I want to jump into Equalizer, what was the process of turning this demo into a track, and why this one in particular?
That demo was originally and still is on my Instagram. It was just kinda a little series I was doing at the time, where I would put out ad-lib demos, cut them into sequences and put them on my Instagram - that one was called “A Thousand Years”. It wasn’t anything special, but then about two months later, I grabbed that track and started playing with it, and it completely terraformed which became “Equaliser”. If you listen to the two, which you can, it is still on my Instagram, they are very different but I think the theme, vibe and aesthetic, cross pollinated and caught fire into the other. “Equaliser” had many different forms but I think starting with that base genre really helped it eventuate from there.
Let’s talk about the hook, that real sexy, “Don’t tell me I'm drunk, lost or unstable, just call me the Equaliser” how did that originate?
Again, that was complete ad-lib but I had an overarching theme to the song which is based on an after party I went to. You know, certain syllables are easy to play with, like this random word pseudoephedrine, they’re certain words you can use in song that go really easy. If you break down equaliser (e-qua-lis-er) it’s easy to mold to a baseline or instrument you choose to lead your song with. It acts as the root of the song.
I.H also features on this track, how was it to collaborate again since “Aubrey”?
He is someone I am good friends with but he wants no part of the music scene. We do have this great relationship where we get to mess around with things, he is good at adding to what I provide with a really cool aesthetic and great accent. He adds a presence which still feels home-grown yet also very much Running Touch.
What I like about the track is the pairing of Rock and Electronica, did you find it hard to match the two genres?
I’d like to say it comes naturally, but it’s hard to say because “Equaliser” came organically during various different chapters. People have heard it, like management, and everyone had their say about where it should go and what it should have. Though, in terms of the cross-genre nature of the song, I honestly think it was an injection of a few things - like Hardcore and Funk orientated things, which are special to me. More than anything, those things come most naturally to me from being in something like a hardcore group before Running Touch. It gave me my willingness to experiment and mix different elements in; to chop and change at will and being open to criticism.
Will Equaliser serve as the sound you will make in future releases or is it more of a standalone?
Good question, and I think a bit of both. In a body of work, I will pursue something of this energy again as it nestles well in the middle of my catalogue as well as a good premise for where I’ll go next. You know, like putting a another track out there that is really relatable, really fun and fits in a lot of different formats. Whether that comes in the form of something like, “Courtesy Of” or something like this, they may have different ‘fathers’ but their relatability will always be consistent.
Now looking at the growth you’ve experienced since your debut in 2015. How do you feel from this accelerated growth? I’m guessing surprised?
Yeah, definitely surprised. It was very different from someone starting from scratch in the scene because of my background in the Hardcore scene and then later the Dj scene - I had such different expectations. My idea of success/good was different, so really I didn’t know what to expect. It is hard to know who to associate with, and that is something I do very carefully, I mean, it’s all you can do, to choose good people to surround you and make good music with. I can be guilty of overthinking so I think no expectations work well to avoid the toxicity of comparing yourself to others and the criticism of your mental and physical self. Expect less and do more is the recipe for anything.
Well, one big thing that has come up is “Courtesy Of” featuring on the Netflix show, Riverdale. How did that come to be?
It was complete chance, I suppose their music supervisor likes Australian music. If you’re a fan of Riverdale, you’ll know Dean Lewis has a song on there too which plays a big part in the series, so someone there must be a big fan of Australian music. I guess I was fortunate they enjoyed the song, and that they were willing to put someone on who isn’t too established.
From this, you also had the chance to produce for Blade Runner 2049 and 50 Shades Freed. What was that feeling like?
Those are all learned experiences because when you get approached for these things, they tell you who you’re up against from the get-go. You can imagine that due to the magnitude of both films, it goes hand-in-hand with the magnitude of artists involved. Which makes you treat it like a ‘feather in the hat’ rather than a done deal because you’ve been approached, you could be one of many artists they choose from. It has helped me to learn how to associated with that world and get better at it. So, I hope these organic situations keep unfolding and eventually pay off.
What other milestones stand out for you?
I definitely think the success of the solo tour and the opportunity to go to SXSW was extraordinary, we definitely got lucky there. But more than anything, and I don’t think this is exactly a milestone but the team I have is a real standout. I have friends as managers, friends as agents, we’re all a tight-knit group. We share a cohesive vision, which I grade above everything else.
And finally to end. What does 2018 look like for Running Touch?
Plenty of new music. I spent a lot of this year in the studio and so you can expect a lot more releases. But yeah a lot of big stuff, more collaborations, music across the board, video and art.
Listen to Equaliser here and make sure to add it to your playlist.
Catch Running Touch at the following
Sat 25 Nov - Grapevine Festival – Rochford Wines, Yarra Valley, NSW
6 – 12 Dec - Your Paradise Festival, FIJI
Sun 31 Dec - NYE in the Park - Victoria Park, NSW