Interview: Mindset Discusses His New EP – ‘Everyone Sounds Like’

Philly-based electronic artist Mindset, aka Tim Walker, released his new EP, Everyone Sounds Like, just a few days ago.

Mindset began producing music at the age of 17. His sound blends raw early Atlanta hip-hop with swashbuckling underground bass, witnessed by last year’s release of “FEAR,” which made an immediate impact.

On Everyone Sounds Like, embracing five energizing tracks, Mindset turns loose thick, crusty layers of bass accented by alien warbles, experimental sounds, and the swaggering muscle of hip-hop. One of the best tracks is “Riddim For Punkz,” a collaboration with tiedye ky.

“Riddim For Punkz” opens on eerie sci-fi-flavored synths rolling into a measured, brawny rhythm topped by anarchic waves of coloration, glitchy percussion, and a bassline from the bowels of hell. Entry points include “Vitamins” and the title track.

Impressed by Mindset’s innovative fusion of cosmic soundscapes, pumping out graphic hip-hop, grungy sonic folds, and crushing basslines, CelebMIx spoke with Mindset to find out more about his influences, his thirst for creativity, and how he took the name Mindset.

Congratulations on your new EP release. For those of our readers who may not know who you are, can you tell them a little bit about you?

Thank you so much! I started making music when I was 17 after I bought a laptop that had an old copy of Ableton live on it. Since then, I’ve been hooked on making music and most of my other hobbies and interests have taken a backseat. Besides writing music, I also do all of my artwork. I think the role that visuals can have when accompanying music is often overlooked. When I make my artwork, I try to tell a deeper story that can’t be told through just the music alone. Ultimately, Mindset is just an extension of myself, and all of my interests morphed together.

What sets your music apart from your peers?

I draw a lot of my sonic inspiration from some of the darker sounds and vibes in hip-hop. I don’t really like build-ups and I’d classify most of my music as “organized chaos,” lol.

What inspired your new EP, Everyone Sounds Like?

I started the writing process for ‘Everyone Sounds Like’ after I lost my laptop. That laptop had everything I ever made on it, from every song, project file, and even my first EP that was almost complete. At the time, I was devastated but in hindsight It was the best thing that ever happened to me. I wanted to come back and make a statement with my first big release after that experience. My goal when writing this EP was to write a cohesive project where every song could destroy a dance floor.

The name ‘Everyone Sounds Like’ started as an ironic joke, it isn’t all that deep. Most of the names of my songs spawn from the emotions that I’m feeling, places I’ve traveled to, or a city that I wrote the song in – like Brisbane. Sometimes it’s just an ironic phrase like Riddim For Punkz; a name Kyle came up with while trying to describe the track we had just made as we danced like hooligans in his bedroom.

On “Riddim For Punkz,” you collaborated with tiedye ky. What’s it like to work with a friend and grow together as artists?

Kyle is a very close friend of mine and one of my favorite people to make music with. He was one of the first people I met from outside of my hometown who also made electronic music and over the years we’ve made a lot of music together. We both bring different ideas to the table and have pretty different approaches to making music, which is what makes collaborating with him so much fun. We started ‘Riddim For Punkz’ back when he used to live at his old apartment in Philly. Back then we used to just plug our analog synths into his different guitar pedals and go crazy just sitting on his floor recording all of the sounds we could, which can be heard throughout the song.

So why music? Is there anything else you’d be doing if music wasn’t in your life?

There’s nothing else that gives me the same sense of fulfillment and happiness that music does. If I wasn’t pursuing music, I’d still want a job that allows me to express myself creatively. One of my passions besides music is graphic design, so I’d probably pursue that as a career.

Which musicians/producers influence your sound the most?

Right now, my biggest inspirations in electronic music are Abelation and Mirror Maze. They both have such unique takes on bass music and their sound design is untouchable. Can’t say enough good things about these boys!

The name Mindset suggests a number of connotations. What’s the straight scoop on the name?

I used to release songs under my real name for a few years on SoundCloud before I began putting out music as Mindset. One day I was driving and listening to the radio and one of the radio hosts started saying something along the lines of “it’s all about your mindset.” As soon as I heard that I instantly knew that Mindset was going to be the name I put music out as. That day when I got home I remember telling my brother and a few of my friends the name and they all hated it, hahaha. Despite their opinions, I was so sold on the name and have used it ever since!

What are some things you’ve learned throughout your career that might help upcoming artists?

It sounds cliche but authenticity really goes a long way, so just be yourself. Take your time and make the music that you want to make. It’s easy to do what everyone else is doing, a lot of new artists tend to do this while trying to find their sound. There’s an untold story waiting to be written if you just be yourself.

You’re based in Philly. What’s the music scene like in The Sixth Borough?

The music scene in Philly is awesome. I’m not sure what it’s like in other cities, but everyone here is super supportive of each other, it feels like a big family. I get a lot of inspiration from so many of my artist friends that live here!

If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

I wish people would spend less time on their phones and instead experience the world around them. Get off social media and go outside and do something nice for someone else.

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Written by Randy

Randy Radic is a Left Coast author and writer. Author of numerous true crime books written under the pen-name of John Lee Brook. Former music contributor at Huff Post.