Together (Till The Morning) Feat. Newtimers
I can still remember vividly hearing my first Skrillex song in a hazy dorm room about five years ago–it was around the same time that “EDM,” to some people’s chagrin, became an unstoppable force in mainstream music. For the college kids of that generation, like myself, it was an exciting moment hearing a completely new genre of mind-altering compositions. While frantically looking for all the EDM I could find, I stumbled across a Swedish duo by the name of Cazzette, who created an enormous dubstep remix of one of my favorite songs at the time, “Monster” by Kanye West.
As Cazzette rose to popularity, they signed with legendary manager Ash Pournouri, who’s best known for helping launch Avicii‘s career, and ended up supporting Avicii on his world tour when “Levels” was making him a household name. Just as with every new wave of music, though, EDM eventually hit a pinnacle of commercialization that began taking away from the artistry and originality that once made it so enticing. In the last five years or so, the term has become tied to a negative stigma–some detracting rationales more valid than others. Meanwhile, a number of the popular artists at the time’s music started sounding the same, with only few emerging from the EDM bubble with a distinguishable style.
Cazzette have seen EDM from its inception to its current, somewhat stagnant, state working to push their music forward exploring various soundscapes along the way. EDM’s legacy resonates, at least to some degree, in almost all genres today and electronic music, in general, is in an absolutely fantastic place thanks to the path it paved. In recent years, Cazzette have shown a determination to break free from classification and their upcoming EP, Desserts, sees the two escaping the constraints of EDM, instead focusing on pure grooves across sub-genres of electronic music. Artists are often at their best when they abandon genre restrictions and that’s exactly the crossroads where Cazzette stand now.
We were lucky enough to chat with Alex and Seb of Cazzette and it’s a fascinating, candid retrospective on the EDM movement as well as a powerful story about the artistic freedom displayed on their EP. Enjoy the interview below as well as the premiere of a behind the scenes video about the making of the track “State of Bliss” from the forthcoming project, which drops on August 14th on Spotify and August 28th on iTunes.
TMN: Can you tell us a bit about your first experiences with music—whether it be your parents playing you a record or the first time you tried an instrument.
Alex: So for me, I’ve always been around music. I never played anything–like I never went to school for piano or anything like that but I think one of my earliest memories of music was being in the car with my dad and I remember we arrived to where we were going and I had to stay in the car because I had to keep listening to that Michael Jackson song “They Don’t Really Care About Us.” I think that’s like, well that wasn’t necessarily electronic music but that’s like one of my first memories of feeling like, music is so amazing, you know?
And then for electronic music I think, I must have been in high school and I went to this super lame disco and some techno song was playing and there were lasers and stuff. I was just really, like, hypnotized by that and after that I started DJ’ing and producing.
Seb: Yeah I think Michael Jackson was for everybody–for many kids in our generation, that was the shit. So that’s my first memory, but then how I got into electronic music was through my dad who always played me house music, trance music, like psych-trance, all this kind of weird stuff. And I think that’s how I got my interest in electronic music. it’s pretty much the same story for me as Alex, my dad introduced me to everything when it came to electronic music. And my mom also had really good taste–she listened more to like Prince and stuff like that.
TMN: When you guys first linked up, it was online, right? What drew you to each other’s styles?
Alex: Yeah, I think we found interest in each other’s music pretty early. We just started talking and sending demos back and forth. We’re a lot alike in the way that we didn’t really think about “Oh I do this genre, you do this genre”–you know like 2 separate genres. And then we started being influenced by each other. But this was more casual, you know, we were both like let’s just make music.
TMN: Can you talk a bit bout the landscape of electronic music back then? Because it was so different with EDM not quite being a full-blown movement yet.
Alex: Yeah, it was very different. I mean now it feels like you know, every third person you meet is a DJ, right. And it’s a little bit different–I mean I remember watching videos of Axwell and Ingrosso and those guys, they were playing these shows and there were maybe 600 people there or something. Everyone was just going nuts and it was a completely different atmosphere. I’m not saying that it’s worse now, not at all. I think it’s great that it’s available for all these people because I think music should be available for everyone. So it’s awesome. But it’s just different, it was just more underground in a way.
Seb: For me it was very different at that time. I think electronic music was really more interesting back then. Everything was very new, changing all the time, always evolving. Now I don’t think it is as interesting any more, but it’s still good.
Alex: You know what differs the most? I think the arrangement of the songs, actually. Continue reading