Joe Miller 1

What was the concept behind your podcast?

I tried to make something that would work as part of the Balance series, which in this case meant layering dozens of tracks that belonged together in feeling, but were often far apart in tone and style and tempo. You always have ideas about the story you want to tell, but to tell that story involves a constant negotiation with the scene’s own stories, the eddies and currents of musical trends. I’ve really indulged my trancey sentiments around the half hour mark, at which point the mix turns in and in on itself, like water going down a plughole. It’s hard to put music into words, so here’s a diagram my girlfriend drew instead. I think Thom Yorke is one of the butterflies:

 

 

I also wanted to play with some techniques that were popular in the nineties but have mostly gone now. There was a mix by PF Project that my brother played me as a kid, and it had all kinds of cutting and chopping, little one-bar hints about upcoming tracks. There’s some of that foreshadowing technique in this mix. There’s also the idea of quotation, nodding towards hints of tracks that remain outside the mix. I’ve been thinking about Stockhausen’s approach to sampling, the idea that you can speed up a Beethoven symphony into a one-second piece and this one second will maintain an imprint that’s true to the spirit of the original. It’s bordering on magical thinking; the kind of alchemical madness you’d expect Jodorowsky to spout if he made electronic music. Anyway, there are these very subtle references scattered through this mix, and I’m interested to see if anyone notices or feels them.

 

You’re rather fresh to Melbourne, what brought on the move?

I was just amazed by what a strong tradition of melodic music there is here – having grown up on Northern Exposure, Involver and Balance 005, it was a shock to realise how much of that bubble included Melbourne artists like Phil K, Jamie Stevens and Luke Chable. I wanted to be around that atmosphere, and also sensed that this was a city where you can start something new and people will gravitate towards it if it’s any good. My friend Alicia had always been talking about running events, and a little after I moved she started a crew called Twist/Turn. We’ve been running shows over the last year, trying out our live ideas and playing communal DJ sets around Brunswick. Each time there are more people and we have to find bigger venues, so it’s been a wonderful feeling.

We’ve checked out a few of your live videos online, is that a concept you’re planning to bring to your shows regularly?

Yes! I’ve switched from DJing to live performance over the last year, so the video I made for Traum is a rough show of the way I’m converting my productions into live performances.

What processes go into creating your tracks?

As for most people, there are two distinct stages – one of sitting in front of a keyboard trying to say One True Thing, and then the practical mixdown and referencing stage. The first stage is about getting in touch with familiar influences, listening to Nick Drake, reading lots of Virginia Woolf and Tove Jansson, going for walks and building up a headspace so full of memories that it’s almost tangible. And then if you can just make one sound or melodic line that’s faithful to that place, then the rest of the track finishes itself. The second stage is a slog, and I’m not very good at it yet. Maybe there’s something in that 10,000 hours of practice thing.

There is a lot of talent pushing out of Melbourne at the moment, who are some local acts we should check out?

Joy & Sparks is making uniquely heavy electronica with powerful vocals, and Ultra Pure are well worth catching for their computerless live techno shows. Fleiss is an excellent house DJ with nineties sensibilities, and Dion Ventrice (the D Word) is one big smile – hard to distinguish between his enormous grin and the sunshine coming off his disco collection. And then the more obvious legends – JNETT, Jamie Stevens, J-Slyde, Katherine Abrahams, Dave Juric (who featured on a previous Rebel Troupe podcast), and Dave Pham.

What is coming up in the future for you?

I’ve got an EP coming out in September on Montreal-based label L’enfant Terrible, which is run by Hassan from In2Deep and sounds like the Canadian equivalent of Kindisch or Manjumasi. It’s an impressionistic bunch of tracks - I’m always trying to conjure up images of specific places, so there’s a track about a seaside town I visited as a kid, and another one based around a poem by Gwen Harwood about a kid that shoots a barn owl. I’ve also got a remix coming out for Aiden on Manual Music in July, a remix for my friend LXDN, and a few collaborations in progress with Melbourne people.

TRACKLIST

Ali Hassan - Boya Na'aema / Foq Al Nakhel [Music Box]
Ssaliva - School Rave [Not Not Fun]
Francis Bebey - Forest Nativity [Hostal La Torre]
Kora (CA), Adriēn - Nuit d'Afrique [Kindisch]
Shelter - Courant Bleu [International Feel]
Badskin - Self-other [Self-released on Bandcamp]
Donato Dozzy and Tin Man - Test 3 [Acid Test]
Benoît Pioulard - Shut-Ins On Sunday See [Kranky]
WIFE - Heart is a Far Light [Tri Angle]
Kings of Convenience - Surprise Ice [Astralwerks]
Camille - Senza [Virgin]
Radiohead - Daydreaming [XL]
Walton - City of God [Hyperdub]
Zombies in Miami - Flashback Mantra [Hippie Dance]
SAVE! - The Darkness (I:Cube Remix) [Les Disques De La Mort]
Earlham Mystics - Truth [Notown]
My Panda Shall Fly - Rainfall [Soundway]
Moonstone - Black Blind Light [Void]
Aïsha Devi - Jesus & The Math [Danse Noire]
Arthur Russell - You Have Did the Right Thing When You Put That Skylight In [Audika]
Andy Stott - Forgotten [Modern Love]
KWC 92 - Nr 6 [L.I.E.S]
Makam - When Light Gives you Hope [Dekmantel]
New Jackson - The Night Mail [POGO Recordings]
Snow Ghosts - The Hunted (Malcolm Axel Remix) [Houndstooth]
Jonas Reinhardt - How to Adjust People [Kranky]
Joe Miller - Found feat. Laura Sutherland (acapella) 
The Orb - Dilmun [Kompakt]
Ghosting Season - A Muffled Sound of Voices feat. Knox (Luke Abbott Remix) [Last Night on Earth]
Bonobo - Outlier [Ninja Tune]
Nicolas Jaar - Balance Her in Between Your Eyes [Circus Company]
Hirotaka Miyamoto - Lake Side in the Moon (Pablo Bolivar Remix) [Seven Villas]
Ladan - Sorry [Not Not Fun]
Dorisburg - Cirkla [Hivern]
Weekend Players - Into the Sun (Riva Mix) [Multiply Records]
Joe Miller - Found feat. Laura Sutherland [forthcoming on L'enfant Terrible]
James Booth - Lilac Sky [100% Silk]
Faithless - Liontamer [Cheeky]
Alkohole - Knochen in Meinem Korper [Kann]
Cuticle - Merciful Swound [100% Silk]
Nathan Fake - Falmer [Border Community]
Fatima Yamaha - The Creature from Culture Creation [Dekmantel]
Tangerine Dream - Love on a Real Train [Virgin]
Leon Vynehall - Midnight on Rainbow Road (Beat Edit) [Rush Hour]
Leandro Fresco - Sol de Medianoche [Kompakt]
Pablo Neruda discussing his poetry
Powel - Kalophain [Das Sind Wir]
Radiohead - Daydreaming [XL]

 

 

 

Support Joe Miller Here: