Today I’m thrilled to bring everyone the latest single from shoegaze artist Sunsetter, called “The Whole World That Turns Around Itself.” Sunsetter is the solo music project of Andrew McLeod, and he shared:
This track is one of the first things I created when my partner and I moved into our new house in rural Norfolk county. I found myself realizing there was an album coming together; I had about 20+ pieces of music to work from and I was trying to pair down but also create more tracks that really captured the mood of how I was feeling at the time. After finishing this track, I remember thinking to myself that I had found a more central mood for this album as a whole and ended up scrapping a bunch of the songs I had previously recorded and almost starting from scratch.
If you’re enjoying the direction of the new single, the full-length record called The Best I Can Be, will be released everywhere music is sold today. I was also able to catch up with Andrew for a brief interview below.
In general, how would you describe The best that I can be. Sonically and thematically, and how did what you experienced over the three years of writing/work-shopping inform what it eventually became?
This record is really a transition for me, into something more fully realized and genuine to my own experience. Something I truly want to share with the world. Much of what I’ve done in the past, previous albums/ projects have been rooted in a deep depression. Made from a need to create things just to get something out of me. This album feels more like I’m coming into who I actually want to be as a person and as an artist. Creating things that I spend the proper time on, rather than just letting them spill, ending up as whatever they become. Sonically, I have spent a long time sort of boxed in by what some might call “slowcore” or post-rock, and emo. As much as I love this kind of music, and still continue to make it, my goal with this record was to make something that had more of a pop sensibility to it, with elements of shoegaze, ambient, folk, lofi hip hop, dream pop. I’ve really never been the type to stick to one thing genre wise, and if you were to listen to any of my previous full length albums you would notice that I tend to leap back and forth between genres in a way that wasn’t always cohesive lol. So for this record my real goal was to be able to create music uninhibited, but then reign that in with songs that actually felt like they made sense together. Basically I spent the better part of the last 3 years amassing a large quantity of songs and then I would bounce mixes off of a few close friends and others in order to gauge their reactions lol, and from there I would fix or change things depending on what I thought would make the song or collection of songs for the album, make more sense.
How would you describe the story behind “The Whole World that Turns Around Itself” in the context of the LP?
This track was one of the first fully realized songs I created in my new house where we’ve been living for 2 ½ years now. It was also one of the first songs where I started realizing that I was planning to make an album with a proper arc and that I wanted the songs to be more concise and to the point. This song came out in a matter of one evening, and maybe another day or 2 in order to finish the overdubs / lead guitar parts. Mainly the song felt like the right emotional tone that I really wanted to be expressing.
You noted that this particular track’s creation marked a turning point within the process of fully conceptualizing this LP. Can you describe the revelation you made with relation to this single, and how you went about informing the rest of the record with that in mind?
I just realized at that time what I was really doing. I had a bunch of other tracks in the works, some more finished than others, I took this track and a collection of others and started fleshing out a track list for the LP. Realizing that many of them needed a lot of work, and that this track was serving as a sort of middle point for the emotional arc of the album. I ended up scraping most of the tracks that were in that original track list and writing a lot more over the next year.
With the creation of your studio, Garden House Recording, how did that new home-base environment help shape the LP as well? Additionally, what inspired you to bring that idea to life?
Having a home base has absolutely helped shape the LP and generally me as an artist. I no longer feel so desperate for time and space to do my thing. I feel like I can take my time, and my recordings have only gotten better as a result. I have always been a home studio person, ever since like 2010 when I had a “studio” in my bedroom. As the years went on I just started collecting more and more gear, realizing that I really enjoy recording, almost more than playing music live. A few years back I realized I wanted to really focus even more on recording. I have always self recorded everything I’ve done, and to date I’ve released hundreds of tracks, if you include my SoundCloud. So it just seemed like an inevitable thing that eventually I needed to start getting better at it haha. My recordings used to be pretty awful, it was in the last 4-5 years that I really started to understand it, especially mixing, more thoroughly. These days I am starting to take on more clients and it has only helped me get better at understanding recording and mixing.