by Kyle Taylor |
It’s been a long time coming, but finally the Colorado trio DYNOHUNTER is unveiling their latest cohesive work, the new album, The Nomad.
With a rich modern electronica style, DYNOHUNTER blends their unique production style with plenty of classical flavor. Utilizing live saxophone, keys, synthesizers, drums, and bass guitar, the DYNOHUNTER live experience is one that’s not only stunning, but full encapsulating.
Those very same live aspects show through vibrantly in all of the group’s music, but especially here on The Nomad. Throughout, the album creates rhythmic grooves, both smooth and funky.
Each member has their moment to showcase their musical prowess, a perfect example being the album’s intro, in which saxophonist Clark Smith bleeds a soulful melody into a massive electronic incline. Drummer Justin Ehmer provides a very individualist flavor to the album, implementing both acoustic and electronic drum pads, often fusing the two within the same track. Fred Reisen controls most of the synthesizer work, which melds itself into various forms ranging from funky to loose and tropical.
The album is undeniably electronic based. The production and synthesizer elements are readily apparent from start to finish, but the inclusion of these instrumental aspects keeps the album breathing new life into the world of jamtronica fusion.
We were lucky enough to speak with bassist Fred Reisen about the album and the DYNOHUNTER project in general. Read below for the full interview.
DYNOHUNTER – The Nomad — FREE Download!!
Funkadelphia: “What is each of your individual functions in DYNOHUNTER- both in producing the music and for live performances?”
Fred Reisen: “The writing process and approach has varied over time. Clark has contributed the most volume to the repertoire but it has also mostly been an inclusive process where we all produce and have an equal say. At this point the project is more of a three headed monster in terms of writing with us all bringing in ideas, whether they be chord changes, a bass line or a melody. With that being said most of the time someone will take the reins if they really have the vision for the song locked in. Having us all contribute adds diversity to the sound we are putting out there and it feels good to have all three individual styles mixed in.
The live performance definitely keeps us busy and at times we have even referred to our sets as much as an athletic endeavor as an artful expression. Even though we do have tracks playing with us we take it upon ourselves that when a line ‘counts’ one of us should somehow be performing it. With that being said Justin (drums) has taken it upon himself to play some of our percussive melodies on his SPD drum pad sometimes with one hand as he keeps the beat going with his other limbs. Fred’s role is usually all things low-end. He will use his synth bass to play many of the side-chained electro tones/lines that you hear in our music, however, sometimes pads and melodies will be thrown in there. He will switch back to the electric bass for the funky bass lines and also use his low pass filter to hit some of the sub bass lines. On stage Clark not only acts as the DJ, mixing songs, queuing samples, and triggering looped sections but also will act as a keyboard player hitting the changes and obviously he uses his saxophone as our lead instrument, kind of like the call of the Dynohunter. Other than that our only other job is to rage up there when it comes time for a looped jam section.“
Funkadelphia: “Was DYNOHUNTER the first project that came from the three of you, or did you toy around with any other projects or sounds before ending up where you are now with DYNOHUNTER?”
Fred Reisen: “We have all been playing music for many years and there have been many “babies” along the way. Dynohunter is the first live/electronic cross over that any of us have done though. Dynohunter is most definitely the focus for all of us but being instrumentalists we do play other gigs from time to time. These can be bar gigs around denver/boulder, house parties, and sometimes even the dreaded wedding gig. For example This past weekend Clark sat in with the funk super group Analog Son at The Bluebird in Denver and Fred played a Darkside of the Moon cover set in Denver.“
Funkadelphia: “How did you learn to play music? Are you classically trained or self-taught?”
Fred Reisen: “Our music education is an on-going process. New techniques in production and playing better as a unit are always coming into focus. Justin and Clark met at the Lamont School of Music in Denver while studying jazz performance and have been playing their instruments for almost 20 years. Fred is mostly self-taught but comes from a musical family, even his babysitter growing up was musical, her 8-piece soul band practiced at his house, so there was plenty of inspiration around.“
Funkadelphia: “Living in the musical hotbed that is Colorado, can you speak a bit about what it’s like having so many readily available opportunities for collaborating with other musicians?”
Fred Reisen: “Being a musician in Colorado is a blessing and playing in a band where live and electronic fusion is embraced is even more so. On any given night you can find a truly mind blowing show in the Denver/Boulder area. To have so many truly special musicians and a really inclusive atmosphere amongst us is about as good as it gets. The best news is that there are plenty of collaborations to come from us and the talented pool of people we have here.“
Funkadelphia: “So tell us a little bit about this album; how long would you say this one’s been in the making?”
Fred Reisen: “This album really speaks to the influence we have felt from house music over the last year or so. Sometimes house music gets a bad wrap and like all genres it can be adulterated and turned into garbage. For us house music is the ultimate dance music and with a four on the floor feel you can really just keep it going all night. What we tried to do on The Nomad is really touch on every aspect of house music that we get excited by and put our own unique twist on it. You will hear different songs aimed at different sub genres funky chicago house, electro, trance, and deep house. The way the tracks are ordered is geared to give a well rounded listening experience and take you on a ride. That is why we named the album “The Nomad” it represents our nomadic journey through the universe of house music.“
Funkadelphia: “Does The Nomad try to stick pretty tightly to the DYNOHUNTER sound we know; or are you trying to expand your range of style?”
Fred Reisen: “The process for The Nomad was a little different for us. Instead of doing it all at home we went to Scanhope Sound in Denver to do a lot of the work. Many thanks to Josh Fairman who helped record and engineer the whole session. We ran stems through analog gear which allowed us to get some of the warmth into our production we’ve lacked by mixing and mastering “in the box”. Also tracking the live instruments and running our final mix through an SSL console also makes this album feel special for us. We each got to really put our stamps on the record and show some personality. In the end the album definitely turned out the way we have always felt Dynohunter should sound. However, we will never stop working to make our music better and progress as a band.“
Funkadelphia: “Are there any Spring tour or Summer festival plans you can disclose at this point in time?”
Fred Reisen: “We do have a spring tour announced and more dates for the summer are rolling in nicely. Should be a great couple of months for the Dynotribe.“