Interview by Marissa Demetriou on 5/7/12
Flume has been slowly generating a louder and louder buzz around his eclectic blend of dreamy electronica and cutting-edge beats, snagging the opening slot for Field Day earlier this year and now a spot on the coveted Parklife tour. Marissa Demetriou catches up with the Sydney based up-and-comer for a chat about his love for Flying Lotus, enjoying some DIY on his film clip for I Met You with Anna Lunoe, and the infamous cereal box story.
Pulse: I read that your start into producing music was via a box of cereal?! Flume: What really happened is that I’ve kind always had a passion for music and I found the idea of creating music fascinating from day one; I started off playing the saxophone though I never really liked playing the songs we were given and I really liked improvising. I guess when I stumbled across that program in the cereal packet it kind of opened the door for me. I guess it was amazing for me because it showed me how I could do this - it was a gateway kind of thing and it showed how it was possible. From then on I got different programs and really got into it from there.
I have to ask, what kind of cereal did you find the program in? [laughs] Nutri-Grain - it was Andrew G’s music making software!
Have you got a particular kind of software you enjoy using at the moment? I use Abelton live, I used a program called FL studio for about 4 years but lately I’ve been using Abelton Live and that’s been really great.
Where would you say you draw most of your inspiration from? There’s such a wide range of music I’ve listened to over the years, for a lot of the Flume stuff I’ve pulled inspiration from artists such as Flying Lotus, Jamie XX, Hudson Mohawke, that kind of UK beatsy kind of stuff has really inspired my sound. Hudson Mohake right now is killing it. He’s got this collaboration with a guy called Lunice - that’s hot shit right there! I’m really excited about the TNGHT collaboration. It’s heavy, banging, dance floor stuff.
Tell me more about the collaboration with Anna Lunoe. What happened was is that she contacted me. She was really impressed with Sleepless so we met up and got along really well. She showed me some demos that she had so I grabbed one of the demos that I liked of hers and turned it into what it is today. She’s never really been a singer, but I kind of really wanted her to sing on it. I heard some of the demos she had on her computer and she had some really cool stuff going on. I’m really stoked at how it turned out; I had a little hookline that she had recorded on her Mac mike, we re-recorded it and stuff and it sounded really lo-fi, then we went off and made the song. We went to her parents farm and did the film clip for three days. We got together and made some props for the video which was really fun.
Your dream collaboration? I’ve always wanted to make a tune with Flying Lotus, that’s been my dream. It would be awesome even to write a tune with someone like Hudson Mohawke. I’d love to be able to get into a studio with these guys and just pick their brains.
You recently had the opening slot for Field Day. Do you prefer the club or festival environment so far? I had a great time playing at Field day. What struck me most about playing Field Day was being able to see everyone’s faces and make eye contact which was really weird after having played small dark clubs - it’s so strange to be able to see people like that. It was great fun. As soon as I clocked off I was just another guy at the festival!
Are you looking forward to Parklife? I think it’s going to be a lot of fun, apparently everyone just tours around together. All the internationals get really excited about it and everyone jumps on the same planes, gets shipped around together Apparently it’s just like a big long party.
Typical live set for Flume? Generally I like to start with something a bit slower to ease into it, but lately I’ve just been getting straight into it and I’ve really tried to incorporate a lot of the heavier stuff into my live sets off the new album to create a party vibe.
What’s on the agenda for the rest of the year? Well my album is 95 % complete. Apart from that it’s just touring. I’ve got Splendour, I’ve got Parklife, a few other little gigs here and there. It’s kind of just leading up to the album.
You’ve beaten me to my next question! What can we expect for the album? With what I’ve been releasing lately, there’s been a huge range of influences. Some of them are really Flume, Sleepless style tracks. There’s even some old school hip-hop style, there’s one on there that’s a bit dubsteppy, really beatsy, Flying Lotus style stuff.
Any other remixes coming up? We’re just trying to keep the hype going until the album comes out. I’ve kind of put out most of the remix work that I’ve done. We’re going to put Sleepless out on a record with a few remixes from some names and we’re thinking about doing a film clip with that too.
Any ideas for that film clip? We haven’t gone down that path yet, just throwing out the idea at the moment. I’m looking forward to getting a film clip happening for that, I mean it was released a long time ago so I kind of want to do a re-release before the album comes out to get a bit of buzz. We’re probably going to release a track or two from the album before it drops, nothing’s set in stone but we’re talking about all this now because we really want to make sure there’s a lot of buzz going around before the album drops.
Your take on the Aussie music scene in 2012? I think for the beatsy electronic scene, we didn’t really have one at all a few years ago, lately it’s really started to pick up. People like Vic at Astral People are putting on a lot of nights to promote this kind of music, guys like Hermitude coming out with great stuff, Oliver Tank, Elizabeth Rose - I think there’s a growing scene for it in Australia. There’s some new talent coming out, I’m really excited to see where it goes. Hopefully we can get some really good venues for this kind of music. A weekly night would be dope.
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