Posted October 7, 2015 by Cooper Point Journal in Arts & Entertainment
 
 

An interview with Aeon Fux



By Amber Hare

I recently got the chance to sit down with one of my favorite local musicians and talk about bugs, production processes and their new mixtape. They’ve recently been written about in Vice and The Stranger and their music has been reposted countless times on blogs throughout the internet.

Would you like to introduce yourself?

Sure! I am Aeon Fux, I was born and raised in the pacific northwest and I make percussive a capella beats and play the omnichord..  I’ve been making music for a few years now and I’m kind of experimenting in the genre doom soul, which is new it’s kind of neo soul but it’s got a bit of a darker edge to it.

Do you have a specific production process? Does it feel more methodical to you or more spur of the moment?

I guess it honestly depends on the song, sometimes I come up with the melody before I come up with the lyrics or vice versa and sometimes, I mean lately, I’ve been recording the beats in shorter segments and I loop them but in the beginning I was just making that sound over and over again particularly because I really liked the meditative state it put me in, to try and match each sound. It’s a very drone like process and until recently it was just me making the same sound for a minute or two which was honestly really fun and good practice.

We’ve collaborated on music in the past, do you feel like there’s a distinct difference between your process for writing a song with someone instead of writing a song alone?

I think there is, particularly because when I am collaborating with someone and they produce a beat I think it’s easier for me to form a distinct picture, like more of a movie quality when I hear it in my head. But when I’m building beats myself, I kind of have to decide what kind of tone I want to set or what it’s going to be about, but when I hear other peoples beats it kind of comes a little more quickly.

Working with other people, for me at least, definitely feels less in a vacuum.

Yeah, absolutely. It allows me to open my mind to different methods and to see what kinds of music other people are making right now, which sometimes I feel a little disconnected from.

You’ve been getting written about a little more and getting a little more exposure. Do you feel like that’s affected the way you make music at all?

I don’t think so. I guess honestly since I moved to Olympia I don’t really know if I’ve recorded anything. I had been focused on moving back here and starting school and I’m really excited to start working on some more music, but I think the only thing that really affects how I write music is the way that I’m feeling in that particular moment. I think it’s really cool that I’m getting some more exposure and what not but I think about the fact that I’m pretty sure my most popular song is the “I’m gonna beat the fuck out of Terry Richardson” song which is something I just made at like 4 a.m. and I didn’t really know how it was gonna go over. Because of that experience I feel more open to experiment with things that I don’t necessarily know if people are going to like or not.

Do you feel like this exposure has put expectations on what you’re going to be making?

I definitely think that those expectations are there, and it’s really hard to try and hold myself to them especially because I’m really self critical. But I do think that because I try to experiment with different styles I maybe don’t necessarily have, like, one particular expectation of what I’m going to sound like. I mean, I know that most of the songs that I’m writing right now have kind of a biological, like a bug, theme but then I have little doo-wop songs, and songs about lived experiences and what not.

Do you feel like your process for this new mixtape you’re creating, which you can also talk a little about if you want to, differs from work you’ve done previously?

With Aposematic, which is this mixtape I’m working on, it’s like my “bug album.” It’s about the relationship between people and insects, not just insects but arthropods as a whole. The theme of Aposematic is aposematism which is a characteristic of insects and animals that display warning colors to prevent predation. t’s not necessarily a concept album in the way that it doesn’t really form a particular story but it definitely has a running theme. I’ve been doing a lot more, I do research for the music that I write now which is fun y’know, like I’ve been watching a lot of bug documentaries and youtube channels of entomology enthusiasts so I think that this really the most I’ve really gotten into subject matters that I’m singing about. Most of the time it’s just little fantastical ideas but now I want some scientific accuracy in what I’m writing so that’s been super fun because I love learning about bugs anyway.

Beyond just insects, which seem like the theme for this mixtape, do you have anything else you look to for inspiration in this process?

Some of the themes I’m working with outside of insects are really basic feelings. Like the comparison of fight or flight instincts or of longing and desire, and our tendencies to either be hunter or hunted. I suppose because there is definitely a big play on predator and prey on the album and I kind of wanted to think about that in terms of human relationships in which ways people feed on each other in the form of parasitism and how that compares. I like the idea that human feelings can be associated with very insectoid ones and there’s definitely a bit of plant stuff going on, there’s a song that I’m working on that’s about the cobra lily so not just insects but insect predators as well.

Are there any musicians that you look to for inspiration?

I look for musicians that I feel are talented but also the visuals that they bring and the concepts that they have. I would say Janet Jackson, Poly Styrene from X-Ray Spex, Jun Togawa, Grace Jones, Left-Eye, and maybe like, Missy Elliot and some of her work with Hype Williams…such a hard question, I know I’m gonna remember a bunch of people when this is over.

If you have the chance to work with anybody who would it be?

I mean there’s a name that instantly comes to mind and it’s just a flight of fantasy because she really doesn’t work with anyone but Sade. I don’t know if that’s the answer that I would choose if it were not immediate. I would work with Kraftwerk as well I feel like that would be wild and I could be part of their 3-D show. I’d also really like to work with like King Diamond. I think that that would be really cool. I think there are definitely more artists that I would like to collaborate with vs. that I draw direct inspiration from.

Are there any other projects that you’re working or that you’re especially excited for that you wanna talk about?

There’s a musician from Seattle called Nightspace that I’ve been working with and we play a lot of shows together and we have a little collaborative project called Dreamroot and we’ve maybe played like two or three times together live but it’s super cool, we just got together and pumped out some songs, and that’s been really fun. Nightspace does a lot of really cool electronic music and being able to work with him and collaborate has been great. I have some projects that I’m like, on the edge of starting, that haven’t really come to fruition yet. I’m really determined to start a metal band. I’d love to do that while I’m in olympia but I don’t know how likely that is. Also pretty high on the list is starting a bossa nova band I think that would be intensely cool.

Do you have any advice or anything you wanna say to anyone who’s starting to make music or anything you wish you’d heard or known when you had started?

I guess that I would like to say, don’t let that blank space scare you. You know when you’re first starting to write music, if it’s not coming to you immediately, it doesn’t mean you’re not a musician, it doesn’t mean that you’re not working hard to improve yourself or to try to get something down on paper. You just have to practice. You have to practice really hard and you know, it’ll happen. You probably won’t just wake up one day and be like “oh yeah I got it!”, like maybe that’ll happen but it’s like a one in a million chance, just keep practicing and it’ll come to you. Also there are gonna be naysayers even if you’re the best musician in the world, there’s gonna be someone out there who doesn’t like what you’re doing and it’s not gonna kill you; it’ll suck but you’re still gonna be there and you’re still gonna have the ability to make music and what’s important is that you’re persistent and you keep making music and you make something that you’re proud of that you want to show other people.

You can find their music at

soundcloud.com/aeonfuxxx