Cardiff-based duo Bodhi (Luke Welsby and Olly Howells) have just released their second EP, ‘Culture’/'Deliquesce’, on Sinden’s label Grizzly, two originals rolling through neatly processed melody, vocal chops and snug chords. Sharing much of the charm of Disclosure and Bondax‘s respective styles, they’re fast making headway in the Internet-charged realms of modern electronic dance music
Fellow Welshman, the acutely talented Ifan Dafydd, is one of two remixers on the EP – the other being Parisian Bambounou. On top of sharing Welsh citizenship, he and Bodhi share a lot of common ground musically: both have released records via Push & Run, and both occupy a similarly song-orientated corner of dance music.
We got them all together to discuss favourite places, work processes, dream collaborations and those James Blake comparisons.
Ifan Dafydd interviewing Bodhi:
Hello Bodhi. Can you clear up the conjecture and confirm whether or whether not you are, or are not, lovers or brothers?
Luke: I can confirm we are neither of the above, simply acquaintances with a mutual love of all things music… well maybe not all.
Describe each other in three words.
Luke: Olly – Tea, Beef Monster Munch, Sleep (in that order).
Olly: Luke – Small , Baked Beans, Slug.
Tell me about your musical backgrounds and how you ended up making music together.
Luke: I learnt to play the guitar and drums from an early age which put me in several different touring bands and also studied music practice in college. I came to writing together with Olly from going out to the same club nights and sharing music back and forth between us.
Olly: Through school I picked up the guitar and saxophone, dabbling in orchestra and various bands. Going out experiencing club nights in Cardiff is what accelerated my interest in music production & DJing. Its from there where Luke and I began exchanging ideas eventually leading us to hooking up. Our first combined efforts produced a bootleg of Destiny’s Child’s ‘Say My Name’.
What’s been your highlight of the last year?
Luke: Getting our first release out with Push and Run and getting our first shows under our belt.
Who would you love to work with?
Luke: I would love to work with Sam Shepherd (Floating Points)… I pretty much love everything he puts out.
Olly: There are so many good producers around the list could be endless. Although I’d put Space Dimension Controller & Floating Points up high on that list.
What do you tell old people when they ask you what you do for a living?
Luke: Disc Jockey.
Olly: I make music, followed up by a change of subject so I don’t have to go into detail.
What would the 10 year old Luke and Olly have thought if someone had told you back then, what you’d be doing for a living now?
Luke: Probably would have told you that you were wrong and I was going to dig for dinosaur bones instead.
Olly: I would would be too busy kicking a football about to care.
Bodhi interviewing Ifan Dafydd:
Hi Ifan. Why can no one pronounce your name?
It’s not difficult to pronounce really. Most Welsh words and names are spelt phonetically according to the Welsh alphabet. It’s pronounced like a Russian ‘Ivan’ but I won’t be angry or anything if you call me Uffan.
Would you agree that South Wales is far superior to North Wales?
I enjoy the fresh air and the mountainous landscapes of North Wales. South Wales has good coal.
Do the ‘James Blake’ comparisons get on your tits?
I don’t think it’s unfair for people to make comparisons. To be honest, it’s when people start pipping me against him that it gets the most irrititing, as if it’s some competition. But there are more important things to worry about and hopefully over the next few releases, I’ll be able to stand in my own light a little bit more.
What is your favourite country you’ve visited and why?
Each experience playing abroad has stood out and it’s always an eye opener for me, even though it can be difficult exploring and actually seeing the places I’m visiting due to only staying one night the majority of the time. Moscow was surreal. Just before my set, they projected a short film on to a brick wall in this courtyard area that I was playing in. I don’t know if it was satyrical or political or what but people started heckling. The show went well though but just being in Russia for the night in itself was enough to blow my mind. I loved Holland too and had two really great shows in Amsterdam at the end of last year. Some friends came along with me the first time round as well and it was really nice to share that experience with them, along with all the lovely coffee and fresh air.
So you’ve opened up Logic and are staring at a blank project…. how do you start things off?
Things will usually start with a chord progression although I’m trying to get out of that habit these days because there are only so many chords, and when you approach it the same way every time, your hands can start going to the same places and you can end up with the same song over and over. If I have a sample then I’ll record a few different grooves and loops and then just see what sticks and go with it.
Do you write the majority of your music in the day or night time?
Night time. I’m really bad at mornings. Daytime can be do-able, just give me a dark room.
If you had to pick one track to sum up the way you feel about us, what would it be?
Anything by Hall & Oates.
Bodhi’s ‘Culture’/'Deliquesce’ is out now. Buy it here.