Apartment 9 Interview
Coming off of an extremely stacked show in Brooklyn, NYC, Music Mondays caught up with the talented creative known as Apartment 9. We discussed their inspiration behind creating sounds, their workflow, recent releases and much more in this Music Mondays exclusive interview.
Rei: How did the show go, and if you performed any unreleased stuff, how was the reception?
Apt9: The show went really well. It was my first time performing since 2019 so I was very nervous before I went on, but I had a really great time. Frax, Baron, Umru, EldiaNYC, Yeah0k! & Mothgirl all killed their sets and it was really fun to watch them all play. I got to bring Yeah0k! and Mothgirl up on stage during my set to play some songs we have together, which was my favorite part. Both of them are such great artists, but I love them even more as friends. I played 1 unreleased song, LIP GLOSS by Astral Trap co-prod Baredex. It comes out Friday, 6/17. I opened up my set with that and it was a great way to start the show.
Rei: How do more ambient genres play into your sound? I noticed you sampled some vaporwave on Tour's opening track and there is always some shoegaze, dreampop elements to your sound.
Apt9: I sample a lot of ambient music in my own music. I listen to tons of dream pop, shoegaze, ambient pop and just dreamy music in general - it heavily influences my beats. The first song on Tour! Is a straight up shoegaze song. I make mostly beats but I tend to also make some music on the dreamier side.
Rei: The first association I made with your solo stuff was to Dylan Brady’s Peace and Love release. Have you ever heard it and does he have any influence on your music?
Apt9: No, I don’t even know who that is, is that bad?
Rei: Where did you get the name for Apartment9? A cursory google search brings up a Kohl’s clothing line.
Apt9: When I started making music, I didn’t know what to name myself. I lived in an apartment numbered 9, so I decided to go with apartment9 mainly for that reason. However, I also loved the idea of my art being a place you go - an entire atmosphere. It gives me a ton of creative freedom and that’s ultimately why I stuck with the name. Also, I like the Kohl’s brand too, shout out Kohl’s.
Rei: Does your workflow contribute to your ability to be so productive and prolific?
Apt9: I have always worked fast. When I was younger I always finished tests first. My brain moves really fast and making beats is one of the only things that I can really sink my teeth into and fully lose myself in. So beatmaking would happen regardless if I was sharing the product or not, it’s just a byproduct of my existence now.
Rei: What do you look for in a sample, and how do you chop them?
Apt9: I like to look for melodies that I think I couldn’t make myself. It’s really fun hearing a little piece of a song, and then taking it and creating something completely new out of it. On my 2020 album Violent Transformations, I sampled parts of several of my favorite songs at the time. It has made that album so special to me, because the parts of the whole are all pieces that I truly love. I don’t use any software to chop my samples, I cut and chop up MP3s and WAVs right in the DAW.
Rei: Does anime music have any significance to your work with mothgirl? Her operatic style reminds me of your use of Cruel Angel’s Thesis on Tour.
Apt9: Yes! We have sampled anime a bunch of times in our music. Mothgirl is so good at creating entire worlds with her lyrics in songs. So my dreamy styles mixed with her lyrical styles always produce a cinematic-like product that feels akin to something like anime. I love working with Astra, she is such a talented vocalist and a great friend.
Rei: Does William Crooks’ mixing techniques have any influence on your own vocal processing?
Apt9: No, again I don’t know who that is. I’ll check out both these artists you mentioned - I listen to a lot of older music most of the time.
Rei: How was the collaborative process with RXK Nephew? That is an unlikely collaboration and it got me into your music.
Apt9: RXKNephew has been one of my favorite rappers ever since I found him in early 2021. I had been following him on IG for a while and I hit him up with some beats and told him I really fucked with his music, and that I wanted to do a tape with him. He was down so he recorded over those beats that day - he works fast, too. So I got the tape back that day, sent it out for mixing and mastering, and put it out. It is definitely my biggest release yet, and we plan on working together again soon so keep your eyes out.
Follow Apartment 9 Here: twitter.com/apt9charlie
Written By Rei Low: twitter.com/_rocktimist