Insight Interview // Antony O’Loughlin (The Games We Play)

It goes without saying just how influential Antony O’Loughlin has been within our community. Founding member of the epochal ‘The Games We Play’ label and all round great guy, we’re absolutely thrilled to be finding out more about Antony in this Insight interview.

Before we dive in, allow me to share a few personal words about Antony. His influence, dedication and out right passion to help promote the music of the underground music scene has become my motive. As a friend, we have discussed and worked aside one another on many occasions, in which his commitment to helping others is something I find humbling. He’s a great representative to our community and one of the most hardworking individuals I have yet to come across. Thank you Antony for the opportunity, I hope you all enjoy the interview. 

 

Please tell us about yourself in a few words (who you are, where you’re from, what you do etc.)

Hello Insight Music! My name is Antony O’Loughlin, I live in London UK. I manage The Games We Play, a record label and promotional channel.

What’s the origin of your label name The Games We Play?

The name comes from the lyrics to a song I wrote when I was around 23 years old. When I started making future garage mixes for Soundcloud I just used my own name, but after a while I felt I wanted to create a more professional name for my profile. So I decided to use ‘The Games We Play’.

 

The now instantly recognisable TGWP logo.

 

What inspired you to be more involved with the future music community?

I discovered future garage music in 2015 and I instantly fell in love with it in a way that I hadn’t done with any genre previously. I discovered the music of Burial and from that I discovered the whole future garage scene – Volor Flex, Vacant, Bucky and all those wonderful artists, as well as Insight Music, Wavevision, Imminent etc. I wanted to create mixes which I started uploading to my Soundcloud profile. I made lots of future garage and ambient mixes and then in 2017 I created my first compilation album and started putting out label releases. It’s all been uphill from there!

Tell us a little about your first ever label release on TGWP. How did you feel about working with artists in releasing their music?

The first compilation album I created was called ‘The Watcher’. I was really worried I wouldn’t collect enough tracks to make a full album – in the end I collected over 70 tracks! The first EP release I put out was by an artist called ‘Honeyruin’ whose music I dearly love. I still love that EP. Then at the end of 2017 I released a compilation called ‘Fractured Vibes’, by a group of Russian artists including Sibewest and Ennja. It was such an enormous privilege to release music by artists who I loved so much. It still is!

 

‘The Watcher’ is available for download via Bandcamp.

 

How about your latest label release? Has anything changed in your approach to supporting and releasing music?

Nothing has really changed, I still want to try and find amazing upcoming talent and I also love working with incredible artists like Juche. I guess the big change that’s come about since I started TGWP is the explosive growth of wave music, which I really love. But I haven’t forgotten about future garage which is like my ‘first love’ of underground music. I love to release both wave and future garage!

What have you found to be the most crucial aspect when working with artist’s outside of the UK?

The scene is so international these days, I guess it’s important to try and remember that not everyone shares the cultural outlook that we have here in the UK and that people are very different around the world. Also, not everyone is fluent in English, so I try and make myself as understandable as possible!

How have you adapted to the ever growing future music scene and the latest genres?

I have completely embraced genres like wave and witch house alongside future garage, I see all these genres as fundamentally linked and essentially coming from the same place, which is the expression of emotion and beauty through electronic styles. I am trying to build a strong presence on multiple platforms like YouTube and Instagram as well as just Soundcloud – hopefully that gives me maximum ability to showcase the talent that I put out on my label, and also promote non-label releases on my YouTube channel. I’ve recently organised a series of URL livestream events which have been absolutely amazing, I definitely want to do more of that!

What’s been your most well received label release?

I think my Future Hymns series of albums and my recent collaboration album with Tribal Trap have been extremely well received. Several of the singles I’ve released in the last 12 months have also been really popular. I feel very lucky to host such incredible music!

 

The first in the series of the ‘Future Hymns’ compilation albums.

 

What’s next for TGWP?

I’m currently working on another hardwave compilation with Tribal Trap, can’t wait to release that one! I am also lucky enough to have brought the artist shxde on board, essentially as artistic director. He is working on some amazing new aesthetics for the TGWP profiles which will completely transform how everything looks. I can’t wait to roll that out.

What are three singles you would recommend we definitely check out?

I’ve been lucky enough to release some absolutely stunning music over the past 12 months, but I guess a few really standout tracks would be:

Antent x Affectwave – Far Away From Me

FATE – Haunted

LXRY – I Don’t Need You, among many others!!!

I want to say a huge thank you to all the artists who I’ve worked with recently as well as everyone who listens and supports TGWP, I love you all!