Lee Bannon will release Pattern Of Excel on July 10th.
The Sacramento born-producer turned heads last year with his Ninja Tune debut Alternate/Endings, which was heavily informed by classic jungle. Before that, however, Bannon was known as a hip-hop producer for rappers like Joey Bada$$. A stream of new hip-hop productions came out in the wake of Alternate/Endings, but now he's coming back to Ninja Tune and this time he's on a more ambient tip. (Check out "Artificial Stasis" below to get an idea.)
In the words of the label, "gone are the rapidfire breaks and growling basslines of his debut, replaced instead by a considered exploration of ambient soundscapes and drone influences." We spoke with Bannon via e-mail to discuss his new direction.
Why did you turn towards ambient music for the new LP? What inspired you while you were making it?
I feel like there is not a big difference between my upcoming second LP and the first. I feel they are both ambient in their own way. On Pattern Of Excel, the difference is I wanted to embrace the calm, which I [always] felt like doing at times but because of a genre, or to stay in my 'lane' or to make it accessible for people, I'd insert percussion and never truly go as deep. This goes deeper.
Are you worried about how the new sound might be received after last year's more drum & bass-influenced record?
Every time I start to create a new album, new elements of myself and skills come to light that I never knew about. Then the next phase is usually spent channeling that, and the third spent fine-tuning it. Sometimes the evolution between works is so huge, worrying about how it will be received is inevitable.
In the time between albums, you've gone back to hip-hop production. Do you approach your solo work differently than working with rappers?
The tracks and projects that surfaced during the time between my first and second LP were all created years ago during a time where making 'beats' interested me, and released as something new—but many, if not all, are from 2009-2012. My approach now with working with anybody, rappers included, is to just take my time.Tracklist
01. Good / Swimmer
02. Artificial Stasis
04. Suffer Gene
06. Shallowness Is The Root Of All Evil
11. DAW In The Sky For Pigs
12. Disneµ Girls
14. Memory 6
Ninja Tune will release Pattern Of Excel on July 10th, 2015.