An 8-bit beat, helium-voiced rap verses about kangaroos, and a quick little Salt’n-Pepa reference thrown in for good measure. Welcome to the world of Javelin. The duo out of Brookly produce a mesh of hip-hop and electro and are known for their live shows, where they have been known to use colorfully painted boomboxes that hang from the ceiling or stack up on the floor like pyramids.
Sounds range from broken dance jams to relaxed instrumental cut-ups, created with love on their MPCs. Long forgotten samples are chopped and re-assembled with drums, wooden recorders, old keyboards, handmade thumb pianos or whatever instruments are readily at hand. The result is a kind of mix tape fantasy (residing in the mythical “dollar bins of the future”), where R&B impresarios, amateur booty bass producers and Andean flautists hold equal sway.
Amy grabbed a quick (and I mean quick) word with George Langford as they prepared to invade Dallas.
TDOA: You’re pretty well-hyped. What do you make of all the recognition from Pitchfork and other blogs/publications? Love it or fear it?
GL: We owe a lot to the blogs of the interwebs and are of course thankful for the kind words we’ve received. I think of it like this: there is a lone wolf on the horizon- maybe it’s been tracking you, maybe not. Maybe it will attack you in your sleep, maybe it just wants you to throw it a tennis ball. Either way, it’s probably good to keep walking.
TDOA: What is your creative process like? I think this question is especially important for acts as unique as yourself.
GL: It differs from song to song, but there’s usually a sampler involved. That doesn’t mean, necessarily, that there will be samples from other music in there though. I think we’re both inspired by non-musical aesthetics and we work to somehow express them in a music. It’s also nice to establish a thesis beforehand and create something that has to fall within whatever rules you made up. We just finished a new 10″ with the initial aim of “canyon.”
TDOA: You’re pretty prolific – how do you produce so much music?
GL: Short songs.
TDOA: Here’s the inevitable Girl Talk comparison question – what do you think are the fundamental differences you and him?
GL: Maybe the comparison makes sense with the live show- Tom does do a lot of vocal stuff that interpolates pop songs. On record, I think there is a huge difference between making mashups and making songs that happen to incorporate samples. There’s a totally different goal there in terms of how references are communicated to a listener. The pop references we make at a show are things we’ve arrived at sort of haphazardly as a way to bring to life sounds coming out of drum machines and samplers. There will probably come a time when our music may not call for that.
TDOA: What space do mixtapes and sampling occupy in the music world? Is there room for growth?
GL: Of course! Mixtapes have been vehicles for spreading new music through a vital underground current for decades. And the issue of whether or not “sampling” is a valid tool is outdated nonsense, in my opinion. I don’t get how this medium is still questioned and devalued in this day and age. Oh, I could rant…
TDOA: Can you talk about your experience at SXSW? Do you get a chance to see other bands and experience the festival or is it too hectic?
GL: We may have bit off more than we could chew last year- something like eleven shows in four days? A little much for me. Saw some great shows though- Man Man and Theophilus London were particular standouts in my mind.
TDOA: I’m interested to see what your preconceived notions of Dallas are? What do you think of Big D?
GL: We played there last year, opening for Yeasayer. It was the warmest welcome, I think, for us on that whole tour. Do they have ribs there? I like ribs
The duo will be playing a few shows in Texas this week. Bring ribs…..
January 13- PM Lounge Dallas, TX
January 14- Javelin // Girl Talk After party @ Emo’s Austin, TX – 9:00 PM
January 15- Avant Garden Houston, Texas