This week, we had the exciting opportunity to chat with critically-acclaimed experimental techno producer, Samuel Kerridge, on his music, influences and debut performance in Bangkok later this week.
Hi Samuel, thanks for taking time out to speak with us. Tell us – what brings you to Bangkok?
I’m here to perform for the Live.Acts.At.Work event at Glow Nightclub. We have a couple of days stop over before continuing with the Asian tour, so looking forward to exploring Bangkok.
We’re excited you’ll be bringing something a bit different to our city, musically. How would you personally describe your music? What would you recommend as a good introduction for new listeners?
Its hard, I’m not really sure I know how to describe my music. It’s a natural thing that comes from me, so i don’t really have any perception of what genre it fits into. I think a good starting point would be ‘A Fallen Empire’ LP on Downwards, and then work back through the EPs before that. The live set is an ever-changing performance – it’s constantly evolving – so there will be old and new material [in it].
To us, your music is dark, atmospheric, dramatic. We’re curious: what kinds of images or thoughts come to your mind as you produce or perform? How do you want your listeners to feel?
There is a definite focus aiming for something very physical and powerful. Given the subversive qualities in my music, you really have to give yourself over to it 100%. I want people to leave a gig feeling as if they have been assaulted, in every way possible.
How did you originally get into electronic music? Do you remember your first memory of it? What was the draw for you?
I was introduced to electronic music through my parents. I grew up in the UK when acid house was in its prime. I have always been drawn to the physical aspect of music; not just outright noise, but music with soul.
Which artists have inspired you in your work?
I would not say there are particular artists that have inspired my work musically, but i am inspired by certain artists’ attitudes or philosophy to the way they make music. Artists that have their own identity, and do what they feel – not what is going to get them more money or fame.
How do you feel your music has evolved over the years, and in what direction is it headed now?
There has been a noticeable progression since my first EP on Horizontal Ground. It has admittedly got a lot darker up to the LP on Downwards. But that’s just what happened; there was no thought to take it that way. I don’t ever know what direction my music is heading. Hopefully, I’m in a position where I can create and release what I want. Not to be bound by any parameter.
What advice would you give to budding producers who, like you, are looking to push the boundaries and preconceived notions of techno and electronic music in general?
Do not make music to please other people, do what YOU feel is right. It’s extremely hard work, and I’ve given up a lot to get where I am, but i could never do anything else. Regret nothing and do not think twice about what anyone else thinks.
Have you performed in Asia before? If so, how has it differed from Europe? If not, how do you expect it might also be different?
I went to Tokyo last April, which was a great experience. The cultural differences grabbed me the most. People’s positive attitudes and mindfulness are very different from Europe. The crowd were very respectful, and responsive, it was a pleasure to perform for them. I’m sure this time in Asia will be no different.
Have you been to Thailand before? What are you looking forward to?
This will be my first time to Thailand. I’m looking forward to the show; bringing my sound to new people is always exciting. I suppose I’ll have to hit the usual tourist spots, it will be nice to immerse myself in Bangkok, if only for a couple of days.
What’s next for you?
After Thailand I’m heading to Taipei in Taiwan, then over to Japan for a show in Nagoya, and then finishing at Rural Festival near Tokyo. My first EP of 2014 will be released in July. ‘Deficit Of Wonder’ will be the 40th release on James Ruskin’s Blueprint Records. So, in August we are curating a day’s programme at Berlin Atonal Festival as part of our Contort project.
Sounds exciting – all the best for these future plans. Thanks so much once again for speaking with us – and looking forward to seeing you perform later this week!