An Interview With The Electronic Duo BIG GIGANTIC On Their Newest Music, Being Creative During This Pandemic and More!
Earlier this year, the Colorado-based electronic duo Big Gigantic (Dominic Lalli & Jeremy Salken) released their newest track, “St. Lucia.” The features the surf-trap rapper, Felly. “St. Lucia” is a Caribbean-inspired tune that has laid-back instrumentation flavored with beachy guitar and trap rhythms.
“St. Lucia” is featured on Big Gigantic’s upcoming eighth studio album, entitled, “Free Your Mind”, via Big Gigantic/Counter Records. This will be the duo’s first album in three years. The 13-track collection features collaborations with Pell, Felly, TOBi, Jennifer Hartswick, Louis Futon, and The Funk Hunters. In true Big Gigantic fashion, the album spans a variety of genres offering up playful electronic pop to modern jazz fusion compositions.
Before the Covid-19 pandemic hit, Big Gigantic had a 3D Live Experience tour planned culminating with the band’s 12th headlining date at Red Rocks. However this has all been put on hold for the time-being. Big Gigantic is well-known for their epic & dynamic live shows, playing major festivals such as Coachella, Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, ACL, Ultra, Outside Lands, Hangout, HARD, Governors Ball, Electric Forest and more. They’ve also sold out their own headlining festival, Rowdytown, at Red Rocks Amphitheater every year since 2012.
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Check out that song and more from Big Gigantic here:
Learn more about Big Gigantic in the following All Access interview:
Can you recall the moment when you thought you could be make music together? Has anything surprised you about this musical journey so far?
I think the moment occurred at our very first live show. I think we both kinda thought, ‘this could really work!’. Of course it was for about 200 people but the strange thing about our first show was that we had sold it out, yet, we had never put any music out for anyone to hear. (Hahahaha) It’s pretty funny that is how it started. I think everything has surprised us in every way, we definitely never thought Big Gigantic would take us as far as it has but we are grateful!
How do you think your hometown has influenced the sound and how you both carry yourselves in this band?
Living in Colorado and playing music around here is definitely a particular kind of vibe. Whats interesting is that, fans really love all types of music here. You see the same fans going out to a variety of different electronic, DJ, jam bands, hip hop on any given night. People here are huge supporters of music. Its amazing so I think because our sound draws from so many different influences, i think fans here enjoy that diversity in the music and culture. And i think Colorado has definitely shaped us as individuals and just our general outlook on life. Definitely always try to bring the good vibes wherever we go and also we love helping out our community and other communities where we go tour etc so we’ve put together a foundation to help people around the US.
Why would you say that you two work so well together? Where is one of you weak where the other is strong and vice-versa? Why does this duo work?
I think we work so well together because we just love music in general and also i think each of our separate talents compliment each other. I (Dom) write the music and work on most things music while Jeremy does a lot of biz stuff for the band (which is super helpful in a band our size) and live his drumming with my saxophone playing, really takes the music to a whole new level.
Let’s talk about your newest and eighth studio album, “Free Your Mind.” What was it like making this collection? Did you approach the process any differently than your previous albums?
Super fun creating our latest album. I definitely always try new approaches when working on new albums/songs. Just small things like starting songs with different instruments and things like that, but, little things like that can go a long way in the creative process. We featured a lot of different artists on this album and it was truly a gift to work with some of these incredible artists 1on1 in the studio.
I read online that you feel like this album is about exploring all of the different things that make us human- the things that connect us to ourselves and to each other so that we can get to know our true selves and live our greatest lives without anything holding us back. Can you elaborate on this? How do they songs portray all of that?
We thought about what would it mean to have a ‘free mind’ and what it might take for an individual to achieve something like that. obviously a very deep subject but we wanted to touch on a few items that we thought were important in talking about ‘freeing your mind’. One of the first concepts we thought was important was, self love. We thought that may be the first step in the process, so our song called “You’re The One” accompanies that idea. Then we thought we would address ‘Love’. It is something that all of us experience and i think when your mind is truly free you can love deeper. Hence the song, “Burning Love.” We wanted to think about friendships and how complex and diverse those can be while being such an integral part of life. Our song Friends w/ Ashe. We just wanted to create a vibe around some of these deeper concepts with the album.
What was the inspiration for the songs on “Free Your Mind”?
They all came from different places but just exploring and creating with friends and really trying to carry the theme while creating the album.
Where do you think you are both happiest- in the studio recording new music, on stage performing or elsewhere?
Really tough to say because we love performing just as much as being in the studio. The perfect balance between the two is the ultimate!!
What has been a favorite show of yours to date?
We’ve been playing Red Rocks Amphitheatre for the last 9 years with our event Rowdytown. Those shows are hands down our favorite we’ve done. Red Rocks is a magical place.
What do you think makes an ideal performance for this band?
Crowd interaction makes the show for us. When the fans are feeling it, we feed off that energy and play harder which makes them go harder.
With everyone’s tour dates being cancelled due to the Covid-19 virus, do you plan on doing any live streaming for your fans? How are you keeping busy during this challenging time?
We are working on creative ways to do live streams and interact with fans. Colorado just enacted a stay at home rule which makes it harder to live stream separately from our homes. The days are going by pretty fast actually. You would think you would have all this time to sit at home and watch Netflix or whatever but I’ve barely watched any TV. Trying to get into good daily habits at home is key to not going crazy. Working out everyday, eating as healthy as possible and staying connected w friends and family around the country are definitely ways to cope with the craziness of being cooped up.
How do you think being musicians and in this band gives you all the most joy in life today?
We’ve been playing music since we were kids. There is a natural drive to just play music because that brings us so much joy. Having Big Gigantic as a vehicle to play for people around the world is a true blessing and something we never take for granted.
We are currently living through a very trying and politically charged time right now so I am curious to know how your own music is reflecting this time period? If you don’t think it is, why is that?
We’re just trying to inspire people to live positive lives and love others. We try to ride the line in the middle of everything politically but work with organizations like Head Count to educate fans on registering to vote. We think thats incredibly important. Our country/world is definitely in a crazy and difficult time right now. Were hoping through our music and shows that people can focus on themselves, family, friends and grow to live positive, loving lives.
Who would you love to work with in the future? Who are some of your favorite artists right now? What do you think would be a dream collaboration for this duo?
We would love to work with Anderson Paak, Bonobo, Thundercat, Skrillex, Quinn XCII, AJR and Earthgang just to name a few!
Where would you love to hear your music being played? A TV show, a movie, in your favorite store, etc…?
Anything would be sweet but love it when we hear our stuff on TV. Basketball games and Westworld! (Hahaha) We are down for whatever!
What do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people continue to take away from your songs?
We really just hope that our music resonates with different people and their different emotions. We want our music to be the soundtrack of peoples lives.