Interview + Free Download :: Oliver Tank (Kyson remix)
February 11th 2014
Oliver Tank has certainly come a long way since winning the first FBi Northern Lights Competition in 2011.
Having previously supported the likes of Lana Del Rey, James Blake and Lorde, the 24-year-old recently blessed the masses at Falls and Southbound Festival over New Years with his brand of hypnotic electronica. The man is embarking on a national tour with the release of his new EP, Slow Motion Music, and to say we’re ‘way too keen’ would be an understatement!
Daniel Prior caught up with Oliver ahead of his gig at the Metro Theatre on February 15 with Oscar Key Sung and Bree Tanter.
And because we love you, here’s an exclusive free download of the Kyson remix of ‘Blessing In Disguise’ for you to enjoy while you read…
- Oliver Tank :: Blessing In Disguise (Kyson Remix)
DP: Your music has a sparse yet consuming feel to it. when you start making a song, do you have a process to maintain that balance or is just a natural effect?
OT: I’d say it’s more natural. I don’t really have much of a process for making music. Every song is different, but I always try and put a lot of heart into my music and I try to keep the writing process very romantic. As a general rule I like to mix natural and electronic sounds with a “less is more” vibe.
In almost three years, you’ve released two EPs, travelled to Iceland after winning the very first Northern Lights competition, performed all over Australia, and performed alongside some amazing artists. What has been the biggest highlight for you?
The Northern Lights comp was really special for me. I was just getting started with my music and the support of the station and its listeners gave me such a huge boost. Plus, I won the comp just as I was finishing uni and putting the finishing touches on my first EP so the timing couldn’t have been better. I can honestly say it changed my life, and I’m forever grateful to the station and my fans for giving me the opportunity. Also when I supported James Blake that was awesome. I’d looked up to him for a long time and to get a chance to support him was amazing.
Your rise as a bedroom producer to festival performer has been rather astonishing. How has the transition from ‘face in the crowd’ to ‘face the crowd comes to see’ been for you?
Its been a lot of fun. This “Oliver Tank” thing has become so much bigger than just one guy making music in his bedroom. It’s surreal to see all these people checking me out at festivals and at my own shows. It’s hard to believe sometimes. It’s all well and good to see that you have so many thousands of fans on Facebook but to actually see these people in front of you, knowing your music has reached them somehow is very rewarding.
You’ve done some incredible remixes as well. What is it like to be on the flip side of it now, with other great artists putting their touch on your music?
I love it. Its really interesting to hear how other people interpret my music and the things they take from it and add to it. I like it when artists put a lot of effort into their remixes and treat it like they are making a new song and just borrowing a few samples and sounds. Artists like Flume and Ta-Ku have done that really well.
[The Eggman’s winning entry in the ‘You Never Know’ Remix Competition]
You’re playing with Oscar Key Sung and Bree Tranter at the Metro Theatre on February 15th. Do you enjoy performing live or do you rather creating new music in the recording studio?
I used to enjoy creating music much more than playing live. I was terrified about playing live a couple of years ago. The thought of getting up onstage in front of people was very daunting, but I learnt a lot at Uni about performance and I’ve had plenty of experience now. I think I still might slightly prefer making music, but now I really enjoy playing live as well. I’m also super glad Oscar Key Sung and Bree could join me on tour. I love their music and I think the shows are going to be great.
Do you have any advice for the aspiring bedroom producer out there?
Be original, love your music – get a Soundcloud happening and start sharing with your family and friends. Also head into the FBi Music Open Day and share your music with the station. It’s a great way to get your songs on the radio.
You’ve explored Dreams and Slow Motion… so what’s next for you?
Oliver Tank is my real name but it’s become so much more than just me. I’m proud of what I’ve done and I like the name, but I feel a bit detached from the whole thing. So my next release, which will be my album, is going to explore that a bit.
And my signature and totally original question: What did you want to be when you were six?
When I was a kid I was really into trains, I used to go down to the station with my parents and watch the trains go by. So when I was six I wanted to be a train driver.
WHERE :: The Metro Theatre, Sydney
WHEN :: Saturday February 15
HOW MUCH :: $17 from Ticketek
For your chance to win a double pass, email firstname.lastname@example.org with Oliver Tank in the subject heading. Must include FBi supporter number and contact details.