Jul 28, 2021
Flatfoot Sam Is Pioneering The TripField Sound
FlatFoot Sam has been busy pioneering his own genre called TripField. He's a lover of all that dance music has to offer, and never imagined sticking with one genre, but he's gotten super into this sound and the results have been paying off for him. Read on to learn more and be sure to check out his latest TripField release titled "Ven a Bailar"!
Hey Sam, thanks for joining us today! Starting off, can you please introduce yourself and tell us about your journey as an artist so far, from when you got started to present day?
Hi and thank you for the interview – it’s an honour. I got into music when I was at junior school, but I got into dance music when some kids at senior school started going to raves like Fantazia and Mythology. Someone gave me a Prodigy Experience tape and someone else gave me a Robbie Long mixtape and it blew my mind. I loved it. Soon after, I went to my first rave up at The Rhythm Station in Aldershot and it wasn’t long before I was there for hardcore on Fridays and deep house on Saturday nights. I started DJing because I loved what the guys were doing up there. I used to watch people like Slipmatt and Seduction and John 00 Flemming up there and think: I’m going to do this one day. I bought some shitty Soundlab DLP1 belt drive decks and learnt to mix on them, and then when I could afford it, in 1996, I bought my beloved 1210s. I still have them 25 years later. I serviced them once and they are as good as the day I bought them. They’ve had a life too. I should imagine they have had every alcoholic liquid known to humankind spilt down them at one event or another.
I started playing out in 1997, by this time hard house / techno & Nu-NRG. I played out a fair bit, most weekends, and then in the early 2000s I started playing hardcore as it had got good again. We ran a boat party in Southampton called ‘Depth Charge’ playing hardcore downstairs and anything else upstairs and it was a sell-out success for a number of years. I wrote two tracks with Jon Doe in 1998/99 which got released on vinyl. They were techno / NRG pumping bangers, but I wasn’t able to really engineer back then. Jon did the clever stuff. I dabbled a bit with Cubase and wrote some very basic tracks that sounded a bit shit, but I guess the ideas were there back then, just not the skills to deliver them.
What have been some of your career highlights to date? What are your next major goals for yourself?
Well, back in the day, playing at Creamfields after Judge Jules in a massive Big Top Tent to a few thousand nutted ravers was pretty epic. In recent times, releasing the first TripField single "I Never Left" was a massive highlight. I remember seeing the artwork for the first time and thinking this was something really special. Matt Wood from Made Noize does all of my artworks and there is no doubt he adds a special something to the project. He is like a method-designer. He gets trollied and listens to the tune a lot, asks people what they think of it and canvasses opinion. Then he designs to the vibe he gets. It’s very cool. Recently, writing the third single a couple of weeks ago (tenth TripField track, but will be the third single on the album) was a real buzz as it came together, armed with some Peroni, in virtually one late night. I think it’s the strongest release yet and a really cool track.
While it's been a difficult past 16 months, what positives were you able to draw from the situation? Were you able to use the time to work more in the studio and progress musically?
To be fair, it was the additional time and lack of distraction from lockdown that probably made this TripField project happen. I have taken loads of positives from the weird situation we all found ourselves in. I met a special someone last June, my niece even started a cheesecake business. I think there must have been some positive mojo in Nanny’s Sunday roast potatoes for our family.
Let's jump into your new release, "Ven a Bailar." Tell us about this one – where did the idea come from and what was it like working on the track?
I was still buzzing from having written "I Never Left" and I went on holiday a week or so later last August to one of my favourite places in the world – a small cove with a converted old Lifeboat station to live in. I took my laptop and got writing. Two tracks from the album were written down there, "Ven a Bailar" and "Helch." Seriously though, if you can’t get inspiration down there in that cove you should hang up the headphones and listen to The Archers and learn to knit scarves for small dogs.
This is your second single in the TripField genre. Can you tell us more about this genre and the types of sounds that it includes?
Definitely, TripField happened by mistake and I am not someone to like pigeon-holing music as my musical youth (great name for a band huh?) was from a time when dance music was just dance music, no sub-divisions and DJs had the freedom to play what they wanted. Very cool. I also like the freedom of having no rules and not following any type of template so I just wrote with a blank canvas. I love all of dance music, though I wanted to create something that was down-tempo but still had attitude. I think my complete musical taste comes out in these tracks and the tunes have a lot of yin and yang elements. There is a rave influence and a classical element – they are chilled but bold; they are uplifting but also slightly melancholy. Recurring themes are slow chunky breakbeats, subby emotional basslines, synthy ravey leads and often a cool vocal. "Ven a Bailar" has a dude singing in Spanish within it and it goes to show to me that the vibe of a song isn’t necessarily just about the words, it’s about the feeling that the words and music conjures. He has a cool voice. Overall, I like to have emotion and a depth of feeling in the tracks. I don’t try to write this emotion in a way, but it’s how it comes out.
Do you have any new music in the pipeline that you can tell us about?
Yes, massively. The next single is due out 4th August and called "R3lease." It is so cool. It too has Spanish vocals as the chorus and a really sassy lead vocal in English. It tells a story (musically ok, this is no duet, man!!!) of a guy who is torn between his partner and his lover, and even though his lover is a bitch he struggles to get away from her. I guess you’ll have to listen to the track to hear what happens. This is definitely my favourite track so far. It sounds awesome, I think. This will be the last single released prior to the album which is two third's written and due for release in autumn.
Looking back to the world of live music, what's your favorite gig that you ever had the opportunity to attend as a fan?
Probably The Prodigy at Glastonbury. Seriously cool tribal vibes that night. Also, Moby at Homelands was pretty epic. Seeing Tony de Vit play the Trade tent at Creamfields a few months before he died was immense. The lasers!
And finally, as we look ahead to better times, what has you most excited for the rest of this year?
I am really looking forward to building some momentum with this new style of music and releasing the next single. I want to experience the reaction to that. Then onto the album and seeing what people make of it all in the context of all the tracks sat next to each other. Hearing that people are loving my music is the buzz which all of this is for. If the vibe catches on, hearing other people make music in this genre would be seriously cool. Thanks for the interview guys.
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