Earthy Measures

By: Dream Chimney

The following interview was conducted on May 31, 2024

Earthy Measures London imprint and party collective Earthy Measures has been around since 2016. They now launch an edits focused sub label called Measured. For the debut release on Measured they bring on board mystical Buenos Aires sound sorcerer Balam with the Black Sabbath inspired ‘Caravana Planetaria’.

File these guys alongside incredible Multi Culti and you’ve got the vibe. Global vibrations, organic sounds, and all the colours of the sonic world rooted in nature. Read on and get to know more about this fascinating outfit.

Thanks for talking to us guys. Where are you at this moment and how are you spending the day?

Thanks for having us! One of us, is currently winding down for the night, in a one-star rated hotel in La Paz, Bolivia - oh the luxuries of long-term travel! And the other is holding the fort down at EM HQ in London!

Where were you born? Where are you based?

We were both born in East London and were actually born in the same hospital! Having lived in London for the majority of our lives, except for university stints in Nottingham and Sheffield, East London is still where we call home.

What do you love most about where you are living?

So, we don't live in the same place exactly, but both of our areas are well connected to central London, being only 20 or 30 minutes to Liverpool Street, but both have quite a suburban feel, meaning there's the amenities of living in London without the chaos. Also, being well connected to areas that have been such nightlife and creative hubs like Hackney and Islington has had a positive impact on Earthly Measures. I think all of the above reasons are what still keep us there today.

Also, the Earthly Measures community of friends and family started in East London - wouldn't want to move too far from that!

Can I ask what kind of artists, DJs, genres you were you into growing up?

Like most people, we've had our phases. Early introduction into music was through both our family's taste, Nirvana, Queen, and The Jam were all artists that would be on repeat in the family car, as well as the soulful sounds of Marvin Gaye & The Delfonics.

I guess we got into Electronica in our mid-teens with Four Tet, Bonobo and Aphex Twin being the main names that really drew us in. Now, we're firm believers in a little bit of everything is best!

How long have you been putting out music on the label Earthly Measures?

We’re into our 4th year now. The first release, Earthly Tapes 01, a compilation EP made up from 6 different artists was the one that kicked started everything.

When you first started out, what was your musical intention for the label?

Our intention was to shine a spotlight on music from different corners of the world. Being astounded by our musical findings and realizing that there is so much music out there that people aren’t tuning into due to limited exposure, is what made us want to dissolve the psychological borders and bring much more cultural richness into the music scene.

As we originated as a London-based club night, it was natural for us to want to have a platform to share the music that we were playing out in sweaty East London basements. Specifically, for us, it’s the blending of electronica and varying cultures traditional folk music, which has been coined "Folktronica", that feeds our souls.

Do you feel you have achieved those intentions along the way?

Yeah, definitely. Theres still so many more people that we’d love to get connected to the kind of sounds we put out as a label, but we’ve definitely seen the scene grow and seeing the ecstatic joy from people dancing to our sets at clubs and festivals has been rewarding!

So, you were putting on the Earthly Measures parties first, right? Who was involved at the beginning? Where did the parties start? What was the vibe?

That’s right, our events are where it all began. We started out putting parties on in 2016. In the beginning it was the two of us, but our friend Alex was also in the mix in the early stages.

The first few events were at small basement bars on Kingsland Road in Dalston. They were a real family affair! Most of the crowd consisted of friends and friends of friends, so it was always a nice play for everyone to get together and catch up.

Who were the DJs playing at those early parties? Were you guys Djing?

Our first two parties were just us residents playing. It wasn’t until our third event that we started booking externally, artists and DJ’s that we love.

At what point did you think – this is going to be a label?

I started doing some work with Multi Culti after we booked them for an event, (a label that had a massive influence on us) and decided that this it!

Are you still putting on parties? What was your most recent? When is the next one?

Yeah, we are but more sparingly than before. Our most recent event was a collab with Shivelight down at Folklore in April, and our next will see a rekindling of the same collab, in the same venue, with a special guest on the 3rd of August. This one hasn’t been announced yet and it’s a little different from our normal parties. Expect a lot of psychedelia and dub!

It is clear that nature is important to you. You have talked about your sounds being a sonic homage to mother earth. Talk to us about this aspect of you.

Sure! I think some of our favourite music is heavily influenced by nature. There is something so deep and resonating within us when you match music with the sounds of nature. I guess it’s that primal sense of attachment to mother earth, which unfortunately we’ve lost a lot of but through the music we release and play, we’re trying to relight that connection.

Also, travel has always been a bit part of our inspiration. The way it opens you up to mother earth’s bounties is something we try to reflect with our music.

What was your first release on the label Earthly Measures?

That was the first installment in our compilation series, Earthly Tapes 01.

You focus a lot on South American sounds. Tell us a little about your love affair with Latin beats and percussion.

Not entirely sure where this love affair began, to be totally honest. I think it’s just the way the Folktronica scene effortlessly blends Latin rhythms, electronica and beautiful sounds of nature was simply a combination that caught our attention early on. Purveyors in the scene such as Nicola Cruz, El Buho & Chancha Via Circuito really opened us up to a whole host of other wonderful artists releasing directly from the Latin American region.

What has been one of your most significant releases on Earthly Measures?

We’ve had lots of very significant releases both for us and for the artists we’ve worked with but if we were pushed to choose one then it’d be our debut with Joaquin Cornejo, the LP Las Frutas. This was the first release we had, which gained significant traction and proved to be very popular with some big names within the UK music scene, being selected and played out by Gilles Peterson, Tom Ravenscroft & Mary Anne Hobbs. This record was our first solo artist vinyl release, Joaquin is an amazing artist, who we’ve been blessed to work with on multiple occasions now.

What is the A&R process for the label, how do you find your releases?

At first we were spending a very significant time finding new artists that fit the Earthly Measures vibe – we are lucky to have now come to a stage that we get sent a lot of amazing demos from some amazing artists big and small.

All of your visuals are incredible. How important is the visual aspect to you? Tell us a little about your art and the part it plays in your movement.

We’ve always been drawn to labels that have incredible artwork - Multi Culti for example - you can tell a whole story from the art before even listening to the music within- we work with some incredible artists like Ventral is Golden who is a good friend and that we also do merch with and our very dear friend Emma who does all of our Earthly Tapes artwork. The aesthetics are just as important as the music !

Who are the artists that you think are making great music currently?

Really digging the new Jembaa Groove Record Ye Ankara / We Ourselves & the Kurup & Afrogame EP Irawo - Trippin Jaguar’s music is currently a staple in our sets.

You recently started up your new label Measured. Talk to us through the differences and similarities in the two labels.

Measured is an edits label which will mainly only be on Vinyl – it’s slightly different as it might not necessarily have that organic feel to it as much – but will be more club ready edits.

Is this the first time you have worked with Balam? Tell us a little about Balam the artist and what attracted you to him as your debut release on Measured.

We’ve been working with Balam for a while now – he’s actually our mastering engineer – and has released a track on our Earthly Tapes compilation – very talented producer, long may the collaboration continue.

Talk to us about the new EP, maybe give us a broad outline of the tracks.

It’s basically 3 different edits of the Black Sabbath classic Planet Caravan – Balam had released this a few years ago on his personal Soundcloud and also it to us, we’d been playing it out in our DJ sets for a couple of years always being a highlight of our sets and getting non-stop people asking us for the track ID so we felt it was only right to put it on WAX! It’s a pretty special edit.

What are you most proud of with this release?

It feels like it’s something we’ve been speaking to Balam about for a while now, so to be able to finally get this out there after maybe 2 years of back and forth feels good!

What drives you guys to continue to create music?

Just growth – as a label and as people. We’ve made many mistakes through our journey from club night to record label, but just learning from them and learning from others as well. Also meeting some of the most inspiring people, having an opportunity to share their art with the world, is a special feeling – we feel we are blessed and lucky to do what we do.

What has been one of your favorite moments from the past year?

Festival season is always fun! We did an Analog Journal which was a great experience and was an amazing way to showcase some of our releases and artists to a wider audience, go check it out if you haven’t yet. Also, our releases with Sidirum, La Forasteria & Eda Diaz were all highlights!

What are you most looking forward to in 2024?

We have our South America tour coming up in September that we’re really excited for, it’s been a long time coming, going there and being around the culture, meeting new and currents artist, will be really inspiring in make new music moving forward– also playing Glasto for the first time this year which we’re gassed about!

What can we hope to see next from you?

Lots of exciting new releases! We have another new label in collaboration with Multi Culti called 'Cult Measures’ - with its first release coming out this year by a very talented group called – we're also very excited about an LP by an artist called Sun Sone which will also be dropping this year. Finally, we have our own debut EP coming out, keep your eyes peeled for that one.


Check out the latest release from Earthy Measures.


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