New Music
08.04.2009, Words by Charlie Jones

Gold Panda "Divine intervention, innit."

There aren’t many musical acts who claim the secret to their creative powers lies, Sampson-like, in their facial hair. London-based producer Gold Panda sits happily in this minority: “I believe in success by the measurement of beards. Not in the length, but by how many you’ve shaved off. So, say you’ve had 17 beards, you are ‘SUCCESS x 17’. In my music making process, my beard is pretty important, it is stroked frequently. Sometimes I fill it with crumbs or pesto sauce to mix it up a bit.”

When not dreaming up mathematical calculations for everyday life, Gold Panda creates tracks of devastating beauty, full of self-deprecating humour, almost entirely from found samples using “old records, VHS’s brought in charity shops and the odd 90’s computer game samples” in the process, which positions him merrily between Avalanches and De La Soul.

Not content to create his own pieces, an impressive roll-call of remixes have arrived already this year for Bloc Party , Little Boots and Marina and the Diamonds . Later in 2009 we will witness the debut of the Gold Panda Live Spectacular (rumoured to consist of a fancy dress outfit of the promoters choice each evening) and the release of his first single, Quitter’s Raga, on Make Mine Music.

After a couple of years of making cuts in his bedroom and subversively guesting with hip hop artist Infinite Livez, Wichita stumbled across his myspace and were so enamoured with his sound they insisted on taking him on as their first management singing. Almost simultaneously, Huw Stephens ripped a track for his Radio 1 show, which in turn was heard by Colin Murray who did the same. This lead to a week in February where Gold Panda’s stolen myspace demo was played no less then 8 times on Radio 1.

Huw Stephens was said to have initially been grabbed by the songs titles, including Quitter’s Raga, REMIX and I Suppose I Should Say Thanks Or Some Shit, which Panda claims arrive from “God beaming them directly into my skull whilst I am sleeping. The next morning I sick them out through my fingers onto a laptop keyboard – divine intervention, innit.”

Showing a somewhat reclusive side, Panda is adamant that the great British public will never learn the title bestowed upon him by his Mum, insisting that “people never believe my real name when I tell them anyway”. On choosing his moniker, he says: “I just picked my favourite colour and animal. And came up with ‘Pink Worm’, and while I thought that would be good name for an industrial band or free-noise outfit I‘m making wimpy electronica so I opted for my 2nd favourite colour and animal.”

Gold Panda’s debut 7”, Quitters Raga, will be out on Make Mine Music in June/July

Gold Panda’s myspace

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