It’s hard to believe that Sullivan King has never before released an EP. Even in my first draft of this article, I just called it a “new” EP, following some form of the Mandela Effect, but it’s the truth. Sullivan King’s debut EP House Of Wolves is out now via Kannibalen, and it’s absolutely wild.
The EP contains three songs, including machine-gun effects of “The Glock,” “W.O.B.S.” featuring his good friend Crichy Crich, as well as the more metal influenced “Don’t Care.” All three tracks feature that distinct blend of metal and bass music that Sullivan King has become known (and beloved) for, in varying ratios.
Sullivan King has so much more music still to come, this is really just a taste. Check out the EP and scroll down further for our exclusive interview with Sullivan King about the EP, his tour with Kannibalen, and the future of live instruments in dance music.
Sullivan King – House Of Wolves
You’ve long been involved with Black Tiger Sex Machine and Kannibalen, but this is your first official EP on the label, right? How’s that feel?
Honestly, pretty wild. For me personally, I’ve always wanted to do a full length, but knew that going from singles to that would be pretty abrasive for people to take in, especially with how my vast my music style can be. This definitely feels like the right time, place, sound, and people to be doing it with. Kannibalen has been so welcoming and supportive from the get-go and I’m just so stoked to bring out an even more original sound with them being the ones to back it. BTSM is such a good example of how someone can really make their own lane and create a family and that’s definitely what I’m trying to achieve with this.
And you’ll be joining that family on tour for a month or two, right? What would you say is something about the Kannibalen guys that you wouldn’t learn unless you were spending that much time with them?
They are batshit INSANE LOL. Jk, they really are such level headed and humble guys and set such an amazing standard of how someone should act in the industry. They just get it. They get what can be done, and get what kind of a family can be built. They genuinely care about what they do and about what kind of artists they bring out with them and that’s why I’m honestly so stoked to be going out with them on this next tour. It’s always a real gift to be welcomed in such an authentic and altruistic manner by people you respect just as artists.
When it comes to “hard” dubstep, your name is one of the first that comes to mind. How do you keep that constant hard edge to your tracks without tiring out your fans? Or are they just that insane?
LOL, they’ve definitely just as psychotic as I am I’d say. Really though, I think it’s more that I don’t ever consider myself exclusive to being a “dubstep” artist. While this EP definitely features a decent amount of that, I feel like from the moment you hit play, you don’t feel like you’re listening to dubstep, you instantly know this is something far more than that.
I know Crichy is a good friend of yours. What was the process like for producing WOBS?
It was amazing, we do a LOT together, but this is only the second release we’ve had with each other. Funnily enough, this isn’t the original “WOBS”. I sat on the vocals for this track for almost a year and a half until I was finally satisfied with the music around it. He’s such a creative guy and works so quickly and religiously that he makes you really wanna create something that respects his artistry and power.
Who were you listening to, outside of EDM, while producing this EP? Do you think that influenced the production at all?
Oh man… It’s funny cuz I don’t listen to EDM much in general for that reason! I love keeping it super fresh when writing and listening to lots of bass music makes when I do makes it feel more stale (to me at least).
A big goal for me on this record wasn’t as much in the writing, but the overall tone and feel of the record. I wanted to it come off like a rock record more than an EDM record, while still remaining under the Dance umbrella. I was listening to a lot of music I grew up on: Atreyu, A Day To Remember, Disturbed, Van Halen even… Another influence vocally was Crown The Empire. Their last record is soooo good lyrically imo that I really wanted to achieve something similar with Don’t Care. I feel like this EP is a really just the hors d’oeuvres to what I want to do following this.
What do you think is the next evolution in the live performance? Full EDM bands have been a thing for a long time, now we have artists like you and Gryffin and Dabin who play guitar live, artists like SMLE who play drums and guitar, Odesza who does drums and pads, Disclosure, etc… does there need to be another evolution, or will live performances just get more refined?
Banjos. Banjos are next forsure.
To be quite honest, I don’t see it as “live performance”.. DJing is live performance whether everyone agrees or not. It’s the instrumentation that people crave, and really I think it’s just in finding cool ways of taking something from how it’s heard in your car, to how it’s heard and seen live. Not much else to it really. I think the real evolution is in the visual aspect of a show, not the performance. The lighting and visual work is really where it’s starting to matter most and you can see rock bands catching up to the trends that EDM has set in that regard. People like Porter Robinson and Lido are the best examples of this. They create so much more than just a live performance – they’re really the people spearheading what a “live” EDM show can be.
What’s next for you in your own artistic development? Could we hear something more melodic from you in the near future?
Ohhhh yeah. Like I said, there’s so much more I have beyond this EP. This is really just something to whet the palette and get people excited for what is to come. I have albums worth of material ready, it’s just the continuing mission to refine it and get it just right. I don’t want to ever put music out where people go “ohhh yeah… heard this, been done.” That would be a waste in what this “genre” is deservant of in this period of music. I have plenty of melodic material, brutally heavy material, but it’s all in building the foundation for that and getting people ready for it.