Music producer who sees colours in genre-bending sounds

He's a big name in Europe but keeps his real name a closely guarded secret.

Going by the pseudonym South London Ordnance, the English music producer, 25, has been praised for his inventive genre-bending sounds.

During our interview over Twitter, joined momentarily by legendary BBC Radio DJ Mary Anne Hobbs, Ordnance also revealed an unusual trait - he can see colours from sound.

It's a rare neurological condition called synaesthesia and puts him among a select group of artists such as painter Vincent van Gogh, singer Stevie Wonder and jazz pianist Duke Ellington.

Despite a very short career, he looms large on the radar. Alternative music magazines Fact and XLR8R both list him as a name to watch.

The former law student has been playing prestige gigs across Europe and the US but you can catch him at Super 0 Season (held at former art gallery, The Mill on Jalan Kilang in Bukit Merah) on Nov 16.

Here are some highlights of our conversation:

It's 9pm here. What time is it there and where are you at?

Yo. It's 1pm. Sitting in Bodean's (a barbecue restaurant) in Soho (London) with my manager while he explains his sharp new haircut.

Here he is, hating life.

There should be a @tumblr called CrankyDJManagers.

Ironically, I'm the only DJ he manages. Probably explains the look.

Has 2013 been good to you?

Pretty sweaty to be honest. Been a great year - USA, Ibiza, etc lots of fun.

I read that you aren't confident of your productions. @maryannehobbs and the like must have proven otherwise?

I think all artists struggle to have complete confidence in their own work...

@maryannehobbs has always been incredibly encouraging and pushed me very hard in the beginning. Very grateful!

But that's the drive, isn't it? To be better than your previous self.

Unless you are @kanyewest who is already better than himself.

Of course. I've released stuff I love but I've also put out records I know I could have done better on, so yeah, I would agree...

RT @maryannehobbs: @STHLDNORDNCE you have a beautiful gift and it's been a pleasure and a privilege to play your music on the radio.

You pick out different nuances of jungle, garage, bass. What kind of aural palettes interest you?

I've always been a huge drum and bass fan. Stuff like Data and Commix's more experimental stuff.

The space in the beats really appeals to me... but I guess it's constantly shifting. I like a lot of chaotic fuzzed out techno at the moment - R-Zone, Prince of Denmark...

I guess partly because you are a visual person. You "see sound" as much as you hear it.

Yup. Different tracks are different colours. Manuel Tur's Most Of This Moment (Blakkat remix) is an orange track... don't ask me why. LOL. Same goes for a lot of Scuba's tracks - they always feel green... Must be the frequencies. Haha.

Dude! Have you heard of synaesthesia?

Yeah man, always had it. People are sceptical but I know loads of people who think the same way...

What's next for you?

Just writing loads of new music, working on some collaborations...

You're pretty elusive about your real name. Why?

Never really seen the need to share it.

Haha. Anyways, have you been to Singapore?

Yeah, once, on the way back from Australia. Loved it :)

@Super0Season is a pretty rare thing here. (Legal) warehouse party. What can we expect from you?

Yeah I checked it out. Production looks dope! (Expect) the business end of intelligent house and techno!

See you on November 16!

Looking forward! Yeah, can't wait to play for everyone in Singapore!

To read the full interview and see some of South London Ordnance's illustrations follow #TNPSLO on Twitter

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