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Jack Smith

I don’t think I’m alone when I say the latest release from one of Brazil’s most accomplished artists on Soul:R is the finest of 2013 so far: both sides of the single as breathtaking beautiful and technically proficient as the other. A future classic in the making for sure… so it is with great pleasure that we introduce the artist himself to our Five Steps series. Step forward Bungle.

Step 1: Origins

One day I was just playing football at school & someone was playing ‘XRS – Get Back’ so I stopped to hear it out. Just after, Sci-Clone’s ‘Everywhere You Go Remix’ came on my radar. What the hell was that? My friends laughed at the mechanical-sounding beats but I loved the piano & sax solos. Then listening to that whole album I realised electronic music could actually be cool.

Step 2: Introducing

I was already involved with recording at the time as a guitarist, both with a band and as a solo musician. The more I went out to clubs, the more I started trying to experiment in the studio, but it was all very weird and unacceptable for a progressive rock / jazz musician to make some bleeps with FL Studio. It was a very basic setup to be honest, and it took me some time to come up with something consistent. The first track I presented to local DJ’s was ‘Yes, I Know’.

Step 3: Foundation

I don’t know if I have one track that I feel ‘made my name’. If there is, I reckon it’s ‘Good Times’. I was doing my first tour in Europe and Smithy talked to DJ Hype about me, I had just finished ‘Where I Am’. Kevin asked for something different for the B-side though, my very own sound so I said ‘alright’ and headed back to Brazil, and went as much introspective as I could. The result was ‘Good Times’ – and I really believed he wouldn’t sign it. My life was changing fast in between these tours, so writing something very personal at that time made me realise about things I haven’t before, really important stuff in my personal life and I was lucky enough to express it all on the track. At the moment I finished, it was already such a big personal achievement no matter what happened from then on. Kevin loved it and decided to release it as the A-side of the record. To my surprise it went straight to the top two on Beatport & number one on D&BA, and people began asking for it at gigs. The track shaped who I am and I’ll always thank Kevin for that.

Step 4: Present

After my first album I wanted to go for a more serious and artistic sound, but it’s hard to not sound ‘fluffy’ if you lay down thousands of melodies on the arrangement. ‘Good Times’ was a big step but I wanted to go even deeper, so it all became a big issue for me. Marcus was into ‘Good Times’ and he understood my issue and where I wanted to go with my music. Memories LP on Spearhead was a huge step, but it only really happened [with Soul:R] when I did ‘Aura’ five years later Marcus and I started talking about that. Again, I did it for personal reasons, just for me basically and didn’t expect him to like it.

Step 5: Future

There’s no new material in sight yet, I’ve decided to let ‘Aura’ breathe for the time being. Though I’d like to point out new talent Urbandawn as a future big artist!

Bungle – ‘Aura’ / ‘Astral Travel’ is out now – get yours from Chemical Records.