Following the release of the title track from his soon to be released sophomore album, Infinity, Sydney hip-hop artist Chance Waters (formerly Phatchance) announces that he will hit the road for a series of East Coast shows this April and May. Infinity is produced by Adelaide artist-to-watchOne Above, who recently produced The Hilltop Hoods’ #1 Single ‘I Love It ft. Sia’ as well as numerous songs from Chance’s debut LP, Inkstains.
Recently you have departed from the Phatchance title to perform under your real name Chance Waters. What was the reasoning behind the name change?
Honestly it was a personal thing, when people asked me what I did and I explained to them I was a musician and told them my stage name was Phatchance I felt like there were all these connotations and assumptions that a name like that carried with it, it’s a really light hearted name, it’s pun based and for a fair while it hasn’t been heaps indicative of the type of music I make. As I’ve gotten older and have matured as an artist I’ve been growing away from a lot of the style elements and influences that I came up with, I felt like by changing to something neutral I’d have a little more freedom in terms of peoples expectations and would also have an opportunity to reintroduce myself somewhat.
You have a new album coming up titled Infinity. Can you give us any brief details on this release?
Definitely! I’m really excited to get it finished and get it out to people, it’s looking like it will be a 12 track album and it should be out sometime in July, there’s a pretty wide range of sounds and I think it’s a little different to anything else that’s going on locally at the moment, at least in terms of production, we’ve approached it from as musical a perspective as possible, there’s a lot of bridges, pre-choruses and instrumental changes, things I think should get more of a run in Australian hip-hop, and I’ve tried to keep my standard of writing as high as possible from start to finish, so I’m feeling really positive about putting it out and seeing how people receive it.
We’ve seen the first track released from the upcoming LP which is also the lead single to the album, titled infinity. Tell us a bit about the track and who you worked with on this one?
‘Infinity’ encapsulates a lot of the ideas I wanted to cover in the album, it’s produced by One Above with a little additional instrumentation from Jon Reichardt (Guitar) and Kieran Owens (Bass), behind the scenes we put a huge amount of time and effort into the production side of things and One Above made a million small changes and additions to the song before we went to mastering. From a production perspective it’s sort of indicative of where I’m trying to go with the record, not bringing the drums in till the very back half of the song and creating as much texture as possible in the instrumental made it a really interesting song to work with, it’s probably not the most radio friendly number we could have chosen as a lead single but I wanted to release a song that was really true to where I wanted to go and Infinity did that perfectly.
You dropped a film clip for the track Infinity, do you feel as comfortable expressing yourself in video form as you do say making a track or writing some lyrics?
Definitely! I love the process of making a video and trying to represent the concepts in a song in a visual medium, I think it’s part and parcel with being a musician now, that you need to be able to do something interesting with both your live performance and your video work, I’m probably not as good as knocking out regular clips as some artists are and I can’t murder the rapping at camera thing like some dudes do, but I love the idea of doing something cool for the key songs on an album. The Infinity clip was probably our biggest production to date, which is funny given how simple the actual video is, but I think visually there were some really nice ideas and the aesthetics of the dancers and the lighting really complemented the concept for me, which is what we were aiming for, so I was heaps happy with how it turned out.
In 2009 we saw the release of your debut LP, Inkstains. How do you think Infinity compares to that release?
I’d like to think it’s a way better record in general. There’s a lot more balance, which was a deliberate thing, I tend to get into this pattern of writing melancholy song after melancholy song, so I tried to pepper the album with a few beat choices that I wouldn’t normally run with, which lead to some interesting results because in a couple of cases there’s quite up-beat production and it’s contrasted with my more macabre writing style, the next single, which is called Maybe Tomorrow, is a perfect example of that. Think jingly piano rock meets cynical arsehole making fun of the end of the world. I also tried to experiment a lot with tempo and song writing and tried to push the boundaries a bit. It’s not totally finished yet but I’m really proud of what we’ve done so far and I think it should resonate with the people who liked my earlier releases as well as hopefully opening up my listening base a bit.
At the end of last year, the I Forget Sorry team released 5 mixtapes each one from one of the artists on the roster. Yours, Approaching Infinity featured a Gotye remix where you teamed up with One Above once again. Tell us a bit about the track and why you picked the Gotye track to remix?
That song has probably been one of the best received tracks I’ve ever worked on, One Above murdered the remixing side of things and it was a really cool concept to write to. Gotye’s one of my favourite artists and I’ve been a little obsessed with his music for years, so the second I saw the video I knew I wanted to do it, I never expected him to be kind enough to send us the stems though. Obviously the success of the track was mainly about piggy-backing what was always going to be a massive hit, but we were lucky in that we got in early and I think we did something a bit different to all the other remixes that were floating around, so people picked it up and ran with it. I still get Google Alerts about that track getting played on radio in Europe and it definitely introduced a lot of new people to my music, which is really surreal, I’d love to do more official remix work in the future but right now I’m primarily focused on finishing the album and getting some new originals out.
You are also off on a tour around the country, are you looking forward to the dates, and what can heads expect at your live show?
Yes! I’m heaps excited about the tour dates! I just merged Melbourne shows with Seth Sentry, and he’s one of my favourite rappers full-stop, and I was also lucky enough to score main support for TZU in Adelaide which I’m kind of pegging onto the tour, so there’s a lot for me to look forward to. In terms of my live show it depends on the date, in Adelaide I’m doing a more standard set with just myself and One Above, which will be heaps of fun as I’ve never shared a stage with him, but for most of the tour I have a bassist and keyboard/banjo player and for Sydney and Melbourne I’ve also got a violinist/singer joining me. I’ll be playing a mix of older tracks from Inkstains and Inkstains (Acoustic) as well as some songs off the mixtape and a few untested tracks from the new album, I’m particularly excited about wheeling those out for the first time and seeing what works and what doesn’t.