In the span of a few years, Matt Wasley has taken house music by the handlebars through a steadily growing body of work being bumped by the underground. The Los Angeles-via-Boston producer, known to most as Human Life, is circling back to Madtech next month to break off two top-notch collabs in the form of his Coming Down EP. On the release, he jumps into the deep end with Troy Kurtz to serve up a dancefloor-dwelling groove, “Unrequited.”
Wasley welcomes up-and-coming crooner Jackson Englund onto the title cut, as they shape up a vocally charged number that could live equally at the party as it would in the privacy of your own pad. Switching things up like a champ, DeMarzo strips away the melodic pulse of the original to deliver a drum-driven tech house take. Lending new life to the topline, he works in chopped vox samples with snappy sub hits and swinging synth lines.
Available August 7 via Madtech.
Were you impulsive on this track, or did you have a sketch in mind before you started?
Matt Wasley: This collaboration began with Jackson Englund and I having a talk one night out that we really needed to get in the studio and try some music together. I’d worked previously with his sister Anabel and had watched him develop into a great artist on his own, working with his own rock band, Nite Owl (who are great, btw!).
When we got in the studio, we had absolutely no preconceived idea of what to do, except we decided we wanted something playable on the dancefloor but still with a strong vocal. So, we started with just some basic drums and a synth part and then headed straight to the vocals. We started throwing ideas back and forth and came up with the full lyrics and melody in just a few hours. I love working with Jackson because his ideas are not only very strong, but they fit my aesthetic, too. So, it was really a lot of fun, no pressure, and letting the music flow freely!
Was there one particular moment in the recording or mixing process of this track that made you feel as though you were creating something pretty damn special?
Once we had the vocals written, I set to work on the production and really took my time finding the right details to fit the idea, using mostly analog synths and also this cool box from Teenage Engineering called the Op-1. There was a certain point when the buildup was about finished, and we gave it a listen together and smiled and thought, “This might just work!”
Describe the best setting/activity to hear this track.
This track is definitely made to be played about midway through the night at a raw warehouse party. We actually did have that setting in mind as we wrote the lyrics and even just shot a video that tells the exact story we had in mind! I can’t wait for everyone to see it, but the overall concept is getting lost in the night and letting the music take you on an adventure.
Who is the ideal person to remix this track?
Demarzo! We were so unbelievably excited when we got the word he could remix it. We knew that the original had a very particular vibe and wanted a more straightforward tech-house remix that would be playable in a variety of sets, and Demarzo just absolutely nailed it! I’ve been such a fan of his work for years. He had one song, “Flip the Mattress,” that I played at every single gig for well over a year. So, needless to say, we were stoked that it came together!
Have you played this one out in any of your sets? If so, what was the response?
Definitely! Been dropping this nearly every set, and its never fails to up the energy. 🙂