» Crillix interview & mp3 download

On one of the many Delarge crew outings into the vastness of Brighton’s gig land, more about we were stopped in our tracks and found ourselves immersed in the sounds of an artist called Crillix. A live show incorporating guitar, samplers and loop stations to create electronic cinematic sounds peppered with heavy hand made beats was enough to send us off into the night hungry for more Crillix material.

Crillix - Live

The few tracks on his Myspace page and a compilation guest spot show plenty to get excited about and wet the appetite for future releases.

We caught up with Crillix to discuss music, and a little bit of home town inspiration, surfing habits and childhood heroes.
We are also lucky to have been blessed with an exclusive new Crillix track for download:

In a Nutshell (MP3 3.2mb)

The track “False Starts” is featured on Abandoned Building’s Assemblage Sessions Vol 2 compilation and there are a handful of tracks your Myspace page, are there any other places where we can hear Crillix material?

I am in the process of setting up a Virb account. It’s sort of like myspace, but more stable and a little less stalker-ish… I’ll have different songs on there than the ones on myspace.
I have recently completed a remix for ‘DOF’, which should be coming out soon on Abandon Building as part of an album of remixes. I’ll also be selling home-made cds at my live shows.

What are your thoughts on the packaging of cds/records? Do you think artists / labels have to step up their game to make people part with their money?

Absolutely. This is something I have thought for a long time.
Most people I know now don’t even own a CD player. Everyone plays music from their laptops or ipods and things like that. The only viable reason I can think of that this has happened is that people never really cared about the ‘ownership’ of a cd. I know friends that buy cds, rip them to their computer, and couldn’t care less where the case ends up. That’s why mp3 sales are so successful.
However, I do believe some labels are aware of this, and are definitely a reason to keep buying cds and records. Take Constellation for example; i would never download anything that comes out on constellation because I respect their ethics so much, and also because they do everything either in-house and by hand, or as locally as possible to assist small, local businesses.
Lex are another prime example of why to keep buying cds. I don’t think i’ve ever come across a label with such a lavish attention to detail. Ehquestionmark are just on another level completely with their design. If you buy a cd from Lex, it’s like someone’s just bought you a beautifully hand-crafted guitar, as opposed to a ‘pluck-master’ from the Argos catalogue.

Tell us about your live set.

My live set is quite different to my recorded songs. It consists of me building loops with my guitar and my voice, and then layering percussion over the top with my MPC. It’s still very much in development, and will hopefully just keep progressing.
When i’m writing music at home, im really very disciplined about it, so playing live gives me room to get out of the mindset of the studio and just improvise and go a bit more crazy.

Considering recent developments in the record industry, are you optimistic about the viability of making a living as a recording artist?

I’m not quite sure what recent developments you mean…but in answer to your question, i never really think about it in terms of making a living. I sort of tell myself i don’t have a choice. making music is what i love doing, so i just do it. I would definitely like to be able to support myself from making records and playing live for people, however, unless you are on an ‘established’ label, this is very problematic.
I’m just doing what i know and not really thinking about the outcome at the moment. I see the release of records as one axis of many though; i would love to create sound design and compose also.

Do the instruments in your repertoire enable you to create the sounds you strive for?

Absolutely. I’m even trying to strip it down even more. I used to try and fill my compositions to the max and have them completely dense with sound, but the stuff i’m working on now only has around 3 or 4 different tracks. I think that you can prove yourself more if you can craft something from nothing.
I do some things which i view as being more oriented towards film though, and these are normally devoid of percussion and have about 15 layers of strings and glockenspiel and things like that… I think i also enjoy contradicting myself.

How do you choose your instruments or sources to create the sound you want to archive?

I just keep things as acoustic as possible. I have a sort of pact with myself, where I keep what i do as honest as possible. One of the ways I try to do this is to never use samples; I never use ready-made drum kits and I never use synths. All of the sounds within my music are recorded and created by myself. I keep a library of sounds that I think work, but I try to create a new palette of sounds for each song, which can be really frustrating at times, but tends to pay off in the end. I always learn more that way.

What’s your favorite bit of equipment you use to make sounds?

Hmm. i’m not particularly one of those ‘gear whores’. I think I used to like the idea of it though, when I was younger. now i pretty much do everything within my computer. It’s mainly just time-stretching, pitch-shifting and filtering. I use Ableton to make things.

What media aside from music do you draw inspiration from?

I think it might be easier to list what doesn’t inspire me!
Living in Wakefield is great. I love being outdoors, there are lots of good walks around here. Yorkshire sculpture park is just round the corner, and I always gravitate towards it if iI’m in need of a kick-start. you can notice the changing seasons more around here, which I find is really nice for inspiration.
I watch a lot of films, and definitely find inspiration within them, but to be honest, my main inspiration, more than anything, is my friends. I’m extremely lucky to have the friends that I do. Some of my friends make music, and they’re all really really good at it, so whenever one of them gives me something it makes me realise how lucky I am and it makes me happy. This in itself is inspiring to me.

We spotted you wearing an anitcon t-shirt at a gig of yours last year, how has the label influenced you and your music?

I really like the way anticon stick to their guns. I can imagine they’ve received a lot of flack over the years for doing ’soft-rap’ or whatever, but they do things on their own terms and that’s a big influence.
I’m a big fan of a lot of people on the label. I think Sage Francis is grossly under-appreciated. Of course, Dose-one is extremely gifted; I don’t think i have ever heard anyone do things the way he does.
I’m not sure what direct influence any of it has on my music though. It’s not really a sound that I particularly aspire to or anything, but then, I don’t really do that with anything, I just try my best do things on my own terms. People seem to hear some kind of hip hop within what I do though, so maybe I’m not the right man to answer the question…

How has your music taste changed through the years and how has this made it’s way into your music?

It’s changed pretty dramatically. When i first started making music on my own i was listening to things like Aphex, Manitoba, Telefon Tel Aviv… things like that. I’d never really listened to much electronic music before, so the whole thing was quite intriguing to me, and i guess was why i started to try doing things of my own.
Now though, i listen to all sorts of things. I like to think I have quite a diverse taste in music. I like Bonnie Prince Billy a lot, but then i also like things like Liars, Fugazi or J-Dilla. All of these things are quite varied, and I like to think that listening to a different array of music will enable me to have a more varied palette of ideas when it comes to creating sounds.

What was the last piece of music you bought?

‘Oracle’ by Sunn O))). It’s really good. There’s a section in the middle of one of the songs that has a pneumatic-drill ’solo’ by Joe Preston. It really doesn’t get much better. Labels can either improve their packaging, or give Joe Preston some cash and a jackhammer.
Crillix pod
What was the last gig you went to?
I played a gig in london with my friends ‘Everybody is Going to Die’. I guess that is the last one I went to. I really just wanted to mention them, because they are really good and absolute gents. Check em out in my top friends.
Other than that, the last ‘proper’ gig I went to was to see Chris Clark and Battles. Both were really good. I like Chris’ music a lot, and Battles have really grown as a live band, they were really inspiring.

What websites do you typically visit during on-line explorations?

I bet you get some risky answers to that little chestnut…
Erm, I like reading interviews with artists that I like. I use it a lot for research.
zeitgeistmovie.com this is a really interesting film that a friend pointed me to. You could wittle away a year or so just researching from the back of this film i think…

You come from Wakefield, a place rich in very recent socio-economic history. It was at the heart of Yorkshire’s role in the UK miner’s strike in the late 70s and early 80s. Do you feel that your music belies any stories about Wakefield’s past?

Hmm. I’d probably have to say that it doesn’t. I mean, I’m only 21 so i guess none of those things have influenced me directly. Sorry for such a shit answer. I think my Dad could give you a good one though; it would probably involve them having to lick the vinegar from next door’s fish and chip papers because they were so poor. That’s a family classic that one.

Did you have any heroes when you were growing up?

Yeah, I guess my Dad was a big hero growing up. He was the first person I saw playing guitar, and the first person to teach me.
John Frusciante also is a big big inspiration. Fuck what anyone thinks of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Seriously, go out and listen to ‘Niandra Lades and Usually Just a T-shirt’ by John Frusciante. I think it is seriously one of the best albums ever made.



Big thanks to Crillix for taking time out for us.
Interview by Dave Flindall.

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