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Interview With Flow Child

Interview With Flow Child

Pop Winds member Kyle Jukka on the sticky, slurpy sounds of his solo project.

Flow Child's Kyle Jukka moves back and forth from glitchy noise to lulling repeated patterns, and he sounds just like his music when he speaks—trains of thought and inspiration that move quickly or meditatively until they expire. Jukka, also a member of the psych-noise trio Pop Winds, will play Maisonneuve's Spring 2011 Issue Launch, on April 5 at Divan Orange.

Amie Watson: What kind of music do you play? How would you describe it?

Kyle Jukka: I play pop music. It's not that hard to do. I could say that it's, like, noise-influenced, psychedelic pop music, but I'm sort of getting a clear idea of it as I'm going. You know how a cicada just comes out of the ground, makes a lot of noise and then dies? That's what it's like. I get up in the morning, eat some food, make sounds. And it's not like I'm making a kind of music or making songs. I'm just making my sound. And I'm not trying to construct things. It's just totally like these sounds just come out of me and that's what I do.

AW: So what do you use to make your sounds?

KJ: Anything. I have synthesizers. I have circuit bent pedals. Just anything. I can use my voice, I can use guitars. I can sample things. And then it's just a loop. Just a sample, something that I've captured. And I can move it around and mess with it and it suddenly becomes more convoluted and interesting.

AW: Do you have a favourite piece of gear?

KJ: Nope. I don't think so.

AW: A favourite sound right now?

KJ: I'm really obsessed with gooey sounds. I really like sticky, slurpy sounds. Sounds that sound like they're made out of something like a slushy that spilled on the sidewalk on a summer day or something, and it's got, like, ants on it and it's all gooey and sticky. Like those kinds of sounds.

AW: So you have two albums out?

KJ: Yeah, sort of. I threw these songs together, made a Mediafire download link and got friends of mine to design covers for them. At the time I made them and put them out I'd be like, "Yeah these are albums," but now that I've spent the last few months making an album I've realized, "Oh yeah, that's how you make an album." So those albums I made before weren't really albums.

AW: Do you learn a lot when you're working with Pop Winds? Do you pick up a lot from them?

KJ: Yeah, jamming is the most important thing to do, I think. I jam with Pop Winds and I jam with a lot of people. And I always learn so much, because when you jam with people you constantly have to improvise, and that is the key to excitement in every aspect in life, but especially in music.

It's not like someone makes a sound and you're also making a sound. Someone makes a sound, but it's a place, it's an idea, it's a shape, and you need to understand it and then experiment, but also carve it out more. Someone has a sound and it looks like that, you want to dig into it, make it bigger, make it more distinct, make it more iconic. And that's how you improvise. It's like hanging ornaments off of branches or something. You need to make whatever you can with whatever you have. That's what improvising is, and that's how you get really advanced in sound and in life or in socializing, or just walking or traveling through a city. The more you can improvise and make the most out of whatever you have, that's how you learn things, that's how you learn how to exist more.

AW: Do you have a new album coming out?

KJ: Yup, there's one coming out in May and it'll be my first actual release. I just think it's really solid and it's going to be put on this new Arbutus series. It's sort of the sub-label, I guess.

AW: So what can people expect at the Maisonneuve Spring 2011 Issue Launch show?

KJ: Probably a lot of meditations on an idea, a pattern that happens-just like a "SHOO!" [sound effect] That's just sort of how I perform.

AW: Is it improvisation-based?

KJ: I definitely write songs, but at the same time I'm not anchored to anything when I perform. It's just me. So I tend to do whatever.

AW: No one's going to yell at you and be like, "Hey! You missed a part!" Is it more fun playing by yourself or with Pop Winds?

KJ: I don't know. I think it's more fun playing with Pop Winds. There's just something about playing with other people that's just really important to me. But at the same time it's important for me to play by myself too. So they're just different.

AW: Since you do your own thing as well as doing Pop Winds, what are you looking for in terms of success? What makes you really happy?

KJ: When I can just live in my art, I guess. When I can just completely be what my music is. I make it and I just want to live in that world, and when I can jam and I can live in that world. When I can have a night and my entire night is just me being whatever that is. I just want to be a character all the time.

Flow Child will perform at Maisonneuve's Spring 2011 Issue Launch, which takes place on April 5 at Divan Orange and also features the Youjsh, Cadence Weapon and Wind-Up People.

Photo from Flow Child's MySpace.

Related on maisonneuve.org:

—Interview With Cadence Weapon
—Interview With Grimes
—Spring 2011 Issue Launch: Facebook Event

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