Over 2500 comments were submitted to Porter Robinson’s AMA yesterday. Questions included topics about his anime obsession, current views on the term “EDM” and what it means for the business, as well as various questions hitting on production and his live shows.
Question: What’s making you unhappy about the current EDM scene?
first of all, i want to define what i mean by “EDM”. when i talk about EDM, i generally mean main-stage, 128 BPM, 1-2-3 JUMP banger type stuff. i don’t mean all electronic music that’s dancy – even though that’s what the name prescribes, i don’t think that’s how it is (or should be) used anymore.
a lot of my angst about EDM came from my songwriting process. i think that EDM, in order to do its job in its intended setting (a DJ set), has requirements to make it ‘work’. the most effective electro tracks have a 30-second buildup, where the chord returns to the root note, with risers, maybe a rising vocal, a snare roll – there are moves you HAVE to do in an ‘EDM’ track to make it work.
i think that emphasis on FUNCTION over real artistic expression is what soured me on the genre. it felt extremely limiting to me to try to write music that had to, y’know… “work”. and once i cast that off, it opened up the world to me. it was the BEST FUCKING FEELING EVER to be writing music without those confines. writing music makes me so goddamn happy again
Question: Do you see yourself still playing “EDM” type festivals in the future (e.g. Ultra, EDC, etc) or are you trying to get away from that scene entirely?
i’m going to premiere my new live show, that’s more “worlds”-y, on the tour this year. i didn’t want to send mixed signals by getting in front of tens of thousands of people and DJing bangers – it’s too big of an audience and i think’d be confusing for folks. when i return to those festivals, it will be my proper “worlds” show.
in other words, i’m not opposed to EDC or ultra – i just didn’t want to do my old DJ thing this year, and my new liveshow wasn’t ready.
Some things got a little weird…
Question: Have you accepted Shrek as your Lord and Saviour? If so, how many hours a day do you Pray to Shrek?
i’m going to f**k shrek. i mean it
And producer nanobii even joined in on the fun.
Question: what is your favorite drum machine, being used the most on the new album? i really like the drum samples on ‘sad machine’, and i figure you go through samples from specific machines rather than sample packs nowadays.
no drum machines, actually. just sample packs.
i think as far as “”””””alternative””””””-sounding music goes, the “sample magic” stuff is a better bet than vengeance for drums.
Of course, these are just some of the top questions and answers as determined by reddit voters. You can find all of Porter’s answers here. And for those of you unfamiliar with reddit, click “context” under the text to go to the original question.