Since the last time we had a chat with Throwing Snow it’s fair to say he has been pretty active. He released the sensational ‘Shadower/Sanctuary’ via Sneaker Social Club, followed by the ‘Too Polite’ EP on Local Action in the bleak winter of 2011. It was this release that embodied everything we admire about his sound – stirring arrangements, haunting vocals, brooding synthesis and lambasting drums that manage to retain an organic timbre.
This week (13th August) Ross Tones released his first original material of 2012 and with it comes another record label, Snowfall. This imprint differs from A Future Without and Left_Blank in the sense that it has been established solely as an output for Throwing Snow material. As he explains, “I have been lucky enough to release on some amazing labels – Local Action, Sneaker Social Club, Super and Ho Tep – that have really looked after me, but I’ve never really released something without it being A&Red to some extent. It allows me to have no creative restraints and put out a variety to releases that would not fit anywhere else.” [via FACT] With the ‘Clamor’ EP we see Tones continue his individual pilgrimage through the current thicket of UK bass and electronica, and it’s truly a pleasure to observe the journey. We won’t say too much on the record itself, go and grab a copy for yourselves.
We were first introduced to the seductive resonance of Jade Pybus via the melancholic soul of last years ‘Wallow’ by Throwing Snow & Py. In the time since this record she has come into full bloom, with highlights appearing in the form of collaborations with Lapalux and George Fitzgerald. Her recent mixtape ‘Tripping On Wisdom’ was a resounding success, featuring production credits from the likes of Damu, Greenwood Sharps, bretonLABS and George Fitzgerald. It was refreshing to see a mixtape approached from a vocalists perspective, themed around a concept that tells the story about a personal journey, with each producer taking a slice of Py’s narrative and creating something from it. She has just put the finishing touches on her live show for a debut UK tour in October, we will give you further details on that as soon as we get word.
There’s a great chemistry between this lovely pair, on a musical and personal level. Check out the results of their Hyponik Vs. interview below.
Throwing Snow interviewing Py:
If you were to describe yourself as a meal what would it be and why?
I have been asked this before, it would a mixture of little bits. Crumbly cheese and piccalili, crunchy green apples, juicy olives, smoked salmon, mango and peaches, dark chocolate, tuna steak, crusty bread. Because I love all this food. They all have a very different texture, there’s different parts of me, little compartments, some I rarely open, musically and in my personalty.
We both love clothes so if you were to design a T Shirt, what would go on the front?
A bunny rabbit!
Why did you decide on the name Py?
It was my nickname, and its the first half of my second name Pybus.
What is your favourite lyric and why do you love it so much?
Thats hard. Most of time I love a combinations of words. So really its about the way they sit next to each to other, how they feel to say, and the textures they create that I am obsessed by. I like nostalgic lyrics that take you back to a another time or moment.
We both played at Soundwave recently alongside the Hyponik crew – is there a standout moment for you (excluding the DIY thong man)?
Haha! What a man. Urm hand clapping and box step dancing to Eliphino’s set. De La Soul – that was a real treat. Standing on that wall performing was amazing, looking out to the sea!
You began developing your live set recently, what’s the set up?
There are two set ups, one with my amazing friends and band Andy (drums) and Jonny (keys). Then a stripped back version with just me, it means I can start to play some shows on my own. I am using Ableton live for that. I am also working on my visuals at the moment. Drawing on concepts from the lyrics and helping to explain a bit about the story behind each tune. I want to set these up to be triggered by sound eventually, so its a real interactive show. I would still love to get tape glove (Signal to Noise) as a live instrument on stage. That would be brilliant. And a couple of girl dancers next to me – 60’s style. I have a UK tour coming up in October, which will be a mix of both of these set ups, so I am very excited to try them out infront of an audience on my first mini tour!
If you were to work with anyone musically who would it be?
Geoff Barrow and the Weeknd producing, Sampha (his voice makes me turn to jelly) and Billie holiday singing with me. Jesse boykins III could do some amazing harmonies too. WOW!
Py interviewing Throwing Snow:
When you write a tune do you have a instrument or sound that you would describe as you, in the same way a vocalist does with their voice? Which bit of the track is your soul?
Difficult opener! I’d have to say something natural sounding and rhythmic. I love string arps and crackle but there’d always have to be an underlying sub bass note so that there is some kind of physical interaction with the music.
Your most recent tracks titles ‘Clamor’, ‘Le Cœur’ come from Latin and French and their pronunciation has a very particular sound, is there a particular message behind it?
My track titles often relate to how the music makes me feel but often this sounds wrong phonically in English. The meaning of the title and the way it sounds are both important and I find using different languages (especially Latin and French) allows me to match the two.
I love the concept behind the new label, and the name! Would you say that since you are A&Ring it yourself for your own releases it has become a different process for creating an EP? Is it intimidating to have no boundaries or know when to stop, or do you create a specific way of working?
It’s a very different process but one I find easier I think because I can do exactly what I want without fitting in to a certain label aesthetic, or by being worried that I’m risking someone else’s money. I write quite a wide variety of music and I need an outlet for this while still keeping it under the Throwing Snow banner. I have some pretty strange beatless stuff that I can’t imagine anyone else taking a punt on but that is really close to my heart. As regards to the curation, I find my tracks have a particular ‘sound’ rather than fit into any genre, so it’s more a balancing act of weirdness and normality, darkness and light.
You recently got back from New York, do you have any plans for a national tour soon?
Yeah New York was great and playing at Unsound etc has definitely given me a hunger to tour more. We shall see what happens in the next few months, I’m writing a body of tunes that could fit together in an album, but I don’t want to rush it. Once I’m happy, and have an outlet, then the live shows and a tour will follow (as long as people are still interested!)
What’s your guilty pleasure tune?
Haha too many to mention! However my dad loves Foreigner and I grew up with him blasting out ‘The Greatest Hits’ out of the car on repeat, so I’d have to say the track ‘Urgent’ (check the sax solo – daymn!)
Last year we made a video for ‘Wallow’ I made you take part in which ended up with you getting covered in thick paint. Whats your pay back?
Oh you have got that coming dearest, no way am I gonna let that cat out of the bag!
If Louis Theroux made a documentary on the life of Throwing Snow, what would be the weirdest weekend?
Well I was once in Laos and the place where I was staying burnt down so I had to evacuate pretty sharpish. The Laos police were told that a
foreigner must have started it and the next door hostel owner wanted someone to pay for the damage. Luckily I had made friends with a local who told me that the police were on the look out for someone to blame so I ended up hiding for a day until I could get on the next boat down the River Mekong – that was pretty weird!
If you curated your own night, who would be your dream team of producers and DJ’s playing and why?
Another hard question but I’m glad you’ve narrowed it down to producers and DJs but even this is difficult. I have so many talented friends that I’d like to play and there would have to be a massive variety. Off the top of my head and only including a few:
-My Name Is John
-Danny Drive Thru
Seriously this is too hard, I’d need a series of nights to even attempt to answer this, in fact let me do a festival!
Throwing Snow ‘Clamor’ EP is out now via Snowfall.