Berlin-via-Oakland producer Armon Bazile, aka AYBEE, today shared a playfully neurotic new track off his upcoming third studio LP, The Odyssey, which will be released via his own Deepblak Recordings. As its title implies, "Push Pull" is built around tension—it comes across as both introverted and extroverted at the same time, its spare melody winding around bouncy drums.
Bazile spoke with THUMP about the track, his label, and the new album via email—you can read the exchange below.
THUMP: What was the production process for this track like? Was there a specific vibe or concept you were trying to capture?
Aybee: When I was working on it I was really getting into this tension between the drums and the synth line. They are kind of tugging at each other. That's why I called it "Push Pull."
You founded Deepblak fifteen years ago now. What's the most interesting thing you've learned from doing the label this long, and where do you hope to see it go in the future?
The most interesting thing I have learned is be and believe in who you are. Stick to your creative calling. For us at the label it has always been "stay open, push forward." We are wanderers sonically, always searching and trying to evolve. I try to foster that community and ethos. At times you will run smack into your environment which will pressure you to be like someone else, but much of the music I cherish as a music lover comes from an honesty. An authenticity. These are the things I try to nurture and where I would like to see the label continue to go.
How would you characterize your approach to making full length albums? The Odyssey is your fourth record, if you include 2014's collaborative LP Sketches Of Space with Afrikan Sciences, so you've had a fair amount of practice by now.
Really it's about having something to say. A story. I don't ever grab a bunch of tracks laying around slap them all together and call it an album. The intent to sit down and express yourself in that format. It's fun and an absolute nightmare if you did it correctly. But the closing of the creative circle of an LP is a cathartic process that brings its own rewards.
Is their a concept behind this new album? What was your thinking behind its title?
For a long time I have always been looking forward. You do a music project, finish and move on to the next. For me I try and treat every one like it's my first. For this one I tried to look back and forward. Taking a little of survey of how far I have climbed, taking in some water, and starting back up the mountain. That's why it's called The Odyssey because for me that's what this musical path is. That is my life.
The Odyssey will be released on November 4 on 2LP and digital formats.
Follow Alexander on Twitter.