Sunday, 1 November 2009
INTERVIEW: Mono/Poly [Brainfeeder]
Mono/Poly's music has made a huge impact on us over the past few months, merging the unquantizable patter of slumped hip hop with aggresive bass lines and an inpeccably natural swing. Keeping his online presence minimal, quietly running things from his California base, he's played at Low End Theory, is an associate of Flying Lotus' Brainfeeder label, has featured on a split 7" with Illum Sphere on Fat City and also appeared on Mary Anne Hobb's 'Wild Angels' compilation.
With a European tour in the works (someone needs to bring him to London...) and his 'George Machine' 12" just out on the Tastefullicks label we pinned down his IP address and digitised him some questions.
Sonic Router: Can you provide those who may not know you with a bit of background info?
Mono/Poly: I'm a 22 year old electronic musician from a nice sized town in California called Bakersfield which is about an 1 hr and 30 minutes away from LA. I've been making music from my home since 2001 and started playing live since 2008.
Outside of music who are you? What do you do on the daily?
I'm just a big music fan but if its not music that I'm creating or listening to I'm home reading various things on metaphysics.
How did you first get into making music? What was it that infected you to do produce?
I was influenced a lot by Timbaland and the Neptunes and it got me interested and curious about the process of making beats. It had to be the way they created drum samples and synth sounds that really infected me to produce... I love freedom and being able to create sounds however I want is what brings the creative spark.
What’s your production set up like?
Ableton Live, Access Virus, Roland Xv5050, MPC 2000XL for the most part.
How would you describe your sound to someone zoning in for the first time?
I don't know what to call it... I try not to worry to much about labeling it since things change. Its everything from Hip Hop, Drum & Bass, Fusion, Dubstep, Electro and more.
You’re based on the West Coast of the US. What is it about those sun drenched climes do you think, that’s spawned such a solidly unique underground beat making scene?
Well its probably because California is such a diverse place... You can find just about anything here so I'd say the reason why its such a unique underground beat scene is because there are so many unique people and places around.
Obviously a lot of the music stems from Daddy Kev’s club night, can you tell us about your first experience of Low End Theory? MAH describes it as ‘positively biblical,’ how would you describe it to someone that hasn’t been before?
My first time at Low End Theory was when I played at a Beat Invitational in 2008 and it blew my fucking mind! After the first experience I would drive 2 hours from my hometown to get to Low End every week... Its like the church of beats =).
Is there a friendly rivalry between a lot of the LA producers to try and out do each other in the studio and in the dance?
I can't speak for everyone else since I'm not sure on everyone's mindset but for myself I'd say yeah but in a different way... I'm constantly trying to out do myself. I think that's a good way to work.
What music are you feeling at the moment from inside and outside the scene?
A lot of Darkstep Drum and Bass, dubstep and some french electro mostly the Ed banger crew. Outside of the scene I listen to a lot of Jazz Fusion and Progressive rock.
Tell us about the mix you’ve made for us, what are the tracks and blends that you just had to include?
Its a mix of hard beats from Dubstep to forward thinking Hip-hop. This is a mix of stuff from several producers including myself.
You’ve got the European tour coming soon what are you looking forward to the most about that?
All of it! It's gonna be my first time out of the country so its gonna be a good experience for me.
What’s coming up for you in the near future?
I'll be releasing an EP on Brainfeeder and a full album on Tastefullicks Records in early 2010.
Are there any words of advice you can depart to our readers?
Listen to what you like... Don't believe the hype!
DOWNLOAD: Mono/Poly - Sonic Router Mix
Mono/Poly -Ill Deal
Mono/Poly - Boxing Gloves
Mono/Poly - The Beatles
Flying Lotus - Stunts
Onra - My Comet
So Cruel (Busy Remix)
The Gaslamp Killer - Show Stopper
Harmonic 313 - DirtBox
Flying Lotus - Bonus Beat
Mono/Poly - Plastics
Fantastic Mr. Fox & Rich Reason - Bleep Show
Bar 9 - Bakin Bread
Datsik - Retreat
Bar 9 - Rapture
Skizm -The Blank(16 Bit Remix)
Mono/Poly - Land of Love