This ‘Artist of the Week’ interview was written by Bee Adamic (New Music Editor at GIGsoup)
Heavily influenced by dubstep and garage, GhostChant’s unique sound also possesses a whimsical, deeply emotional aspect.. A bitter-sweet gem featuring ethereal vocals from Sarah Zad, ‘Nights Like These’ is the first single from Sincerity, presented here alongside a solid stash of remixes.
1.Tell us about yourself, how did it all begin?
Well I started to get into music at about the age of 12, and from the age of about 18 I was really hooked. Back then I was really into my hardcore and punk, and apart from a bit of hip-hop and garage, it was the only thing I listened to. I was playing guitar and bass in bands, and the name Ghostchant actually comes from a song title of a band called “poison the well”. It was only when I moved up to Liverpool to study that I really embraced and formed my love for Electronic music. I started to go to more nights, producing a lot more ,and DJing at house parties or whatever. Then I got signed to BBE Records, and ending up getting a few residencies, the main one being “Release” and playing some sick warehouse parties supporting some big names. I started to develop my live show and got some amazing opportunities from that. And over the last year I’ve finished my debut album for BBE, “Sincerity” and started planning the release of that which will be out in September of this year.
2.The happiest moment you’ve experienced to date in your musical career
Tough one….so im going to name a couple. Going out to play in Hong Kong at Clockenflap Festival opening for Four Tet was pretty special. It was on reclaimed land by the sea, and had the Hong Kong skyline out behind me. Not a show I’ll forget easily. Last summer I was invited to play on the BBC Introducing Stage at Bestival. That in itself was pretty cool, but I had serious technical difficulties at the start which ending up pretty much clearing every person from the tent. After a very nervous 10 minutes, it finally got sorted and after about 20 minutes of playing, the tent was absolutely rammed; I couldn’t even see the back of the tent. It was one of the rare occasions where I can pat myself on the back for a job well done.
3.Take us through your writing process – how do you start
Usually I’ll start with the drum beat, and then jam some melodies and harmonies over that. Then work on a bassline and go from there. I usually have to just work at the initial idea non-stop for 8-10 hours, and by then I’ll have a workable idea of how and where the track is going; most of the creative stuff gets done in that initial writing process. Then, if I think the beat would work well with a vocalist, I’ll send it over to them. After that its focusing on honing ideas and completing the mix. that can take anything from 2 weeks to 2 months to 2 years. Its finished when I’m happy with it basically.
4.What’s been your favourite remix so far of ‘Nights Like These’.
Too tough to call. Both Skelecta and Clueless do amazing jobs on putting their stamp on the track. Skelecta’s one has some seriously good basslines in it and brings a really energy to the track. Clueless’ bring his signature deep,dark wonky sound to it. Not many people can write drum beats like he can.
My VIP mix ain’t that bad either….
5.Who will you be collaborating with next can you say?
I’m working on a few remixes at the moment for a few different people. I’m going to writing some new stuff with Sarah Zad over the next few months;stuff for me and stuff for her. And I do have plans with working with a few very talented producers but they are just plans at the moment.
6.Tell us everything we need to know about the debut album
The album is quite progressive from the start of it to the end, with me trying to create the idea of a journey. I experiment with the use of dubstep,garage , and trip-hop beats and elements over atmospheres and melodies which can be both euphoric and melancholic. Its by know means a record for the “club” but it does use and develop some of those aesthetics and vibes. I have tried to make the ideas on the tracks off the album as musical as possible by means of using live guitar, sax and trumpet over some of the beats, and I think its accentuated even more by the incredible talented guest vocalists that appear on half of the tracks. Its definitely and album you want to try and immerse yourself in.
7.What does 2016 have in store for you?
I’ll be finishing off another record, doing more remixes, and playing a lot more shows;both Live and DJ sets
8.Favourite new artist right now?
Big fan of my boy Menik. He knows I say say this too much. My mate SPD has some serious beats as well. Just had him do a Live mix for radio show on Hoxton Fm and its an absolute killer. It ll be up on my mixcloud soon for those who want to check it out. Going have to do a label shout out to I’m afraid, and although he isnt “new” , Vursatyl’s new album ‘Crooked Straights’ on BBE is getting rinsed by me at the moment for those into their Hip-hop.
‘Nights Like These’ featuring Sarah Zad is out now via BBE Records.