My Favorite Robot are the Canadian production duo of Jared Simms & Voytek, who both joined forces in 2002 and formed their highly respected My Favorite Robot Records imprint in 2008.
Hi guys, flicking through your Facebook feed you guys seem to be all about the music, which is not only cool but it’s refreshing. With so many artists have different strategies to get attention or stay relevant, what advice can you should with artists looking to be in your position someday?
My Favorite Robot: I think the key is for it to be about the music like you mentioned. Lots of artists find new ways to stay relevant or get noticed but to us it’s always been about the music. We don’t have any gimmicks or tricks. We always try to make the best music we can and release the music we truly believe in. This way you know you’re getting recognized for your art and body of work and not anything else. I like to think of it this way: When you die, your body of work will hopefully float out there forever and represent you. If you haven’t done the art then I doubt anyone will remember you even if you have thousands of followers on social media today because you’re witty.
Do you feel it’s still possible to build a successful career without good PR and management these days?
My Favorite Robot: Definitely. More so than in previous years even. Younger people these days really know where to dig for new music and artists that just put their music out there have a lot more chances to be heard than in the old days. Electronic music is still basically a small scale business so it’s achievable to get somewhere without proper representation. Once you reach a certain point, it definitely helps to get a manager or hire a PR company but roughing it at first is part of the ride and quite likely the most enjoyable time artistically for a musician. Once everyone else gets involved you can’t help but lose a bit of the magic that made you an artist to begin with.
What’s your opinion on underground artists who have bought their following? i.e. such as those who’ve bought their Facebook and Soundcloud following? Is that a necessary evil in 2017? And do you feel this helps them get taken more seriously plus secure bigger opportunities?
My Favorite Robot: With the way things are going I’m not surprised that that kind of shit actually works. It’s as much the audience’s fault for buying into it as it is the idiot’s who’s faking his way through it. We don’t relate to those people whatsoever and have a good laugh at their expense frequently. I’d rather have less opportunities but remain legit any day.
What things really piss you off about the industry?
My Favorite Robot: Well the last question touched on it but it really is the legitimacy of it all. Anyone can be a DJ pretty quick these days and so times are changing pretty fast. In my opinion people need to be more critical again. Too much blind support out there and opportunists taking advantage of it all. If people became more critical of the music and took some time to get some reference it would hopefully become less disposable with time.
What’s the best piece advice of you could give to anyone looking to get signed on MFRR?
My Favorite Robot: Know your sound. Sounds pretty sad to have to say this but it’s true. If you know our label don’t send us funky vocal house. It happens. Jokes aside, it’s important to really know that your music is the right fit for the type of label. Our label’s style is still pretty particular so as long as you feel it’s something we’d be into then send away. We look for real music so if we feel your musicality and some emotion through your demo then it’s already a plus.
C-U is a site that supports new talent. Given your label has grown to the size of where people trust it, does MFRR have a policy on supporting new talent? And which artists are you proud to have helped or discovered?
We definitely always look for new talent and are happy to support any new artists that we find fit our vision. Our main goal is to give existing artists a proper outlet to release their music. One that fits their particular style which may not be adequately represented elsewhere. Since our style is a bit quirky, we’ve managed to attract some great artists along the way, many of whom we looked up to long before starting the label. We’re very proud to have released music by artists like Jori Hulkkonen, Fairmont, SidLeRock, Chloe, Rework, Rodion, Villanova and many more that share a similar particular taste in music as we do.
Considering you’re both senior industry figures, you’ve gone ahead and remixed Raphael Cerato’s track Samurai for Anathema Records. As we’ve experienced it ourselves, given there’s so much elitism in the upper tiers of the scene, what convinced you to support such a relatively new label?
My Favorite Robot: We go with what feels right. We’ve been around for a while but we would never consider ourselves among the elitist tier of the scene. We work our butts off like we did at the beginning and it’s never been easy for us and so we’ve always supported acts that we like no matter if they’re established or not just like some bigger guys did for us when we started.
What can we expect from you guys soon?
The label is going strong as always with lots of interesting releases coming up before year’s end and into 2018. 2018 is the 10 year anniversary of the label so we’re planning lots of showcases to celebrate. On the act side, we’re finishing a few EP’s that should see the light early 2018 and some live PA/DJ gigs to support so needless to say we’re very excited to share all this with everyone!