Euphoria in musical form: Croydon boy Andy Smith, AKA Lxury captures its dreamy essence with his oh-so-danceable, dubstep inspired tracks
Andy Smith, AKA Lxury has come a long way since playing with the guys from Disclosure in college bands and being the epitome of the ‘bedroom producer’ archetype. His breakthrough EP, Playground is a mash of eclectic samples from reverberating greek guitars, colourful childish vocals and infectious baselines that thunder through unexpectedly. ‘J.A.W.S.’ and ‘We Do‘ may have wowed but Playground challenges the landscape of progressive house to new levels. Lxury cites his influences from jazz, jungle, techno, to the likes of the Cocteau Twins and Siouxsie & The Banshees… even though he’s not been listening to much as of late because of a broken iPod, he tells me. He’s definitely one to keep an eye on over this year’s festival circuit and beyond.
The EP’s got quite dreamy, trance moments but it’s still very danceable. Was that the kind of vibe you were looking to project?
Yeah, exactly. The aim was to definitely make it dance-y but it’s not like an EP made over a weekend for people just to dance to, rave or whatever. I wanted it to be listenable as well, on the way to work or something like that. It’s got its little moments of ambience. Definitely the whole euphoria wave influences are in there.
The ‘J.A.W.S.’ video is really cool. Got anymore videos in the works?
Yeah, I actually made that video with a friend. [I] think that we’ll definitely make some more. Perhaps a bit more deep with a storyline, but it’s good to have a visual complement to the music. I really enjoy a good music video even though they can get quite same-y. It’s important to set the tone of something. When I make a song and have something in mind I usually just write it down straight away. So I’ve got notes on different songs and how they could appear at certain points or they might not ever be heard.
You recently switched labels. Is Greco-Roman a better fit for you?
I think it’s good to try out different things, I’m still very much developing so for this EP, Greco-Roman probably is a better fit. It wasn’t because I was unhappy with [Method Records] or anything; it’s just stepping stones. I guess a final home where I can work and release a full album would be ideal, but while I’m developing it’s good for artists to try out different labels.
You’re from Croydon where dubstep pretty much originated. Would you say that’s had a lasting impact on you?
Yeah, definitely. I was quite young when it came out but you can’t really escape it if it’s happening down the road from you. It’s weird how it blew up in Croydon and obviously all the clubs were playing it and the pirate radio stations that I was listening to started playing dubstep. I’m not so into it now. I don’t listen to it the way I did then. But I used to listen to it a lot on pirate radio back in the day, we had a lot of dubstep nights in Croydon that you could go down to. It had a big influence on me.
I read somewhere you’ve got a small studio underneath the Heathrow flight path, is that right?
Well, I’ve moved now. I move around a lot, living in Peckham at the moment. But yeah, I was living under the M4 motorway — as you do — for a couple of years in a little room. It’s where I wrote most of the EP, actually. In this tiny room. Like really, really small. It was an experience. People have been saying that Playground sounds really lively and playful. I don’t know why it sounds so upbeat because it really shouldn’t have been due to where I was. Quite funny, really, being in such a weird environment making music. But it’s pretty much all I could do.
Words: Sophie Hadley