Seth Rosson enters the scene with a glitchy, lo-fi self-titled debut E.P. Taking cues from his career as a graphic designer, the essence of beautiful minimalism extended into his music and formed the basis for his first release. We catch up to talk about his influences and creative direction.
You’ve been making music for quite some time now. Does your latest EP (due out May 6th) reflect this musical journey? How has your sound changed over the years?
I think it reflects that specific time and place I was at when writing the music. As a whole though, I think it’s representative of the evolution of my process that all artists make over time. That said, I’m really excited about the new music I’ve been working on.
You’ve been based all over – Austin, London and now Brooklyn. Each has quite a distinctive musical culture and history. Have you taken a little from each place to add to your own sound?
Yes, I think so. Everyone takes from their surroundings whether they consciously choose to or not. That said, I think imagination is an important tool for taking yourself outside of your immediate sphere. I think London was the most influential on me musically (and personally). The UK tends to be a bit more subtle and understated than the US, and I’m drawn to that.
Your techno/drone side project seems like a natural extension to your current style – glitchy and melodic. Are you keen to keep other avenues open to continue experimenting?
Yeah, I always seem to gravitate towards ambience. For example, Tim Hecker has always been a huge influence on me, as well as many others. Techno has kind’ve resurged the last few years alongside the growth in popularity of modular synths. I like the rhythmic aspects of it, in correlation with the other. DJ Richard put out a really good album last year called “Grind”. I listened to it non-stop last fall.
Your ‘less is more’ attitude comes across in your EP’s back story – portraying the universal feeling of trying to let go, whilst still holding on. The result is a deeply intimate sound that can be compared to the likes of James Blake and the xx. Did you find it hard to refrain from throwing in too many layers and effects to keep things simple?
Thank you for the comparison. Short answer is yes, but it gets easier over time. The EP was about keeping things as bare as possible. Nothing was used unless it proved itself. I’ve gotten a little more “forgiving” at this point, but I still have a minimal outlook. I’m working on new material now, and I’m playing a little bit more with layers, although it’s still fairly bare compared to a lot of stuff. I think maybe I’ve grown a little too and have a little clearer vision of what I want and how to get it.
Which artists have you got your eyes on this year?
I’ve really been enjoying Mark Pritchard’s tracks that have been leading up to his new release. “Beautiful People” with Thom Yorke was great. I’ve also been enjoying Tim Hecker’s new album. I listened to a lot of techno/rnb in the fall, which is an interesting combination. Looking forward to what people come up with.