Journey Into Sound

From travel and hospitality industry icons to acclaimed architects, designers, influential artists, forward-thinking musicians and media thought-leaders, we aim to create inspiring art. In this instalment, Gavin Lynch (better known by his stage name MATADOR) draws on inspiration from his homeland to transport us across the Irish coast through an ethereal collection of original music from his latest LP—Tuesday.
Photograph by Stuard Tracte
In the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic, being grounded in the confines of your home has become a reality, and with that comes new challenges, and for many, a very different way of life. Alongside the immense impact on our public health, the economy and our overall well-being, we also face the mental and societal effects of physical and social distancing. With travel currently on hold, we look to the talented artists who are capable of taking us on a journey with nothing more than a pair of headphones.
A revolutionary musician, Gavin Lynch comes with a gleaming reputation for versatility and unwavering craftsmanship. The Dublin-born producer’s signature sound takes on many shapes, styles and moods, propelling his worldwide success and allowing him to explore very unique and organic compositions.
Wild soundscapes become vehicles for teleporting us to beautiful, remote regions of the world. The same raw, untouched surroundings that emulate the spirit of Room + Wild also give birth to ideas in all areas of creation. By examining the connection between landscape and music, we uncover how sound can enable travel, escapism and interconnectedness for both the listener and the creator.
The topic of sound as it relates to our human psyche is a profound subject. Of all of our known senses, hearing is considered the most widely used tool in aiding practices for reaching enlightenment. Through mindfulness and meditation, sound does not require one to look outside themself, but gives one the ability to travel within.
What memories from your lifetime stand out to you the most? The silence of a vast ocean before a storm; the thin, sharp echo of the wind in elevated rocky chambers; the low thundering vibrations you feel upon approaching a massive waterfall. These special moments most often coincide with being in natural surroundings — fishing on a secluded lake, driving in the countryside with your parents’ favourite song playing on the radio, hiking through the lush jungle in the tropics, dancing in the rain.
We invite you to join us on a journey to the North Atlantic’s wild coast of Matador’s homeland. Below Gavin chats with us about life, music and his timely album, inspired by nature, perhaps at a time we need it most.”
Wild soundscapes become vehicles for teleporting to beautiful, remote regions of the world.
  • NV: For those of us that are unfamiliar, tell us a little bit about where you currently live and work?

    GL: I’m back living on the east coast of Ireland, after 10 years of living in city centres, another small fishing village, and my house is on the beach. We open the back gate and are literally in the sand dunes. We’re under the main flight path into Dublin airport (which is actually how I found the house!), which on a really hot summer’s day, gives it an Ibiza vibe. There’s plenty of wind and rain though, and you really can get four seasons in a day. Lots of fish and shellfish, birds, bees (there’s an apiary up on Howth Head), seals, plant-life — it’s a very diverse environment to immerse yourself in. My main studio faces onto the ocean, we’re in a bay here, so there’s a backdrop of the next village over, and Ireland’s Eye and Lambay Island out to the east too.

  • NV: What made you want to (literally) bring the sounds of the sea and your natural environment into the studio?

    GL: For this latest albumTuesday, the ambient one, I had dinner with friends planned in L.A. so I wanted to write something that was easy on the ear whilst we ate, or whilst reading, travelling or generally just chilling out. Initially it wasn’t something that I had planned on releasing as a collection, it was just for me. But I’d sent it to a couple of artists and friends and they enjoyed it, so I decided to release it as a stream only. I gathered some of the bird song on walks with my dog, put microphones out on the balcony for hours to see what I could pick up, and sat in the forest at Deerpark with my phone to capture the wind through the trees. Evening strolls along the shoreline at the beach, timed with the tide coming in, enabled me to record the sound of the waves lapping on the shore. So I had a pretty extensive collection of field recordings which I could place in some of the tracks I’d already written, and then some which inspired tracks that I wrote around them.

  • NV: With the current state of the entertainment industry, has this been your way of moving people without having a dance floor?

    GL: I’d written this album last year before the current issues that we are facing worldwide, so it was more a reflection of how I was feeling at that time. At the end of 2019 I’d decided on the stream release date of March this year… And then the world went into lockdown — maybe that was the universe at play. I think we all went into overdrive longing for the clubs, and live streams filled this void, but I guess the Tuesday LP resonated with people and offered them an opportunity to relax and reset away from the dance floor. It was a release like no other I’ve done before, in that there was no real PR or press campaign. I’d posted a couple of snippets of it on my own social media channels but didn’t really think too much about it. It was there for people to listen to and take what they wanted from it, if anything. Then Mixmag were interested in doing an hour’s live stream of it from my studio at home and I thought, “why not?” I get a couple of messages every few days from different friends and fans saying that they’ve listened to it whilst doing yoga or tidying their house, and that’s really what it’s for.

Evening strolls along the shoreline at the beach, timed with the tide coming on, enabled me to record the sound of the waves lapping on the shore.
  • NV: If you were to play this album live in the near future, what would be the most ideal setting (with no limits to budget or reality)?

    GL: That’s a tough one. Perhaps The Cliffs of Moher, over on the south west coast of Ireland overlooking the Atlantic ocean. It’s such a dramatic location, one of the UNESCO geo parks, and home to protected seabirds and rare plant life. I think it would be the perfect landscape to accompany the Tuesday LP.