Rushden chillwave man Henry Dymott aka Ellision has been building a name of himself over the past year, including roping in fellow NN stars Nailbreaker and Mio Flux to remix recent single ‘No Smoking’. New Boots loves a fresh sound, so had to dig a little deeper. Cue this interview…
How did you start this project?
I would say that Ellision has had two different beginnings. Near the end of 2016 I had just started to get into more production, when I started collaborating with experimental guitarist and producer Curtis Jeffs on a track. Couple tracks later we released The Etherial EP under the name Ellision. When I moved away to uni in Guildford and started getting DJ slots at clubs and venues I started using Ellision as a stage name, and it just kind of stuck. Ellision became a solo project just after that first initial release, and since then I think I’ve found my sound and image. I’m a finger-drumming singer and producer. When I press buttons and it’s all live triggered in the moment – no playback – I like the reaction it gets. A lot could go wrong but that’s part of the fun of it.
I’ve released three singles so far: ‘No Smoking’, ‘The Hard Way’ and ‘Wreck Me’, with a lot of stuff crammed in-between. A beat tape, a few collaborations, live shows and a visual project. I’m planning on focusing solely on releasing music this year, and hopefully bringing out a project by the end of the year.
How would you describe your sound? Who are your main influences do you feel?
Genre flippant? A mix of chillwave, hip-hop, pop and lo-fi elements. My sound changes depending on who or what I’m working with , but it always has a particular vibe to it. My main influences at the moment are probably FKJ, Justin Vernon, Flume and Jeremy Zucker.
Tel us about new single ‘No Smoking’?
The name of the track comes from the “Coffee” sample at the start of the track. I sampled it from the 1980 movie Airplane! There’s a scene in the film where Ted Striker asks for a ticket, “Smoking or Non-Smoking”, “Smoking”. The track is about two people just starting to connect on an intimate level. It’s a “not quite in love yet” song, but who knows we might end up there.
I met AyiTe at a show where he was performing as part of Soul Purpose with O J. Hodding, and I ended up DJing for their set. I thought he was sick, so we met up for a session and worked on a track called ‘The Hard Way’ [my previous release], and I played him this track that I had recorded with Molly Nicholson and he said something along the lines of “Let me write something on this”. That’s how ‘No Smoking’ was made.
You’ve got four people remixing it, how did you choose them?
I had to get my partner in crime LUPUS on it. We’ve been doing music bits together for a while, playing festivals and shows together all around the place. We even made it out to Barcelona playing music. His ‘Autopilot Disengaged Remix’ is H U G E. Nailbreaker and Mio Flux, another two Northamptonshire-related artists, came up with two completely different remixes for the release. Nailbreaker’s remix is a heavy, glitchy track which fits the “plane crash” concept I decided on for this release. Mio’s track is a darker sounding remix; we’ve been looking for an excuse to collaborate for a while now. Dan J. Wilcox decided to just flip the script and make a spacey future bass track, having fun with AyiTe’s flow and Molly’s vocal. It was sick to have these guys work on this release, and I’m looking forward to seeing people’s reactions!
Have you played live with the current sound? Any plans to?
Yeah, I’ve had quite a lot of shows, especially last year. My Live setup is always changing but always centres around my MIDI Fighter 64 or 3D and Ableton Live. I like to have a lot of guests come up during my live sets, feature rappers, singers and even producers sometimes. I try to have a continuous stream of music throughout a set, I think that’s the DJ in me, I don’t like talking while I play I just want to play music and have a blend from track to track.
I recently played at an underground show in London at an event called Tasteneon where they live stream the whole thing in VHS somehow? Was definitely my favourite show I’ve played in a while cause the vibe was so high and the place was packed out!
Are you part of a wider scene in Northamptonshire? Any acts you wanna give a shout out to?
I’m fresh back to the Northampton scene after being away for a bit, but I’m ready to get some live sets booked and work with more artists around here. Shout outs to Krankhead [Mio Flux and Patchy The Rockstar] and Nailbreaker.
What has been your favourite Ellision moment of the past year?
Probably shooting the series of videos leading up to ‘The Hard Way’ release, particularly the shoot I had to sort at a butchers. Was a good time and the result looked sick and finished the story off as intended. Also the fact ‘No Smoking’ got a spin on BBC Radio 1xtra was a highlight for me!
What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Last album I streamed was Hi This Is Flume by Flume. But the last album I actually bought was a copy of Uh-Oh! by Tennyson, from their show in Hoxton.
What is your burning desire to do in the future? What plans do you have?
I’m planning my next single release for this year. Hoping to get some more shows in and try get a video made for ‘No Smoking’. If anyone has a plane, hit me up!
No Smoking [The Remixes] is out now on the usual digital and streaming platforms. Watch the original version on YouTube below