Gilligan Moss are the kind of producers that you and your mates imagine you’d be. Drawing on a vast pool of influences, from the likes of Radiohead to DJ Koze, the duo conjure wild remixes and otherworldly original productions that are just as at home in your bedroom as they are in the club. After three years away the pair has just returned with their new EP What Happened?; a true to style eclectic mix of tracks featuring the likes of Betsy. We haven’t been able to stop listening since it dropped, so we asked the Chicago duo to put together a mix for this week’s Groundwork. Needless to say, they didn’t disappoint, with everything from afro-beat inspired club sounds to their own Frank Ocean rework appearing in the mix. Listen to it below and read out chat with Gilligan Moss after the jump.
Take us through your mix – who have you included in it and why?
For the most part, we tried to pick personal records for the mix. The front half contains some funkier, club-centric cuts, while the back half is built on more contemplative records. These are all songs that that at some point in the past year have been in heavy rotation at home for us. We also included two edits/remixes we recently made (the first track and the Frank Ocean edit), because we felt they fit the vibe of the mix.
When did you start making music? What kind of music was it?
Evan: I’ve been writing little songs as long as I can remember, but I didn’t start recording songs until I was about 18. For the first few years, I mainly made weird ambient sound collages. Not because I set out to do that, but because I didn’t really understand how to program cool drums, and the only thing I really knew how to do was loop and manipulate audio.
Ben: I didn’t start making my own music until Evan encouraged me to! I was content to listen and enjoy, but Evan helped me learn how to write. I don’t think we’ve arrived at the ideal form of what we’d like to make together and I think there are a great many kinds of different kinds of music we will end up making too.
How have the artists in this mix influenced your music?
The artists in this mix & the songs themselves have helped us to carve out our sonic map– Most of these folks make music with curiosity, beauty, and humour, which are qualities we think are important in song making. Baba is someone who has helped us remember to have fun; Frank has helped us look at song structures differently; Louis Moholo taught us the power of making songs that hit on an emotion you can’t pin down; Steve Monite taught us the power of a bassline, and Traumprinz taught us not to be ashamed of going for pure beauty. They all taught us in one way or another about a tiny part of songwriting or helped us with the big picture ‘who are we’ type questions.
Who’s your favourite artist in this mix? Why?
Ben: For me it’s gotta be Frank… I have this really clear memory of riding this airport tram one early morning in the fog, and having his new record finally click in my brain- I was firstly so irritated at the lack of drums and disorienting song structures, but suddenly on this airtram, every song just worked. He’s one of the very few artists whose praise I think is justified… he’s really just that dude in the biggest way.
Evan: Frank is god-level all-time favourite for both of us. So my answer isn’t the same as Ben’s, Baba Stiltz is another guy who we admire a lot. There’s too much grey, bland electronic music — Baba and the Studio Barnhus crew bring so much personality and colour to their music, which is something we try to channel in our work.
What’s your favourite track in this mix?
Evan: The final song, ‘You Ain’t Gonna Know Me ‘Cos You Think You Know Me’ by the Louis Moholo Octet. This song straight up brought me to tears the first time I heard it. This is funeral music, wedding music, celebration music, music to play after a long day… I could give you 10,000 words on why I think this is one of the greatest pieces of music of all time, but I’ll spare you my breathless praise – just listen to it.
Ben: I think…’2 bad’? I know you’re supposed to listen to it at a club at the end of a great DJ set or whatever, but I took a really great bath and put it on recently and had a psycho-spiritual vibe going on.
We’ve got some hot ~~**remixes**~~ coming out from our record, which is a first for us. It’s exciting to hear other people’s take on your own music. We’ll be touring on this record we just released too! Going out in 10 days for some North American action and we are excited for people to hear it and excited to keep writing.
Follow Mike Vinti on Twitter