An interview with Arran Sym

An interview with Arran Sym

Scotland artist and producer Arran Sym is rising in the alt music realms of late — landing him smack dab on our radar for an artist spotlight!

This up-and-coming low-fi name might be a novice to some, yet is quickly becoming a master of his craft.

Arran Sym has been making such major waves in the UK that we’ve taken notice across the Atlantic! We had to know more about his journey as an artist, so we asked him about his new EP release, 1000 Micrograms of Love, his general feel for the industry and beyond. This is what he said.

What made your interest gear towards low-fi, compared to other sub-genres of hip hop?

  • AS: I’m not really sure it was a conscious decision. Having produced for a lot of hip hop for artists, it comes across in my own work. I definitely wanted to go in a pop direction, but do it differently… so, I guess the combination of pop and hip hop influence resulted in the lo-fi sound.

Has growing up in Scotland made a mark on your music taste? If so, could you elaborate on that?

  • I don’t know if Scotland directly influenced my music taste; it was more so the music I was exposed to when I was younger. Growing up, my mum was super into music and would take me to gigs and stuff, so music became a big part of my life early on.

What does ‘1000 Micrograms of Love’ mean to you?

  • 1000 Micrograms of Love really came from the opening track, “Dosed”. It was just lyrics that came naturally due to what I was experiencing at that time. I had been living in Japan with my girlfriend for a few months and had just started to make my own music, when that concept really stuck in my head. It’s a reference to LSD doses, as that’s kind of what falling in love felt like to me. It was such a new experience that was so potent.

You wrote, mixed and mastered all of the music on this EP. Can you give us some insight into what that process was like for you?

  • The process of making the project — completely by myself — was interesting. I definitely learnt a lot from it. Once I began writing songs, I felt really rejuvenated and had a period of two or three months where I was just creating song after song. Then, it got to the point where I kind of had to force myself to stop creating new ideas, so that I could focus on mixing the EP and get it finished. 

The EP has an almost ethereal 80s sound. I am curious — who are your music influences, specifically on this album?

  • My biggest influences are The Beatles. I listen to a lot of different genres though, so I pull influence from many places. But, other artists that have meant a lot to me are Björk, Tame Impala, Radiohead, Amy Winehouse, Frank Ocean, Father John Misty, Kanye, James Blake, amongst others.

Does anything stand out for you in your memory about the making this album? Or, perhaps, a particular memory that may have influenced this album?

  • Definitely the first moment that the project really began, which was making the song “Dosed”. It was the first song I created and I’ve got no idea how it came about. I got lost in the zone and the music just flowed out. It’s such a personal song, that’s really quite simple and truthful, lyrically. It started with the harmonies: I just layered about six vocal lines on top of each other to create some interesting chords and used that as the base for the song. Then, the rest of the song kind of just appeared. It was a special moment for me.

Where can fans find your music/merch for purchase?

  • My music is all available on all streaming platforms, which can be accessed through my website.

Links: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Website

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