write, comprehend music or move. She has since made a comeback that left everyone awed.
Each time she makes music, TOKiMONSTA aims to surprise both herself and her fans, and it’s with this hope to surprise people in mind that she puts out her wish for 2020. “I just can’t wait for everyone to see my next evolution,” she says.
TOKiMONSTA says, if she could, she would want to collaborate with artists including Missy Elliot, Bjork, Marvin Gaye, Delia Derbyshire and Jimi Hendrix. With diverse taste and her fender Rhodes—her favourite instrument—in hand, the down-to-earth producer explains she’s still awaiting what she thinks will be the pinnacle of her career. “I’m waiting and excited,” she says. “In many ways, I hope I continue to search for whatever that is.”
Seldom do you cross paths with an individual as hopeful as TOKiMONSTA. Her philosophy towards life, “Just go, go with it”—a lyric from her 2013 song titled “Go With It”—puts her awe-inspiring personality into perspective for those uninitiated to her ways.