Saturday, 13 August 2011

BEWILDERBEAST




















We're a spoilt lot; not only have we been treated to superb e.p 'Slow it down' in February, but 'U Know' was dropped 19th June, culminating in a double dose of chillwave from BEWILDERBEAST this year. Based in York, Gus Beamish-Cook is one of the most exciting producers around. His music screams 80s; it's slick, outrageously bouncy and brimming with synth. I'm literally bopping away as we speak, yup that's right, BOPPING.

First off, where are you in the world right now and what're you working on?

On an island in the south of france called the Il de Re. Currently working on a new album for a different band I'm in (chalices of the past) to be released early september on the new label Rad Rit cassettes. It's currently called 'Peace 4 tha World 2.0'. I graduated a couple of weeks ago, so I'm pretty much on terminal holiday.

Could you give a brief Bewilderbeast history?

Bewilderbeast started off as a way of making music that wasn't at least 40% self-reflexive parody. Having said that, it's kind of a development of an ironic synth band I was in in high-school. I realised that I actually really liked the stuff I was supposed to be making fun of and decided it would be rad to try and do it in a semi -serious way. All of the stuff that I had loved and really connected to when I was younger couldn't really help but come out. I still beleive there's nothing better than a smooth jamming disco bassline.

Who did you grow up listening to?

In terms of what my parents introduced to me, the stuff that I've run with and has really made a serious impact on the way I think about and make music-

1) Talking Heads (especially 'Remain in Light')

2) Kraftwerk

3) Joni Mitchell

Also a lot of rad disco staples that my older brother introduced me to- Cerrone, Sylvester, Divine, Chic etc- along with a ton of industrial and EBM-Throbbing Gristle/Nitzer Ebb etc.

Tell us a bit about recent offering 'Slow it Down'.

Slow it Down is really just a collection of stuff that I made as a semi serious outlet for the disco side of my musical interests that is constantly fighting to get out. I was really surprised that anyone dug it, but getting it out and about has been pretty rad. The internet is awesome.

What's the weirdest thing you've ever written a song about?

For a while I was really obsessed with the idea of trying to write a track about dreams of 'the American Dream' from the perspective of a hopelessly culturally ignorant individual. I wrote three different tracks trying to capture that vibe(as Chalices of the Past), but as of yet haven't released any of them in any real format. I really liked the idea of a cultural 'dream' with an actual dream. It's kind of like the most laboured pun that ever could happen. I don't know why, but I still find it really funny.

Are there any specific themes or sources of inspiration you find yourself revisiting often when making music?

Any time I listen to Fox the Fox's track 'Precious Little Diamond', or 'I Want Your Love' by Chic, I'm reminded that everything I make is worthless and I need to try harder. Both tracks are perfect gems of disco magic. Having that kind of musical potency washing around really does a lot in terms of motivation.

What would you say was the perfect environment or situation to listen to your music in?

Train journeys, flights, car trips. Any kind of transport or motion.

Where would you love to tour?

Bhutan. Barely even a question. I really doubt that anyone there has heard my music, or ever would do, but it's always seemed rad as fuck. Seeing as only about 5% of people have the internet, it's unlikely I'll ever get asked to play there.

Finally, what's next for Bewilderbeast, future plans and such?

To actually make a bewilderbeast full length, rather than four or five track EPs.

Visit the BEWILDERBEAST bandcamp and grab the e.p here