Can 2018 be the year we bring moombahton back into the collective electronic subconscious? 26-year-old production luminary Tim Gunter is leading the charge with his first single of 2018, the riotous "Badman." The track boasts crowd-pleasing trap sensibility with that undeniable ass in the air bounce of moombah – all tied together with a dark tone that sends the listener on a twisted journey. Premiering exclusively with EARMILK, "Badman" is one to include on your party starting playlists to kick off the new year proper. I recently had the chance to get to know the talented young artist, and dig into the history of this particular "Badman." All joking aside, Tim is an impressive dude who knows his way around a beat.
EM: What were you earliest musical memories? Favorite artists/bands growing up?
TG: My dad was in a band for a long time so we always had instruments in the house. My sister got this Yamaha Keyboard one Christmas that had like 100 instruments and a few drum kits on it. I remember using it way more than she did. I was really into Weezer, Blink-182 and pretty much whatever my sisters listened to growing up. I started skateboarding at around 11 and that got me into hip-hop. I really liked hip-hop because of the beats which eventually led me to electronic music. By high school I was listening to everything from Daft Punk, to Atlanta trap music, to Death Cab for Cutie.
EM: When did you decide you wanted to become an artist? You studied at NC State, was there ever another career path you considered besides music?
TG: Honestly I knew I wanted to do this from the time I entered NC State. I started getting really into music production my senior year of high school and would show my friends all my terrible beats. Once I got to college, I started making remixes and I would steal the AUX cord at parties to play them. A few of them were actually well received and people generally liked my taste in music so I started "DJing" all the parties. I studied business and I honestly wouldn't change a thing looking back. Some people advocate dropping out when you're a creative but I think its super important to stay in school and I learned a lot of things that help me today from that.
EM: What are your favorite hobbies outside of music?
TG: I live in LA so there's always a ton to do. I love going out to shows, I always get super inspired by other artists. I'm a big fan of art in general, whether that's movies, games, exhibits etc. I think it's important as an artist to appreciate all different types of art.
EM: How do you fight writer's block? What inspires you to get back into a creative groove?
TG: I saw this video once on Reddit that literally changed my life regarding writer's block. It basically said when you have trouble creating, don't be a creator, be an editor. Everyone loves being an editor or a critic (saying how something could be better or how they would do it). So, do that to yourself. Make something, even if it's really shitty, and then start editing it to make it better. I also love Splice Sounds. I use that a lot to find inspiration.
EM: What's on the horizon for you in 2018?
TG: I'm just trying to continue building on what I've done already. 2017 was big for me playing my first festivals (Middlelands, Bonnaroo, Voodoo etc) but I didn't put out much music. I spent a lot of 2017 making a ton of music and now I'm ready to start putting it out. I'm excited to show people what I've been working on.
EM: What artists (besides yourself) should we be listening to this year?
TG: There are so many people making incredible music that I could probably fill an entire page with just this question. Definitely have to shout out my friend Alina Baraz. Her new music is amazing and she's going to have a big year. Some producers I'm into right now in no particular order: graves, HYPRESSION, Hanz, ye., Oriental Cravings, Prismo, Dave Edwards, Dark Heart, no sleep, Ramzoid (I'm probably forgetting so many people). Some vocalists/rappers: Angelo Mota, LocateEmilio, MADI, EZI.
EM: Tell me about the creation process/inspiration behind "Badman"?
TG: From the start, I knew "Badman" was going to be something I would play in my sets. I wanted something people would dance to. I love the 100bpm tempo and I feel like it's neglected a lot in dance music. To me its the perfect crossover between hip-hop and electronic. Some of my more successful remixes were at this tempo, but I wanted something to call my own. A big thing for me even with "bangers" is listenability. I've listened to this track at the gym for months but also in the car, at pregames – it sounds good anywhere.
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