Ottawa, Ontario’s—and maybe North America’s—fastest rising remixer, Ryan Hemsworth, recorded his FADER mix between tours of Europe and the US. “It’s kind of a sad mix,” he said, explaining, “I had post-Paris depression.” Eschewing the frenetic, wide-grinning pace of previous work, Hemsworth lets these songs—seemingly taken from the goldmine pile of CDs one finds in their teenage bedroom after a long time away—stretch and breathe. “I’m trying to be a little more patient,” he says. A download and tracklist are below; pay close attention to the surprisingly sexy Broken Social Scene edit Hemsworth made in high school and a brand new solo track, titled just “(｡◕‿◕｡)” for now, that lifts the mood 39 minutes in. Then, read a chat about Hemsworth’s upcoming LP, big brothers and forgetting breakfast.
Download: Ryan Hemsworth’s FADER Mix
How was touring in Europe? Really good but too short. It was my first time there and I finally met like a million internet friends. I’ve been producing and stuff for so long and I didn’t know if that transition was going to be awkward or not, but playing shows feels really nice and natural. I was expecting tour to be kind of a vacation thing but it was hectic: stay out until 5AM, wake up at 7AM and figure out like, Do I need to be at an airport right now? Where am I supposed to go? I’m always worried I’m getting lost wherever I am. I’m worried about this North American tour that I’m about to do; I’ve been in the USA like two times. I’m gonna get lost a lot, so I’m hoping that there’s nice normal people. I’m definitely picturing like, King of the Hill in Texas.
What’s your daily routine at home in Canada? I like being alone, usually. That’s really where I’m most comfortable, when I’m on my couch on the computer. It’s nice to be able to talk to a million people at the same time on the internet. Growing up I was always quiet and never really made that many connections, so having this kind of accessibility to the world, that’s amazing. I moved out of my parent’s house last summer and I’m living in Ottawa, Ontario, now. I wake up and I start working on music and forget to eat my first two meals and eventually have something huge to eat for supper and then continue to work on music. It’s nice to be secluded out here, because I can work all day. When I play shows I get to hang out with everybody.
Have you always been a sort of solitary guy? Growing up I had two older brothers who are kind of totally the opposite of me, jocks and stuff. I was always kind of in the background, playing video games or guitar. Like Dewey from Malcom in the Middle. Now, my brothers are super proud. They’re probably the most supportive of my music. One of them has Google alerts on me. He knows more than me about what I’m doing, before I do.
You studied journalism for the last four years. When did you realize you’d rather focus on making music than writing about it? Music has always been number one for me. I wanted to be in a cool rock band since forever. But when I finished high school and I wasn’t a rock star yet, I had to figure out what I liked second best and it was definitely writing. To graduate [from journalism school], we had to make a magazine and get an internship, and the magazine I made was a music one. I basically tried to make a FADER rip-off. Now when I read reviews of my stuff, you see patterns repeated. That’s what I learned from spending time in both worlds, just how a lot of people can be lazy, in both music and writing.
Have you signed a deal with a label for your upcoming solo LP? I haven’t yet, but I was literally just talking about that right now. I’m pretty much done with my album, I’m just trying to get one or two last features for it. It’s weird because all of my favorite labels are kind of like, Hey can we hear it? I’m trying to figure out what the best route is. Hopefully I’ll have it sorted in the next week or two.
Having envisioned a career in music for so long, is there anything bittersweet about actually finding success? The only thing that has surprised me is the pace of everything. How fast people start talking to you and word gets around. But also how slow things can be. With the album, I feel like I’ve already done it and I want to put it out right now. But I know with labels it takes so long; contracts and stuff are still kind of weird to me, but I’m trying to get used to them. Also how slow checks come in. Still, right now I feel lucky. I’ve been shaping [my career] in the way that I want to. I’m producing for people and I’m doing my solo stuff and people seem to respect that. I’m doing a soundtrack right now that’s coming together well. I want that balance, where I can do a tour, come back and make an EP, do remixes. Maybe produce for Drake and Future a little bit.
Is that every Canadian kid’s dream, to work with Drake? I don’t think so, actually. You would think, as an outsider. There’s definitely a lot of Drake hate in Canada. I love “Started From the Bottom,” even if he’s not really saying where he started from, which is not the bottom. I’m going to play it a lot, so he did something right.
The Microphones / Cornelius intro
Mr. carmack – Rogue
Ryan Hemsworth – Chippy Swing My Way
Più Più – The Melt Rap
Singing Statues – She’s In The House
Shlohmo – Out Of Hand
Spaceghost Purrp – Osiris Of The East
Nosaj Thing – Snap
Sibian & Faun – I Thought That I Was Over You (Now I Get The Glock)
Hot Sugar – and the walls came tumbling down (demo)
Cholombian & Morgan Hislop – Brittany Murphy
Broken Social Scene – Anthems For A Seventeen Year Old Girl (hemsworth edit from high school lol)
Lofty305 – bussin at em
Jojo – Leave
Boyz II Men – Can You Stand The Rain
RAJA – He Won’t Pay Me (ft. Vijay Iyer)
Sam Tiba – u lookin for a title and all u think about is that other person so u name it me & her
Bjork – Pagan Poetry
The Radio Dept – 1995
Tink – Bonnie
Evy Jane – Slowdive (demo)
malky – never enough kells (instrumental)
3 Of A Kind – Babycakes
Chrome Sparks – Luna Luxor
Sky Ferreira – Everything is Embarrassing
Depeche Mode – See You
Ryan Hemsworth – w/o u
Juj – Farmer’s Market
Ryan Hemsworth – (｡◕‿◕｡)
Rhye – Open (Ryan Hemsworth Remix)
Più Più – ll cool e