OTW #479: Flume

Sun-kissed yet introspective house music
Flume

Sometimes less is more. A self-confessed tech junkie, Australian producer Flume - real name Harley Streten - decided to throw out anything he deemed unnecessary. Given a sudden rush of focus, Flume’s debut album, a heady mix of house textures and gently wrought introspection, quietly fell into place. “I always felt that I had the skills, as a producer I was quite confident in my ability,” he says softly, “but it was really just finding that sound, my own sound, which took time.”

His set-up (“It’s still super ghetto!”) while basic affords the producer huge flexibility. Shuffling between moods, Flume’s debut album is a catalogue of colours and shapes, with the Australian displaying enormous ambition. “My intention was to write music for headphones,” he explains. “I feel like the energy that’s come from it initially has been because of my musical upbringing. My entire musical history has been dance music.”
Part of a burgeoning wave of new electronic talent from Australia, Flume’s debut album features walk on performances from the likes of Moon Holiday, George Maple and fellow Clash favourite Chet Faker. “He’s so good to work with,” Streten enthuses. “He’s so talented, I’m never pulling my hair out over stuff. I like to let the vocals have complete creative control because I feel like that’s their thing, that’s what they’re good at. A lot of the time the results are surprising if the people you’re working with are like that.”

Filtering across the net as 2012 drew to a close, Transgressive have stepped in to support a British release of Flume’s self-titled debut later this year. “I didn’t expect people to like it so much, so to see the actual reaction online was pretty overwhelming,” he says. “It made me really excited; every morning I’d wake up and I’d look at my SoundCloud and there’d be more plays and the Facebook would have extra likes. It’s been crazy. I think it’s really good that it’s been an organic thing rather than someone from a major label putting $100,000 into a marketing campaign. It’s just spread online. Stoked.”

Words: Robin Murray
Photography: Neil Bedford


Where: Sydney
What: Sun-kissed yet introspective house music
Get 3 songs: ‘Stay Close’, ‘Warm Thoughts’, ‘Star Eyes’
Unique Fact: Flume picked up his first piece of music software from the front of a cereal box, aged thirteen.
 

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