Guillermo Scott Herren, better known under the aural nom de plume, Prefuse 73, is highly lauded as one of the founding fathers of the glitch-hop movement. Fusing a wide palette of instrumentation encompassing classical music, with edgy computerized samples; he prepares to re-establish another sonic foray with the release of his latest LP: The Only She Chapters. We grabbed a few words with Herren to mark the new page of his musical prowess.
How’s it going man? Yeah good man how are you? Very well, all the better for getting a taste for your latest The Only She Chapters LP! Cool. Thanks! The new album has more of a focus on instrumentation and vocals. How do you feel this decision came to light? It sorta just happened naturally. I wanted to get out of the tangled web of making beat records. I started working intensely on the LP a year and half ago. I focused on the production aspect for the most part; then went into laying down the material to forge the tracks themselves. How has embracing this new production technique developed your skills set as a musician? I’m definitely still inspired by old school electro-acoustic approach. I like using different types of microphones to create distinct vibrations from acoustic instruments that you usually wouldn’t get. This allows the song to sort of generate itself. I saw you perform at Governor’s Island, just off mainland Manhattan, NYC, last summer. What was enjoyable about touring with Neon Indian during that point in time? Oh really?! That particular concert was a really fun show to play! It was cool cos all the bands playing that day were really good, and very different. We didn’t decide to play for want of breaking in the ‘chillwave’ genre. We played because it’s what we do. When we play live, we try not to repeat ourselves twice; we aim to conduct a performance utilizing the spur of the moment as best as possible. From a technical perspective, what aspects of Gas Lamp Killer’s musical style can you appreciate? As a DJ he’s just incredible! I mean his ability to connect, and feed off the audiences’ energy is just otherworldly. Musically, the stuff he laid for Gonjasufi was completely visceral. Gaslamp is just raw energy man; it’s awesome! If I can call your new LP a concept album. There’s certainly an onus on the exclusive use of female vocals. On this note, did you ever consider collaborating with ex Cocteau Twin vocalist: Elizabeth Frazer, during the making of the album? hmmm my mum would have really liked that! Yeah man a stack of Cocteau vinyls went across her turntable many times. I feel Elizabeth’s unique vocal style permeates through this body of work on a kind of subconscious level perhaps. Especially in the way the words sung by Zola Jesus kinda wash themselves out. Looking at your discography, the first time I heard ‘uprock and invigorate’ was a seminal moment for me personally. Can you name an artist who has opened your sights to an entirely new musical playing field? I got that feeling listening a lot of the material that Andy Votel releases. He incorporates old re-releases from obscure female guitars from Turkey, to galatically directed analogue synths. I guess hearing his take on sound was inspiring, cos I was assaulted by a barrage of different production techniques. For the first time I heard samples mixed way louder than they should be. Finally, being a life long hip-hop fan, I’d say the most important outfit that’s shaped my stance on urban music is Cannibal Ox. Who are your most important hip-hop influences? Ahhh dope, I can definitely agree with you! ‘Cann O’ are in totally in my top 5. If we go back in time, Bomb Squad and Prince Paul are hugely influential too. Bomb Squad for the fact they produced the first Public Enemy LP, and Prince Paul for his work on the De La Soul’s first record. Cool Guillermo, thank you for taking the time to speak with us! Yeah no problem man, thank you for your time. Thanks and be well!
The Only She Chaptersis available April 26th on Warp Records