“Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something.” ~ Plato
When Bassnectar speaks or gives interviews, he does so with purpose. Too often, EDM outlets – us included – are too focused on the trials and tribulations within 140 characters of Deadmau5, Rob Swire, Twitter beef, and random interactions online. Bassnectar is focused on the real and present and it shows in every aspect of his work.
He recently spoke with Westword after his set at Electric Forest, and it’s an eye-opening look into the mind of one of electronic music’s foremost experts. I say electronic music, rather than “EDM,” because it’s a large part of the interview wherein Bassnectar, real name Lorin Ashton, says that he doesn’t identify with the term.
“Well, to be clear, I 100 percent don’t feel like I’m any part of EDM anymore than I’m part of hip-hop or rock and roll. […] I feel EXTREMELY — and you can put that in all caps — disinterested in EDM. […] I think there’s a lot of good, inventive minds, but I don’t think they’re EDM. And I think EDM is something I just don’t know anything about. But it looks really silly to me.”
In that same vein, Bassnectar said that the concept of a crowd facing a DJ or two on stage is absolutely preposterous.
“When I was growing up, I didn’t care who the DJ was or where they were. I didn’t care. And now, it’s such a preposterous parody of itself. Some goon — myself included — on a stage. It’s so preposterous to me. No offense to anyone.”
Without a doubt, there are hundreds of DJs who make a living by hopping up on stage and twisting a few knobs. The reality of DJing, and doing it well, if obviously more complex than that, but that’s what it boils down to. It’s why agents from many popular booking agencies, like CAA, Circle, WME and others, are picking up more live acts than ever – people are getting tired of the usual DJ experience. Or if they’re not completely exhausted by it, they’re certainly enthralled by the prospect of something new.
That’s partly also what Bassnectar’s forthcoming Freestyle Sessions is all about, reclaiming the feeling of his 16-year-old self is a warehouse with no idea of who the DJ is, let alone where he is, and focusing solely on the music and the experience.
“It’s so fun to dance in slow motion to a song that you’ve never heard, that you may never hear again, and maybe being remixed live and that’s super slow and quirky in a room where it’s too dark to see, and you’re in a room with your best friend, and your eyes are closed, and you do that for an hour. It’s fun as hell. You’re not on your phone. It’s awesome.”
The full interview obviously goes into more detail – which you can read here – but Lorin’s brief thoughts on EDM, the art of modern DJing, and his own vision for his Freestyle Sessions are exactly what someone in his position, with his legacy, should be striving for.
Image via Rukes.com