Following the release of Good Time (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack), Oneohtrix Point Never answered questions in a fan led interview on the soundtrack, making music, visual media, and more. See highlights below, and read the full AMA in the link below.
On Good Time
Q: I know this isn't the first film you've composed for, but was there anything particularly unique challenging about this project/film specifically?
OPN: the first 20 min was extremely challenging. the music pretty much never stops and is constantly vacillating between intense and super intense
Q: How did you approach making a soundtrack for a film compared to having full creative freedom with past records?
OPN: safdies gave me all the freedom i could handle tbh. not always the case but, in this case i kind of understood the job well enough where i was in a free flow most of the time without a lot of agonizing about what they wanted from me
Q: The Good Time OST feels like the most ‘jammey’ thing you have done in a while and was wondering how you turn your jamming into finished songs? Is there a lot of overdubbing ‘solos’ on top of pre-written material or is everything done in pretty much one go? Are you stitching together different jam sessions together? Thanks for taking the time for doing this.
OPN: yeah a lot of jamming . and then finessing the jam in midi
Q: Hi Daniel! What really struck me when watching the movie was the way your soundtrack seems to permanently convey a tension, even when the narration seems to slow down, so I was wondering if you had access to footage from the movie when you were creating the soundtrack, or if you were purely working off the script?
OPN: it was all scored to picture !
Q: How did you and Josh Safdie meet?
OPN: he said, "dan come to my office. NOW."
and so i did
On Making Music
Q: big fan, what's your least favorite and most favorite part of your creation process?
OPN: least favorite - agonizing intellectually over shit most favorite - fingers on the keys
if i can remember this im ok but often forget
Q: why did you want to study library sciences and do you still do stuff in that field today?
OPN: YES all the time. i'm obsessed with categorizing stuff. its how i start making music
Q: As a musician, often times when I load up a soft synth, I get stuck no matter how much I play around with it because I feel like I can't get a good sound out of it. Or sometimes I'll get stuck looking for "the right sound". Do you run into this as well? How do you get around this kind of writer's block?
Thank you so much for doing this AMA!
OPN: haha you're welcome. i feel like that all the time. i am a big fan of organizing sounds. putting them together in piles in some system that makes sense for you. keep notes and keep digging around until you find a sound you wanna write with. it could take all day or a week. OR dont worry about the sound until later if you have a musical idea. use a piano. get it out while its there. BECAUSE IT COULD DISAPPEAR BEFORE YOU KNOW IT. good luck :D
Q: Hi Dan, big fan - what's the most unusual sound you've used in a track? E.g. http://vimeo.com/12014899
OPN: oh wow. scott walker unreal. its never unusual going in . i just do unusual things to it
Q: Do you enjoy working with vocals? I was introduced to you via your earlier material and came to expect a lack of voices. Since then I've come to understand they play a much bigger role in your sound than I would have thought, and some of my favorite tracks/releases feature vocals in some way: I Only Have Eyes for You, Returnal, Replica, a lot of R+7 and GoD.
OPN: even on Rifts there was a song w/ me singing on it. it was there all by its lonesome but it was still there
i love the voice its the most complicated musical machine ever invented. on top of which, it speaks, beautifully, saying meaning things and also meaningless ineffable rhythmic utterances. it can do it all. what more could you ask from an instrument.
Q: Hey Daniel, whats the cheapest way to make music?
Q: in a recent AMA of his own David Byrne mentioned you when asked about people he's working with. i was wondering if you could shed any more light on that? it's a wild pairing.
OPN: YESSS. working with david was one of the true highlights of my life i have to say. he was working on his solo album (his first in a very long time) and he invited me to have a listen. then i started tinkering around on a few pre-existing songs. then i said, ok why dont we make one from scratch and we made a couple. and you'll hear them very soon.
Q: Hey OPN. Just wanted to ask what it was like working with Iggy Pop on the GOOD TIME soundtrack, as well as with FKA Twigs on some new songs?
OPN: GREAT and GREAT. I love working with vocalists/lyricists
Q: would you ever work with a rapper? or have you and i'm just unaware of it. i think that you could make a crazy ass rap album.
OPN: me and ish from shabazz are working on stuff
Q: you ever gonna do an arca or sophie collab because yall are basically the triumverate of pop art gods tbh
OPN: haha thx. love them both. arca and i have a fake band called ELECTRONIC ZADDY. ask him about it. even though its never gonna happen, like trent/maynard james keenan's TAPEWORM project
Q: Hi 0pn! Just wanna start by saying that I saw Good Time the other night and your score for it is an all-timer, and now it soundtracks my workday which i appreciate.
at the Q&A afterwards the Safdie Brothers said that The Weeknd saw the movie and is now courting you to produce his next album. Is that going to go anywhere? It seems like you're getting more into production and I was wondering what direction you want to take that in.
OPN: yep i have been working collaboratively a lot more lately. too much hermetically sealed creativity and i start losing a sense of myself weirdly. i like going back and forth. I LOVE THE STUDIO. thats my machine shop. thats where good stuff happens
Q: How did your relationship with A. G. Cook / PC Music start? I loved your track "Bubs" from a few years ago and would love to hear more stuff from you guys.
OPN: i cant remember but A.G. is a good pal and i adore his labyrinthine MIDI compositions with all my heart
Q: Hey Daniel, do you have a favorite movie? Also, with your many recent collaborations (Anohni, FKA Twigs, Iggy Pop, etc.), is there a particular artist you've always wanted to work with?
OPN: 2001: A Space Odyssey Daft Punk
Q: What was it like working with Jon Rafman ? You two are some of my fav artists and it's dope seeing y'all collaborate since I've always thought y'all were like minded.
OPN: its good. works fast. extremely thoughtful. the least afraid person i know but also the most neurotic
Q: have you ever been asked to score a videogame? would you be interested in doing that sort of thing? if i recall correctly, you don't have a ton of personal interest in playing games but what about producing a soundtrack for one also you are good. that is all
OPN: yes. im kinda snobby when it comes to games though. if i dont completely love the product its kind of hard to give up that much time to something ... about SPIES or ZOMBIES or a MYSTERIOUS ISLAND. dont read anything into that, i am just making shit up. I should say that I'm very interested the aspect of video games that deals with thinking about music rhizomatically - dynamically - situationally, motifs developed based on quasi-random forces that decrease or increase musical effects... i think about it all the time, and then i go and compose music that sounds like that, not for a game lol
Q: How did your 2014 collab with Cav Empt happen? Is there a deeper meaning behind the text and imagery on the pieces, perhaps something tying into an albums storyline? Is it likely you'll release more designs with them in the future?
SHOUT OUT CAV EMPT
Q: I LOVED your remix of Andata. Was Ryuichi able to give you advice on how to write music for film?
OPN: no but trent reznor gave me advice once. he said "its easy" that was actually good advice. albeit false
On Visual Media
Q: Hey OPN, love your work.
What movies help you make music? Thanks.
OPN: all movies, nothing is more inspiring than film its the 20th century macro-artistic medium that envelops you completely and touches every nerve and sense (WHEN GOOD) (ESPECIALLY ON A BIG BIG BIG SCREEN)
Q: If you could re-score a movie, which one would you do?
OPN: I would re-score a re-make of 48 Hours. Not to make the score better but to basically just up-res it and make it slightly more feral. James Horner is a genius
Q: Was "Woe is the transgression" inspired by the Shining OST? Also, what's your favorite Tarkovski movie and why?
OPN: ha i see what you mean, but no it wasnt.
STALKER because of the mood it establishes and never lets go of . you feel the essence of the ZONE completely, without ever seeing any anomalous shit at all. its genius
Q: Which character from Evangelion do you want to produce an album with?
OPN: haha maybe Ramiel. I would irregularize its polygon
Q: Who's your favorite character from a Michael Haneke film?
OPN: the boy from Benny's Video. scared the living shit out of me
Q: Favorite Dreamcast games?
OPN: CRAZY TAXI IS SO GOOD. AND JET GRIND RADIO
Q: Mr. Daniel. What is your favorite PTA movie?
Q: Seinfeld og Curb?
Q: Do you watch Adult Swim? What's ur favorite show on it?
OPN: not in a while. i liked Xavier Renegade Angel
Q: thoughts on the return of twin peaks?
OPN: love it. summation of DL's entire career. cant get enough tbh. could do without the band bits at the end. other than the guys dressed up old timey that sang a country ballad. i liked that
Q: Who are you?
OPN: just another homosapien sucking the earth dry
Q: I have always wanted to dive into your discography, being an admirer from afar for the longest time. Where should I start?
Q: Is it true you are in a fantasy NBA league with Panda Bear
OPN: yes. but i think i need to STOP playing f bball. it takes up too much time to be good at it, and i dont like not being good at it
Q: Hey Daniel! I'm a huge fan and have even arranged/performed some of your music at a college recital! I was wondering if you've been influenced by any music in the "classical" side of things :)
OPN: wow thats interesting. how can i hear that?!
yes of course i am. i like modern stuff like Ligeti but lately i have been returning to some very old stuff like GESUALDO !!!
Q: Eccojams vinyl when?
OPN: when Juliette Binoche narrates a documentary about hypnagogic pop on PBS 25 years from now, vinyl of eccojams shortly after that.
Q: if you had to be in a street fight with any band, which one do you think you could take
OPN: theres no band i'm scared of because bands think in hives like the borg and they are easy to outwit. also russian tank dont break
Q: Hi opn,
1. you've said before that you had lots more eccojams in cold storage. Would you ever release more or these? A lot of people would lose their shit. By the way, thanks for remastering the original eccojams it can't have been easy.
2. What books are you reading atm?
3. Fav autechre album?
OPN: 1. theres a lot of them / maybe one day
2. right now reading AUTOMATA
3. ep7 / confield / oversteps
Q: Pineapple on pizza: good or bad?
Q: what do you consider the greatest 4 bars of music? eccojams has this feeling where there is a deep love for all of the samples, and every song feels like little bits of a song that you wanted to last forever (or a full songs length). p.s. i think i saw you at ambient church for the forma release party but i wasn't sure if it was you
OPN: maybe the first verse of lazy smoke - come with the day whole song is perfect
Q: greetings daniel. 1. what scares you? 2. if you were offered $1 million to eat a 2cm human man, would you do it?
OPN: 1. nothing im russian
2. CANNIBAL CHALLENGE HUH
Q: Favourite Aphex Twin album?
OPN: SAW V2 i have to say it. evergreen
Q: what do you do when you "feel" like you have to make music, but also "feel" like everything you're doing is shit, and really don't want to keep making shit music at that moment in time?
OPN: watch Deep Space 9 seriously
Q: Hey, in another AMA you mentioned your interest in continental philosophy. Also, your use of the word "rhizomatic" got me thinking about Deleuze and Guattari. Anything interesting you've read in that field lately? Any additional insight you can share about how it influences your work, if it all? Thanks!
OPN: i like to read some philosophical stuff sometimes. right now reading a book called Simultaneity and Delay: A Dialectical Theory of Staggered Time. the author also has a book about D&G on the topic of history that i want to read as well
Q: Have you checked out much of the stuff that came out on the Melodiya label during the Soviet years? If so, pls share some of your fave albums/bits. I feel like there's so much good stuff there to discover.
OPN: i rec Mikhail Chekalin who is one of the most under appreciated electronic music composers, mostly because he was stuck behind the IRON CURTAIN
Q: My question is: how much do you think about your hair? Does it ever feel like it defines you? Do you feel literally reborn after a haircut, only to have the feeling numb and fade? That's what it's like for me.
OPN: its nice getting a haircut. you feel aerodynamic for a couple weeks. but yeah like you said... then its over and life sucks again
Q: What's the most bait conspiracy theory you buy into.
OPN: STONED APE THEORY maybe or .. that aliens kickstarted homosapien evolution (both theories are basically the same)
Q: Hey there! Was just wondering what some of your favorite records from this year are?
Thanks for your incredible body of work, can't wait to see Good Time tomorrow.
OPN: Quazarz: Born on a Gangster Star / Quazarz vs. The Jealous Machines. The Bill Orcutt s/t record was good too. Wanted it to be longer lol. oh and I liked the Pallbearer record it was so proggy. im sure im forgetting stuff im sorry.
Q: Your last 2 proper albums seem to draw influence from New Age and Jazz Fusion respectively - both sort of maligned genres. Were these style choices conceptual or do you think they are overlooked genres?
I personally love a lot of music from these categories - Steve Roach, and Allan Holdsworth (RIP) namely
OPN: theres 2 components to this answer
1 is that i love some jazz fusion and i love some new age 2 is that theres latent potential in areas of culture that have calcified somehow is either being in good or bad taste, i always find that stuff interesting for one reason or another. especially stuff people think serves some "purpose" that isn't en vogue or moderated by the tenants of tasteful art making practices. i hate that music is a lifestyle industry and i try to find ways to make stuff that imagines non normative lifestyles lol
Q: What kind of electronic music you listen to mostly? And who are your favorite artists currently?
OPN: James Ferraro
Q: I know you're a Holdsworth fan and you've composed some cracking guitar esque synth solos, especially on "Leaving the Park".
What other guitarists are you into and do you have a top 3 guitar solos?
OPN: STEVE HILLAGE HANS REICHEL JOHN MCLAUGHIN
john abercrombie's solo on "timeless" is godly
Q: What is your take on music criticism that reads from and into the social context of your music? I remember an interview of yours where you joked about Marxist critique of your music, but I have friends who want to wholly depoliticize your stuff. I'm just trying to win an argument here, not really asking you to give us interpret your work.
OPN: we all lose the argument in marx's eyes
because we are 2 far away from the source of the thing we desire
hows that ?
Q: megadeth or metallica?
OPN: metallica. better songs. megadeth smarter/funnier
Q: How can anyone cope with the fear of death?
OPN: just press on like a good homosapien lol
‘Good Time Original Motion Picture Soundtrack’ is out now and available at: