Posts in interview
[Sasquatch! Interview] Odesza Discusses their Debut Album, Campground Games and More

Sure, we're a month removed from this year's memorable Sasquatch! Music Festival, but that doesn't mean what happened there is any less relevant. As the amount of free time I have available went up exponentially this week, I was finally able to finish editing the remainder of my Sasquatch! interviews. The first of those interviews was with Seattle-based duo Odesza, comprised of producers Catacombkid and BeachesBeaches. We've never covered them before here on SKOA, but it's never too late to get introduced to awesome new music.

After releasing their debut LP Summer's Gone last September, Odesza have been touring and feeling out the general reaction towards the project. I was very impressed, and I'm sure others were too. When I met up with them on the second day of the festival, they had just arrived. Nonetheless, they were eager to chat with bloggers and journalists. More than that, they were ready to perform in front of Sasquatch!'s dedicated music enthusiasts. Before hitting the stage, the laid-back duo and I sat down, along with my girlfriend Katherine, and chatted about their debut album, how Seattle and the Northwest have influenced their sound and the intricacies of camp games—specifically Laddergolf(ball) and the poorly named Cornhole. Stream the entire interview below.

[News] W Magazine Interviews Kanye West

As Yeezus seeps further into the public consciousness, Kanye has begun putting himself out there, revealing intimate details through rare and selective interviews. The first was his interview with The New York Times, where he was open about moments throughout his career, his failings and also his successes. Now, the fashion magazine W has published an interview with Kanye that occurred in Paris just before Yeezus was released.

The interview revealed a Kanye that, as much as he is boastful and self-aggrandizing, understands the importance of inspiration and the effect others can have on oneself. Speaking on Paris, where he recorded Yeezus, he said, "In Paris, you’re as far as possible from the land of pleasant smiles. You can just trip on inspiration—there are so many people here who dedicate their lives to excellence."

For example, the song "I Am A God," a title that flaunts a self-absorbed mind, came about because of a major fashion designer's poor decision to attempt control, effectively dissing Yeezy:

[A] few days before Paris Fashion Week, West was informed that he'd be invited to a widely anticipated runway show only on the condition that he agree not to attend any other shows. "So the next day I went to the studio with Daft Punk, and I wrote 'I Am a God,'" West says. "Cause it’s like, Yo! Nobody can tell me where I can and can’t go. Man, I’m the No. 1 living and breathing rock star. I am Axl Rose; I am Jim Morrison; I am Jimi Hendrix." West is not smiling as he says this, and his voice is getting louder with each sentence. "You can’t say that you love music and then say that Kanye West can’t come to your show! To even think they could tell me where I could and couldn’t go is just ludicrous. It's blasphemous—to rock 'n' roll, and to music.""

He went on to reason why he chose the title "I Am A God": "I made that song because I am a god. I don’t think there’s much more explanation. I'm not going to sit here and defend shit. That shit is rock 'n' roll, man. That shit is rap music. I am a god. Now what?"

Kanye even embraced the shortcomings of his opinionated voice, understanding that his way of expressing that opinion doesn't always work the way he wants it to: "God's little practical joke on me—as an intellect who doesn't like to read a lot—is like, I'll say some superphilosophical shit, but I'll say it the wrong way. I'll use the wrong word, so it goes from being really special to completely retarded."

You can read the entire interview here.

[Sasquatch! Interview] Bloc Party's Kele Okereke Chats About the Band's Latest LP 'Four', Their Upcoming EP and Future Projects

Keeping the Sasquatch! festivities going is Kele Okereke of Bloc Party. During my time at The Gorge, I sat down with Kele before the band's great set on day two of the festival. The sun was shining through the sliding glass door of the backstage trailer we sat in. The couch had a simple design and was surprisingly comfortable. At ease with this setting, we talked. It was a brief chat, only fifteen minutes, but during that time we delved into Bloc Party's latest LP Four. I'm interested in how the band is now, after four albums and over a decade together. Beyond that, we discussed the future: the band plans to release a new EP this summer and are also working on their next full-length album. Check out that and more below.

[Sasquatch! Interview] P.O.S Talks Minneapolis Music, His Various Projects, Future Touring and More

Sasquatch! 2013 was a crazy experience. There were so many amazing performances, stunning vistas to bask in and tons of cool people to meet. One of those people was Minneapolis rapper P.O.S, a founding member of the hip-hop collective Doomtree.

After releasing his fourth album We Don't Even Live Here last October, P.O.S (real name Stefon Alexander) was unable to tour due to kidney complications. Now, he's slowly reentering the touring scene. If his performance at Sasquatch! was any indication, he seems ready to get back into it full swing. Before he hit the Honda Bigfoot stage on the final day of the festival, my friend Jon Riggs of MVRemix and I had the chance to sit down and chat with Stefon about a slew of topics. During the 12-minute interview, we discussed the Minneapolis music scene and Doomtree's place within it, the importance of embracing different genres and music styles, as well as P.O.S' numerous side projects and future touring plans. Stream the full interview below.

[Listen] Stream Triple J's Rare Interview with Daft Punk

Australian radio station Triple J recently aired an interview with Daft Punk's Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter, a rare opportunity. During the five-minute interview, the duo talked their new single "Get Lucky," the recording of the song and what it means to them and (they hope) their fans. They also spoke of their decision to unveil the album at a global premiere in Wee Waa, Australia: "It feels like [Australia] understands our music. It could be anywhere, that’s what the record is made for, anywhere and everywhere."

Stream the full interview below. Random Access Memories, Daft Punk's first album since 2005's Human After All, is out on May 21st.

[Watch] Check Out Nardwuar and ?uestlove's 46-minute Interview

Nardwuar the Human Serviette is loved by many, conducting interviews intelligently and offering plenty of gifts to those lucky musicians. On the other hand, there are many people out there who can't stand the quirky Canadian. In this particular case, though, I urge everyone to press play. Nardwuar recently interviewed ?uestlove (of The Roots and Jimmy Fallon fame), with the whole interview lasting a mind-boggling 46 minutes. During their time together the two discuss a ton of different topics, and you'll likely learn a lot from these knowledgeable gentleman. Check it out below.

[News] Daft Punk Discuss New Album, Tour Plans and Collaborations with Rolling Stone

Daft Punk are quickly ramping up excitement for Random Access Memories, whether it's their ongoing collaborator-centric video series or the extended teaser they recently dropped. One lucky man, Jonah Weiner of Rolling Stone, had the chance to peer behind the veil of the enigmatic robot duo. Yesterday, he posted an extensive interview with Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo. Much is discussed and it's the first time the band have talked about their new album. Here are some significant highlights:

—"They began working on Random Access Memories in 2008, in Paris, with no clear plan. "After three records, there was a sense of searching for a record we hadn’t done," Thomas says. The duo were dissatisfied with early demos that leaned heavily on electronic equipment, feeling like they were operating on "autopilot," Thomas says. Eventually, a new approach emerged: "We wanted to do what we used to do with machines and samplers," he explains, "but with people." Except for a snippet of "an Australian rock record" that opens the final track, "Contact," Daft Punk foreswore samples entirely, and they limited the role of drum machines to just two of the album’s thirteen tracks. The only electronics come in the form of a massive, custom-built modular synthesizer that Daft Punk played live on the album... and an arsenal of vintage vocoders on which they manually manipulated factors like pitch, vibrato and legato. "There’s this thing today where the recorded human voice is processed to try to feel robotic," Thomas says, referring to the undying AutoTune vogue. "Here, we were trying to make robotic voices sound the most human they’ve ever sounded, in terms of expressivity and emotion.""

—"The album’s move away from computerized sounds reflects Daft Punk’s "ambivalence" about the EDM craze they helped to inspire. "Electronic music right now is in its comfort zone and it’s not moving one inch," Thomas says. "That’s not what artists are supposed to do." He adds that the genre is suffering "an identity crisis: You hear a song, whose track is it? There’s no signature. Skrillex has been successful because he has a recognizable sound: You hear a dubstep song, even if it’s not him, you think it’s him.""

—"While recording, Daft Punk found time in their schedules to jam with Kanye West for his next album. At their Paris studio, they laid down a combination of live and programmed drums while Kanye worked out rough vocals on the fly. "It was very raw: he was rapping  kind of screaming primally, actually," Thomas says. "Kanye doesn’t give a fuck," Guy-Manuel adds. "He’s a good friend." Director (and longtime Daft Punk compatriot) Michel Gondry says that Kanye recently played him "two songs" that sprang from the session. "One of them, I told him it sounded solid and powerful  I envisioned a cube when I heard it," Gondry says. "He told me, Chris Cunningham’s already directing the video!"'

—"They say there are no current tour plans to promote the album. Their "Alive 2007" world tour, in which they played within a giant steel pyramid covered in screens, was a marvel of pop stagecraft, but Thomas says "we have no current plans" to tour the new record. "We want to focus everything on the act and excitement of listening to the album. We don’t see a tour as an accessory to an album." When they do finally hit the road, he added, it will be with a career-encompassing set list, not one overly focused on the new material."

Check out the full interview here. Random Access Memories is out on May 21st.

[Interview] Daniel Anderson, aka Glowbug, Discusses the Benefits of Solo Projects, Vancouver Memories, and His Tetris High Score

Daniel Anderson has been involved in numerous music projects over the last eight years, co-founding both Idiot Pilot and The Ghost and the Grace. His broad musical talents then led him to founding Glowbug, a solo project with heavy '80s influence and a distinct dance sound. Since 2010, Anderson has released four EPs and two full-length albums under the moniker, and he doesn't seem to be slowing down.

Last month, Anderson released a brand new single titled "Go Easy", an energetic dancey cut that urges your body into motion—it's accompanying music video should give you a good idea of this. Along with an awesome b-side cover of Huey Lewis and the News, the single showed that Anderson is ready to push forward with Glowbug. It gives the sense that he knows where the project is going, and it makes me incredibly excited to see how he will go about doing that. In the midst of my excitement, I set a good chunk of time aside to chat with Daniel to discuss various aspects of Glowbug. During our conversation, we touched on the benefits of a solo project, his yearly visits to Vancouver growing up, his high score in Tetris, and more. Stream the full interview below.

Connect with Glowbug on Facebook, Twitter, and for more of his music check out his Bandcamp page.