Accidentally Miserable: Samoyed

Having released the emotive ‘Spit’ EP on Rekordah’s burgeoning Astro:Dynamic’s label last month, Scottish producer and vocalist Samoyed is an interesting talent from north of the border. Based in Aberlour, a sleepy town in the county of Moray in Scotland, Andrew has been releasing broken electronic music for a while now, producing a full album of soulful noise in 2008’s ‘Always From This Point’, made completely on his own homemade software.

With his deep, mournful electronica being picked up by the likes of Rustie, Lukid and the LuckyMe camp, plus his more techno-leaning work receiving plays from Floating Points and the Numbers crew, we thought we’d corner the producer to talk through his upcoming work, that homemade software, and “doing a sing”.

Describe your sound in five words?
Mmm. hmm. Well… aye. melty.

You’ve recently released an EP on Astro:Dynamics, can you talk us through the release?
It’s my first attempt at doing a sing and writing sort of proper songs. It’s all about and inspired by the same very personal stuff. It’s a bit of a painful listen for me now. I think ‘Malamute’ is my favourite but the rest of it is alright as well. And Lukid put me to shame with a remix that’s a lot better than the original. He’s like that.

Samoyed – ‘Spit’

We understand that you make music and play live using software you created yourself, can you talk us through that?
For years I only used this nightmarish Max/MSP patch that was terrifyingly unpredictable. It didn’t save anything so everything I did was started with a blank slate and recorded live. I don’t really use that software so much anymore. It was a great approach and it felt like the software was more of a mentally ill, emotionally unstable creative partner that I worked with than a reliable slave that I told what to do. But it was incredibly stressful, especially playing live, and I felt like I was coming to the end of what I could usefully say using that process, so I’ve been turning to more conventional means. That’s a different challenge, wringing something unique-sounding from essentially the same stuff that everyone else uses.

Are you still running your Flask Records label, what’s coming up this year?
Yeah. Flask has been on hiatus for a while, everyone involved has been busy and living difficult post-art school life for a while. All our best-laid plans went agley. The next release will be a tape from Poacher & Ghillie called ‘Stag Night’. It’s like a singing shortbread tin with a 606 in it and is very good.

Any new Scottish producers we should be keeping an eye and ear on?
Apart from Poacher and Ghillie, look for stuff from Jim Coulter, which will hopefully be surfacing kind of soon. He’s incredibly modest and elusive and doesn’t really play the online music game but he’s incredibly talented in a kind of analogue bucolic techno vein.

Samoyed – ‘Malamute’

What have you got coming up release wise over the next few months?
A record for GLUM, which is very much more housey and dancefloor oriented but still manages to be somehow miserable completely accidentally.

Where can we catch you playing soon?
I don’t have any gigs booked just now. So if anyone wants to book me just say ‘James Blake’ in the mirror 6 times and I’ll answer your query as soon as possible.

‘Spit’ is out now on Astro:Dynamics – you can purchase it here.

Interview: Josh Thomas