Sydney producer, MUTO, aka Miles Davidson, surely would have been lurking in your playlists by now. His EP Arcane was released on July 4, which includes his hit single ‘Tessellating’ ft. Borneo’s Oliver Dibley (an absolute tune), landing #1 on Hype Machine. ‘Say Nothing’ ft. Emerson Leif also topped the iTunes Electronic Chart, and other musicians featured on his album include UK-born Deutsch Duke, and HVNCOQ from Esese.
From storming instrumental pieces to stunning vocal performances and synth-driven hip hop, Arcane is a testament to Miles’s ability in song writing, sound design and alliance. Georgia had a chat with him about his influences and experiences so far in the Aussie music scene.
Talk me through the process of making this EP.
It’s been a collection of demos that I’ve been working on for the past couple years that I felt were more cohesive together. I’ve been working on it for quite a while so it’s nice finally having them out in the world. It’s been a bumpy road getting them all finished, but it’s been worth it.
How did you get into contact with the other artists featured on Arcane?
I guess it’s just through word of mouth. Within my label there are certain links to other record labels that have really great vocalists, so we’re all in a little community where we can chat and send demos. It’s all done via the Internet now so it’s great to send your demo out to a whole bunch of people and get feedback, and hone in on one artist that you’re really vibing on and then meet them.
Where did you find inspiration for this EP?
There’s never really one thing from the beginning, it’s usually a day-to-day kind of vibe. It’s the collection of the music you’re listening to, how you’re feelings, where you go and what you see. I don’t think it’s specifically one thing. Over two years you can have a lot of different experiences and a few emotional lives within that period. [For me], I have a close friend of mine, Harley Streten, who everyone would know as Flume, and he’s been a big part of my learning process and getting up to par as an electronic music producer. Everyone has favourite artists, and I don’t think it’s one artist where I think ‘I really want to sound like that’. It’s more just certain genres have certain elements that I really like, and I try to use [those elements] in an experimental process.
Which would be your favourite song on the EP and why?
It would probably have to be ‘Tessellating’. It was one of those songs where it was really fun to make. I had Oliver Dibley in the room, and we hadn’t really known each other before then, but we got along really well and it was a really good night. I think the music just spoke for itself in that occasion. From that experience, I’d say that was the most fun to make.
What was it like touring with ODESZA in Europe last year?
It was eye opening and absolutely manic. I had to get myself to a new country every single day. They all had a bus that took them from country to country, so it was definitely a journey having to lug all my stuff around by myself. But then the reward was obviously playing to much bigger crowds than I’d ever experienced, and be a part of something that was way bigger than myself at the time. It was pretty incredible. It makes me less nervous going on tour now, having that kind of experience under my belt. It’s kind of like a right of passage to some degree.
How was Splendour?
Another right of passage, especially in the Australian music and festival circuit for sure. It was incredible, especially having the EP out and getting people gathering in much bigger numbers than I’d ever seen before, with them singing the words out – that was pretty special. Having the whole new lighting rig set up and the vocalists come on stage, it was just a really special experience.
Did you get to see many acts?
It was pretty scattered because I had so much work to do in terms of preparation and doing interviews and DJ sets, so I was kind of all over the shop. It definitely wasn’t my normal festival experience where I would go for three days and watch as many musicians as I could. But I did get to see a couple acts like Kendrick, Franz Ferdinand, Khalid and Ocean Alley.
What are you most excited for with your tour starting this Friday?
Having a taste of it from Splendour, I’m just keen to test out different waters and different venues. I think it’s going to be more intimate doing it in club/bar kind of shows, and having the lighting really be a tool in that sense because it’s going to be more darker and intimate vibe, and that will be pretty special as well. I’m programming all these lights as we speak – it’s pretty full on!
MUTO will be hitting up Rocket Bar on Friday 31 August – grab your tickets here.