Autosea Podcast006 - JAMIE BLANCO

 

For Autosea’s sixth episode of the podcast series we’re lucky enough to have the now Sydney located Londoner, Jamie Blanco!

Whether it be his solo work, or original productions and remixes as one half of Ess O Ess, Jamie has featured on labels, such as Love On The Rocks, London Housing Trust, Not An Animal, Cynic, Tusk Wax and ENE.

Before Jamie jets back off to Europe for the Love International Festival in June we were lucky enough to have a chat with him about life in Australia, how the scene compares to that of overseas and his latest release as Ess O Ess.

Autosea: Having been originally from London, which many may argue as a better location for your line of work, what prompted the move to Sydney?

JB: Although we met in London, my partner is Australian, so when her visa ran out one of our options was to move to Oz. I'd lived in London all of my life so I thought why not. I really wasn't sure how things would work out at first and I’ve certainly missed things culturally about London and Europe but never enough to think I want to move back anytime too soon.

I definitely don't miss the weather and especially not at this time of year, getting out of bed in the morning has never been easier. The food here is outstanding, and I’m very happy to be friends with the King and many of the stand-up people I’ve met here. Australians are very honest, warm people. I wish more pubs served Guinness though.

Autosea: How would you best describe your sound? Do you feel it has changed since relocating to Australia?

JB: Moving over certainly forced to me to work in a different way due to not having a studio for a large period of time, initially I turned up in Sydney with a suit case of clothes, a laptop and headphones.

Back in London I'd always had a studio full of outboards, guitars, mics, random percussive instruments and a mixing desk. I had grown up playing in bands (although I've always DJ’d) so recording to me was physically plugging something in with a jack lead and then recording its output. When I didn't have this option anymore I was forced to start using VSTs and the likes so I could produce some sort of sound again. This took some time, but I can now see the benefits of the approach! I've since shipped over enough synths and records to use a combination of the above.

I've met a great number of very talented producers over here, and have certainly taken influence in the way they work and the environment they work in. You could say this was evident in the music I released with Dreems and in the forthcoming solo/Ess O Ess productions recorded with Max from Angophora's studio outside of the city.

Autosea: Having played throughout much of the world, whether it be in London, Berlin, Croatia or Vietnam, how do you compare Australia’s electronic music scene?

JB: It's as healthy as anywhere I've been, probably healthier in terms of enthusiasm and want for the music. The scene in London is so large that it's easy to get completely lost, which is sometimes a good thing but more of the time not. The scene in Melbourne and Sydney have communities where I've experienced a lot of people looking out for each other’s interests, putting each other’s music out and booking local line ups to play.

Melbourne has definitely got it happening and it's a pleasure to go play or hang out there, every time I meet up with an international over there I know they can't say enough great things about the place. Sydney is obviously going through a tough time with its government's bullshit rules, however people aren't just sitting around complaining and are actually putting on parties and working around it. The amount of female talent in Australia is also very impressive, there are far more hugely talented female DJ’s and producers here than in London or anywhere else I can think of. Too many to list in Sydney alone. I’ve only been to Perth once so far, the Move party I attended was wicked, lovely blokes too.

Autosea: Although many down under may not be aware, whether it be as Jamie Blanco or as Ess O Ess – a collaboration with Chris Stoker, you dedicate quite a bit of time to performing live. Do you prefer DJing or performing live? In regard to reading the crowd, how do they compare?

JB: I actually haven't played live much over here, think just twice in Sydney so far. I do enjoy playing live, although really don't enjoy lugging all the equipment around. The last time after a gig the Uber surge was so high I decided to walk back through Kings Cross pissed carrying a mixing desk, laptop and a load of guitar pedals.

I think DJing is much easier for that reason, a bag of records on wheels! I suppose I could scale down the live set up, stand behind a laptop and just press play on Ableton, move about a bit, who'd know.

Autosea: What has Jamie Blanco got in store for the future? Anything exciting that you want to tell our readers about?

JB: Our latest Ess O Ess release is out now on Not An Animal Records, we’re honoured to have remixes from Sydney duo and all round good guys, Angophora and another two (one on the digital and one on the 12") from legendary Japanese producer Kuniyuki Takahashi.

Otherwise, looking forward to heading back to Europe for the Love International Festival and then some other euro haunts throughout June-August.

Cheers Autosea!