Nic Offer Breaks Down Five Thrilling Samples

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Impossible to Google band !!! is dropping their impossible to pronounce album Thr!!!er on April 30, and it comes complete with a jam — “Slyd” — replete with impossible to identify samples. Why so hard to suss those samples out? Well, that’s because the band created them themselves as part of a wild, out-there feedback loop.

“When we started, our style of music was like — we were imitating the drum machines and synthesizers with guitars and live drums and those initial drum machines and synthesizers were imitating original guitars and live drums,” frontman Nic Offer says. “But then it turned into something else. So it seemed like an interesting way to be working, to be imitating this new technological advancement.”

In honor of said technological advancement, we hit up Offer to find out which five samples inspired the band.

1. MARRS, “Pump Up the Volume” (1987)

Samples: James Brown, “Super Bad”; The Jimmy Castor Bunch, “It’s Just Begun”; The Soul Children feat. Jesse Jackson, “I Don’t Know What This World Is Coming To” and many, many more

“It seemed like in the early days of sampling there was a moment where there was just kind of a free-for-all and everyone was just kind of like, ‘Whoa, we can just sample anything, you know?’ And so they’re just poring through records and finding all the breaks and beats for that. So ‘Pump Up the Volume’ [by MARRS] always felt like it was made at a time — it was one of those songs that was using the exact technology of everything that they could use at that time to make something new.”

2. Re. You, “Junction” (2012)

Sample: Shorty Long, “Function At The Junction”

“It’s become a thing now, with samples — it seems like they’re kind of taking one loop and twisting it and turning it and kind of like changing the energy beneath it, you know. So I really like this song by Re.You called ‘Junction.’ And it’s just like, ‘I’m getting ready for the function at the junction, and baby you’d better come on right now’ — and that’s just that sample over and over. I just really responded to that.”

3. Boddika, Joy Orbison & Pearson Sound, “Faint” (2012)

Sample: Origin unknown

“It’s just a sample of someone saying, ‘Begin to go weak.’ They play with that sample and they tease it and separate it from wherever it’s taken from. It takes on this mantra-like meaning and it begins to be about the track and how the music is teasing you and making you go weak and building and building and that tension is what makes you feel ‘begin to go weak.’ That to me is a good example of how sampling is like an art. You can use it to be something else.”

4. Beastie Boys, “Jimmy James”

Sample: Cheap Trick, “Surrender” from Cheap Trick at Budokan

“We’ve been coming to this point in our live set where we say, ‘Now we’ve reached the point that all bands look forward to, which is when they get to say this, “This next one’s the first song on our new album.”‘ Everyone knows that sample. The Beastie Boys were so excited to open up their record with that, because they had listened to that Cheap Trick record when they were kids. That’s another way that the sample can be used. Just us doing that [live] is, in a sense, sampling.”

5. Zapp, “More Bounce to the Ounce” (1980)

“That song has become the template for West Coast hip-hop. There are so many songs that just use that Zapp clap — it’s just like three of them in the studio all clapping and feeding it back through a digital delay. I always thought that was really interesting, because it’s just a clap that became a sound used 30 years later. We even used it at the beginning of ‘One Boy.’”

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