Interview with Prefuse 73, at Heathrow Lounge on Sunday
After releasing his debut 2001 album, Vocal Studies + Up Rock Narratives, Herren earned the attention and respect of underground electronic music aficionados. And though his production technique is firmly rooted in hip-hop, Herren's work also delves deeply into the realm of electro and ambient, making Prefuse 73 a difficult artist to pigeonhole.
So it's very fitting that the eclectic Prefuse, along with Elliot Lip and local hero PG 13, is performing this Sunday at Miami Beach's Heathrow Lounge for the last night of Art Basel. "I got a lot of friends in Miami," says Herren, speaking via phone from his Brooklyn home. "I also started doing a lot of stuff for [Miami-based label] Schematic. I have some close friends down in M.I.A., but I'm not very good at communicating with people when I'm not around, so I'll be cool to be visiting." Nowadays Herren is also getting used to life back in the States, after years of living in Barcelona. "I live in Brooklyn right now but I miss Barcelona," he says. "I moved back because I want to be with my kid."
The move from Barcelona to Brooklyn also affected the Herren's sound. "What I did in [Barcelona] was more Savalas-style work," says Herren. "The new Prefuse stuff that I'm doing here is more optimistic ... more vibrant."
To breathe fresh energy into the new upcoming Prefuse album, Herren is changing his digital methods. "The [creative] process for me is becoming longer," he says. "The new Prefuse stuff is more simple. But for this new record, we did everything analog, cutting the tape and recording things like it was 1974."
A key factor his decision to go analog was the overabundance of laptop jockeys. "There's an onslaught of stuff that sounds really sterile," Herren says. "And I want to stand apart on my own." His Sunday DJ set at Heathrow will offer clues into his new, bold directions.
Prefuse 73 performs with Eliot Lipp, PG 13, and others Sunday, December 7. Heathrow Lounge, 681 Washington Ave., Miami Beach. Doors open at 8 p.m.; tickets cost $18 in advance from www.trinumeral.com. Ages 21+ with ID. 305-534-7614; www.heathrowlounge.com.
-- Jose Davila