MINDSET MIX #1: e4444e
The first thing that springs to mind when consuming the music of e4444e is how unique this guy is. It’s clear that he’s quite literally moving to the beat of his own drum, albeit an electronic one. For all the exciting music making its way out of Australia at the moment, Romy Church seems to be doing something particularly fresh – creating a sound that subtly commands your attention.
Last week, he released his brilliant debut EP ‘Mr Dover and The Endless Rovers’ – a collection of tracks that perfectly captures his eclectic approach. We’re very pleased to feature him on our first ‘Mindset Mix’ – a way for us to take a look inside the brains of some of our favourite artists, at a time when they’re making their own music. So, treat yourself to a mix of sweet, worldly sounds below and don’t forget to check out the new e4444e EP here.
Can you tell us a bit about the recording process for your new EP?
I did most of the final recording at home (where I do everything) in late 2017, but a lot of that was recording and writing over a few skeletons of songs that I had on my computer. Recording is a weird combination of writing and mixing for me, I’ve gotten into this practice of writing a song over the top of a song in a weird way, which makes for this thing with a couple of faces to peer at. All of the sounds except for one on this EP are just instruments I recorded at home, there’s almost no samples on this record. Not that I’m not into samples, I love using them, but I had been using them a lot before, and kind of wanted to feel out in the open again.
Lots of putting sounds through a bunch of machines, long live recordings shifting and tweaking stuff over the song. Trying to sculpt the sounds on my instruments into their own sort of organic world, playing delay pedals and filters and stuff like that live as instruments. Lots of guitar too.
What are some of the weirdest instruments, sounds or recording techniques you used on the new EP?
Most of the stuff I did didn’t seem too foreign or out there, just sound sculpture and collage with drum machines, oscillators, guitars and various effects. The opening to the EP has the sound of me putting my phone up to the pickup of my guitar in there, it can be a really violent sound which is kind of scary. I ended up making it sound like something that reminds me of sand and wind though - hot day, blue sky, quiet wind.
Do you have a favourite track from the new EP? Why?
I don’t have a particular favourite, they are all different sides of the same thing to me nowadays. ‘Meathooks’ is a song I feel like I’ve been trying to write for years, at least the first half. ‘Water Playing’ I’m pretty psyched about in that I feel like it has a good amount of things going on, while still kind of not much at all, which gives out a sort of meditative/content feeling in the right mood.
This mix is a real mixed bag, which is great. Do you think it's important to be consuming a wide range of sounds when making your own music? Why?
I don’t know if it’s important but I just like music a lot, and like listening to a lot of music around the time of recording. Especially more free form and out there stuff, that gives me more appreciation for sound and texture and people making music in general. It reminds me of the fact that I’m not making anything specific to any sort of audience, I’m just making and tuning the sounds that come out of me.
There's a whole heap of incredible music coming out of Australia at the moment, but yours feels particularly refreshing. How would describe your sound to someone who's never heard you before?
That’s a super hard question to answer because I’m so close to the music myself. I guess I think of this release as something like fragmented old indie rock stuff, pasted and sunken into a sort of river of textures and drones. That’s the way I see it now at least, and if I remember right, that was a goal when recording.
Judging by this mix, you like music from all around the world. If you could make music in anywhere else in the world, where would it be?
I don’t really know, I don’t really have a huge itch to travel, but I always think about going to Cambodia for a couple weeks and recording there. I think if I went to Antarctica with some mics and a bit of gear I might come back with something sort of rough, textured and peaceful.
And for those of you that want to open yourself up to a wealth of beautiful, interesting artists, Romy has kindly detailed the tracks below:
shinichi atobe - shipscope / environments - the psychologically ultimate seashore / e4 - never ocean
ozark mountain daredevils - fly away home
the music of kirchin, coleman and nathan - through new territory
king sunny ade - eje nlo gba ara mi
can - tango whiskeyman
fischerle - temperate acid
stereolab - prisoner of mars
laurel halo - jelly
various artists - 1 (basic channel)
teiko kikuchi - melody of spring - the scene of the singing plover - to the autumn
neil young - will to love
experimental audio research - left channel: sub aqua, center channel: tidal, right channel: lunar
avey tare - lunch out of order pt. 2
broadcast and the focus group - i see so
francois bayle - toupie dans le ciel / doug martsch - sleeve
Be sure to catch him live too:
Friday 24th August, Strawberry Boogie, UOW UniBar, Wollongong
Saturday 15th September, Golden Age Bar & Cinema, Sydney