The opening minutes of Tomas Barfod's Love Me finds Luke Temple boldly admitting, "All I have is hope, or my lonely breath." This lead track is so comfortably beautiful and devastatingly ominous it feels like an exhale of shared solitude in moments that are neither here or there. It begins with a gentle but deliberate build up of plangent piano tapping, whilst in the background, a rumbling drum machine pulses and Temple's sentiments echo throughout. Barfod is indeed renowned for having endless collaborations in music, but the connection between him and Temple is so palpable you notice the quality of this pairing, precisely because it's so rare. Temple breathes a light into Barfod's composition that I haven't heard radiating from the Danish producer before.

As with Love, this album is all about chemistry.

After his 2012 debut Salton Sea, Barfod didn't want to just jump into another musical relationship without taking a step back first. Instead, he spent a year finding the right partners to make an album that was truly meaningful to him. Artists like Nina Kinert, Here We Go Magic's Luke Temple and Brian Batz from Sleep Party People have lovingly brought a heartbeat to an album that pays tribute to a range of stylistic endeavours: songs framed as immersive synth landscapes and pop R&B explorations. It became something of a musical love child.

As for the title, it isn't a plea for help, a deflated cry or one last frustrated sigh; it's the sound of a musician benefitting from well-planned collaborations. He's spent much of the past decade hopping across genres and projects like a lover enthusiastically and expertly navigating the dating scene. In the geography of love, the landscape is always rocky, Barfod admits, "if the chemistry is there, then the sky is the limit and if it's not there, it's really hard."

On its own merits, Love Me is seductive by engaging multiple moods. Oh, and did I mention he feels schizophrenic from it all? ... Love Me?

Do you feel like you're in a very different place from when you recorded you debut solo album Salton Sea?

Yeah because I knew the expectations were higher! Even though I put out solo music before, Salton Sea was my debut somehow and because it was released in America and the label was new I saw everything as a new beginning.

So with all these projects you're apart of, which role is the closest to who you are as an artist?

That's a really good question. I try narrowing my stuff down as much as possible, but I also love working. If I meet some guy who says he's a blogger, a DJ, runs a label, and is also clothing designer - I'm like, whatever! I don't take that seriously unless you're P Diddy and you have the money to pay people for doing it. I also ran a label at some point and did consultancy, so I'm actually narrowing down even though people think I'm doing a lot of stuff. My life is quite simple at the moment. But obviously when you're doing a solo project, you're very fragile because it's your own name.

The title of the album can be seen as quite vulnerable, but do you think that a lot of your music is based on not holding yourself accountable? Like you let the music, beats and the body explain the songs for you?

Yeah that's actually how I work when I play live, I'm not this front person and I'm not the singer. Being a part of the club scene I saw a lot of people getting the right attention just by being at the right after party, but I was always different. Of course I like parties and being social, but I want my music to get my gigs not my networking skills. I've always wanted the music to talk for me, that's the best way I can express myself. I'm not a good songwriter in terms of writing good lyrics so I just provide the music and have Nina and other people help me.

Are you worried about being known for reinterpreting, as opposed to writing your own lyrics?

No I just really believe in focusing on what you're good at. I might be able to write a song if I really spend a lot of time on it, but I would maybe spend two weeks on making a not so good song, and Nina [Kinert] I know will spend one day. Also the social side of it all instead of being alone, it's nice to have people there.

I love the sequencing of the album too particularly how you start with 'Bell House' which stood out immediately. What made you start with that?

Thank you! I did the sequencing, but there were many people involved in arguing about it. A lot of people didn't want 'Bell House' to be the first and I was like, it has to be the first that's how it has to be! Also, while I was doing it I realised that I had maybe three or four songs that didn't make it to the album - like 'Happy' and a few others, and it really stressed me out because I realised I could change the whole album with a sequence. I got really stressed thinking which kind of artist I wanted to be. You're right it took a lot of thought.

I think the way this record is structured mimics that kind of ongoing introspection - you want to send people on a journey, tell a story...

I think that was a big goal of mine because with Spotify and YouTube and general culture, people are very focused on the top singles and they do their own compilations. I'm really happy if they sit down and listen to the whole thing.

I can imagine telling a story with so many different style of music must have been challenging.

I think it's very exciting to have all the opportunities to be whoever I want and not stick to any rules, but it can also be like schizophrenia, so it's a fine line.

It's funny because on the song 'Honey' you can hear Brian Batz from Sleep Party People so clearly, which is so different to some of his previous work. Did you try bringing out his vocals or did that just happen?

I sent him a few beats to choose from and he chose this, which is a little more uplifting, and as you said he does this really beautiful dark stuff and he did this kind of party-vocal [laughs]. I think he just got inspired from what I gave him. Funny thing too, we live like 1km from each other, but we only emailed and I haven't even spoken on the phone with him he just sent the vocals and then "we should have beers soon" emails back and forth.

You need to have a beer! That song is fantastic.

I feel already we could be good friends.

But when you send the songs to vocalists, do you send a little side note with it or do you just send the song and hope for the best?

I believe very much that my curating is when I pick the feature artist, not in guiding them. I pick the ones I really know will do something good, ones I really respect. I tend to send them four different songs so that they can pick what inspires them. They have a lot of freedom. With Nina I wanted to have her on fewer tracks, but she just kept sending really good songs and I wanted it to be that she had her own thing and I had my own thing but she's just too good.

There's definitely something very special between the two of you. On the last album she was only on two tracks, but each song felt varied and unique.

I'm a big fan of Nina and everything she does. I think I corrected two words, everything else I put on exactly like she made it.

In terms of genres is there one side of this that's more of a payoff for you?

No as I made the album what it is, when I did the sequence. I had all these songs to choose from and I've got a good balance here I think, between being a pop indie album and an instrumental club album.

But is the separation of the genres essential for you to appreciate each without detracting the one from the other?

As an artist I might be torn, because I have this big history in the club scene and I really want this to continue - I still love DJing. I also see myself making music that's not just for dancing, but also about being in love. I think I'm in between.

I'm sure that fuels it and you probably need both. I read in an interview once where you said you loved pop music - especially Katy Perry.

When people ask me 'so what's your guilty pleasure' it's like I don't have any, I'm proud of who I like; Rihanna and Katy Perry. I'm fascinating with them, because I'm also doing some production for bigger artists, which is why I'm in LA right now I'm working with a girl here, so I'm fascinated with the commercial scene and how it is in the states. Here is this big machine of songwriters and producers and artists getting together - Everything is music and it's just really exciting. Sometimes when I listen to Katy Perry, as a producer nerd that I am, I hear all the layers of production and vocal production and think about how the songwriter wrote it.

Even on Katy Perry and Pink albums most of those producers started out as drummers like you did. As a drummer I can imagine beat overpowers the production.

Yeah and a lot of music is beat based at the moment. Harmonies are very important, but when you hear the mixing of most genres the drums are very loud and the drum rhythms are a big part of making it a hit. The drums and base are essentials. I've been talking a lot about that with this lady here in LA [Yuna] that when you listen to Lana Del Ray it's the same four chords on the whole album, and that means that the production in terms of making the right sounds is one of the most essential things, obviously songwriting as well. Seeing as though everyone is using the same four chords the production is important.

Is it a trend?

The whole urban scene is very poppy and a lot of different artists are inspired by Drake's album, even indie people like Kanye West. Katy Perry's biggest single is the one with Juicy J on it, which is basically a hip-hop track - so the whole urban scene is very strong at the moment.

Who are you producing in LA?

I'm working with a girl called Yuna and a few others as well. We did three songs on her old album and she's quite big, but not super famous and has worked with Pharrell - but she's very happy with working with us.

*Badum-chhh*! Do you look at music as something you'll be doing for a long time?

A few years back I was like, do I want to be a DJ when I'm 40? I was thinking maybe this is not a healthy lifestyle touring all the time and sitting in some studio making a song that nobody cares about one month after its released. After working a year part time in PR, building up something that was actually going really well I realised I can do it but I'm not good at it. I'm really good at making music and there's no room for a guy that has some agency and then is making some okay music on the side. So that I chose to focus on music made me aware that I was gonna do this for a while now. I chose music.

You're obviously enjoying it!

It's a lot about chemistry. If the chemistry is there, then the sky is the limit and if its not there, it's really hard. I've tried to have sessions with people I don't connect with and it's so hard compared to getting in, having fun and then suddenly there's a good song.

Tomas Barfod's new album, Love Me, is out June 9th 2014 via Secretly Canadian.