Lebanese singer/producer Khodor Ellaik spent his teenage years listening to metal, slowly garnering influences from the likes of The Clash, Sleaford Mods, Suicide and more. Between 2010 and 2014 Khodor fronted a couple of Beirut outfits; Beirut Scum Society and Friendly Faces before deciding to go solo with his own Kid Fourteen project.
Donning synths and drum machines instead of band-members, Kid Fourteen went on to to develop his own unique sound that doesn’t lack the punk attitude one bit. He released his debut album Dream Kids Never Sleep in 2016. Some of the LP’s songs featured various instrumentation by Karim Chams Eddine, as well as a remix of ‘Whirlwind Blues’ by Jamie Stewart’s Xiu Xiu. Fast forward to 2018, Khodor has then played several European festivals like Incubate and Waveteef and has put together events in Beirut inviting the likes of Dirty Beaches and Xiu Xiu.
His second studio album - Blood-thick Silence - out the same year was an undertaking of a different kind. Khodor had quit his job as head of content for a video on demand company to become a full time musician. His second album, instead of being self-released was to be released with the UK’s Pinyon records, and instead of the two-year process it took to develop his debut LP, Blood-thick Silence was recorded in an extensive 40-day studio retreat, giving the harsher, more extreme edge baring Ellaik’s doubts about his decision to pursue music full-time.
We caught up with Khodor following his performance at Cairo Jazz Club’s Wall of Sound night on January 16th, and head of the release of his third studio album Love, to discuss his early beginnings, his songwriting process and how it differs from one album to another, and how his cathartic stage performances reflect his true state instead of it just being plain theatricality.