FROM OTHER is a weekly radio show showcasing the very best in forward-thinking electronic music. Tune in Wednesdays 10-11pm on fm.whus.org / 91.7 FM.
Sad Eyes has us covered with the guest mix this time around, supplying an emotive mix of glistening and bass-driven r&b vocal reworks. The CT-based producer has found a new home in this style of music, and this mix describes just what he’s all about.
Check the audio and Q&A below: [WARNING: Explicit Language]
Who are you?
My name’s Allen. I started making music some years back just bouncing around ideas. It has become the primary way I chose to express myself and it just so happens that I’m lucky enough to have people that have enjoyed it through the years.
Connecticut isn’t particularly well-known for its electronic music presence. Where do you think the scene currently sits?
It’s tough being smack in the middle of two major cities, New York and Boston. The talent is certainly here, there are many talented artists in the area that I can see doing great things with it. However, the lack of accessible venues makes it tough to make people known. As for right now, we all live online which, in this day and age, is perfectly fine.
With Sad Eyes being a relatively new project for you, what can you tell us about your journey in music up to this point?
Having recently announced that I was no longer making music under the moniker “Shmallen” was pretty heart-wrenching. I’ve dedicated so much time and effort and built up a modest but loyal fanbase I felt like I owed them an answer as to why I’ve been quiet lately. In the beginning, Shmallen was basically my first musical alias. I experimented first with disco/French-house but the brunt of the project was a deep, soulful, mellow house sound. My tracks got progressively slower and more mellowed out and Sad Eyes was born.
Your tracks show a notable emphasis on vocal samples – how does the production process look for you?
I love vocals. Always have and probably always will. I love the way they can be manipulated into senseless but melodically pleasing patterns and such. My process pretty much starts with a basic chord progression or some instrumental sample idea, coupled with my own drum patterns. After that’s done, I hunt for vocals. I would sing on these tracks if I could, but for now, I’ll stick to chopping and pitching vocal samples.
Where do you find inspiration for your work?
How I feel and what I feel like making at any given time. Sometimes ideas just spontaneously appear. Sometimes I’ll have four or five tracks in mind that I had been listening to and sort of reinterpret the best parts of each into a cohesive unit.
What’s your favorite event and/or favorite venue that you’ve performed at?
I actually have not performed Sad Eyes live yet. I am currently working on a live setup show, hopefully to debut soon in a city near you.
Lastly, what can you tell us about this guest mix?
It includes some of my favorite tunes as of late and most of my own productions as well. Gives you a glimpse into what my style encompasses. I hope you all enjoy it. Thanks for having me.