Primarily known for fronting his genre bending, country/western band Brent Amaker and The Rodeo, Brent Amaker surprises us this week with a brand new collaborative art project called Android Amaker. The debut single, entitled “I’m The One”, is a complete 180 degree turn for Amaker who worked with locals Vox Mod and P. Smoov to create a spacey, fast paced electro jam.
I had a chat with Brent about the project and what the future holds for both Android Amaker and Brent Amaker and The Rodeo.
the mixtape: With Android Amaker you’re working with locals Vox Mod and P. Smoov. Where did the idea for Android Amaker come from and what are each of your roles in this project?
Brent Amaker: Vox Mod and I bonded last year over our fascination with the impending technological singularity. We wanted to create a soundscape that represented a vision of the future where I might survive as an entity downloaded into a post-singularity android. We wrote the songs together and collaborated on the music. Vox Mod created a back story for Android Amaker and I wrote lyrics intended to float over electronic beats. When it was time to record, we needed a producer, and P Smoov was the obvious choice. We brought this concept to P Smoov, and he shaped our vision over the course of several sessions at The Robot Room.
Roles? Brent Amaker: Android Amaker, Vox Mod: The Architect, P Smoov: Mission Control
tm: The following is an excerpt of the back story of Android Amaker: “Soon after the inception of integrated A.I. and the Explosion of the Sun, Amaker’s survival hinged upon a retreat to the far reaches of space and the melding of man and machine.” How closely linked, and important, is this story to the music being created?
BA: The first single gives you a peek into the world of Android Amaker. The story goes much deeper than what you hear with “I’m the One”. More secrets will be revealed with the full length concept album to be released this summer. It all stems from my fascination with Raymond Kurzweil’s theories, and the possibility of immortality through technological evolution. The project is 100% based on the concept, and other artists are helping us deliver this vision of the future. Frank Correa has created a series of six original photos showing us his vision of Android Amaker. Christopher Jones is creating fashion based on the Android Amaker concept, and we will wear that clothing for our first music video. P Smoov is directing and producing the music video. We’ve also brought on a technology specialist, Matt Hickey, to help us keep things real. When not working on this project, Matt is either handling tech issues at Neumos, or writing technology articles for Forbes magazine. He is well qualified to keep us on track with emerging trends. Things are going to happen quickly and we need to be prepared.
tm: Is this your first venture with making a concept album? Also, this seems like a massive undertaking, do you have any major concerns going into this project?
BA: Yes, this is my first concept album. The project exists because technology is dramatically changing our world right now. It will affect all of us at some point. It’s only natural that I interpret the world around me through music. And yes, it’s a big undertaking, but the key to Android Amaker is collaboration with like minded artists. It’s the result of friendships and connections formed during my time in Seattle. The project will continue to evolve organically, much like mankind’s march toward technological evolution. I’ve merely planted a seed and now the concept is in motion.
tm: You’re primarily known for your work with your band Brent Amaker and The Rodeo which puts its own unique spin on the country/western sound. Have you been itching to create something completely different from your previous work?
BA: I’m proud of all my work with the Rodeo and that project is still trucking along. In fact, I’m celebrating my 50th birthday by playing a show with Brent Amaker and the Rodeo at the Triple Door on April 25th. I wouldn’t say I’ve been itching to do something different. I will say it is very exciting to be working on something completely new. For me, Android Amaker is a way of expressing topics that have been on my mind. The world is changing quickly. And I’m ready for transition.