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Mylo Interview - Mylo Interview

2006-03-29 11:06

Mylo has supported Faithless on a recent tour, been voted best live act by DJ magazine, and formed a band. A new album is in the works. We spoke to him about whether he really hates rock, how fame as changed his life, and what lies ahead.

Jean Barker for MWEB: I'm sure a lot of people ask you about the title, Destroy Rock 'n Roll. There's that list of big rock names in the beginning. It's so similar to the tribute you get on many urban soul albums. Is the album title basically a blasphemous joke of some sort? I mean, you can't be serious.
Mylo: Good description, yeah. Blasphemous joke. Definitely. I discovered the vocal sample, which is the speech listing all the rock stars of the 80s, by chance when I was working as a journalist at the BBC. And I just thought it was the most amazing thing to have hit upon and I knew straight away that I would make a track out of it. And obviously the title of the track is self explanatory given the content of the sample.

MWEB: I read an interview with you where you said a few months ago that your favourite band at the time was Steely Dan. That's a rock band. Well, some people would consider them a rock band.
Mylo: Completely. Completely. I generally listen to rock music. Well, I listen to everything. I think there has to be something wrong with you to just listen to dance and electronic music.

MWEB: Quite a lot of Rock fans criticise electronica and dance and say that making it is not really originating - that it's just mashing up other people's stuff.
Well, some sample based music is completely terrible, had no creativity. Other sample based music is really - uh - innovative. Like The Avalanches (from Australia) and Acufen - a Canadian guy I really like who uses samples only slightly. So you have the whole spectrum of quality. Much as you do in rock music! [laughs]

MWEB: I gather you made your CD at home?
Mylo: Yeah, I just made it on an iMac and then a G4. Just a lot of playing around; a lot of samples obviously, on this record. I had to buy some software separately, but it's all pretty basic stuff. The main software I used was a program called Reason - it's a virtual simulation of a rack of different modules which you would have in hardware, if you can imagine. It's simple, it's a toy, but it's totally brilliant. It's pretty much all you need. But I don't know anyone who uses it as much as me.

MWEB: How does your live show compare to working at home. Do you pre-programme a lot?
Yeah it's very different. It's four of us in the live band. Even the drums are live. So there's not that much programme stuff apart from things that can't be done any other way like looped sample and the occasional bleeps and things but it's very, very different. When I was making the record I had no plans to do it live so it's just kind of taken off in its own right.

MWEB: A few watershed production moments. A few albums that you think really changed the popular musical game since say... 1980? That have influenced you perhaps?
Definitely the bigger electronic albums of the 90s. They were quite cool but quite pop at the same time. Like Daft Punk's first album, Fatboy Slim's really big album. Like Royksopp, which is just starting to get a proper re-release now.

MWEB: You've been compared favourably to many of these heroes of yours. That must be a cool feeling.
Mylo: Yeah. I will stand up and say I have my influences. There's no shame in that.

MWEB: You toured as the support act for Faithless. What kind of vibe was it on tour with them?
Mylo: They were really, really cool. They made us feel they wanted to have us, and helped us out financially on the tour. So we got a much better deal than most support acts do. And it completely changed the whole plot for me. It was December last year and that was when I went from hundreds of copies a week to thousands of copies a week. Things changed gear for us. It was a really big deal. Since then we've been in Brazil, all over the world, in Germany and Argentina as well.

MWEB: Now that you're a household name - well in some circles - what are some of the weirder questions people ask you at parties?
Um... doo doo do doo. Let me think. Factually, there seems to be a lot of completely untrue information going around. I'm generally thought to be French by most people. Maybe the music sounds French.

MWEB: Any plans to come out here to South Africa?
Mylo: I think there was an offer to DJ and unfortunately I was already booked. I would absolutely love to come. My partner went there for a holiday there a couple of months ago and had a fantastic time so... I'd really love to come.

MWEB: And your next album - there will be one? Are you going to go about it differently?
It will be more live, and certainly less involvement and dependence on samples. having done so many live shows with the band it would be stupid to not try and incorporate that in some way into the new record. I'm not that interested in using samples anymore, partly because I just think of it as a way into production for people who don't have any other resources available to them.

MWEB: Does this mean you're going in a more rock 'n roll direction?
Mylo: [Laughs] Yeah completely yeah. We're going to sound like ACDC.

Mylo (full name Myles MacInnes) was a surprise success and is the new big name on the popular electronica scene. Destroy Rock 'n Roll, which he produced pretty much by himself in his bedroom has sold over 200 000 copies already and is both intelligent and pleasing. His new track has entered the UK Singles chart at no 3, beating Coldplay's latest single (also a new entry at no. 4.)

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