In this interview we had the occasion to have a chat with two people; the first one is Alland Byallo, the label manager of Bad Animal records, and Kenneth Scott, who recently released “If The Rain Stops These Ruthless Acts”.
– Thanks for joining us guys! How are you doing?
Alland: Great! Just back getting to the Monday grind after a fun weekend.
– Looking back to the past year, what have you done up to 2015?
Alland: I’ve been working really hard this year on both my music and visual art gigs. As far as music I’ve had a couple records under my own name out this year and I’ve been developing a techno project under another name which I’ll announce soon, a house music project under the name Kid Grimm, and most importantly a band project called KAMM with Kenneth here, Dave Aju and our boy Marc Smith. Our first mini-LP is out late Winter/early Spring or so on Marcel Vogel’s Intimate Friends label.
As far as graphics go, just 9-5ing it and freelancing on the side if the project is interesting enough for me. Mostly music-related work. I try to not do the boring corporate stuff anymore.
– What are the main reasons that motivated you to found Bad Animal?
Alland: I had an old digital label called Nightlight Music which ran for a fair bit. I released music of my own and that of some friends and acquaintances and had a lot of fun with it, but after a while things just didn’t feel all that special. I just felt like the label had lost it’s identity and momentum, so I kinda shut things down. After moving to Berlin I had some new energy and felt inspired to start something new. I wanted to do something positive out there, so in the beginning I donated profits to Wildlife Conservation Network, specifically the Save The Elephants effort, but we had to cut that to keep the label running properly. I guess it was a righteous idea but a bit overzealous. I hope to pick that up again some time soon, but maybe from a different angle like fundraiser parties or something like that. It’s definitely on my mind.
– Did you create the label for yourself or also to make your music vision available for others?
Alland: I created the label for myself and my friends, to have a bit of a playground to release music that they loved; a place to get weird if we want and have some fun. I started signing new artists for a bit, but we’ve kind of pulled it back a bit and now Kenneth and I are mostly releasing our own music. We have a couple of friends on deck for releases, but these are close, personal friends. We still get demos all the time, but I think I’m happier with it being a tight-knit circle of friends.
– How much the label is influencing this phase of your musical career?
Alland: A lot, I suppose. I’ve released so much music the past 12 some-odd years since my first record, maybe even too much. I was quite excited and things worked a bit differently a lot of that time. These days I’m putting extra emphasis on quality control and carving out different paths and sounds for different aliases. The stuff I’m putting on my own label will be focused on a very rhythmic, broken beat sound, much like my last EP on BA called ‘Dead Ringer’. I mean this isn’t a strict, permanent rule by any means, but for now that’s what I’m having the most fun producing and will be paving that path as I release on BA. Furthermore I used to send the best stuff to big labels. It’s kind of natural to do that, I suppose. Now I prioritize my own label unless the style just doesn’t fit.
– What’s your favorite Bad Animal record thus far?
Alland: That’s really hard to say. I think ‘Dead Ringer’ is my own favorite record I’ve ever released, so that’s up there, no doubt. Otherwise I really love Kenneth’s first EP, ‘Engrams’, and the second record we put out, Safeword’s ‘West Portal’. That was some amazing music!
– What can you tell us about the creative process of “If The Rain Stops These Ruthless Acts”?
Kenneth: I’d just gotten a new sequencer that allowed for programming euclidean rhythms so the main lead melody came from experimenting with that. I did a long take and then built the rest of the framework around it. It’s pretty much 3 (mostly) unedited takes on top of each other. I like to keep things simple and just get the most expression out of a few parts.
– Why the choice of Benedikt Frey as remixer?
Kenneth: To be honest I wasn’t too familiar with his work before Alland recommended him. As soon as I heard him it was obvious he was the right choice.
– Does the release reflects the kind of stuff you’re playing out at the moment?
Kenneth: I guess so. I’ll play out my own stuff so technically yes. I usually go a bit all over the place but I could certainly imagine playing both sides at different times of the night.
– You’re part of “Different Grooves Fastmix” featured artists, what can you tell us about the mix you recorded for us and the ideas behind it?
Kenneth: I’d had a rough weekend so the mix ended up being a good way to vent some frustration. The songs are a mix of stuff i’ve been playing out recently and some of my favourite tracks from over the years. I knew I wanted to end it with that Objekt track so I had to figure out someway to get up to that speed! It was only after I sent it in that I realised I had made a fast mix for the Fastmix series…
– Have you got any other forthcoming projects for the next season?
Alland: We’re putting a lot of energy into the KAMM band project, and we’re looking at new EPs by the both of us for the label. As mentioned before I have a few things coming out under a couple of different aliases, but we’ll announce those when the time is right.
Kenneth: I’ve got a release coming out this week on my boy Lance Desardi’s label, Legwork. Also, putting the finishing touches on my first full length album and working on releases for a couple new labels that are so fresh and secret that I can’t say another word.
– Thank you for having spent the time to let our readers know more about your music and thoughts!
Alland: Thanks for having us! Support vinyl, support the artists you love, eat well, and um… call your grandma frequently. Grandmas are the best.
Kenneth: Thank you! What he said, but don’t forget Grandpa. He’d like to hear from you too.