Introducing Lou & Rohan of Kiiōtō
It’s a special feeling to see Emily’s pieces being worn to celebrate a future life together. We recently spoke to Lou Rhodes and Rohan Keath of Kiiōtō, who recently chose Emily’s pieces for their commitment ceremony, about their band, creative process, sources of inspiration and love for Emily’s organic designs.
Singer songwriter Lou, and musician songwriter Rohan first met when mutual friends suggested they create a piece together. As Lou says “that didn’t happen, but instead, we fell in love” and rekindled a passion for making music they thought they had lost. From that renewed passion for making music emerged Kiiōtō and what will be the duo's first album, which seeks to restrict itself from conventional creative boundaries. With influences in jazz, soul, funk, folk and blues, but with its own distinctive twist, Kiiōtō is brought to life with Lou’s unique vocals and Rohan’s open melodies.
Much like Emily, Lou and Rohan find inspiration from their surroundings and the routines that unravel around them. Following both the beautiful, in the form of vivid colours, textures, scents and flavours on journeys to Mexico, as well as the unsettling, in the form of American life and local history, Lou and Rohan approach the creative process with a innate sense of discovery - navigating sources of inspiration through comfort as well as discomfort.
Inspired by these places and emotions, Lou and Rohan decided to write most of the songs in their first album in Oaxaca, New Orleans and the Louisiana Bayou. As they said, “we found the US an infinitely inspiring place, for better or for worse, and much of the album is rooted there”. Approaching subjects through the lens of the human experience, Lou and Rohan encompass themes like love, the natural world and place in their music, whilst also exploring subjects closer to home, with one song in particular being written about Mary Anning, the Victorian fossil hunter.
When Lou and Rohan were looking for rings to make a commitment to each other, they felt a strong connection to Emily’s pieces. With its rocky textures and sea-worn finish, it was Emily’s Sculptural Rock ring that resonated deeply with the two, and as Rohan beautifully said “it had an etched appearance to it that reflects what we both see as the true embodiment of any relationship: beautiful, imperfect, individual and extremely precious”.