Until recently it was hard to join the dots between the solo work of Christoph El’ Truento and his production work with hip-hop group @Peace. The former combined the psychedelic, free jazz explorations of Sun-Ra with the playful, creative freedom of Mr Scruff; the latter (especially on EPs @Peace and Girl Songs) was Auckland’s answer to the best of West Coast hip-hop. Now, with their debut album just released, @Peace and the Plutonian Noise Symphony sees the group evolve towards a sound much more akin to their producer in chief. Celestial, more experimental beats reflected by a lyrical content that is altogether more existential, discussing themes of time, space and philosophy. There seems no better time, therefore, to ask Christoph to guest on our Stamp Mix series and ask him a few questions about his production methods. The interview below continues on from our sit down with @Peace wordsmith Tom Scott, which you can check that out here.
@Peace and the Plutonian Noise Symphony is out now. Stream it in full from the @Peace Bandcamp.
Download Stamp Mix #24. More tracklist info on Soundcloud.
The productions on Plutonian Noise Symphony are quite different from @Peace and Girls Songs. Was this intentional? Did you have a particular sound in mind for PNS?
I think as a group we wanted to separate the project from the other two to suit how we’ve grown and evolved as artists – as artists should. The album in general allowed the three producers from the group be more involved as far as the overall sound and arrangement goes, instead of us just making beats for rappers, we all came together to produce it like a proper album for grown ups.
How would you say your solo work differs from your productions for @Peace?
With my solo work I don’t have four other people to consider when writing music, I just have to answer to the ten other people in my head. So it comes out a little bit more strange, but it’s just me satisfying my musical tastes, making songs that I would like to hear.
Can you tell us a bit about the mix you made for us. Was there a particular idea you had for it?
I didn’t really get to talk to any of the other members of the group to get their input for this mix, which is what I initially wanted to do. So it’s just a bunch of music that gave a bit of direction to the album as far as the production goes, and also a bit of music that is helping to inform my personal direction as an artist and probably @peace’s future path in some ways also. I’m literally just playing some songs off my turntable doing nothing fancy though.