Our latest minimix comes from Colorado based producer and graphic designer GUNKST. Read on for our chat, and listen to the mix!
Hey Gunkst! What’s up? Tell us more about your sound!
Yooo!! Currently eating chips and trying to recover from last night’s show haha. There was a lot of tequila involved. My sound has definitely changed a lot over the past few years. I started out making more loose “boom bap” type beats that were heavily inspired by shit like Samiyam and pre-“Butter” Hudson Mohawke, and I’ve moved towards a more experimental sound with tighter drums. I think it falls somewhere in between hiphop/rap and dance music. Most of my music has always had this sorta dark vibe thats tied it all together.
Your name is very unique… what’s the story behind it?
So one night in like 9th grade my friend Mike’s parents were out of town and everyone was partying at his house. I was super wasted and for whatever reason decided to make a rap album. I made like 5 songs that night on GarageBand. It was my first time trying to make beats, and I mainly just used stock GarageBand loops and incorporated a lot of crazy sounds like cars crashing and the brontosaurus wail. (which was my fav stock GB sound) Then I freestyled over the beats. They were probably the most ignorant songs I’ve ever heard. Gunkst was born when trying to come up with a name for the project. I was just trying to think of a name that no one had heard before, and I think it also loosely stems from my last name which is Goodwin.
Along with your work as a producer, you also are a graphic designer. Do you feel that graphic design and production follow a similar creative process? Why or why not?
Yes! I definitely feel like designing and producing are extremely similar. For me it’s like the same exact thought process. I think it’s mainly because of the way the software is used. I look at “layers” in Photoshop the same way I look at “audio/midi tracks” in Ableton, and “rasterizing” in Photoshop would be the equivalent to “freezing/flattening” in Ableton. I recently just started doing animation in AfterEffects too, and that’s even more similar to production because you have the whole timeline aspect.
The most common word I’ve seen used to describe your sound is “experimental,” which is hard to define in itself. What do you feel is experimental about your music? Do you feel like that word is an accurate representation of your catalogue?
I think “experimental” describes my music pretty well. Every track is definitely an experiment for me. I like finding weird sounds that typically wouldn’t be used and repurposing them. One of my goals is to be browsing Youtube one day and see a video called “Gunkst-type beat”, so I really like the fact that people have trouble defining my music. With so many people producing these days you have to be different. Thats always been one of the most important things for me… Having a sound and aesthetic that’s uniquely mine.
Lastly, what advice would you give to others hoping to produce?
Stick with it!! It takes a while to get the point where you can use software efficiently enough to create what’s in your head, but if you have the idea and your passionate about it you’re already halfway there. As technology progresses, musical technique is becoming more and more irrelevant. It’s all about the creative idea now. You don’t have to be able to play the piano to make a crazy dope chord progression.