Making bangers you can still chill with, and having influences such as the great J Dilla and Timbaland, Aussie duo Slumberjack have quickly established themselves as one of Australia’s upcoming rising producers and artists. Being both previous winners of WA’s Limelite DJ Competition, Slumberjack first met at the 2012 Perth Dance Music Awards. They began working the studio together and their love of electronic beats infused with heavy synths created the backbone for the ‘Slumberjack’ sound.
Having remixed acts such as DCUP, Airwolf and Goldroom, Slumberjack’s beats can be heard on dance floors across the country. The guys have just finished their ‘Felon’ EP and have announced an accompanying national tour.
We chat to Morgan and Fletcher about their upcoming ‘Felon’ tour, their influences from J Dilla, and how they will be producing on the road.
How does it feel finishing the EP?
F: It’s been a really crazy process for us; we started writing tracks for it about a year ago and it’s slowly come together bit by bit since then. The first track was a gradual process over the 12 months while but the one of the other tracks was literally written, done and dusted within a week. It’s great to finally see the package all finished and sitting in our iTunes ready to go.
What can we expect from ‘Felon' tour?’
M: Sweatiness and great music. We’re super excited for this as it is our first proper tour off the back of a record. We strive to constantly have new original material and bootlegs to play at every Slumberjack show so you can also expect lots of new stuff!
You guys were both previous winners from the Limelite DJ Comp in Perth. How did you guys discover DJing?
F: I watched a bunch of videos about DJing on Youtube when I was pretty young. I didn’t have enough pocket money savings to buy ay gear for myself, though, so I used to draw controllers in the sand at the beach and pretend to DJ.
M: I preferred playing instruments at a younger age so I kind of fluked the DJing part to be honest. I saw a flyer in a music store about the competition and thought it could be an experience, prior to that I had almost no experience at all.
You guys cite artists like Timbaland, Skrillex and J. Dilla as influences. What draws you to these guys and who else influences the ‘Slumberjack’ sound?
M: The thing about these artists is their ability to create infectious rhythms. Skrillex is a great musician, singer and songwriter; he writes hooks like nobody’s business. As for Timbaland and J. Dilla, they rally influence the way we write and process our drums. It’s all about the rhythm to us. Slumberjack is constantly changing. We draw influences from the artists we meet, fans, our friends, the internet, new trends and basically anything cool. Artists like Sam Gellaitry and Losco are our current obsession.
How did you guys come up with the name ‘Slumberjack’?
F: Funnily enough the project was initially supposed to be all about chill music hence the play on ‘Slumber’ but Morgan and I just love bangers far too much to write sleepy tracks.
M: But that’s not to say we write ‘only’ bangers, what fun is that? We have quite a few laidback, melancholic records in our collection but we haven’t had to chance to show them to anyone yet.
Describe in three words what we can expect from your shows during your ‘Felon’ Tour.
“Bass. Bucket-hats. Trap-hands.” Cheeky use of hyphens there but cut us some slack, I’d call that three words!
How will you guys produce while on the road?
F: Squish-ily! Unless we raid our friends’ studios around the country and force them to listen to our unfinished music on repeat for hours; which will more than likely happen.
M: I’m actually horrible at producing on the road. Fletch comes up with great ideas on the road, I just want a tequila sunrise. Maybe with enough tequila sunrises, I can overcome that.
What’s next in the pipeline for ‘Slumberjack?’
M: More music! We are constantly writing and working with other artists and it’s overwhelming (in a good way). We’re always in search of the best avenues to release music so it’s relevant and fun and so that it reaches a wide audience. As long as the music is accessible, it’s up to everyone to decide whether they want to listen to it or not. And if they do, it’s also up to them to decide if the ‘play’ button is worth clicking again.
What stimulates your soul?
F: A good night’s sleep. I always come up with the best musical ideas just as I’m drifting off to sleep which is very untimely but I can usually remember at least half of it in the morning! Oh and a good hot shower; nothing beats that.
M: Agreed on that good night’s sleep part. Rock-climbing and running keeps my blood hot. Can’t forget a good show too, a killer show keeps me buzzing for hours, even days!
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