UK band Rudimental has been making a lot of noise in the EDM/dance scene since their debut album “Home” was released back in 2013.
The group, which consists of Piers Agget, Amir Amor, Kesi Dryden, and Leon “DJ Locksmith” Rolle, are an EDM/live band who collectively draw inspiration from all across the musical spectrum. The Source caught up with Kesi and Piers before they played their opening set on New Year’s Eve for Skrillex and Diplo at Madison Square Garden, and we talked about what’s next for the group, their newly formed label Major Toms, and their respective favorite New Year’s Eve memories. Hit the jump below for our EXCLUSIVE interview.
Your debut album “Home” took you to some pretty incredible places this year, for example you have been touring for the better part of two years now. Did you expect “Home” to blow up the way it did?
Kesi: We didn’t really expect it to blow the way it did. The first single [“Feel The Love”] was a success and went straight to #1, and then we pretty much finished the album straight after that. We never expected that to go to #1, we were just making music we love. So for us to have the success we did, it’s pretty cool, man. I’m still a bit speechless about it … It’s taken us to places like Madison Square Garden on New Year’s Eve. It doesn’t get much better than that.
Speaking of MSG, how does it feel knowing that you’re opening for Skrillex and Diplo on New Year’s Eve here at The Garden?
Piers: It’s a crazy feeling. We come from London, so we only hear about MSG in terms of great concerts and people who have played here, so to be here, especially on New Year’s Eve, it’s amazing. We’re big fans of Major Lazer and Skrillex and A$AP Ferg, it’s a wicked line-up. Amongst those guys in an area of 20,000 people…
[DJ Locksmith] mentioned that on your next album you’d be collaborating with Ellie Goulding, Ed Sheeran, The Game, Johnny Depp, Alice Cooper, and Psy?
Piers: [laughs] They were all in the studio at the same time. We were in the studio with The Game and Ed Sheeran at the time, and I think Ellie Goulding was passing through, and Alice Cooper and Johnny Depp were downstairs, because that’s what LA is like. Ed Sheeran is on the new album, we toured with him recently in America around the arenas and that was amazing. We wrote “Blood Stream” off of [Sheeran’s] new album together.
Kesi: We did some tracks with Ed Sheeran and The Game, a sort of joint collaboration. That’ll be for a different project, not our next forthcoming album. That’ll be some new music to look out for.
Piers: Rudimental, what we like to do is work with unsigned talent and launch artists. On the first album, there’s a lot of unknown artists and they’re well-known now, and we’ve set up our own label as well, so we’re gonna be signing artist through that and creating our own little world. The new album is very exciting, it’s got some old legends on it, like George Clinton [of Parliment Funkadelic] is on it, Donald Fagon from Steely Dan, it’s got some unsigned talent that we can’t wait to unleash.
And when can we expect to hear that new music?
Kesi: Early 2015. We’re thinking April. It’ll be coming soon. We’ll be having a single or two coming out before hand, maybe in January or February, so it’s coming very soon.
Have you ever given thought to working with other UK crossover artists like Sam Smith or Charli XCX?
Piers: Sam we know very well through the industry and obviously through Disclosure. We’ve done a lot of performances together, so I think something like that could definitely happen in the future. And Charli XCX is a labelmate, so who knows?
Is there anything else that Rudimental or anyone else that you guys like has coming down the pipe in 2015 that you’d like to talk about?
Piers: We signed this singer called Anne-Marie, who’s singing live with us tonight. She’ll be featured on the album and she’s working on a lot of music as well, so that’s pretty exciting. There’s a lot of people coming out from under our umbrella label, which is called Major Toms, which we’re launching next year, so definitely check out stuff that comes out on our label.
Kesi: We’ll also be touring around the world again. We’ll be going to South America, Europe, Australia, and another UK tour, and hopefully another American tour as well, so look out for us. You need to come see us live, that’s how you get the message of what Rudimental is about.
Now that you mention your message, what do you think Rudimental’s overall message is?
Kesi: We’re a positive band that likes to get musicianship across. People may see our music get categorized on either side, as EDM or anything else, but it’s not. It’s like EDM-meets-live, it’s a crossover. We’re a live band, and when we come out and play onstage it’s a big show. You have to come and see us play live to understand, really.
Piers: We represent family vibes and unity and soulful music. Soulful electronic mash-up. That’s kind of our vibes. Happy New Year [laughs].
Speaking of New Years, what are your personal favorite New Year’s Eve moments?
Piers: Last year, we DJ’d in New Zealand and that was amazing. And this year, we’re playing at MSG. New Years is always a really big hype for me, but since Rudimental’s happened it’s been a lot more fun because we get to DJ and perform for these crowds, so I’m hoping tonight will be the night.
Kesi: I think the year before we did 4-5 shows in one night in the UK, so it was literally get to the venue, get on stage, have a car waiting outside, run off stage to the next car and get to the next stage … It was crazy, it was almost like a film. Get in, get out, get in the car, get to the next one. We made every venue with about two minutes to spare [laughs].
You can read our review of the concert here:
-Dylan “CineMasai” Green