“Chasing Tail” is the latest single from Chicago-based electronic duo Nick Winholt and Austin Gahsen, better known as Win and Woo. The duo’s first release of 2018 is a bright and poppy song that can lift anyone’s mood. It combines dissonant, awkward sounds into a driving beat and rhythm that pulls the song along through a laid back verse that builds into a chorus filled with fluming treble beats that elevate the chorus against the atmospheric vocals of the unaccredited vocalist on the track.
“I’M JUST KICKING BACK
I WAIT HERE FOR YOU
TO FIGURE OUT JUST WHAT LIFE IS TO YOU NOW.
YOU’RE OUT THERE, JUST CHASING TAIL,
YOU KNOW THAT I GOT
JUST WHAT YOU WANT, WHAT YOU NEED
NOW COME HOME TO ME.”
The song’s beat and lyrics intrigued me, so I reached out to Win and Woo and was lucky enough to catch both Nick (Win) and Austin (Woo) on Friday afternoon to discuss the song’s creation and what they’ve got planned for 2018. Check out our exclusive interview below!
This interview has been lightly edited and condensed for clarity.
Let’s talk a little bit about Chasing Tail. it’s your first song you’ve released in 2018. What made you decide to release this first?
WIN: We’ve kinda had it for a little while and we’ve always wanted to put it out. We wanted also to start the year with something that had a story to it. This one definitely tells a story, so we figured we could have some fun with it. It’s actually written from the perspective of a dog. So if you listen to it again, you’ll get it.
“It’s about a dog’s owner going away to college, and the dog just sitting at home waiting for the owner to come back, while he’s out there chasing tail.”
So that’s kind of the full circle thing: It could go both ways – it feels like it could be a human to human interaction itself too. If you listen in between the first chorus and the second verse there’s a big giveaway.
On my hot take of the track, one of the things I highlighted was the beat. What kind of sounds were you mixing with to create the beat?
WOO: When I walked into the studio, Nick and the writer were already working on it. They told me, “We’re trying to make the weirdest song we can possibly make right now”.
“Nick was just browsing recorded samples of quirky sounds, trash can noises… I don’t know, we were just trying to make funky pop music at the time that people hadn’t heard before.”
WIN: That lead is a djembe mixed with a xylophone and some other weird Indian-inspired instrument all combined, so it’s just really weird.
Obviously you made it onto to New Music Friday. Congratulations on that. I know originally in 2016 your first single went on New Music Friday and now you’re back again. What do playlists like New Music Friday mean to you as artists?
WIN: It’s great recognition. It’s reassurance to yourself that what you’re doing is what you should be doing. And what we’re doing is what we want to be doing. So the fact that those two can coincide is a really awesome feeling. Having it in a playlist like that which highlights the best music that comes out is really a cool recognition of our work coming together.
Has anything caught your ear lately that you’ve been vibing to?
WIN: I didn’t really get through the New Music Friday playlist yet, but I’ve been really listening to this girl Bülow. She had a song that on New Music Friday last month, called “Not Another Love Song”. It’s in all the pop playlists right now, but I really like her voice and style – it’s really cool.
WOO: And then you’ve got the two new songs that came out on the Fifty Shades of Grey Soundtrack from Whethan and Louis The Child. Whethan’s track (“High” with Dua Lipa) is getting half a million plays a day right now. Insane.
Both are excellent – I highlighted them both on my TGINMF playlist last week, which I take all the top songs from New Music Friday and whittle it down to no more than 15 tracks…
WIN AND WOO: Your playlist is super cool by the way. I think it’s really awesome. It’s a way to highlight the best music; you know, people are so A.D.D. now, highlighting fifteen songs is all they can take.
Chicago has a budding scene in EDM, but it all started with Louis the Child, you guys, and Whethan. What has it been like to see the EDM scene growing out there in the Windy City, and how has it developed?
WIN: We’re lucky enough to be a part of that. We all just kind of came together. First it was us hanging out with Louis The Child – we have the same management. Then Whethan came on. I think it’s cool that we all came from Chicago and I think it developed from a couple EDM kids to kind of writing pop music. We’re getting some really cool exposure.
WOO: Chicago is an amazing place to start. There are so many good artists coming through the city. It’s kind of a really-small-big-city, so everyone kind of knows if you’re in any kind of form of the music industry, which is pretty cool. That was definitely nice to come up in for sure.
You guys have done a lot of collaborating and you’ve put out a ton of remixes across the web. Which collaborations have you done that have been your favorites so far, regardless of commercial success?
WIN: Anything with Ashe that we’ve done has been huge. She’s an incredible writer and we’ve written so many songs with her, so everything we do with her is a good vibe. She used to live in Nashville and drive up to write with us, hence all the collaborations. Obviously both of those tunes with Bryce Fox as well. “Burn Fast” and “Chicago” – those are very special to us. We’re working with a bunch of different artists right now with songs we haven’t put out that I’m also really excited about.
WOO: I think some of our upcoming collaborations that we have going out are some of my favorites that we’ve ever done. But I think for our old stuff, Swing is probably my favorite we’ve ever done, with EVVY. That song is one of those times it just sort of happened, and it was awesome and felt good. It still feels good three years later.
You’ve got one song out and a small six show schedule together. What made you decide on the shows and cities you’re playing this year?
WIN: We wanted to start branching out doing our own shows instead of going direct support for other artists. That’s kind of a big step for us. So we wanted to make sure we were doing those shows in the right cities. Obviously one that we haven’t locked in that we really need to is New York. It’s been too long. We’re definitely working on a New York show. We have a lot of people listening to our music there and we miss it. So that’s the only one we really need to add.
WOO: We were really focused on making sure that we hit all of our major markets where we felt people needed the Win and Woo show first. To where they have only been to a show that Win and Woo was performing at, not our show, you know?
Taking that big step forward and doing your own headline shows, and is that part of a bigger scheme in 2018? What do you guys have coming out?
WIN: We’re just testing the waters now and we’d like to roll back out with a bigger tour and hopefully bring our own production in the fall, depending on where the music takes us.
WOO: Last year we took touring to a whole next level where we did almost a hundred shows, and that’s a lot. We’re really trying this year to back up what people already know, which is that we can throw a great show, and fulfill it with music. Our biggest focus in 2018 is going to be putting out some of our best music that we’ve made to date.
You can check out more win and Woo on the “This Is: Win and Woo” playlist on Spotify, and at their SoundCloud Link Below.
“This Is: Win and Woo” on Spotify: