Electroclash turned tech house producer Sir Winston wants to take you on a wild ride
Sir Winston is a prolific and diverse artist who thrives on the affinity between music and fashion. His music has been used in large-scale fashion campaigns including NIKE, VOGUE, Victoria’s Secret & Maybelline. He’s also designed and dropped several sustainable clothing collections under the brand Sir Winston, culminating in a recent Pop-Up installation on the Lower East Side in Manhattan New York.
His latest single is Fashion Is A Drug (Remix). This unholy concoction of electroclash and tech house is a savage, mind-bending trip that’ll have you questioning the very fabric of reality. As the relentless basslines and frenetic synths swirl around you, you’ll find yourself immersed in a hedonistic, dystopian soundscape.
We caught up with the magnetic artist to get the lowdown…
As the year starts drawing to a close, what have been your standout moments?
It’s been a crazy busy year and I spent a lot of time in the studio and releasing music. I travelled all over Europe during summer. One show I did in Bourg-Saint-Maurice in the French Alps was off the hook. It was really random for me to be there and it was an amazing wild night.
You have a really distinct vocal delivery on your records – when did you first start to perform, and what do you remember enjoying from those times?
My first performances were with a band I put together when I was a teenager. My brother was on drums. I’ve been performing ever since. Every project that I’ve done brings back amazing memories. I lived in Texas for years and was in a band with some really cool guys. We worked hard and played killer shows. They are great memories. I do like singing because I have a message to deliver with my music and it feels right that I deliver that message.
What has been your main inspiration behind the current string of releases, that’s culminating with the remixes?
The EP was a concept record – a throwback to the bloghaus era. I’d been listening to a lot of music from back then and that inspired me to make the EP. I also lived in Paris for six months last year and was inspired by the city – so there is also a French theme to it. It’s called Démons à Combattre – which means Demons to Fight in French. I made a decision to release a lot of music and go hard at it after the pandemic. I wanted to create something special with Sir Winston and make the DJ sets really different – wild and crazy. So the remixes I needed, as they would work in the DJ set.
In a recent interview, you mentioned a fusion of styles in your music, ranging from electroclash to indie rock. Could you elaborate on how your musical style has evolved over the years and what influences have played a significant role in this evolution?
I played in hard rock and punk bands all through my 20’s and early 30’s and was based in the USA. I returned to my hometown Melbourne, Australia, around 2000 and started clubbing a lot and making dance music. I loved the club scene in Melbourne and released a lot of music – working with local producers and DJ’s. I loved Felix Da Housecat and the sexy allure of electroclash. I also realized that there was no limits to how far you could push different ideas into club music and that I could incorporate my punk and hard rock roots. Tracks like “little black spiders” by Armand Van Helden and “breathe” by The Prodigy were heavy influences on me. When I started DJing it opened up a whole new frontier and that’s made me dive deeper and deeper into discovering new music and creating my own style within it.
You’ve expressed enthusiasm for working on remixes that integrate into your DJ sets. Can you share more about your creative process when remixing tracks? How do you decide which elements to keep and which to transform?
There is always a stand out topline to grab and a message in the original that I want to preserve. It all happens pretty quick and it’s also random what makes it through. We create a rocking vibe in the studio and that mood helps dictate the direction of the track.
What music do you listen to outside of the studio?
I constantly listen to music. I have music for the gym and playlists for just about any moment. I have a playlist called “Bath music” that I love to listen to relaxing in the tub. It’s got old classics by Bob Dylan and Nick Drake. I also like to play music when I’m cooking or when I’m getting ready to head out. Finding music for my sets is a more focused and concentrated routine. I’ll lay by the pool or at the beach for hours and dive deep. Lots of Tech House, but I’m searching for those diamonds in the rough. Obscure new tracks that I might tweak a bit to work into my set, tracks that have an underground feel but are driving enough to bring a festival vibe.
And outside of dance music, what has been the album or artist you’ve listened to the most?
The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Velvet Underground, Bob Dylan, Jane’s Addiction & The Cure.
What’s 2024 looking like for Sir Winston?
Lots of new releases and I want to DJ as much as I possibly can.