RTR is returning after a short break at the end of this month. As things start moving again, now feels like a good opportunity to reflect on the label’s progress by looking back at some of the artists who have not been featured in The Maker series so far. The first to be featured is Tyson Swindell. The Texas-based musician and entrepreneur appeared during RTR’s first year of operation for the Cassette Store Day 2018 special split release, ‘Two Haunted Pianos‘, alongside Sound Awakener. The split also included remixes by Giulio Aldinucci, Kepier Widow, and Slow Clinic.
In this feature, Tyson talks about his background in music and how he came to discover ambient music, unusual sources of inspiration, favourite new music, and nostalgia.
How did you first get introduced to ambient/drone/experimental music?
I had classical training as a child, my dad was way into jazz, and I LOVED punk music from my teen years on. The combustion of those ingredients is what fuels my interest in ambient/drone/experimental.
What inspires you to create a new body of work?
I get inspired by a good chef. They create and create everyday only to watch someone destroy all evidence of their art. Only the memory lives on. It’s so empowering to try and do that as a musician.
How do you approach working on a new release?
Generally, I have a few pieces that kinda fit together, and I form an idea or theme around them. Then, I let that theme/idea grow as I write more music, create the art, or elaborate on the feelings they evoke.
Can you tell us about your favourite new release from the last 12 months?
Probably ‘Tropical Depressing’ by Jake Schrock. It’s so dreamy and lush with vintage electronics while managing to have modern structures. I love it.
As RTR is a tape label, we have to ask: What attracts you to the cassette medium?
Absolutely the nostalgia, and the fluidity of the sound.