The Voice Behind The Mask
Matias Aguayo welcomes me into his head space. He is, with immediate recognition, the future holdover to crossing genres in the electronic music advancement. His complex entirety of foundation phase thoughts breathe in a way I have never been introduced to before. He is not from this era. His processes cross batch between the vibrating present and a future we haven’t taken on as our own yet. When he speaks, he thinks in layers. Just like when he produces the music. Chilean-born, German raised, Argentinian liveliness and a Mexican partner, Aguayo is the epicentre of cultural intuition.
When he creates, he listens to what is already there. He observes and translates his surrounding sounds into his production and takes what exists in his environment already, but shares it in a new way.
“I find the moment I am confronted with a situation of playing or recording which is new and different is the most inspirational, “says Matias.
Matias’s affiliation to his voice as an instrument is not a new idea. Many contemporary artists work within or around their vocals as a point of reference. In Matias’ case, he starts the majority of his productions with his voice. He feels his voice is the most genuine way of arranging a track. It is his main instrument. When he sings a bass line, it the most direct way of translating his imagination.
“The voice is the most original sound I have”, explains Matias. He believes people have become virtuosos of languages and he is fascinated by the different dialects individuals have. This comes into play when using the voice as an instrument, as spoken word plays out its own composition and turns into a melody. In his last album ‘The Visitor’, Matias used spoken word and turned them into a tune, which is more “subconsciously built” than if he sat down with a score and a piano.
When asked about his ideal mood and venue for a set, he says his preference lies in the variation of places. His connect to an art gallery differs from that of a street party. “The perfect venue or spot for me wouldn’t be perfect, because I would always think of the other ones,” he says.
“The beautiful thing about live gigs is that sometimes you play sets that last for building up the mood slowly” describes Matias.
“A short slow set is also very cool. It changes the approach and keeps everything going in a very short amount of time.”
Speaking about his label Cómeme, Matias reveals his selection process when it comes to signing or working with new artists.
There are different stories behind every artist. Some are old friends such as Christian S who had sounds that needed to be released, and other people were found on MySpace and got in touch.
Matias needs to like the music. That’s a priority. He also believes it’s important for people to have an open mind to collaborate. He could find a musician he admires, but they might not fit the label. At the end of the day, the attractiveness lies in the unknown. He likes unfished stories and narratives open to work through different processes. He doesn’t believe in genres. He believes in DJs creating an atmosphere in music. The modern rhythms are attractive as they are up-to-date and not stuck in the past. “As soon as something has a name, it has died for me.”
Matias helps choose and build a narrative with a sequence of tracks. “Helping other people finish their music is as fulfilling as making my own music,” illuminates Matias.
When asked about his presence and awareness of music in South Africa, he tells a story of friends bringing him mix tapes and searching You Tube for exposure. He knows the greats, such as Brenda Fassie, Hugh Masekela and Yvonne Chaka Chaka. He also admires what DJ Spoko is doing. He reminisces of a time when our local music felt similar to the rhymes and sounds he was doing at a younger age. For him, South Africa was always present as an idea. He was curious about its past and its activity. This is Matias Aguayo’s first time in South Africa. In his time here, he will be exposed to the different cultural sounds we have embraced and hopefully will leave knowing a bit more about how we create.
Visit the event page below to find out more about his tour in South Africa.