Wonderland caught up with troublesome twosome Arkon Fly to get the lowdown on their juicy garage beats and their ‘music for the ladies’
Arkon Fly are a funky fresh London-based duo consisting of writers, producers and vocalists Big Jam and Bixby. The multi-talented multi-instrumentalists first pricked up ears with their sumptuous debut ‘Through the Fire’, and caught Wonderland’s attention with their bouncy remix of the Rizzle Kicks’ hit ‘Tell Her. Blending synth-based funk nostalgia with juicy garage beats, the pair create a sound that makes the people move. Crisp vocals meet cheeky lyrics and infectious ’80s arcadia bass on their latest tune ‘Back Seat’ and ‘4 my People’ is a slick upbeat track with a tasty old school flavour.
Counting Duke Dumont, Skream and Julio Bashmore as fans, the boys have really been making ripples and are now currently locked in the studio beavering away on new material. After releasing their first few tracks with iconic garage label Locked On (The Streets, Artful Dodger, Zed Bias), the guys have just signed an album deal with Sony, and now Arkon Fly are set to soar.
When and where were Arkon Fly conceived?
Big Jam: We met at a gig and hit it off. After a lot of shots we went back to the studio, started jamming and made ‘Through the Fire’ in 20 minutes. The rest is history. Or will be.
Do your tastes differ and what do you both bring to the table individually?
Bixby: Our music tastes are really similar.
Big Jam: We like a lot of the same classic records, but we definitely bring our own style in the studio. Bixby is without a doubt one of the best bass players you’re likely to come across but I make grime beats and he doesn’t – so there.
Who or what inspires you on a day to day basis?
Big Jam: The greats. From Bach to Michael Jackson to my Dad.
Bixby: But currently it’s a TV show called The Knick.
You’ve been touted as a funky garage disco house act by listeners, how would you personally describe your own sound?
Bixby: Like a box of Celebrations!
Big Jam: Music for the ladies. Other people might like to throw words like funk and disco in the mix, but we’re not those guys. We’re far too sensible to box ourselves in already. I personally don’t see us as being part of a genre-defined scene, but maybe we are? Who knows? When we write, we never set out to make a particular type of tune, so there are no restrictions, wherever the tune goes, we follow. The rest happens naturally.
Bixby: So long as people are still dancing, I’m happy.
You played at XOYO earlier this year and it got pretty hectic, what are your live shows like and what can people expect when they see you in the flesh?
Big Jam: Pelvic thrusting and jumping. Watch out ladies.
Bixby: In many ways, it’s like watching Susan Boyle collaborate with Slipknot.
Who out there is making music right now that excites you, and what was the last song you fell in love with?
Big Jam: The last tune on radio I fell in love with was ‘If I could Change Your Mind’ by Haim. COLD grooves, movements, melodies. Super cold.
Bixby: Little Dragon is doing it for me.
Your song Back Seat tells a pretty filthy tale, what inspired it?
Big Jam: The tune is basically about getting up to naughty things in a car. Simple chords, baddaman bassline, baddaman drums. Standard coldness.
Things really seem to be taking off for you at the moment, what do we have to look forward to and what’s the big dream for Arkon Fly?
Big Jam: We’ve got lots of new material that we can’t wait to share with the world. And for me personally the dream is to not make dreams my master.
Bixby: More celebration, more creation, more collaborations and more condensation! As for the dream, still living it!
Words: Josh Willacy.