Interview: Andre DeSaint of PayUp! Game

Here’s a quick interview with Andre DeSaint, in anticipation of his show at the Elephant Ink pop-up shop this Saturday, and also since I’ve been listening to his new album ODNT quite a lot. (available free at

What does ODNT stand for?ODNT Show Flyer
Old Dreams//New Themes is the title to my latest project. I normally stylize it as ODNT for ease. The undertone of the album is going about your dreams in a different way. You can spend years and years on any given goal, but at some point you have to stop, adjust and adapt. Otherwise, there’s nothing separating you from the rest of the bunch. You’ve gotta know what works and what doesn’t.

Tell the kids at home about PayUp! Game
PayUp! is my family before anything else. Together we form a collective of different talents. Everyone kinda stays in their own world and we come together to help each other as needed. We released our STAMPEDE EP last April (which you can still download and stream for free on and now we’re all working on albums. It’s pretty awesome; I’m excited for everyone to hear what each one of us offers musically as individuals after knowing what we can do together. Look out for something from everyone: Ellz, Mouf, Cherele, and even our in-house producers The Silence Killers.

Some of the crew moved to Miami, right? You guys staging a coup of the whole state?
Ha! Yeah man, we need a Florida takeover! But, you’re right… half the crew is out there living the South Beach life. Miami is a little too wild for me to be honest. But I love to travel so I can handle any city in small doses.

Andre DeSaintWhat’s inspiring you right now?
I’m in a very visual phase right now. It probably sounds weird but I’m pretty distant from everything else at the moment. I go through phases, man. I can’t really stick to one thing for too long. There are just way too many things that I find interesting. But since I’m sure you’re probably looking for the music I’m into right now, I’ve been listening to a lot of Tame Impala, Sylvan Esso, and Toro Y Moi. Oh and Future’s new album is amazing to me.

The Time Bomb video really surprised me. Were you afraid of people taking the symbolism too literally?
Yeah, a little bit. People can be pretty cynical, but that’s with anything. I was ready for whatever as far as commentary goes. I use music and visual projects to get my ideas out. I have to or I’d go insane. So, I don’t worry too much about what people will think as long as it’s quality work that satisfies me. The plot of the Time Bomb video can be looked at as controversial, but to me it’s no different than what any movie director is doing out there. Tarantino is one of my favorite humans on the planet, and I think it’s amazing that he puts out such unfiltered films. When I wrote out the treatment for the video I was excited about it, and nothing else mattered honestly.


What’s next? Any vision of where you’d like to be as an artist and with PayUp! in the next year?
I just want to get better at everything, really. I want to keep writing and editing videos. I want to make more music and put on some great live shows for everyone to come out and see. Also, in the next year all of our listeners should have more music from each division of the collective. Like I said before, I’m stoked about what’s being worked on behind the scenes and I can’t wait until it’s all out there.

Catch Andre DeSaint this weekend at Elephant Ink’s pop-up shop. Event details here.

About Justin Zero

Resident mad scientist, collector of many metaphorical hats, recovering musician.