New Zealand producer Pacific Heights is easily one of the most exciting upcoming producers generating hype right now, most recently with his gorgeous, newly released new single Buried By The Burden ft. Louis Baker. The single came out ahead of Pacific Heights’ debut album The Stillness, set for release on may 27 via Create/Control.
Real name Devin Abrams, his lush soundscapes are inviting and intricate, open to all manner of sonic exploration. If his recent singles – both Buried By The Burden and its predecessor Airborne ft. Deanna Krieg are anything to go by, this will no doubt be a phenomenal release.
We wanted to know the man behind the music, so we asked Abrams to share three albums that influenced his life.
Cinematic Orchestra, Everyday
Ninja Tune 2002
Cinematic Orchestra’s Everyday for me optimises the brilliance of songwriting, utiliising live instrumentation and sampling (a la Portishead as well). This album and particularly this track had an air of sadness and depth that little music that I could find at the time had. I remembering hearing this for the first time when it came out in 2002 at a small local record shop that I haunted weekly on routine. It was playing in the store, and totally stopped me in my tracks; I literally just stood there, eyes closed in the middle of the store for at least 30 minutes or so. In 2002 I had just broke up with my girlfriend and moved from Christchurch, New Zealand to Melbourne. It was a lonely time, in an unknown city and this album helped endure the transition. Seeing them live in Sydney several years later for the first time, brought me to tears instantly upon their first track… The power of music as a framer of memories and time is profound!
Grover Washington, Winelight
Where it all started for me, the love of the saxophone and wanting to learn it, the love of the Rhodes and wanting to learn the keys. The love of groove! Grover is quite often considered too easy or pop for many jazz purists, but for me his feel and grasp of melody is too strong to ignore. The combination of jazz, R&B and funk in his music is the perfect cocktail for nodding the head and just wanting to get down! I still remember playing my parents vinyl copy of this album over and over until I had learnt on the saxophone his lines (yes each and everyone of them – my poor parents). It was how I learnt to play sax, as I couldn’t and still cant read music, so the ear and legends like this navigated me on my journey of discovery and musicianship. Even today this album after many listens still makes me smile and want to pick up the sax and play along…
Adam F, Colours
Once in a lifetime, you might be lucky enough to experience something evolutionary… That’s how I felt when I first heard jungle/drum ‘n bass music back in the 90s. The first rave I ever went to was in 1996, I was really young and still in school and had no idea what was about to hit me. I had no prior knowledge of dance music at this stage, and went on a good friend’s sales pitch. That first rave which was two DJ/Producers from the U.K called Ed Rush and Trace, they played to a packed club on a cold wintery night in my hometown Christchurch. It was life changing. This album by Adam F, is probably my fondest musical memory of that time, it combined elements of jazz, breakbeat and urban culture effortlessly and instantly resonated with my musical inclinations. This album was always one of the first albums I would recommend to friends who had yet to be initiated, as it had as its title suggests all of the colours of what drum ‘n bass was at the time.