A few weeks ago, Vancouver based electronic music producer Kermode, otherwise known as Jeanot Mey, released a killer 4-track EP Blast from the Past on Boogie T.’s label Drama Club Recordings . Known primarily for his bouncy bass tunes and high energy beats, Kermode’s latest EP differs in theme from other recent releases, as this EP corresponds more with the dubstep sub genre of bass music.
This aspect, however, is precisely why the EP is titled Blast from the Past. Kermode’s departure into the heavier realm of bass music marks a return to his earlier beginnings as a producer…except this time he has some new tricks up his sleeve. From the title track’s effervescent growls and infectious melody to the decidedly wonky, arcade-inspired Wonky Kong, and from the rock n’ roll rail breaker Stupid to the sweeping basslines of Grin and Bear It, Kermode’s latest four track offering is sure to satisfy the bass buds of both new and old fans.
We caught up with this talented producer to hear more about his recent release, his return to dubstep, and his renewed vision for the future.
You have a brand new EP just released with Boogie T’s label Drama Club Recordings. Can you walk us through it?
This record came together quite quickly and cohesively compared to many of my previous. I was feeling a lot of nostalgia listening to music one day, and decided I wanted to try and capture that feeling, in whatever way. Each track is sort of a different type of nostalgia. Wonky Kong is me taking the old donkey kong melody and flipping it into my own. Blast From The Past ’s melodies made me feel like a kid. Stupid was me going into my rock and metal roots, and Grin and Bear It is an ode to the melodic dubstep I really loved when first getting into electronic music.
What inspired you to get back into producing dubstep?
Dubstep, and bass music as a whole, is this ultra experimental playground in my mind, which I think I had forgotten for a little bit there. There was a time dubstep all felt the same and I wasn’t really feeling inspired by it, but over the past few years I think it’s gone in so many different directions. From riddim, to the more melodic, to the callback wobbly style, there are just SO many things you can do with the genre, it’s incredibly inspiring.
What separates this EP from the rest of your releases?
In some ways, I think I approached this record in a more mature way than previously. Maybe mature isn’t the right word…I simply mean that the focus of these tracks was the songwriting and vibe. It’s not about being overly technical or relying on sound design, it’s about exploring a theme and executing that theme well. I hope I did that!
Will we be hearing more music like this from you in 2021?
Yes and no. I think these songs were very much written to BE dubstep tracks. You hear them, you know what they are. The music I have coming certainly explores song writing and themes, but without being strictly one genre. I think what’s to come in 2021 is a very authentic me, I’m excited to share it.
How have you been coping over the last year? What’s been keeping you motivated?
Gratitude, hope. In many ways I have never really felt more connected to the rest of humanity than through the pandemic. That sense of community has been motivating me to contribute what I can…and for me that’s music. I’m just very grateful for the life I was given, COVID reminds me of that regularly.
What else can listeners and fans expect from Kermode this year?
I’ve been working on a record that I truly believe is the most special I have ever written. Special, because it was so meaningful to make, and because it was made during such a uniquely memorable time. I don’t think I could have written this music during any other time, or in any other headspace. It truly feels like me.
What are some goals for 2021?
I’ve only really got two main things on my mind lately when it comes to goals. Playing more shows, and writing better music. Normally I like to have measurable goals, but to be honest I don’t find those as rewarding as I do stressful as of late. I find it far better to just focus on what I need to do during the present day. And for me, that’s to become a better musician, write better songs, and put on a better show.
Any last thoughts?
Just a huge thank you to anyone who chooses to listen and be a part of this project. Life is busy and life is hard. So for anyone who takes time out of their lives to support, it means more than you know. I can’t wait until shows are back and we can connect again. I’m looking forward to the shared experiences <3
Interview and words by Jessie Strongitharm
Photos by Blake McRitchie