INTERVIEW: Gold Panda stortrives i det nye projekt ‘Selling’

Gold Panda (Derwin Dicker) og Jas Shaw som Selling (foto: Laura Lewis)

For knap to uger siden kunne man på Regnsky – og mange øvrige medier – læse nyheden om det nye musikalske projekt mellem Gold Panda og Jas Shaw (fra Simian Mobile Disco) som Selling. Sammen har de spontanudgivet albummet On Reflection, der byder på ni legende og kalejdoskopiske instrumental-ekskursioner, og som er det første egentlige kollaborative album med Gold Panda (aka Derwin Schlecker) på rollelisten.

Regnsky ‘slid into Gold Panda’s DMs‘ kort efter offentliggørelsen af pladen med fem hurtige spørgsmål om det nye album og om samarbejdet med Jas Shaw.

You’ve called ‘On Reflection’ “the most immediate and natural record I’ve ever made”, which I think is a pretty big accolade. Can you elaborate on what it was that made your collaboration with Jas feel so instinctive?

DERWIN: »Jas mixed Lucky Shiner and Half Of Where You Live, so it felt familiar being in the studio with him. I went to visit him because I hadn’t seen him for a few years and after a cup of tea and a chat he showed me round his studio and we just switched some gear on. We made two tracks which were about 40 minutes each, just messing about with a simple sequence. It was so easy and fun that we just decided to do more. Once we got better at getting the jam sessions shorter, the tracks became more structured and before we knew it we had 28 tracks.«

»I think we like to work in a very similar way, set up some stuff and keep tweaking things until the sequences become a bit messy and unexpected and surprise us, then hit record on the computer, and jam with whatever gear is running. Later we edit together the good bits and eat some cheese.«

How do you feel about the album? Do you see this as a natural transition after your three albums as Gold Panda?

»I’m really proud of it, I can listen to it and enjoy it because it’s not just me. I don’t think it’s a transition. I make lots of music. I see Gold Panda as certain music I make. I’ve made a lot of stuff in the last year and there are two more albums out this year under different names.«

When I listen to ‘On Reflection’, I recognise your sound immediately. And yet, there are hardly any tracks on the album that I would expect on a Gold Panda record. What were your contributions to this collaboration – and what were Jas’?

»Yeah, I definitely have a sound! It’s great because it’s natural for me, I don’t have to force it. Before I used to get annoyed that it would always sound like I had made it. I wanted to sound like other artists I admired, but now I think it’s my saving grace.«

»I’d say Jas did more work than me, especially in the editing and arranging stage after we recorded the jams, because he is way better at Pro Tools. I really hate arranging, I’m too impatient. I sat on the sofa behind him eating fudge and saying, “delete that bit, oh let’s get that bit louder“, like a backseat driver, haha.«

»When we’re making the tracks, Jas would be writing a sequence on the Cirklon and I’d be messing with a synth and then suddenly we’d get a combination of good loop and good synth sound and that would be our cue to hit record. Next time we’d swap, etc.«

How did the production of the tracks – with your tight touring schedules in mind – come about? Where you mailing ideas back and forth, or where you sitting in one room together and eventually thinking ‘this is what we wanted, this is actually pretty good’?

»I actually had a pretty quiet year and Jas has a family, so he was mainly dj’ing on weekends and at home in his studio in the week doing sessions. We did everything together in the his studio over about 10-15 days in about four or five sessions throughout 2017, so each day we’d make about four to six tracks!«

I’ve always been an admirer of your ability to discuss mental health, both in interviews and when I’ve seen you, where you haven’t been afraid to talk about feeling shit for a couple of days on a row. How are things today? Have you found a sense of normalcy in your life as a so-called ‘musician’?

»I’m feeling quite good today, thanks! But the black dog still follows me around, the void is always there, waiting to swallow me whole at any minute. I decided that I do really like making music or being creative as much as possible so why not try to focus on that? I still don’t see myself as a musician… sometimes I say I’m an artist, I should get a beret and an easel!«

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Sellings ‘On Reflection‘ kan købes nu digitalt (via Bandcamp), og albummet udkommer ligeledes på vinyl 14. december

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