Talks with Tyler Smith
aka Androcell

©2014 Ambient Visions


Tyler Smith aka
Androcell

Visit Androcell's website


 

Imbue

 

AV:  How did you get started in music and did you ever have any formal training? 

TS:  Ever since I can remember music has been influential and important to me. While growing up playing a little piano, being in a touring youth choir, and being a serious drummer, I tried to pay attention as best as possible to all the educational music experiences and instruction I had in my developmental youth. That same attention would also be given to all the records that made me feel good while listening to them. I love the feelings I get from certain musical formations so much that I started to produce my own music around 1996, to try and crystallize my own thoughts and feelings into projected sound waves. This started with a slow but steady accumulation of hardware gear using dedicated MIDI sequencers and eventually the acquisition of a Mac G4 which was a real game changer for me at the time. By 2003, I had begun the Androcell project and have given it most of my musical attention ever since. 

AV:  What is it about electronic music that draws you and listeners to it?

TS:  I couldn’t say for anyone else, but for me it is the almost unlimited possibility of sound generation and combinations inside the audible frequency spectrum that span a range from cinematic low end bass that can only be felt to the highest frequency sound waves a human can detect with the ear. Electronic music gives palpable meaning to the phrase “sound on sound”. 

AV:  Has there been a flow and progression to the music that you have written and released over the past decade? 

TS:  I generally just write what I am feeling and try my hardest not to over-think things too much anymore. 

AV:  How would you describe the music that you create as Androcell? 

TS:  I define it as an organic meets electronic, musical expression of bass drenched, effects heavy sound manipulations. 

AV:  You just recently released your latest album called Imbue on October 17, 2014. Where did the title come from and how does it relate to the music that the listener will find there? 

TS:  The definition of Imbue is “inspire or permeate with a feeling or quality” so I feel that pretty much speaks for itself and sums up what I was aiming for with this album. I hope for every listener it will indeed do just that. 

AV:  As writer/producer of all the tracks on this project do you enjoy being able to control your music through the entire process of recording it? Is it easier or harder to do than say working with the traditional studios where you had to deal with several people while recording your music? 

TS:  What is a traditional studio? :)

I don’t have any experience in a “professional” studio setting if that is what you mean. I’m just a guy with some standard, run-of-the-mill gear, a Rode microphone, and hands and fingers that obviously like to stay on the move. ;) Yes, I absolutely love being in control of it all. It is a strong reason why I said to hell with drumming in bands as a young teenager in the mid 90’s and sold my drum kit to buy a fun, programmable synthesizer. My studio is the one nice little place that keeps me free of the distractions and concerns of the external world. 

AV:  Typically is there a theme that flows through a project like Imbue as you are writing and assembling the songs that will eventually make up the album? What was on your mind as you wrote and recorded the songs for Imbue? 

TS:  I just tried to keep happiness at the forefront of what I was doing most of the time and kept plugging away until something cohesive and engaging seemed apparent. My only real direction with any album is that it has to be at least 8 songs. 

AV:  As an indie artist how tough is it for you to make enough money on your music to be able to keep making more music? Would you say most indie artists are in the same boat when it comes to finding ways to motivate listeners to support them? 

TS:  “Indie” doesn’t necessarily imply an artist is just getting by anymore. Are all indie artists in the same boat? I don’t think so. Some seem to be rolling deep on yachts while some seem astray in a dinghy with no paddles. Fortunately, I am in my humble kayak and have learned how to keep skillfully cutting my own way through the tumultuous waters of the “music business”. It isn’t glamorous or easy at all but when I know I am truly on my own in this, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I am my own captain on a sea where it seems like there are plenty of artists who are tourists on their own cruise ship with a manager at the helm. 

AV:  Tell me about your approach to fusing many cultures and styles into your music and what you mean by using the studio-as-instrument approach to creating your music? 

TS:  I use some recorded sounds of instruments and voices captured from cultures around the world and combine them into the music in ways that are not necessarily “traditional” by sometimes heavily editing, re-arranging and applying effects chains to the sources. These individual cultures could take this as disrespectful but I mean no malicious intention. I find some very pleasurable results from mixing, for instance, vocals from one culture with the percussion of another culture, or a stringed instrument from one region with the wind instrument of another region, and so on and so forth. If it sounds good in the mix for me then I will use it. 

By saying “studio-as-instrument approach” I am meaning using my collection of software and physical gear in extensive combinations to create interesting sounds and sonic textures that might not otherwise be created alone with just a “single source” instrument. Thus, the studio becomes one big instrument at times, working simultaneously to create one glorious “part”.

AV:  Anything else you’d like to say to your fans about Imbue or about Androcell’s music in general?

TS:  Thank you ALL for your continued support!! Much love! :) More info about how to get the new album on CD or DIGITAL DOWNLOAD below.

Available on CD direct from the artist here:
http://www.androcell.com/androcell_CD.htm

Available as DIGITAL DOWNLOAD here:
https://androcell.bandcamp.com/album/imbue

Also available on CD from Altar Records here:
http://www.altar-records.com/imbue.html

If you like the cover artwork and want to know more about the artist who painted it all, please visit Jack Shure’s website for more info.
http://www.jhsart.com