Having come to prominence with GLAQJO XAACSSO, experimental electronic producer patten has just shared his full-length debut for Warp Records. We invited him to talk us through the creative process, and share some of the concepts behind ESTOILE NAIANT.

A big congratulations on the new album. How does it feel to finally have it out there?

It’s an interesting moment with it being out in the world in that form, entwined with moments of other lives, in minds and places I’ll never know.

How’s the feedback been so far?

I think the record seems to function a little like a Rorschach test. It’s very interesting how heavily diverse the responses to it have been so far: some hear complexity, shifting density, [while] others openness and meditative simplicity; some delicate order, others intense chaos. Very interesting. Supremely. It’s as if people are speaking about entirely different things. I see this as a key indicator of the healthily functioning mechanics of the work: it’s a truly open text.

What did you want to achieve sonically with ESTOILE NAIANT?

In the title, ESTOILE NAIANT, there’s something of what’s being looked at here: not a goal but an area, a situation or environment. There’s a lot there in the title mapping out a certain territory.

How do you feel you’ve progressed artistically since GLAQJO XAACSSO?

I don’t think “progress” is such a useful term to take on in looking effectively at what moving inside life can be. Our lives can unravel across on entirely different frameworks to that. Demarcating artistic progress sounds a little linear and statistical for what’s happening here. We don’t even have to think about time and temporal events in this way – linear, separate, hermetic, discreet.

Has being part of the Warp family altered or influenced your approach at all?

Not really, no. Working without official releases, just putting out my own CDRs, performing live and so on was an environment of total freedom; working with No Pain In Pop on releasing the first LP was the same, and it follows now with Warp.

The possibility of that approach has always been a key factor in the choices that have been made in terms of who to work with on this, from project, to labels, to collaborators and so on. Ultimately, one of the most important things in this is for all involved to hold the value of freedom of thought in high esteem, to give space to the mind. It’s an important way of being as a person in this world, and making records isn’t a separate thing to that.

How did the writing and recording process compare to that of GLAQJO XAACSSO?

The process of arriving at the recorded aspect of ESTOILE NAIANT was very similar, in that it was open and without boundaries. It’s an important part of this to remain as receptive as possible to the situation as it unfolds, engaging deeply. This process encompasses every waking and sleeping moment: as I type now and pause, breathe, glance away and back, it is happening.

There’s potential in every single thing to feed into this. Light reflected, warmth sensed, sharpness tasted, a thought lost in passing, a short hailstone shower clattering on a roof: it’s all equal.

What sources or genres do you generally find yourself looking to when sampling?

Sampling existing musical information in that way doesn’t really feature in the process at all. Most of the sounds are generated from scratch, but perhaps they could sound sampled at times, because of the compositions and processing. It all goes through a bit of a journey.

What kind of concepts or ideas were you exploring this time round?

I’m really interested in the idea of transcending your own imagination: finding ways to avoid being bound by what your own thoughts might deem possible. When the ‘I’ disappears - if only for a moment. Altered states are fascinating.

The album artwork seems in perfect harmony with the music. Is the visual aesthetic as important to you as the music you create?

The visual, sonic, live, linguistic, imagined, programmed and unseen aspects of the project are all of identical importance. with no hierarchy at all. Harmony is a perfect word actually, as the environment presented here for public use – “patten” – feels like simultaneous, entangled, parallel explorations occurring in various accents or registers. A term I’ve used before for this is a “cloud of vectors”. Looking at, or rather, mapping out and testing/inhabiting ways of living and thinking without restriction or boundary is absolutely essential to all of us working on patten.

Can you tell us how you came to work with visual artist Jane Eastlight, please? What is it about her work that resonates with you?

We started working almost right away after meeting. The way it happens is that we’re constantly trading words, ideas, nodes, textural notions, frameworks and so on, and these begin to manifest themselves in forms. These forms constitute part of a continuing conversation without end, a small part of which is visible in the materials released into the public arena. In a sense, the components out in public temporarily splinter from and fold back into this stream of thought, always mutating and shifting further.

How do you translate your music to a live environment?

The music comes very much from a process of performing live and bringing findings from that back into the studio and vice versa. So the live performance grows and shifts in a non-linear way, parallel to the investigative composition for recordings. They are, for a time, one and the same thing. Once a release exists, then there is a natural divergence. The development of course continues live and the recorded version continues to develop as well as time moves.

So what’s the plan for the remainder of 2014?

As well as seeing a number of brand new releases from other artists, the imprint I run [Kaleidoscope] will birth another organisation to develop some different kinds of activity. There will be more patten live AV shows worldwide too. The ‘ESTOILE NAIANT LP party’ in London is coming up on the 16th May at Concrete.

There’s also a new sort of approach to DJ sets I’ve been working on; some couture extending the language of ESTOILE NAIANT is due before too long. A brand new monthly night will kick off soon as well, injecting something London’s been missing recently into things. There’s really a lot to come.

April 2014