Friday, 9 July 2010

BRAINBHEATS















I love Local Natives, I also love remixes, put these two entities together and let a hotpot of delight ensue. Brian Healey who goes under the alias of BrainbHeats has just dropped such a sweet remix of 'Who knows, who cares' and it's great. A few days ago I might've been dubious of reworkings of Local Natives songs cos I like them as they are but this is just soooooo right. So laid back, with an undercurrent of urgency. It's getting a wicked reception and hats off to Brian for a stirling effort! Bravo.
Cast your eyes over some wonderfully insightful answers to my wonderfully uninsightful questions from Brian!

Firstly, to set the scene, where are you right now in the world and if it isn't too invasive, what projects are you working on at the moment?
Right now, I'm living in Louisville, KY and I'm currently dividing my time between developing my live performances and creating new material, which is a non-stop process. My EP just came out back in February, but all the music on there is at least a year old, and in that time I've come up with probably 2 or 3 full albums' worth of new material. That's not including the remixes, which is something I only recently got into. So one of the main things on my plate is deciding how and when to get some of newer stuff out into the world. I'm just waiting for the right opportunity I guess, but at the moment, getting live performances under my belt is the top priority.
I'm also in a band called The Pass (
myspace.com/thepasstheband), which is a project that I'm really excited about. We've only been a band for about a year, and it has been amazing how much the project has taken off during that short time. We've spent the past few months recording our debut LP, which is due out this fall, and we're starting to book more and more tour dates, so that has definitely been a point of focus recently as well.

Thankfully we're blessed with sites like hype machine, have you found it pretty easy to get your work out there and heard?
There are definitely more outlets for people to find music than there were even a couple years ago, but I wouldn't say it has been easy exactly. The one fact that has never changed is that you need to have something worth listening to for people to pay attention to it. It doesn't matter what style or genre you fall into, there will always be listeners who are into whatever kind of music you're making, but those listeners are discriminating. You don't have to be a musical expert to know what does or doesn't sound good to you. On other side of it, the sheer amount of good music readily available to the average listener these days makes for tough competition. I'm not sure exactly where I'm going with this. I guess the answer is yes and no. It's easy to put yourself "out there," but it doesn't necessarily mean anybody will listen. The bottom line is you have to have something original to say musically.

I'm in love with your Local Natives remix, what made you choose that song to work on?
Thank you! There were a few reasons: firstly, I just really like that song. Secondly, Local Natives made the stems for some of their songs, including "Who Knows Who Cares," available. Stems are the isolated audio components of a song, and having those makes a remixer's life much, much easier. Finally, I was able to realize a certain vibe in the song that made it possible for me to make it into something new, which is really the deciding factor to me. My outlook on remixing has always been to not just put a song in a different setting, but to use the song as building material to create an entirely new piece of music. There's a fine line between the two, but there's a definite difference in my opinion.

What other artists around at the moment are you really digging?
It changes almost on a daily basis. For years, one of my favorite albums has been "Miles Gurtu," which is a collaboration between electronic producer Robert Miles and Indian jazz drummer Trilok Gurtu. That album is probably the closest representation of what I want to accomplish musically with Brainbheats. I can't recommend it highly enough. Currently, I'm really digging on Brad Mehldau's new record "Highway Rider" produced by Jon Brion. I'm a pianist first and foremost, and Mehldau is one of my pianistic heroes. Jon Brion is just an overall genius. I've been in love with Passion Pit's album "Manners" for the past few months, and I've also been on a real Stone Temple Pilots kick lately. "Core" and "Purple" are both essential rock records.

You're pretty new to the live scene, how have you found the experience so far?
I've been performing as a musician forever, so in that sense really nothing is different when comes to playing live. I've also been producing for a long time, but performing live electronic music, combining the two, is definitely a new experience. The technical aspect of it is something I've been working on mastering more than anything. It's a lot like learning a new instrument. Even though I'm using the same basic tools, it's an entirely new process compared to working with material in a studio setting. I never want to be just "pushing the play button" on stage, which is all too easy a trap to fall into with electronic music. I need to be able to interact with the music and be in the moment, so in that sense it has been somewhat of a challenge to take this music that I've meticulously crafted in the studio and turn it into something I can manipulate in real time. I'm learning as I go.

And finally, in a years time, what would you have ideally liked to have achieved musically?
A year from now I hope to be touring regularly with this project as well as with The Pass. As I mentioned before, I'd also like to record a full-length album and maybe have the chance to collaborate with some folks in the process. I'd love to do a track with ?uestlove, for instance. I've also had a longtime vision of working with Mike Patton. Wishful thinking, I know, but if I could do all that in the next year, I don't think there's anything more I could ask for.

Cheers :)!

Check out BrainbHeats remix of the Local Natives tune here....
Local Natives - Who Knows (bhts rmx) by brainbheats

and his remix of Cults, Go outside is awesome too
Cults - Go Outside (bhts rmx) by brainbheats

...and be sure to invest valuable listening time in The Pass, hotly tipped!

The Pass - "Treatment of the Sun" PMA Premiere from Pretty Much Amazing on Vimeo.