Dropped In: LockJaw
We recently interviewed Canberra based producer Louis Fourie aka Lockjaw. Louis is a long time friend of the Stir Crew and will be doing some writing for the Stir Blog in the new year, this is what he had to say!
Q.1 Tell us a bit about yourself?
I’ve been involved with music since I was 14 when I picked up the guitar. Getting absorbed by music was the first thing which really interested me on a deep level as a teenager. I played the guitar all through school and eventually went to the ANU and studied a music degree there. It was around this time when I also first started to get into electronic music. From classic rock, funk, metal, blues and jazz, I started spending more time listening to drum and bass and becoming obsessed with the genre and eventually started trying to make it myself. About halfway through my degree, I made the decision to stop playing the guitar and focus entirely on producing as I felt it was a more exciting and promising avenue to travel down, for myself anyway. I also didn’t want to give 50% of my effort to something which was another reason to drop the guitar playing. Since those early days, I’ve continued to produce and have released (mostly) drum and bass on a variety of labels in the genre, played shows around the world, started a label and branched off into professional mixing and mastering too.
Q.2 Tell us a bit about Locked Concept, Sine Sound And what inspired you to get started?
Locked Concept is a drum and bass label I run with my friend and fellow producer Lewis Matheson. As we were both avid drum and bass fans, the idea to start a label eventually arose and we started doing as best we could. We had some slightly more left of field ideas for the label when we started and had to learn and experiment with a whole range of issues in the beginning but now, it’s more of a straightforward drum and bass label. We keep the quality high, try to find new talent and essentially attempt to release music that excites us and that we respect. It’s been a great year for us, and the label just keeps on growing with support from some of the biggest players in the scene such as Noisia and regular airtime on radio shows and DJ support.
Sine Sound is my own music mixing and mastering business which was originally founded by fellow friend and Sydney-based producer Sondrio. I’ve always been interested and engaged in the technical and precise aspects of producing so it was natural for me to become interested in the mastering and mixing side of things. I started doing it for free for people and eventually, people started paying me for it. Nowadays, I master music for a few drum and bass labels, some non-drum and bass ones and also mix music for a range of producers too. I’d like to continue doing this as I find it very fulfilling and satisfying work.
Q.3 What have you been inspired by recently?
Musically, deeper artists like Synkro, Kid Drama and Pessimist. There’s also always a constant stream of great drum and bass coming out from the likes of Alix Perez, dBridge, Icicle, DLR…the list goes on. Aside from that, all the music we release on Locked Concept I am inspired by, I wouldn’t release it otherwise. We’ve got releases coming out from NZ and AU artists as well as some unknown guys from Serbia. We’re not such a huge label yet so we get a lot of demos from smaller and more unknown artists and sometimes, it’s genuinely amazing stuff which is really cool. I also listen to a lot of pop music and vocal music. Artists like Kimbra, Banks, Clara La San and few others really interest me. I’m always trying to bring more melody and harmony into drum and bass so listening to a lot of melodic, non-drum and bass music is key.
Q.4 What piece of work are you most proud of?
Personally, it’s tough to say; I’ve had quite a few releases and moments where I’ve been genuinely proud of what I’ve done. My first release on Dispatch Recordings was a massive one as it felt like it had validated about three years of non-stop producing and grinding to get my tunes to a decent stage. After that, my first release on Noisia’s Invisible Recordings was probably the happiest moment of my producing career. That label, to me, represented and still does represent the highest level of the drum and bass I like so having multiple releases on there has been something I’m proud of. A while ago I made the decision to release (almost) all my future music on my own label so I’m working on an album now for Locked Concept. It’s a gigantic amount of work and I’m trying to pull out all the stops so I feel when that’s done, that will be my most proud achievement.
Q.5 What advice would you give to someone starting a music label?
Think about why you’re doing it. I feel starting a label should come about naturally and not as a calculated business plan. The quality of the label should always take precedent over quantity. The world doesn’t need more C-grade releases churned on an almost weekly basis to be forgotten by listeners. Only put out music you personally like and don’t try to pander to certain audiences or genres, you will invariably fail. Be clear and honest with everyone you deal with, pay everyone what you owe them and quickly too, don’t make promises you can’t keep and be consistent in whatever you set out to do.
Q.6 Where can people find out more about Locked Concept and Sine Sound?
The Locked Concept Facebook and SoundCloud pages are our main ports of call. Lewis and I put out a podcast weekly to keep listeners engaged between releases and these can be found on SoundCloud or iTunes. Sine Sound also has a Facebook page where I promote projects I’ve worked on and share production tips too. Business enquiries should be directed to email@example.com or the website, www.sine-sound.com
Q.7 Anything you would like to promote or plug?
As I said before, we’ve got some new and unheard talent coming out on Locked Concept so keep an ear out for that as we continue to grow the label in 2018! That’s about it really.