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Interview

Interview // slip chats to us about voice memos, Brian Eno and peanut butter-basslines.

After decade of playing in bands in the Los Angeles indie rock scene, Taylor Brown has finished his debut album titled “The Cost”, under his solo moniker slip. It’s time for Taylor Brown to shine as a solo artist and we are SO pumped. If you like indie rock with a strong electronic and trip-hop influence, these are the sounds for you. 
Co-produced and mixed by Jules de Gasperis and mastered by Howie Weinberg, the debut album’s first single ‘head on backwards’ was released just over six months ago, already boasts over 14 thousand plays on Soundcloud and has been called by Indie Obsessive a track that, “…has a sophistication that sets the track apart from the collective work from the genre.” 
slip has also just released his second single ‘the patient’  earlier this month and told Nakid Magazine, “… after a decade of being a guy in a band — all the while quietly writing songs on my own that no one was hearing — I decided to write an album. After finishing a series of shows with the Dead Ships that culminated with Coachella, I moved into my friend Nora’s guest room for a month. I went into the garage, set up shop, wrote and finished recording a demo of “the patient” in two days.” With passion like that, who needs to be in a band?
We were lucky enough to catch up with this talented musician about the exciting creative things happening for slip right now plus what’s in store for the future: 
Set the tone for us. How would you describe your sound?
My sound is both dangerous and hopeful — dusty, ominous trip-hop animated by pulsing psychedelia; basslines that stick to deep grooves like peanut butter; all buoyed by a constantly on-the-brink narrative.

What’s on your current playlist?
Jonwayne, Jay Jayle, Soulwax, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Parquet Courts, Nico Jaar, Childish Gambino, KAYTRANADA, Ravyn Lenae… So much more…

Take us through your songwriting process. Are there any particular steps you take when putting music together?
It always starts with a seed of something – a melody, a riff, a phrase, a beat. At my studio at home, I’ll record something in Ableton Live – either a loop or an entire passage – and build around that. I like to let ideas flow freely, and I keep a lot of first takes. In the past with bands I’ve been in, a lot of the songwriting has been hashed out in the rehearsal room, jamming with each other. At home, I’m essentially jamming with myself on various instruments.

What gets your creative juices flowing?
When an idea pops into my head out of nowhere. It’s hard to explain where little musical nuggets come from, and I guess that’s because I’m really not sure where they come from. But when they do, if I’m mobile, I’ll record something into my phone – whether it’s a melody with my voice or something on guitar or keys. I have so many voice memos. When I’m ready to record, I’ll just go through them all and start recording around what strikes me the most at that moment.
What do you personally consider to be the incisive moments in your artistic career?
Completing anything, whether it be a song or an album. Finishing my own album earlier this year, in particular. So utterly satisfying, and I’m very proud of reaching that finish line.

David Bowie is quoted as saying “It makes me so angry that people concentrate on lyrics. It implies there’s no message in the music itself.” What are your thoughts on this statement? Music or lyrics?
I understand where he’s coming from, because a lot of ideas don’t necessarily start with lyrics — most of mine don’t. They start with the music, and the lyrics tend to flow through that. The music essentially gives birth to the music. That’s where the message truly originates. Thus, the music intrinsically informs the lyrical content and themes. Also, music is a more immediate way of expressing that emotional intelligence. The lyrics wouldn’t exist without the music that informs them. Take instrumental music, for instance. Take Brian Eno, for instance. Music by itself carries the weight.

Tell us about the chemistry you have with your fans on stage.
For most of my career, I haven’t been the singer. I’ve always felt kind of in my own little world and somewhat ignorant of what’s happening in the crowd — at least until the song or show ends. Now that I’m a bit more in the spotlight, that might change. We’ll see. 
If you had to choose between never playing live again, or never being able to release music again… Which would you go for, and why?

Never playing live again. I have to make music, most likely for the rest of my life. I don’t need to play live for the rest of my life, and I most likely won’t. I like to create things, especially songs. Nothing else is more satisfying to me. I need to be able to do that.

Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you in the near future?

More songs. My first album is already recorded, mixed, and mastered. It’s in the bag. So there’s a ton of music I have yet to share. And, of course, touring.

Be sure to follow slip on Soundcloud and Facebook and check out slip’s brand new feature in Nakid Magazine here

All photos by Jena Puttman.

Art Direction by Ashley Elizabeth.

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