Interview: Sampology on worldbuilding, music discovery, and meditative movement
With the release of his new single 'Suffer and Swim', we spoke to producer, DJ, and radio host for Worldwide FM, Sampology; ahead of his upcoming album Regrowth...
The new single ‘Suffer and Swim’ features Allysha Joy on vocals and Beau Diako on guitar, what was the songwriting process for this song? And what draws you to collaboration?
The original rhythm I made the night before I flew from Brisbane to Sydney, to DJ at a party called 'Midnight Swim’. I made it specifically to play in my set for that show. I then reached out to the amazing Beau Diako to see if he'd be up for laying some rhythm guitar down and then sent it on to Allysha Joy, who I'd wanted to collaborate with for a while now. I love collaborations where you can hear the contributors’ personality in the instrumentation, and that's totally what I get when I listen back to 'Suffer and Swim', I can hear all three of us in there.
What else can we expect from the upcoming album Regrowth, set to be released on September 3rd?
With this project it was all about building a world and atmosphere, so all the creative choices I made were to serve that intention. Regrowth can mean whatever you feel, but I was thinking a lot about environmental regrowth around the time of the bushfires, as well as personal regrowth as I move through life. Sonically I'm really influenced by electronic music but am drawn to using organic sounds captured with microphones, so the full album is an exploration into soulful, natural sounds that are meditative but also contain rhythms to move to.
Having digitised some 70s and 80s Super8 film tapes from your grandfather’s collection, how did you envisage combining the visual design with the musical composition, in order to achieve your overall concept?
The visual side of the project was a happy accident. In 2020 I spent a few days digitising this box of tapes I had intended to look through for years and discovered footage of me at 8 years old flying on my grandfather’s green screen. That shape of me flying became the main icon/logo of the album art, the other Super8 footage I was drawn to for editing together to the music from the album. It felt like the right path to take, collaborating with my late grandfather in this unique way and to infuse as much personality to contribute to the album roll out.
As a DJ & radio host for Worldwide FM, how do you explore and discover music yourself?
Mostly Bandcamp and recommendations from friends. I'm really accessible and often people will send me stuff from their group to my Insta DMs to check out. When I started doing the monthly shows a couple of years ago, I reached out to a few labels I was a fan of and asked if I could be put on some promo lists also. I’m a big supporter of La Sape, Far Out Recordings, Aloha Got Soul, Hope Street Recordings, Mandarin Dreams, Brownswood and many more independent record labels.
You’re also a vinyl enthusiast with a love for sampling, what could we expect to find in your collection and how do you choose samples?
Right now, I use my record collection more for inspiration, as opposed to when I started where I was sampling in the traditional sense of flipping samples. There's actually only one direct sample on the whole album. Everything else has been recorded in my home studio, around Brisbane or on my travels.
In the last few years, I've spent more time pointing microphones at instruments and I've learnt so much from listening to different records in my collection, in terms of the tone, colour and feeling.
Can we expect any live shows or further upcoming projects from you?
There's a couple of collaborative projects for next year and a remix for a Melbourne artist coming out in a couple of months that I'm really proud of. I've got a one off special live show at the end of July in Byron Bay at a cinema which I'm doing with a drummer. We're playing just before the movie Interstellar is screened. Aside from that I’m really excited to be getting around the place for lots of DJ sets, which is my base from where all of my music stuff started from.
Finally, what does the word ‘groove’ mean to you?
It's physical, different grooves make different parts of your body move in different ways. My main inspiration for groove comes from being on the dance floor and watching other people move.