If you know what’s happening in Calgary, you saw the insanity that went down inside of TEN for Wolfcastle Agency’s anniversary party. Featuring the talented, groovy artists Slynk and Funkanomics, the packed venue was vibing high all night. When I arrived to local DJ Logo on the decks, the crowd was already bustling with energy, and then the man behind Wolfcastle, Rhett Brownbridge, took the decks as Crush Le Muck. The party turned up, with champagne being doused over the crowd as Funkanomics started his super funky set. He knocked out some nostalgic music with new takes, and kept the vibe alive for Slynk. As Calgary has seen before, this man brings the noise every time he graces our city, and tonight was no different. His grooves kept everybody moving and on the floor until we were given a healthy dose of drum and bass to end the night.
Wolfcastle Agency has been providing Calgary another facet to our nightlife for three great years. Not only do they provide a place for this community, but they include their community more than most: They work with many grassroots photographers and artists from all over the scene, and regularly bring up-and-coming acts along with the world-renowned types. This anniversary bash in particular was possibly the craziest party I’ve seen go down at TEN, with champagne showers and the crowd being invited to invade the stage to party at the end.
It was a beautiful night, filled with some of the best people of our city – and the people are what seems to leave the biggest impression on the artists that tour our country. Throughout Canada are music festivals to attend all summer, and club parties to tide you over until you can feel completely alive again. Whether it’s watching the sun come up on a morning set at Astral Harvest that teaches you a new meaning to ‘community’; floating on the river and seeing the smiles surround you at Shambhala; riding a massive purple hippo through the grounds of Motion Notion with your friends; or having your last, and most epic, hurrah at FozzyFest – so many people who have attended a festival can’t help but want to live it year-round through the clubs, pubs, and parties that can handle us.
Not only are we blessed here with spectacular environments to hold our events in, but they are always stuffed full of the most adored and truly gifted producers from around the world. Pair that with all the amazing people that you meet at every festival and shindig you attend and you’ve got yourself a damn good time!
I sat down with Slynk before the show, and talked to him. Welcome to the “Slynkterview”:
Considering it was your first show outside of Australia – how was your first Shambhala?
Yes. I was just walking around with big wide eyes! I was pretty nervous the day of the show as you can imagine. I was booked to play Saturday night from ten ’til midnight right before Nick Thayer. I felt like we were representing Australia together haha! It was a huge pleasure warming up for him. I looked up to him a lot as an artist back then and still do. The people at Shambhala were really accommodating and hospitable. Two or three songs into my set I was like, “Yeah I got this!” All in all I had a great experience.
Was your set your favourite moment at Shambhala?
I really, really love the river. I love listening to the beats, floating around, sunglasses on – just kicking back really. That’s what I did this year and it was awesome. It was cool not having the pressure of DJing this time around. I played the last three years in a row and actually every time I’ve been to Shambhala I’ve played, so last Shambhala was my first time without playing a set. I got to just enjoy it.
Have you gone to a lot of other countries on tour? Canada & the US obviously, Australia … any new favourite places?
Last year I did my second Europe tour – I think I was in something like 10 different countries last year. I always enjoy Amsterdam. It’s very different than every other country I’ve ever been to. There’s this general feeling of freedom there – everyone’s riding their bikes, there’s no signs anywhere telling you what to do. It’s freedom. Italy was really weird and cool at the same time. Nutella was invented in Italy and I saw a few people walking around in Nutella t-shirts – it’s a thing man! Canada has street meat but in Italy they have vendors of little desserts with Nutella in them. Cute.
That sounds weird, but delicious. I’d trade the hot dog guy for a Nutella vendor any day. So those were your favourite places to experience personally, do you have any favourite cities to tour in? Places you go and know you’ll have a really fun party?
Umm … every Canadian show. Having been all around the world DJing I can say I’ve noticed something different about Canadian crowds. You guys here just have no inhibitions whatsoever. Generally speaking, if a Canadian hears a beat they like, they will dance no matter what. They could be the only one in the club. Speaking of my first Shambhala set in 2009, I remember playing a song that had a vocal sample saying “Make some noooissseeee!” and I was actually surprised when cheering erupted from all around me. A lot of Canadians seem to genuinely have a passion for music and they’re really interested in who’s DJing. Like who is that? What is this song? I haven’t heard this remix before, who is it by? When I play a Canadian show and I look at the crowd, I can see everyone’s faces ’cause they’re all looking at me and what I’m doing up on stage. This all makes it very enjoyable to perform for you.
What’s the scene difference, living initially in Brisbane and now being in Vancouver? It’s got to be very different. Is that part of why you decided to move to Canada?
One of a few reasons yeah. Of course it was a good move for my career but I’d also been living in Brisbane for my entire life up until that point and I just thought it’d be cool to experience the different culture by living here.
Is there a lot left on your career bucket list? Anything you’ve always aimed to do that you haven’t done yet?
Right now what I’m working on is bringing out my first full-length album which is a goal I’ve always had. I have about eight songs mostly ready and they came together quite quickly. I was surprised at myself. It always seemed like such a mountainous to write a full album but it’s been happening really easily.
How many songs are you aiming to have?
Oh I dunno – probably 11 or 12. Still got a ways to go but I’m pushing myself as hard as I can to get it finished.
Is there a date you’ve got in your head that we can expect to hear about it?
Possibly around April 2015 but I’m not really thinking about that just yet. I’m just focusing on writing the music.
Anything you’re doing differently with this album? Are you changing up your style, or defining it?
The only thing that I feel I’m doing differently is allowing myself to be truly creative and not putting any rules or restraints on what kind of music I’m going write. I was stuck in a headspace for a while where I felt like my fans expected a specific kind of sound so I tried to write music for them instead of just doing whatever creative weird thing I felt like doing. I had these rules set in my head like “It’s got to be 110bpm, funky and it’s got to have a certain structure.” People like that stuff and I don’t dislike writing stuff like that at all, in fact I really enjoy it, but for the album it’s more of a selfish endeavor where I want to push my creative limits and that’s really what I’m doing with the album.
What’s next in the short-term?
Touring around Canada until the end of February when I go to New Zealand to play Splore Festival, and a few other shows around New Zealand, then I’m heading to Australia play some shows there, got a festival lined up in Australia as well, and after Australia I’ll be going to the US probably.
Are you working on the album while touring?
I’m trying to get the album done before I go to Australia. That’s the goal anyway. I prefer to be at home in front of my big bad speakers and giant screens when I write.
Is that kind of like your vacation time? Do you prioritize festival season in Canada?
Vacation time is all the time for me. I never really work, because work is more fun than fun. I love writing music, I love touring the world and yes, I love performing at Canadian festivals too!
I think that’s what everyone aims for. That’s all I’ve got for you – thank you for your time!
Words By: Kiddo | Photos By: Cody Simon