Who is Ant LaRock?
I’m the culmination of a life-long obsession with music. I started playing instruments at a very young age and by about 14 I knew I only wanted to pursue a career in music. When my first track was picked up by Todd Terry I still didn’t have an artist name. Ant LaRock was an homage to the old New York music scene which I’d grown up listening to and seemed appropriate as I had a new energy to create real House Music. Call it a nod to the classics in a contemporary setting…with a weird edge.
Your Facebook page describes you as constantly innovating and bending genres. Do you have a certain creative process for each new project you take on in order to maintain diversity in sound?
The only part of my process that repeats is time and coffee. I just want to make something exciting and different. There is so much good music out there that if wanted to copy someone else’s sound, I would just save the time and spin their track or not spin at all. I stray away from the norm in my daily life, music is no exception. The less I think about making something, the better. I just go at it.
When was your first exposure to electronic music and how has that influenced the sound you produce today?
I grew up listening to Run D.M.C. and was hooked on Rick Rubin’s sound at probably around 7 or 8 years old. I knew that music wasn’t coming from a band or traditional instruments. Pink Floyd’s, Animals and Dark Side of the Moon were huge to me as well but still not completely “Electronic”. In 1996 I was exposed to DJ Shadow’s Entroducing, Goldie’s Timeless and of course Daft Punk’s Homework. Lost my shit. By the time I heard Homework, I wanted to quit my band and buy a TR-909. Entroducing and Timeless still haunt me. If I can squeeze a huge Amen Break into a track, I will. I guess all of those albums were so radical for the time, I’d always like to make something with that type of cultural impact.
You just released Listen To Me on InHouse for Todd Terry, give us your reasoning behind this one?
Todd has been such an amazing influence on me. As our friendship has developed, he has shown me why things work on the dancefloor as well as what he likes for InHouse and of course it has to be real shit. I wanted a feel-good vocal track that was heavy late 80’s/early 90’s vibes. It’s light on top with the melody but the bass is all business. Like a boombox on 10 in a basement somewhere in 1991.
How did it feel to have your very first single picked up by Todd Terry’s InHouse records?
It was a trip! I didn’t really understand the levity of it at first. The more I got reacquainted with the House scene, the more time I spent with Todd…the more I saw how his influence and his support are priceless in this industry. It really hasn’t completely set in yet, honestly, as I have had my head down making as much music as possible for the last 3 years.
What’s the reception been like for your EP, Universal, on Nervous Recordings?
The reception for the Universal EP was Amazing! Pretty much the exact opposite of what I thought it would be. I had just spent 5 months away from home, working on more, let’s say, “accessible” music. So I got back into my studio and was like, “Right, lets get weird with it…” I remember being out in Brooklyn and meeting friends of friends that were really in love with the tracks or people sending me videos of random DJ’s playing it at clubs. I was even shocked that Nervous picked those tracks out of the lot that I sent them but I couldn’t be more grateful to Mike Nervous and Co. I definitely walked away from that experience being more confident in what my style is.
Before we go, tell us a useless fact about yourself?
I live on a roof with a JoJo and a Bruno.
Anything to add?
I just spent 4 months hanging out in Ibiza with Todd Terry, Roland Clark, Kenny Dope, Junior Sanchez, Alexander Technique and Michael Moog – pretty much every day. It’s been incredibly inspiring so keep an eye out for what’s coming next.