Justin Samgar and Josh Dupree release their debut EP ‘Sputnik’ under their alias ‘SpaceAgePoetry’. Samgar is a poet and storyteller who grew up in a cult group, struggled as a young adult and decided to break out. SpaceAgePoetry is an attempt to translate this journey into music. ‘Sputnik’ is a reference to the first satellite launched in 1957, heralding the Space Age. The EP takes you on a journey where slow electronica, mysterious spoken word, and psychedelic sounds collide. They collaborated w/ Dialoque, Hessel Stuut (Polynation), Arjuna Schiks & Myrthe v/d Weetering as fellow travelers.
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SpaceAgePoetry takes you on a trip through space using stories and music. It’s a combination of deep & slow electronic music and spoken word, that organically evolved out of the shared music taste of Josh Dupree & Justin Samgar. This is Justin’s story:
SpaceAgePoetry is the culmination of a lot of things. Influences on me as a person and finding my way in life. It’s weird to realize in hindsight that the thing I didn’t like going to every week, was also one of the most defining features for me as a poet.
My dad is a pastor in a cult. The way he preaches and used to tell us stories was very specific and is something I unintentionally copied from him. I found a way out and have been looking to substitute that affection I lost ever since and more importantly, what ‘the truth’ is, I felt, that was withheld from me in that period. This struggle found its way into the lyrics of the Sputnik EP.
My mother has named me after the singer of The Moody Blues, Justin Hayward, but I have been mostly raised with a lot of classical music and opera. As a teenager, I started and at a later point only wanted to listen to hip-hop, thereby finding a way to reject my parents’ music and faith. Only later in my life, in my twenties, I discovered music from bands like The Doors and Pink Floyd and more electronic-oriented music.
In that time the lyrics from Jim Morrison and Gil Scott Heron really touched me and inspired me in a special way. I didn’t feel lonely anymore, or as much, through my writing. These two poets inspired me to take SpaceAgePoetry in the direction it has been going and even further. Huge inspirations are also Flying Lotus and Moderat. When I met Guy, I found out that we both have a broad taste in music, complementing each other. We started looking for electronic music that helped to elevate my lyrics and their recitation. After many rehearsals and performances, we set out the musical direction for the productions on our first EP.
Conceptually, the rapping alter-ego of Flying Lotus, called Captain Murphy, is one of the coolest things happening in hip-hop in recent years. Concerning finding ‘the truth’, Neil deGrasse Tyson opened my eyes with his documentary Cosmos, it’s still is one of the best I’ve ever seen. I was always into space and science because I felt there was more than the narrow view of religion I was raised with. The Sputnik EP is my account of this journey.
It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly what inspired me to produce this track (Zwarte Gaten), I guess it has something to do with hip-hop. In the early days, I used to listen to hip-hop a lot (and still do). The first source that comes to mind is the Beastie Boys, as they were experimenting with samples and sounds relatively new to hip-hop back in the day. Hello Nasty features some interesting material, bringing a more songwriting approach to hip-hop, with lots of twists and turns in the tracks.
Deltron 3030 also sprung to mind, a futuristic, science fiction themed side-project from Del tha Funky Homosapien. They used this outer-space theme for all tracks and lyrics. Working with a similar approach, the talented Dutch producer Kubus produced DMT with Rico. A song about hallucination/space, where beat and lyrics go hand in hand, just what I tried to accomplish with Zwarte Gaten.
I am inspired by (the possibility of) extraterrestrial life. There are many possible explanations for the things we fail to comprehend. Explanations could be anything, varying from string theories based on assumptions to polytheism based on beliefs. Explanations like string theory and religion are very commonly accepted, despite the improbability of some aspects, yet extraterrestrial life somehow mostly remains subject to sci-fi movies. Let’s add extraterrestrial life to our train of thoughts.
My biggest inspiration would be the artist NU. For me, he was one of the first producers experimenting with downtempo that felt like a modern take on house music. Especially his four seasons sets, like S O L in the video above.
And because of that was still very much danceable. It had these amazing acoustic and atmospheric vibes to it that made it feel modern and familiar at the same time. To create that feeling he blended in a lot of world music and for me is a true pioneer in the genre.
With ’Ons Juweeltje’ I took a lot of inspiration from that. The tempo is pretty low, whilst still being playable and impactful on the dance floor. For the track, I worked with a lot of acoustic sounds spread on a dark backdrop to give it that distinct sound.
The collaboration with SpaceAgePoetry allowed me to experiment with this. And because of the extensive amount of hours in the studio together it really paid of in a special way. It wasn’t easy to keep the track fresh and interesting for 9 minutes, but I’m really happy we pulled it off and made this amazing track.
The process of making the track Supernova started with a beat Justin had heard that Jasper made, named after his son’s nickname.
Justin liked the beat and the groove so we decided to use it for this project and turn it into a real Dialoque band track. Using this as a starting point, we recorded the guitar and violin.
We added new keys and changed the structure of the track a bit. The main idea was to really create some kind of supernova breakdown in the middle that is referring to the text Justin wrote.
The violin was recorded last and gave the finishing touch to the break. We are really happy with the result of this collaboration track. It’s so beautiful to see how a simple idea can become so much deeper and intense by working together with more people at once.