PRIME chats with ESSEX about needed change in the electronic music scene and making power moves this year
PRIME: Give us an introduction to yourself, for those who are new listeners - your name, age, hometown and when you first started producing.
ESSEX: So what up, hi, hello, my name is Seth, A.K.A. ESSEX. I'm 31, from Boston, MA (currently living in L.A.) and have been making music, producing and playing in bands for a little over a decade. This project, ESSEX, is only about two years old but my absolute favorite endeavor thus far.
PRIME: You describe your own style as “Post-EDM”. What would you most like to change about the current state of electronic music?
ESSEX: To be honest, I just really want to see more artists with real talent that aren't as affluent given a platform to share their art. Especially over a lot of cats in the industry who are paying people to create for them, so that they can just play the "entertainer" and capitalize. If I could change anything it would be that there were more tastemakers out there doing their best to dig through the noise and give voice to those truly passionate about the process. (Damn, we couldn't agree more, Seth).
PRIME: Your production is hard to pinpoint, but your beats are complex and often have a melancholy vibe. What artists have significantly influenced your sound?
ESSEX: I've been obsessed with music my entire life, so I draw influence from a number of artists. Most notably (or currently) everyone in my collective TITAN SQUAD, HXV, Lapalux, Flying Lotus, Deftones, SS Decontrol, Bad Brains, Minor Threat, The Doors, Win32, Skinmelt, Le Maitré, Radiohead, Portishead, Nine Inch Nails, Divine, James Blake, SBTRKT, Raf Riley, Last Night in Paris and to be honest, I could go on forever. I listen to a ton of music but right now, these are my consistent go-to's.
PRIME: What vocalists would you most like to work with?
ESSEX: Right now I'm super happy with the vocalists I've been working with, Holly Stell and I have a project coming that's far more advantageous than anything former either of us have released - but someday in the future I would love to work with Chino Moreno, Louisahhh, SZA, James Blake, Travis Scott or even Sampha.
PRIME: We’re absolutely stoked to watch you throw down at Lights All Night 2017 - have you played any festivals before?
ESSEX: Lights All Night was my first *real* festival, and I can't thank them enough for having us! Such a blast and a brilliant way to connect to others in the industry, as well as new listeners and a grip of new friends.
PRIME: What can we expect to hear from you in 2018? Will there be an EP in the works?
ESSEX: 2018 will be a busy year for releases. I've got an album slated on VAVLT for the fall, some stuff in the works with Holly that's still under wraps and a slew of releases set throughout the spring and summer in prep for the two albums. It's already been a busy year, but I'm more than looking forward to sharing what is hands down my absolute best work yet.
PRIME: Give a shout to your listeners.
ESSEX: Speaking of, I'd really like to thank absolutely every single person who's ever pressed play on one of my songs, the few that reach out consistently to say what's up, the ones that say hi after every show; you don't know what that means to me. You, all of you that enjoy my music are the only reason I have a platform to be able to create. This process, (being transparent) has more than saved my life and given me reason to exist far beyond what at times I thought I had. So from the bottom of my heart, I thank you. I look forward to growing with you and hope you stick along for the ride, it means worlds to me. Also, s/o Rebel Base Management and PRIME, y'all are the realest in the game. Facts.
contributed by: Claire Carlson