Interview by Parisa Eshrati
I had the chance to speak with electronic producer Liam Shea of Templo on the phone. We talked about his latest EP, the festival scene, and sunrises.
I read in another interview that before you started producing music, you played keyboard in another band and were experimenting with other instruments. Was there a specific moment that you realized you wanted to pursue electronic music?
It was definitely right when I got out of that band. We were doing a funk-rock sort of thing, and it was really hard working with five or six other people. I didn’t know what I was going to do next. I thought I had already done a lot in music but didn’t know what direction to take it in. I experimented with production before, but at that point I just got a lot more serious about it.
You also stated how your inspiration comes from things you don’t like to hear in music, so what are some elements you try to avoid when writing music?
When I got first really into production, I would listen to a lot of other types of music and without realizing it I would incorporate elements of other people’s sound into my music. You don’t necessarily want that. I cut out of listening to a lot of other people’s electronic music and that kind of influenced the sound that I have. It helps me stay more original.
You recently released a new EP, Sunrise Vol II, which are 5 tracks made especially for the early mornings. Sunrises seem to be a big theme throughout your music, can you tell us a little more about that and the EP in general?
Yeah, definitely. Every since I went to my first festival when I was a young kid, like 6 or 7 years ago, I saw my first sunrise set. I thought it was so crazy. It definitely influenced a lot of the music that I release online. If you see one of my live performances, it’s a little bit more uptempo. I like to keep the online presence a bit more of that sunrise, happy vibe so I can stay connected with that scene as well.
You’ve said how one of your main goals is to become a regular in the festival circuit. What are some things you prefer about festivals over playing a smaller show?
Festivals are a different environment where people are more open to hearing new sounds. I found out about a lot of artists that have really influenced me the most while I’m out at festivals. The vibes are strong in the festival scene, so that’s definitely the place to be.
I know you like playing morning sets as well. Do you have any sunrise sets lined up?
I hopefully have one coming up in September at Dancefestopia, The sunrise sets are a lot more limited, so I’m trying to push into that realm of things. There are only a few sunrise sets available at every festival, so I'm trying to get into that as much as possible.
Speaking of festivals, who are some people you’re looking forward to seeing at Sonic Bloom?
Sonic Bloom is a really good lineup this year. Kalya Scintilla has been high on my list for the last few years. I’m always excited to see Random Rab. He’s one of my favorites.
You’ve done some collaborations in the past with artists like Lily Fangz. Can we expect any more collaborations in the future?
I mean, Lily is always someone I’m trying to collaborate with. She’s coming up hard but she’s been really busy. As for collaborations with beats, up until now it’s easiest for me to work on my own. I’d always be down to get a singer or a get someone rapping over my tracks, so maybe you can expect something with that.
Finally, tell us some things we can look forward to from Templo for the year of the year.
I’ll definitely be keeping it frequent with releases on SoundCloud and BandCamp and step up my game there. I’ve been doing a lot of traveling. I’ll be in New York at COSM for an Alex Grey event. I’ll be doing some events out in California and Austin as well. I’ll just be keep it moving with releases and shows throughout the summer and hopefully keep it growing.
For more information on Templo and Sonic Bloom:
All interviews posted before October 2015 were originally recorded for KAMP Student Radio.