Exclusive: What So Not (Emoh Instead) Interview

WSN Sit Down Wall - Credit - KUHLEKTIV

Earlier this afternoon I was scrolling through old tunes I bumped over the summer and was reminded how hard What So Not‘s afro-beat infused trap remixes & originals bang, which ultimately made me fall back in love with the groups sound. What So Not released their debut 4 track EP, 7 Dollar Bill, in November 2011 and caused quite a buzz in the EDM scene, but it wasn’t until last spring when I came across their insanely epic remixes (especially their massive “Get Free” remix that never fails to stick in my head for at least a week after listening to it) that I personally became a true fan.


Fortunately I was blessed enough to get in to contact with Emoh Instead, who makes up half the Sydney, Australia based duo alongside Flume. I asked Emoh a series of brief questions, so you can indulge in a fresh new interview and listen to the duo’s most recent remix of The Only’s “Looking Back” below that. Check it out;

Skoodmusic: For the readers who do not already know who are What So Not? How old are you guys? And what is the music scene in Australia like?

Emoh Instead: Heya! I’m 23 & Harley (Flume) is 21. The scene here is getting better and better! From mainstream rock bottom about 3 years ago, to an abundance of thirst for quality music & parties across the country today.
Skoodmusic: Nice, so what genre would you guys classify yourself under?
Emoh Instead: We try not to. Genres come & go too fast in the dance music world. If you pigeonhole yourself with any one in particular, you’re very much limiting your career prospects.
We like to draw from a bunch of genres & create our own sound. That was the basis for starting this project & it seems to be doing well for us thus far! 😀

Skoodmusic: It’s definitely working out for you guys. Who are some of your biggest musical influences?

Emoh Instead: Gorillaz, Death From Above 1979, At The Drive In, Mylo, Flylo, Hudmo, Baauer.
Skoodmusic: Handful of great artists, good choices. If you could collaborate with anyone in the game right now who would it be?
Emoh Instead: Flume 😛
Skoodmusic: Haha, Did you guys do anything musically before joining forces for What So Not?
Emoh Instead: Yeah, Harley used to sing in a choir & play saxophone, and I played the drums for 10 years.
Skoodmusic: Word, thats solid. I remember first hearing your music last summer and ultimately being blown away, I knew something big would happen between you two. Next to Ryan Hemsworth, you guys have dropped some of my favorite electronic-based remixes in history. Besides the 7 dollar EP, have you guys worked on any new original music?
Emoh Instead: Thanks man! Oh yeah, we have a ton, about a years worth of material. Some coming out soon 😉 and some being combined with the talents of some huge singer/songwriters. We can’t wait to show the world what we’re sitting on…
Skoodmusic: Well I think i can safely say everybody is stoked to hear the new tunes. What is tour life like? Craziest story so far at a show / festival?
Emoh Instead: Probably the Triple J House party @ Bowler Bar in Brisbane. I dived in to crowd surf which went well!.. But then i was lifted back towards the decks and was about to be thrown onto them! I grabbed onto the light scaffolding right above all the equipment, but everyone started swinging me (even Harley). No one actually realised what was happening & how much pain i was in trying to hold on & avoid destroying the decks/mixer below (and my back). Then the owner & security pulled me down & tried to kick me out, but I explained what was actually happening and they let me keep playing. A few of the people working the show got really angry at me after our set, so i skulled half a bottle of vodka (smart move), had to be carried back to the hotel & completely missed my flight the next morning.
Skoodmusic: Sounds rough, but entertaining nonetheless. Any pre-show rituals that you guys tend to do regularly?
Emoh Instead: Stretching is surprisingly important. Some form of cardio (running/dancing whatever) to get blood pumping. Minimum 2 shots + an energy drink.

Skoodmusic: Understandable, all performers should stretch before shows in my opinion…If they are up there all bland without any stage pre-scene that is not a good look. With 2012 being a huge year for What So Not, what is on your guys agenda for 2013?

Emoh Instead: Big single releases on some awesome labels (we are so excited for this!), and heading over seas too!
Skoodmusic: Dope! You guys have received a lot of positive feedback from the likes of Flosstradamus, Boys Noize, Diplo, and many other major producers… Which artist was the coolest to see love from? Why?
Emoh Instead: You know what? Probably Boys Noize. Mainly the fact I feel our music is far removed from what he makes. To see someone at his level, with his experience give us props for our very first EP was pretty amazing.
Skoodmusic: That must have been very exciting, big ups for that- Boys Noize is huge. Starting to see many more shows and festivals with your guys name in the line up, how does it feel to finally be acknowledged for your musical abilities?
Emoh Instead: It’s amazing. The reactions we are getting astonishes us. I mean, we’re not following the norm, playing those big progressive trance/house bombs like everyone seems to be doing at festivals these days. Yet our sets seem to be filled with hands in the air, screaming, raving punters. I pay a lot of credit to the open mindedness & musical tastes of the crowds / fans we get to play too.
Skoodmusic: Word, well thanks again for letting skoodmusic pick your brain a little, Emoh Instead! We look forward to hearing new music by What So Not very soon, stay up.
Another instant-classic by the duo of upcoming Australian producers. Listen to What So Not’s “Looking Back” remix;
WhatSoNot_Cant Say_HR - Credit adamNOTeve

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