Sounds From the Ground are Elliot Morgan Jones and Nick Woolfson. Over the last 15 years, these two have mastered serious down beat electronica that infuses sounds of so many genre. From hip hop to dub to jazz, SFTG takes the best elements of these different styles to create something singular and of their own. They continue to remain consistent and true in their creations from their first release Kin to last year’s, Brightwhitelight. Slackline Radio was fortunate enough to chat with SFTG and find out a little about the men behind the sound.
Slackline Radio: Where do we find you two today and what in life is occupying your time at the moment?
Nick Woolfson: We are currently working on a new SFTG album consisting of rare and unreleased material stretching back from our 1st album to our latest album. It is called ‘Thru The Ages’. We have just set up a digital distribution deal and are planning to release this album on our own label, Upstream Records digitally.
Elliot Jones: We’ve just finished the final touches to our next release ” thru the ages”, the sun is shining and the weekend approaches…
Slackline Radio: Tell us a little about your history. How did each of you come to realize your appreciate in the same style of downbeat music that lead to the creation of SFTG?
Nick Woolfson: I think we have come from different musical directions but have similar tastes. I enjoy lots of different styles of music as long as it is innovative and good quality and downtempo is my comfort zone. I don’t really know why it worked out with Elliot, but he turned up at my studio one day with the bare bones of Triangle and we just clicked. Over time we have had our ups and downs but musically it has always been good and writing has never been a problem. Now, 15 years down the line we have a clear
understanding of each other and what works for us and we are still wanting to write and embrace new technology and ideas.
Elliot Jones: My background is chillout and dub, from running my own label and doing clubs and gatherings in the early nineties. I had written “triangle” as a demo and was introduced to nick, our styles matched and the rest, as they say is history.
Slackline Radio: The evolution of SFTG has progressed from the early days of the Kin release. What do you feel is different about your most recent release from last year, BrightWhiteLight?
Nick Woolfson: I am always adding new sounds, plugins and synths etc which keeps me interested and on my toes and I work with other writers on other projects when I’m not doing SFTG which means that I will always be in a different space when I start a new SFTG project. I always try and keep a clear understanding of our core essence musically ie deep bass and warmth with a broad 3 dimensional sound but I feel it is important to move on as well and I also need to enjoy what I am doing which, so far, I do…..
Elliot Jones: I feel although the technology has changed in the studio you can still hear elements of “Kin” in the latest album, we’re still the same people, the sound keeps evolving.
Slackline Radio: How does each of enjoy taking breaks from music?
Nick Woolfson: I love my motorcycles and am always going out for fast blasts down country roads or going travelling whenever I can, weather and time permitting. I also go down to the gym and try and work of the weekends excesses and pretend its fun.
Elliot Jones: In between projects I like to get away, if possible. I’ve recently spent time in Ireland and in the past have enjoyed visiting New York, it’s good to change your surroundings from time to time, it gives you a fresh perspective.
Slackline Radio: Tell us about some of the things in life outside of your music that bring each of you pleasure?
Nick Woolfson: Definitely food and entertaining……….holidays with the family and friends………and fast bikes!!
Elliot Jones: Relaxing, I enjoy cooking, a brisk walk and catching up with friends.
Slackline Radio: Global warming or global cooling?
Nick Woolfson: Definitely global chilling.
Elliot Jones: Really?! I feel that’s out of my hands, I’ll let nature decide.
Slackline Radio: What do each of you find liberating about performing live at say The Big Chill and producing your music in the studio?
Nick Woolfson: We haven’t done a live show for a few years now although Elliot does dj now and again. As for life in the studio, well….I am in there most of the time as my studio is at the bottom of my garden and I love the fact that I can go in with a blank canvas and come out with an album that I am proud of which gets played all over the world. That is a good feeling.
Elliot Jones: It’s always good creating new tracks, it’s something we both feel at ease with, playing new songs out is a buzz and although we haven’t been at the big chill for some years now, we preview new material at thier in brick lane.
Slackline Radio: Do you have any big plans in 2009? Will you be out on the road this year?
Nick Woolfson: See above. No plans to do any live shows although I would love to do some gigs in the US. I am looking forward to releasing our ‘Thru The Ages’ album and am planning to put a new experimental ambient project together with Elliot……maybe something with an emphasis on beatless soundscapes. Just thinking about it.
Elliot Jones: As i mentioned we have a compilation released soon, it’ll be available via download. We’ll host a night to celebrate the release. We’ll be back in the studio recording new tracksfor the future, check our websites for updates.
Slackline Radio: The Ocean or the mountains?
Nick Woolfson: Mountains every time……….
Elliot Jones: That’s a tough one, but I’d have to say the ocean, being a water sign.
Slackline Radio: I believe food tells us a lot about the individual. Tell us what each of you may be eating and drinking tonight?
Nick Woolfson: Mmm, I love food of all kinds, preferably washed down with a good bottle or 2 of quality French red…….and preferably eating and drinking outside with some good friends on a warm sunny evening.
Elliot Jones: It’s a curry for me, and when that’s done I’ll be on the Guinness.