There are few producers in the American psychedelic bass music culture rising faster than Antandra. Lost in Sound has been excited to feature the original productions from Jacob Louis‘ project. The Jamaica-born, Asheville-based artist has gained the support of Mycelium Music on his newest release Alpha Threshold and has been selected as winner of two Jumpsuit Records remix contests. Get to know Antandra with this mixtape featuring original tracks and a few remixes.
ODESZA – Say My Name (feat. Zyra) (Antandra Remix)
Luke Mandala – Dancers of the Dawn of Now (Antandra Remix)
Antandra – You Are the Reason
Antandra – Alpha Threshold
Antandra – Mutation
Electrocado – Baited (Antandra Remix)
Antandra – Moonlight Flight
Polish Ambassador – Prayer for Rain (Antandra Remix)
Antandra – Amazon Revival
Antandra – Getting Warmer
Antandra – Kale Eyed a Scope
Antandra – Spectral Emission
What can we expect from this mixtape?
I put together this exclusive mix for LostinSound which contains original music and remixes. Featuring tracks from my new release on Mycelium Music, Alpha Threshold, and tracks from my debut, self-released, Attunement EP. My remix of The Polish Ambassador’s song, “Prayer for Rain”, was one of eight winners selected out of over 200 entries, and is featured on his official Pushing Through the Pavement Remixes compilation on Jumpsuit Records alongside the likes of Mr. Rogers, Saqi, Diamond Saints, Gladkill and more. I also played my remixes of Odesza, Luke Mandala and Electrocado.
What is your current studio setup?
My setup is a minimal home studio at the moment. I sometimes work with as little as a laptop running Ableton Live with VSTs including Serum, Sylenth and Tantra to name a few of my favorites. I set up whatever I feel inspired to use in the moment. My gear list includes, a Macbook Pro, M-Audio BX-5 Studio Monitors, Moog Minitaur, Akai APC40, Korg microKontrol, Korg NanoPad 2, QuNexus, Focusrite 2i4 audio interface, Blue Baby Bottle microphone, Audio-Technica ATR2100 microphone and Audio-Technica ATH-M30x headphones.
What is your current live setup?
I’m currently running Ableton Live on a Macbook Pro with my Akai APC40 midi controller, Focusrite 2i4 audio interface, Audio-Technica ATH-M30x headphones, and I’ve been tinkering with using my Korg Nanopad2 a bit. It has a nice XY controller that’s fun to play with. It all fits into two small backpacks which is great for travel! I am continually developing new ways to perform live while maintaining the quality of production.
What is your favorite free VST and can you tell us about it?
Glitchmachines’ FRACTURE is a great free plugin. As the name suggests, it mangles up the sounds in quite a number of fun ways. You have to be careful with glitches though, because they can easily be too chaotic. When I use plugins that generate some type of randomness, I like to resample them to have the editing capabilities. That way I can take the segments that I like most, slice them up, and place them in my arrangements exactly how I want.
Link us to three of your most influential non-electronic tracks.
This is a very challenging question for me to answer. Not only is there so much great music that has inspired me over the years, the line between live music and electronic music is blurred in my eyes. For example, I wouldn’t necessarily call hip hop electronic music even though much of it is sample based. Also, most live music often incorporates the use of synthesizers and effects. That being said, I’ve done my best to narrow it down to just three examples.
I studied ancient Zimbabwean mbira and marimba music for many years, and have played in two marimba bands. The syncopated 6/8 rhythms and elaborate arrangements have been a huge inspiration. Nhemamusasa is a traditional Zimbabwean song over 1000 years old. Here is a version played on Mbira: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-WpMthq5tU
I grew up in the United States, although I was born in Jamaica. My father is a musician who toured and performed with the roots reggae band, Justin Hinds & The Dominoes. He played sax in the three part horn section. I spent a lot of time around reggae music, and it’s been a big influence on my music. Here is a Justin Hinds & The Dominoes song titled, “If It’s Love You Need”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Izyrjnxp6Qo
This third track is tough to pick. I am thinking of an endless list of artists like The Beatles, Pink Floyd, Bob Marley, Radiohead, Al Green, James Brown, Sublime, NIN, Smashing Pumpkins, Shimshai, Krishna Das, etc. I will say the first alternative rock CD I ever owned was Nirvana’s ‘Nevermind’ album, and I was a fan of the grunge rock era. Since David Bowie just passed away a few days ago, I’d like to share his song, “The Man Who Sold the World” covered by Nirvana on the unplugged album: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fregObNcHC8
Do you survive financially entirely off of music or do you supplement your income by other means?
So far, music has not been a substantial source of income. Most of my music is free or name your price. Music is not about the money for me. It’s a lifelong love affair. That being said, all support I receive is appreciated. I dream of the day that I can devote 100% of my attention to making music and performing live. The name ‘Antandra’ translates to ‘Amazon’ in Latin, and I plan on donating a portion of my proceeds to causes like rainforest preservation. Aside from music, I am a graphic and web designer. For example, I designed my own logo and website.
How did you grow as an artist last year, what is the plan for 2016?
The Antandra project is still fairly fresh and was launched in August of 2014. The first song I shared under the new moniker was my entry for Ayla Nereo’s remix contest, which was one of the winners to be featured on her official compilation, along with Kalya Scintilla, Random Rab, The Human Experience and more. I took that as a good sign and invested more time and energy into the brand. Since the launch, I’ve had 47,422 plays on the Antandra Soundcloud page. Comparatively, this is more plays than I had after 12 years of making music under my other alias, DJ Story.
In 2015, I was focused on producing as much high quality music as possible. I practiced yoga which I highly recommend to anyone who spends a lot of time on the computer. In addition, I spent more time than ever before on the production of my tracks. I have shifted towards this approach so that I can give special attention to the details of my music. I released my second album, Alpha Threshold, on Mycelium Music, and had a track featured by The Untz. I also performed at events like Kinnection Campout and CoSM’s Vernal Equinox, and opened for top-notch acts locally. I was also featured on compilations alongside some of the artists I admire most.
Some of my plans for 2016 are top secret, but I will say that I have a new album in the works, some more compilation pieces and remixes. I’m also playing at a couple festivals this summer, although since the lineups haven’t yet been announced I cannot disclose those yet. I have availability for more bookings as well. Just send an email to email@example.com with the subject line ‘Antandra Booking Inquiry’ to start the conversation.