Creative collective DUNCE are at it again, continuing to bring in and introduce fresh sounds from all over the world. In the spotlight this time is electronic act Raus aka Rory Stenning. Experimental with pop sensibilities, Raus will be throwing a party at Blu Jaz with a few friends for the launch of his album, LP. The album will be out on the hellosQuare label and also featutures Spartak who played here a few weeks back.
There will be a whole lot of sounds to sample from on the night with Fauxe supplying some chillwave, Michaela Therese on powerhouse vocals, experimental/funk/neo-soul outfit neoDominatrix, and members of sub:shaman Weish and Isa F (blankverse) will be showcasing their respective solo electronic projects as well. On the decks to close the night are Jaydah from the Phyla label and RAH of Darker Than Wax.
Hi Raus! What are you up to these days?
Hey. I am currently three shows into my first tour, and right now am sitting on my friend’s balcony in KL. The KL show was last night, and was super fun.
Tell us more about the moniker and this project.
The moniker came from my nickname. The project was just a natural progression of my interest in writing music, and was kickstarted by my finishing school and feeling like I hadn’t been able to spend time doing the things I wanted.
How different is the material on your debut LP compared to your EPs and singles on your Bandcamp page?
Very different. Some of the tracks might sound similar, but they all came from a very different headspace.
A lot of musicians in your field work from their bedroom. Where do you think the limitations, if any, begin for that kind of work ethic? Other than a polished studio production, for example.
In terms of ‘studio production’ I feel like the limitations are not that bad, as long as you are willing to grapple with learning some technical stuff about sound/audio. But personally I am more concerned with writing pieces that are musically polished, over something that is sonically shiny. The music/intent behind the music is much more important. That’s not to say that I don’t want it to sound good…
Could you elaborate on your method of selecting and utilising samples in your work?
For the past couple of years I have used almost exclusively the same 15 drum sounds, that I recorded off my drum kit, and very select samples from other places in specific instances. I like to limit my options as much as I can so as to force myself to grapple with the actual writing of a piece. It also means that I also know those 15 samples inside out, and can get almost anything I want out of them. It gives some kind of unity to my work too.
A geeky tech question; what’s your favourite piece of gear in electronic music-making, and why?
Probably my laptop, as I would not be able to construct tracks nearly as easily without it.
We’ve seen many DJ/producers expanding their live sets with a full band, would this be something you will explore in the future?
This has already happened on this tour as I am playing with Luke Keanan-Brown (a.k.a. Yether) who is playing a minimal drum kit of kick/snare/hi-hats as well as another synth and singing while I am running loops and basslines live whilst doing the main vocals. Essentially, Luke is my band!
What can we expect from your live show?
Jammed out songs with repetitive lyrics, and gongs.
Top 5 Influential Albums
Third | Portishead
I love the sparse production and feel. It really captures a very clear vibe. The combination of acoustic and electric instruments is masterful, and very beautiful.
Sketches of Spain | Miles Davis
Harmonically beautiful. Great structures. Great fusion of styles. A very rich album.
Ufabulum | Squarepusher
I sat and listened to this album the full way through when I bought it and pretty much ripped my head off. I had never heard anything like it, and it really broke down a lot of musical biases that I had.
Shaking The Habitual | The Knife
Just the name of this album gets me going. Karin Dreijer Andersson’s vocals really blow me away. The songwriting, the production of the album, the use of synthesizers and percussion, and the sentiments behind it really excite me.
Flood | They Might Be Giants
All the songs on this album are really funny and weird and are actually good songs.