The five experimental albums that inspired the Russell brothers of dance duo Overmono

Ed (left) and Tom Russell.  photo elliot morgan

Ed (left) and Tom elliot morgan

Ed: ‘Tom is more interested in notes and melodies.’
Tom: ‘And Ed has a good singing ear that we can use as a sample. how to cut them, process them and put them in an entirely new musical context. And he is also very good at drum computer programming.’

Tom (44) and Ed Russell (34) of Wales complement each other. Like brothers Howard and Guy Lawrence of Disclosure ten years ago, they form a duo that are once again shaking up the British dance scene. Russells has already received the award for Best Live Act in 2021 from British Dance magazine Dj Mag, they were headliners at the 2022 Dance Hits in the Lowlands and Decamantel. Earlier this year, American giga festival Coachella rolled out the red carpet for him.

Pablo Cabinda has been writing medicine since 2002 de volkskrant About pop music and human interest.

Not bad for two brothers who grew up in Overmno, a corner of Wales where nothing flashy looked to be and not even a record shop. In desperation, Tom steals compilation CDs from the bookstore, which were distributed to the magazine at the time as a publicity stunt. Dj Mag – the same magazine that had awarded him two years earlier – and took BBC Radio One’s Essential Mix But. As a teenager, Ed sold his school mixtapes. And then there are the memories of self-hosted, do-it-yourself fun in local woods and pubs with sticky floors.

free from prejudice

Away from the big city, he fell in love with everything techno, trance, hardcore, acid, without knowing what was hip or cool at the time. This ensured that the brothers would be able to work as a duo in 2015, free from bias. Over a series of EPs and singles, they went in search of their own sound, using their brother-in-law’s crates full of vinyl as inspiration. They found their popular sound in the underground ArlaEP series. Now it’s fully realized in their debut album good lie, with the title track as an anchor point.

Tom: ‘When Ed showed me the demo of good lie I knew immediately: this would be the core of the album.’

good lie Don’t beat yourself up too much. A fast-paced snare drum, indebted to the UK garage sound, is the song’s engine. On top of that, synthesizer chords float, forming a harmonious backdrop, and quick, humming R&B vocals that draw you onto the dance floor in a light trance. Everything about the album breathes subtlety.

run away

Overmono is not about ‘the beet’, and how to serve it as thick as possible. There are other ways to liven up the dance floor, too. The inspiration of a song can also be created by the subtle collaboration of percussion and vocal rhythms.

Ed and Tom Russell.  photo elliot morgan

Ed and Tom elliot morgan

Ed: ‘Just in the car I heard a song where all you hear is the kick drum to the effect. That distracts me. The challenge is to find that driving energy without resorting to cheap tricks like pounding drums.’

In fact, on some of the songs the brothers were so bold that they completely changed the beat. tom sent a demo of it to ed sugrush Under which there was a very strong heartbeat. Ed thought the track would gain momentum if they threw it out the window. Now only the Roland-303 synthesizer quivers the beater, making it more of a rhythmic meditation than a dance number.

right to exist outside the club

Word brain dance Printed in the English press. you’ve got a point. Russell believes that his music should have the right to exist in places other than the dance floor. That your head should also be able to do something with it.

Ed has a litmus test for this. “Our music has to perform well in the car. You know, walking around with a loud speaker a bit. I don’t know why, but if it looks good in the car, it’s suitable for both the club and the living room.’

This resulted in a dance with such a unique character that it cannot be classified under any existing subgenre. If you start your love of music in rural Wales with few resources but a lot of innocence, you can get it. Blissfully ignorant of what is good, but not devoid of influences. Because they have real fans too. An overview of five albums that influenced Russell.

Actress – Chhapaak (2010)

The actress, pseudonym of Darren Cunningham, is a British electronic musician who creates almost fragmentation dance music. ‘Spalzush’ was named the best record of 2010 by music magazine ‘The Wire’.

Tom: ‘We respect him very much because he has created a world of cohesive sound that is instantly recognisable. You hear a variety of songs that clearly sound like the actress.

Ed: ‘Each track has a sort of electronic grit to it that creates a certain atmosphere for that song. I think it is important that there is something in music that is bigger than music. Does this make any sense? All songs contain emotional ambiguity. Señorita It sounds joyous at first listen, but there’s an awkwardness to it that makes it feel uneasy. And that drum! The swing in that song is full of madness.

Sophie- oil inside pearl (2018)

Scottish songwriter, producer and DJ known for his unorthodox approach to pop music. Their songs are distinguished by experimental sound design and underground dance influences. He received a Grammy nomination for the album and has produced works for Madonna, among others. Sophie died of an unfortunate fall in 2021 at the age of 34.

Ed: ‘One of the foremost producers I know.’

Tom: ‘So confident and in your face In presenting strange noises. And so are their numbers A sweet pop feel.

Ed: ‘He approached sound design from an almost physical point of view. The sounds almost sound like physical materials and you get the constant association of abrasive metal, rubber or running water. like a track pony Boy It is complete twisted madness but the rhythm and his melodious vocals make it super fun at the same time.’

Baby Kim – melodic blue (2022)

American rapper who won a Grammy for the song ‘Family Ties’ from the album ‘The Melodic Blue’, which also featured his cousin Kendrick Lamar. Baby Keem also provided songs for the soundtrack of the film ‘Black Panther’.

Tom: ‘There’s something fresh about the way people like Baby Keim, Kendrick Lamar and Travis Scott make music. That fearlessness to suddenly turn things around in the middle of a song. And the great thing is that it still seems logical and consistent.’

Ed: ‘in family relations This happens three times as well. It seems like Baby Keem had a lot of ideas and figured out how to stuff them into an album like sardines in a can. As Tom says, giving free rein to your creativity is fearless. We try to do the same. But good lie There are some songs whose ending is completely different from the beginning.

Tirza – devotion (2018)

Lush, intimate and unusual R&B by English singer-songwriter Tirza Mastin, who studied at the Purcell School for Young Musicians in Bushey, England.

Ed: ‘Her voice sounds like she’s singing in the shower. I find it amazing when someone does a vocal performance that sounds so spontaneous, almost haphazard. And it sounds like his lyrics are straight out of conversation. It feels as if she is talking directly to you.

Tom: ‘Micah Levy also helps a lot as a producer. She understands that you shouldn’t make things unnecessarily complicated. She knows when an idea ends and something doesn’t have to be of a certain standard like they often claim in all those YouTube videos.’

Ed: ‘If you do this, your music will sound exactly like thousands of other people’s.’

Tom: ‘You’ve heard of a reckless way of doing things In those songs and I really like that.

Dizzy Rascal – the boy in da corner (2003)

The debut of a key figure in the English hip-hop and grime scene. He received the prestigious Mercury Prize for the album.

Tom: ‘This record marks the birth of English hip-hop. From the boy in da corner English hip-hop artists no longer felt the urge to copy the American example.’

Ed: ‘It was one of those records that spread quickly among your friends. Suddenly everyone had it. The album has an amazing brutal sound. they are drumming i love you Looks disgusting. I must have been 14 when that record came out, because I had just started making my own tracks, and I wanted that sound too.’

Tom: ‘Though there were rumors that he only recorded it with a PlayStation. I don’t know if this is true or not, but it must have been something common. Some software with some samples. It just goes to show that you don’t need high-tech stuff to make great music. Only good thoughts.’

truss and tesla

Before the Russell brothers worked together, they were active in music separately. Under the name Truss, Tom focused on the dark side of techno as a DJ and producer, while Ed was later more drum and bass driven as Tesela.

Overmono will be performing at Down the Rabbit Hole on Saturday, July 1.

overmono – good lie (XL Recordings/Beggar).

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