Aussie DJs are having their moment, and Canberra’s bass boy Blanke is no exception. His Sneaky Plans Tour and matching extended play, featuring Portugal producer Holly, are well underway. JP Orchison’s (Blanke) upcoming/recent remixes released on Deadbeats, Buygore, Lowly Palace and etcetc set the bar high; Steve Aoki spun Blanke’s Boyz Noize “Overthrow” edit on the 2018 Ultra Main Stage and JP or John-Paul’s freshest flip of the Duke & Jones single “TUSK” is one of the most well-performing flips on the recent Deadbeats remix EP.
It’s been a solid 10 months since Noiseporn initially interviewed Blanke about the two-track record Curiosity and his experience as a supporting act for established artists, such as Zomboy, Kill The Noise and Yellow Claw. Nearly a year later, he comes through with an exclusive NP mix in hand and a plan to bless America with his presence.
For listeners who may not be familiar with your music, describe your sound in three words.
Ambitious, powerful, abrasive.
Other than a pitch black studio, where’d you go to get your creative juices flowing for the Holly collaboration “Rush”?
“Rush” came about from Holly prepping a demo that he sent through to me. We thought we would be able to turn it into something awesome, so I played with a few ideas. I think the final one was the fourth version, which isn’t that many. It’s always great collaborating with someone because one of you has usually got an idea, and the other can just work off that, and then, you can go back and forth. It’s always so fun hearing what the other person has done to the record.
Detail your first time hearing Pendulum.
This is actually such a good memory. It’s vividly planted in my brain. When I was about 10, I had a whole stack of CD’s that I stole from my brother because he left them when he moved. This stack of CD’s was like 30 deep, pretty standard for back then really and was pretty much the foundation of everything I would ever listen to from then on until I found dance music.
It had, among many, what came to be all of my favorite albums which included Metallica’s ‘Master Of Puppets,’ Tool’s ‘Lateralus,’ Pearl Jam’s ‘Rearviewmirror’ album, Nirvana’s ‘Nevermind’ and of course, ‘In Silico and Hold Your Colour’ by Pendulum. Nothing compares to these albums for me, and funny enough, I never really listened to much else since.
I was so stuck on this music. I used to listen to all of these on my stereo in my room, (dark, with neon flashing lights, of course) while I was getting lost playing PlayStation 2 for hours. ‘Hold Your Colour’ was like the perfect soundtrack to “Ratchet & Clank.”Damn, the nostalgia. I’m pretty sure thats why I love them so much.
Developing relationships with record labels is great for exposure. They just have a reach that you alone don’t really have. They get behind your music and validate it to fans too. Like if someone hears a tune and see that it’s from their favorite label, all of a sudden they go “Oh, it must be alright then.” Especially for first-time listeners to your music, it’s almost like a great icebreaker. Not to mention, how awesome it is to get recognized by these label heads you’ve looked up to and respected for so long like Zeds Dead and Downright being with Ministry of Sound.
As a self-described perfectionist, which recent or upcoming remix was quite challenging to finish?
Remixes aren’t as taxing on my creative side I’d say, compared to originals. Though, I think I did at least 11 versions of a remix I’m doing for William Black, which I’m really stoked on now. It’s this kind of epic, emotive sound I’ve always wanted to tackle and nail, but it’s always been a challenge for me to make all of these sounds fit together and sound great.
It’s like this massive wall of sound and trying to separate each sound but still make them coherent and connected, has always been a struggle for me. Seven Lions does it amazingly well, so he was good to reference with.
Can you give us any more hints about Sneaky Plans and what fans will be hearing next Friday?
Sneaky Plans is an all out, no frills EP with an overuse of obnoxious bass noises… probably. Its very “me” I guess you could say. I definitely hear myself in it a lot.
Why ‘Sneaky Plans?’
“Sneaky plans and clever tricks” is actually a variation of a quote from Roald Dahl’s “The Enormous Crocodile”. I’ve always loved how mischievous and mysterious it sounded and thought it would fit the music for the EP really well. I’ll be doing more with the name in the future, so keep an eye out.
You’ve conquered Australia. When will you circuit North America?
Its been so awesome to do two tours of Australia and do all these unreal shows within the past year, but the plan now is to get to the states as soon as possible. It’s looking like end of year/early January. There’s just so much going on over there; I just want to get amongst it. The scene looks ridiculous. When I was over in Los Angeles and Miami last year, for Miami Music Week, I couldn’t get enough of how passionate the artists and fans were about music. It was inspiring and addictive. I can’t wait.
Who played the biggest part in developing your sophomore record conceptually?
For me, it all really came together one night at home. It was one of those weird and magical nights of brainstorming ideas, falling in love with new music and artists, subscribing to random music magazines, drawing and trying crazy ideas and next thing realizing it was 5 a.m. I love how lost you can get creatively when the whole world around you is asleep. I know a few producers who would say the best time to write music is at night. Basically, I’m excited for the future. Musically and conceptually I feel really content.
Lastly, what will we be hearing in your guest mix today?
The mix is an exciting peep into the future for me. Its got heaps of unreleased stuff and awesome tunes that cover a lot of what I’m going to be releasing in the future as well. I feel really at home with this sound. I’ve been playing with it for quite a while now so I’m excited to show what I’m loving and what I’ve been creating. You’ll have to listen and find out I suppose…
Check out Blanke’s exclusive guest mix below featuring unreleased music from his Sneaky Plans EP dropping next Friday, April 13.
Pendulum, Virtual Self, Porter Robinson – Axel Grinder / Eon Break (Blanke Flip) / Divinity
Boys Noize, N.E.R.D. & Rihanna – Overthrow (Blanke Flip) / Rock The Bells / Lemon
ID – <unknown>
Kilter – No Games (Blanke Remix)
Porter Robinson & Madeon – Shelter (Madeon Evil Edit)
13 – Nuclear
ID – <unknown>
Daft Punk – Rinzler (1788-L Remix)
Blanke – Sneaky Plans & Clever Tricks
What So Not & Dyro – Bottom End
WATGOOD – Rapture
Hekler – Basic Bass Tune
Kai Wachi – GTFU
Blanke & Avance – Disturbed
Duke & Jones – Tusk (Blanke Remix)
Demons – Alon Mor (Edit)
Rezz & ISQA – Psycho
Blanke – Curiosity
Blanke & Holly – Rush
Blanke & Zeke Beats – Chaos
1788-L – Pulsar Beam
Kendrick Lamar – HUMBLE
ID – <unknown>
ID – <unknown>
Sakuraburst – Downfall