Dominic Salole, better known as Mocky, is a producer and multi-instrumentalist who grew up in Saskatchewan and moved to Toronto, then Amsterdam, and finally Berlin, where he became part of a hypercreative Canadian expat scene that included Peaches, Chilly Gonzales, and Feist (although she didn’t actually live there). As well as working with those artists—not to mention Jamie Lidell, Kelela and GZA—Mocky has released several albums and EPs of his own, latterly Living Time: The Moxtape Vol. II. But the title of his latest full-length record, Key Change, signifies a shift in approach for Mocky, who’s been known to rely heavily on samplers, presets, and other modern technical conveniences. To make the album, he moved from Berlin to Los Angeles, believing that his music needed more of a human touch, and he also decided to abandon the sampler and to record Key Change using acoustic instruments. The result is a strangely fascinating middle ground between genres and eras. If “easy listening” weren’t considered damning, it’d be an apt description of these breezy, gently swinging retrofuturistic tunes—part ’50s jazz, part ’60s Euro-film soundtrack, part ’70s Weather-Report fusion and part post-electronic melodic pop. While Mocky plays most of the instruments himself—drums, keyboards, bass, percussion, flute, and guitar, plus occasional vocals and whistling—his penchant for collaboration led to a number of friends showing up for the sessions: Feist drums on “Living in the Snow,” Miguel Atwood-Ferguson adds mood-elevating strings to several songs, and Gonzales plays keyboard on “Head in the Clouds.” At first, some songs seem so light as to be insubstantial, but their melodies are insistently catchy. Others are beefed up with melodic bass lines and upbeat rhythms. Still others float away on a soulful tropical groove, and yet have more staying power than you’d expect.
Key Change was released on June 30, 2015. Mocky's summer 2015 tour stops include Hamilton (July 8, HAVN Gallery),  Toronto (July 9, The Drake),  and Montreal (July 10, Resonance) with more North American dates TBA.