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Exclusive Interview with Hermitude, Playing White Rabbit This Friday

Australian electronica artists, Hermitude straddle genres from dub to hip-hop to jazz and back again. [This Friday](http://www.cityweekend.com.cn/beijing/events/30615/), these legends of the electronica scene set up their synths and turntables at White Rabbit for an unmissable live set marking the release of their third album. CW’s Jessica Beaton recently interviewed Luke of this dynamic duo of electronica. **Your first release, Imaginary Friends, was vinyl-only. Why did you go down that route? **
Having a release on vinyl was always a big dream for us coming up. We were in a another hip hop group called Explanetary for a couple of years before Hermitude which released one EP on Elefant Traks as well but that was CD only. Vinyl is quite expensive to manufacture so its not always affordable for first releases, especially when you don't have a fan base that will definitely buy up your records. So I guess when we did imaginary friends, it was a pretty big stipulation for us that it had to be vinyl regardless of the cost and also because we wanted to release something for all the DJ's out there that are avid vinyl collectors. **Your second album, Alleys to Valleys, refers to your move from Sydney to Blue Mountain, no? Why'd you decide to make the move?**
It didn't really have that title because we moved to the Blue Mountains, we actually grew up there as kids. That album had that title because we reside in Sydney but the studio where we write all our music is in the Blue Mountains. The sound of that record we think is a real mix of the serene sounds of the mountains where we grew up mixed with the hectic vibe of the city. **You guys have toured a lot over the past few years, who's been the best audience?**
Everywhere is different. We've been lucky enough to play in Japan, U.S, Norway, Malaysia and all over Australia. We go back to Japan a lot becaue they really dig our sound. The U.S and Norway were great audiences to play to. Malaysia was a little quiet at the beginning of our set but we had them in a frenzy by the end, and of course you can't really beat playing to your home crowd too. Who knows, maybe china will take the crown! **What are three things you miss when on tour? **
Hmmm, its hard to get a good coffee when you leave Australia, were pretty fussy about that. Theres only so much starbucks you can drink. **What's one thing you looking forward to when you get to China?**
We can't wait to try some local cuisine. We haven't been to China before and we love Chinese food back home but we also know that's its probably nothing like the real thing. Were ready for the authentic experience! **If you had a Chinese name, what would you want its meaning to be?**
I dunno about Gusto but something like “Mountain Lotus Flower.” I know that sounds real cliché but I dig that kind of thing. If anyone can draw those characters and bring them to the show that would be sweet! **China is the land of illegal downloading, as a DJ, what are your views on this?**
Illegal downloading is an out of control beast that is close to impossible to tame. On the one hand, if people are down loading your music all over the world, it is reaching ears far and wide that may not normally be covered by your distribution network, which I think can only be a good thing as your spreading fan base. However, your basically giving away your music that you put years into making. It can be quite disheartening to not receive any money for all the people that are enjoying what you have made. **How do you think illegal download as affected you?**
I think it has affected us slightly. Our last couple of albums have appeared on Limewire and I'm sure on many other sights too. Its stupid to believe that piracy is not affecting you in some way in the music industry. However I think it is more of a major problem for larger bands that are combating the problem of their albums appearing for download before they are even released! That would most definitely be crushing. **Have you been to China before to play?**
Never. Neither of us have ever been to China. **Why'd you decide to come here? ** Our good friend Katrina suggested we come over and play since we already had plans to be in Japan. It seemed like a great idea to us to expand our existing tour to China. **What are five tracks fans can expect to hear?**
We will be playing a mix of songs from all of our previous releases. We'll be playing Sunsetter which is off our last E.P. This is a reggae flavored number which features the amazing talents of Matt Ottingong on the tenor sax. Another tune we'll play is Gustos Theme which is off our first album Alleys to Valleys. This is a straight up Hip Hop banger which will feature El Gusto scratching up a storm on the turntables. Also Nightfalls Messenger which was off our last album Tales of the Drift which has a nice asian style to it. And finally Cartridge Kings and Slychain which are both off our new album threads. Cartridge Kings is a track we made which features all sounds off all old video games. Slychain is an fat uptempo hip-hop track that features myself on the Keys and Gusto cuttin’ it up! We look forward to meeting you all!"

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