Mon, 02 Aug 2010 07:49:38
What Sonny Moore does as Skrillex isn't all that different from what he's done for years in From First to Last.
In From First to Last, he engages a sonic exorcism of epic proportions over explosive, urgent post-hardcore. That same urgency translates into the electronic landscape that Skrillex is about to reign supreme in. Somewhere between the glitch-psychosis of Squarepusher and the catchier than hell dance of Daft Punk, Skrillex thrives. You can hear vibrantly on "WEEKEND!!!," Skrillex's first "official" track, which can be downloaded here. Also be sure to check him at one of his upcoming shows! Dates here…
Sonny Moore a.k.a. Skrillex talked to ARTISTdirect.com editor and Dolor author Rick Florino in this exclusive interview about "WEEKEND!!!", his favorite Korn record and so much more.
How did "WEEKEND!!!" come together?
I was working on the track itself, and I had some friends over. One of my friends is a rapper named Sirah who's totally fucking awesome. She was doing a piss-take on the auto-tune vocal songs. She sung the hook, and I was like, "Wait, record that real quick!" We literally recorded it into the speaker of my laptop. It wasn't even properly recorded. I squashed it, and we mashed it up a little bit. It became this really fun hook. It's just a fun song. It's a little bit of a piss-take, but it's not at the same time. The fun thing about dance music is you get a simple hook together with challenging production and it really makes for a fun song. There's nothing behind the meaning of it.
Do you feel like you have different personae for Skrillex and From First to Last?
Yeah, absolutely! It's the idea of being in my home studio and making whatever I want to make at the time that I create it. I can do anything I want at any time, and there are obviously pluses and minus to doing anything, whether you're in a band or doing a production. It's always nice to collaborate with people, but it's also really nice to do everything you want to do and not necessarily be bound to drums, bass and guitar all the time. I do enjoy playing live music as well, so it's simply another outlet to throw it all together.
With From First to Last, you capture a cathartic and kinetic energy. Are you doing something similar with Skrillex?
Right, traditional dance music is a lot of loops that last for like five minutes, which really works on the dance floor. What comes naturally to me are the more progressive elements in dance music. Dance music can't have too many stops, starts and changes. Then it's not dance music anymore. I grew up listening to a lot of Aphex Twin and different things on WARP records that are a bit less danceable but more challenging on a production front. I like to mix that glitch and fidget element with dance music. It feels urgent and in-the-moment because things are changing a bit more.
It's like the middle ground between Daft Punk and Squarepusher.
Exactly! It's has that four-on-the-floor, but there a lot of elements of surprise that I tend to do naturally. I'm doing some collaborations right now. I'm going to be doing a lot of original production as Skrillex. I have a ton of singles. There are 50 unreleased Skrillex tracks, and I'm making them all the time. It's just going with the flow, and that's the nice thing about Skrillex. Anything can happen at anytime. I can make a track in a day and do anything if need be. That's the plus to being a producer. Even if I'm on the road, I can bring my home studio. I can do a track in a hotel room and constantly put material out instead of waiting two years to make another album.
Is "WEEKEND!!!" the best intro to Skrillex?
As a Korn fan, what do you think of Korn III — Remember Who You Are?
I haven't bought it yet! I was just buying it on iTunes last night. It started to download, and my Internet went out midway through the album. My Internet's down so I'm going to have to go to the coffee shop and get the rest of it. It's the third Ross Robinson record, so I'm stoked to hear it. It's always cool to hear what he does regardless. I still have a strong personal relationship with him. Obviously, the first Korn record was what started that whole wave of music and changing the standards of music and what it is now.
Which Korn record is your favorite?
I guess the first album for nostalgic reasons. That was the first one I ever owned. When I was eight or nine, I went to a thrift store and there was this little 25-cent basket that had hair bands and scrunchies. There was a Korn tape in there. It was just a white slip over a cassette. There were two tracks—"Blind" and "Clown." I got it, and I was terrified by it. It was so incredible. It was actually scary in a good way. The special moments when you're doing music professionally are when you come full circle with some things you never dreamed of or thought would happen. I remember being on the phone with Ross when he was about to start the new Korn. I asked him, "Are you excited?" He's always good at giving poetic dark answers, and he just said, "I don't give a fuck about anything. All I want is their blood!" [Laughs] It was the coolest thing!
Are you into Skrillex? Check out "WEEKEND!!!" here!