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Ruairi Lynch is just one of the foot soldiers in the growing army of ultra-talented Irish electronica artists. Under his Bantum moniker, as well as producing an impressive body of solo work, he’s collaborated with talented homegrown artists like R.S.A.G, Owensie and more recently vocalist Loah.
We caught up with him for a quick conversation before his upcoming show in Workman’s with Slow Place Like Home and Carriages.
Hey Ruairi, cheers for chatting to me. How was Interlude? You were scheduled to do a Prince A/V set, how did that go?
It went well! Always good to get people dancing. I also got to see Bad Bones, Daithi, Adultrock and Solar Bears live which was great.
How did that Prince idea come about?
I was asked to DJ at a Prince themed night in the Bernard Shaw years ago by Nialler9 and it kind of went from there. I used to throw in some cheeky Prince samples into my live sets for the craic and people kept asking for a full Prince set.
Doing something like that proves he must have had a profound effect on you?
He did! I have an early memory of loving his music in Tim Burton’s Batman film when I was really young, and I’ve been listening ever since. A friend of mine gave me that soundtrack on vinyl recently and its a prized possession.
Why do you think he was such a big influence to a wide range of artists, hip hop to electronic?
His musical output in the 80s especially was just phenomenal. He was always pushing the boundaries both on stage and in the studio. Songs like ‘Kiss’ still sound like they came from another planet!
Do you feel festival shows like that give you a bit more freedom to explore more obscure avenues?
Not necessarily. I think at festivals you’re playing to crowds who might be a bit unfamiliar with what you’re doing, so you have to play to them a bit more as opposed to your own shows.
‘Take It’ has been out for a couple of months now, how have people taken to it in your opinion?
The reaction to it has been amazing so far. Its been receiving rave reviews since we released it and its still getting played a lot from what I’m hearing. It really gave me a boost in terms of writing more music.
How did the collab with Loah come about?
I mentioned in conversation to her manager that I was working on some demos, and he suggested I get in touch with her. She loved the instrumental that was to become ‘Take It’ so we worked on some demos and eventually went into the studio to record.
Loah has been fantastic to work with.
Getting in touch with vocalists can often be integral to producers. What’s your usual process?
I usually reach out to someone I think might suit a track, but lately I’ve had some collaborations come about by chance.
I made a spur of the moment trip to London a few weeks back where I ended up drinking with a friend of my cousin, an Australian singer called Adam Townsend. Long story short I sent him a demo and within a week we had a track done!
It’s been a few years since ‘Legion’, is there a new album on the way?
I’m hoping to release something in or around October. It’s looking like a seven-track LP with a bunch of collaborators I’m excited about. Its a short track list but it feels like an album to me.
Cork seems to be producing really high quality electronic artists like yourself Toby Kaar, Ellll.. What’s in the water down there?
I think the local venues and promoters have a lot to do with giving young artists a go. From what I can see the likes of Stevie G are very active with local youth music programs (which also seems to be thriving in Limerick) so if you’re a young artist in Cork it can be easy to get some gigs under your belt to start. Its a small “scene” and everyone looks out for each other.
You’re playing with Slow Place Like Home and Carriages in Workmans soon. That’s definitely a great representation of Irish electronica as a whole. How do you see the state of the electronic music scene right now?
I think its in a healthy state right now. The lineup on the Nialler9 stage alone was a good indicator as to how diverse things on the electronic side of music can be here.
New acts tend to be pop up every week now and its always exciting to come across someone you’re really into.