May 12, 2022
Get To Know: subduxtion
American DJ/producer subduxtion joins us to discuss how his year is going, including the launch of his brand new radio show 'Dark Signals Radio.' The show embodies his musical interests and is a great way to get a feel for the sounds that he loves. His next release "Seek" is due out on May 16th and you can grab the track from Beatport exclusively today!
Hey subduxtion, thanks for joining us today! How is your year going so far, and what have been some of your highlights in 2022?
Thank you for having me! It’s been a really good year so far as well as a very busy one. So far, I’ve launched my weekly radio show, Dark Signals, completed a handful of remixes, and finished a new track named "Seek," that is coming out May 16th on Milligird Records.
Can you tell us about your journey as an artist so far? What made you want to pursue a career in music, how did you get started, and how have you progressed to where you are today?
My journey started back in elementary school, and I started on clarinet. From there I moved onto learning to play piano, saxophone, oboe, drums and bass. I played in school bands and orchestras and eventually found my way to playing in several different local bands. I played every style in those local bands: punk, metal, progressive rock, synthpop, jazz, R&B, goth and industrial! I eventually wanted to pursue a career in music because it was the one thing that really interested me and held my attention. During my time playing in those various bands I never had any intention of becoming a "solo" artist – it was a natural progression. As technology developed (very rapidly I might add), it allowed one person to fully write, arrange and produce completed music. That music technology development and my natural interest in technology melded perfectly, allowing me to realize my music in a way that suited me.
How would you describe your style as a DJ and a producer? Who are some artists that you draw influence from?
Stylistically I’m drawn to darker, more melancholic tracks. I’d say there's a certain noirish quality to the tracks I make as well as the tracks that make it into my DJ sets. I definitely will cross genres, nothing is really off-limits if it has the sonic qualities and feeling that I like. Tempo-wise my sweet spot is 130-140 bpm.
Who do I draw influence from? Where do I start, as there are so many brilliant producers and artists who’ve made a real impression on me. My list would include Trent Reznor, Richie Hawtin, Carl Craig, The Neptunes, Timbaland, Massive Attack, Green Velvet, The Bug, Alap Momin, Basic Channel, Prince, and Hank Shocklee.
You have a weekly radio show named Dark Signals Radio. Tell us about the show. How do you select tracks, and what can listeners expect from the show each week?
The show is really a chance for me to play music that I like as well as support the producer artists who are making really good music. Sonically the show leans into sci-fi and futurism. I’m a big sci-fi fan. Electronic music to me has always had a real futuristic quality to it. Early Detroit techno and NYC electro sounded like they came from the future, not to mention what artists like Kraftwerk, YMO, Nitzer Ebb, and Gary Numan sounded like. That futuristic element has stayed with me and definitely inspires the show. Listeners can expect an hour of music that I’m excited about sharing and hints at or leans into that futuristic / sci-fi sound. I try not to limit myself to any one genre but rather include music that I like, regardless of how it might be classified. My own personal tastes lean towards techno in all its forms and styles, house, electro, IDM and dubstep.
Can you pick out one of your releases from last year and take us through the production process? What makes this track stand out to you?
I’ll pick my track "Lust." It was released last December on Internet & Weed. Like many of my tracks, it went through numerous revisions before being released. The original demo of the track leaned closer to dub-techno, but as it evolved some of the more "dubbier" elements were removed. You have to go where the track wants to go, and forcing it into a direction it doesn’t want to go leaves you with a track that appears to be fighting with itself.
"Lust" started like most of my tracks with the chord progression, a basic sound for the pad and some sort of kick drum pattern. Next up is to add a bassline and build on that kick drum pattern with more drums. At this point I just start adding layer upon layer of synths, drums and percussion. With a multitude of tracks and parts recorded, it’s time to arrange all of this into something that makes sense as a musical composition. I tend to align my working method to that of a sculptor, you chip away at the stone until an inspiring form begins to take shape and then it's about refining that shape. Once I’ve got something that makes sense musically it’s time to add the details, risers, breaks, doubling or tripling of particular parts and then we’re ready to mix. Even at the mixing stage I’m still working the arrangement because once you start adding fx and getting levels together you really get a "feel" for what’s working and what isn’t. I like to take a couple of days away from the track before I begin mixing. This allows me to approach the track with fresh ears. After I’ve "mixed" the track I’ll take another couple of days away from it before having it mastered. It’s amazing the perspective that time away from a track can bring. Fresh ears at each point that you’re committing to an idea or ideas is a good thing.
Do you have any new upcoming tracks that you can tell us about?
On the immediate horizon is a new release on Milligrid Records in the US, entitled "Seek." It’s a single and is set for release on May 16th; it’s my first release in 2022. Later this summer I have a release planned with NYC label Internet & Weed, which I’m just starting to work on. I also have in the works a release planned for MuteAnt Sound, a really cool independent label out of Florida. That’s just what is planned, but as I’ve learned there will always be new opportunities that pop up when you're not expecting them..
And lastly, as we look ahead, what has you most excited for the summer months and the remainder of 2022?
I’m most excited to further develop and expand my radio show. I want to line up some guests for mixes, and maybe do a show or two focusing on some of the labels that I really like. Another show idea I’m planning is one that focuses on the tracks and producers that have influenced me. There’s a lot that you can do with an hour show each week!
Another thing I’m excited for is to see how web3 impacts music. We’ve seen what NFTs can do, and I think they offer tremendous opportunities for both fans and artists. Looking forward to seeing that develop. With that being said, there’s far more to web3 than NFTs – there’s cryptocurrencies, VR/AR, DAOs, and the idea / concept of the Metaverse. I’m a member of a couple of DAOs, The Willow Tree DAO and The Record Label DAO. Everyday someone, somewhere is pushing technology into new areas. We’re already seeing the idea of a "live performance" changing / expanding and DJing is evolving as well. I’d be remiss if I didn't mention platforms like Audius, Emanate, and others who are working to fix the broken streaming model. There’s just so much happening that at times it feels almost impossible to keep up. Music technology shows no signs of its evolution slowing! How can you not be excited? I want to highlight a web3 project that I’m really, really excited to be part of called Music Machines NFT. It's a fantastic project and community whose goal is to fund musicians to help them create without the pressure of "where’s my next dollar coming from?" I encourage everyone to check them out!
subduxtion - "Seek" is available for download from Beatport today and is due out everywhere on May 16th: https://www.beatport.com/release/seek/3703129
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