The esteemed beatmaker talks skating, video games and his never-ending love for Japan.
With a distinct sound that traverses beats, instrumental hip-hop and electronica, Rob Orme – aka submerse – has risen to become one of the heavy hitters on the Japanese electronic music scene. Amidst a plenitude of productions, he has seen support emerge from influential media titans such as Pitchfork, FACT Magazine, XLR8R, BBC and has played prestigious events such as SonarSound Tokyo, Low End Theory and Boiler Room.
Currently back in the UK for a stint, I asked Rob about his connection with Japan – as well as for a selection of YouTube videos that showcase some of the stuff he loves. Over to you, submerse.
“When I was around 8 years old my dad picked me up a ton of anime from Blockbuster on VHS. I got home and watched them all and my mind was blown. I’d never seen anything like it before – so much violence mixed with cuteness, it just left me feeling strange and curious to see more. After that I was hooked and same went for video games. I spent my whole youth watching anime, playing JRPG’s and skateboarding. When I got a bit older I got into it even more and started to discover a lot of Japanese music – I was ordering $40 CDs from Amazon.jp when I was 14. So that’s how it started.
After wanting to go to Japan most of my life I finally headed out to Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto back in 2010 to play some shows, then the following year I moved out to Tokyo for 2 years. It was better than I even could have imagined, the food, people, music, games, everything just really resonated with me and I finally felt like I was in a place I could see myself spending most of my life. When I was living in Tokyo It had a really big impact on the music I make. I shut myself out from a lot of western producers/beatmakers because I really wanted to soak up as much Japanese music as I could. Just being in a city like Tokyo gave me so much inspiration that walking around with headphones on was enough to give me that craving to rush to my PC and start working on something. I definitely have a connection with Japan and I’m toooooo excited to return to Tokyo this summer. x”
PALACE SKATEBOARDS – TRES TRILL
“I’m a pretty huge Palace fan, the title says it all. dope little video.”
Fresh Prince vs. Soul II Soul
“This is how i learned to dance in clubs.”
Egoraptor + PokeAwesome
“Egoraptor is rad.”
A Tribe Called Quest – Check the Rhime
“Classic 90’s video. Every ATQC video is real dope.”
Araabmuzik’s 1st MPC Battle
Araabmuzik is crazy crazy fast.
“Trailer from my favourite movie, this pretty much traumatised me as a kid.”
The Walking Dead OST – Alive Inside
“Just a track not really a video but anyone who has played the first season of the Walking Dead game should shed a tear when they hear this track.”
ZELDA: LINK’S AWAKENING
R. KELLY SINGING ABOUT DOLPHINS
“This video is too much. check the Ango remixes too.”
Bell Biv DeVoe – Poison
“Another classic 90’s video. Wish I could get away with dressing like BBD.”
Submerse returns to Tokyo this summer so keep an eye out for shows. In the meantime, if you’re in London, check him out at Rhythm Factory on 21 March.
‘Melonkoly’, his latest release on PROJECT: Mooncircle is out now.