Toronto’s Nature of Music are ready to breakout. With their latest EP, "Amsterdam", as their second release on Hernan Cattaneo’s Sudbeat label and a slew of gigs both locally and abroad at festivals like Electric Island or SXMusic Festival, they're solidifying themselves as the "ones the watch" (Cattaneo said it himself). After they put a mix together for EARMILK last week on Night Rumours, we've got an exclusive interview from Mazi & Kian on their Nature of Music.
EARMILK: All of your tracks on 'Amsterdam' are so unique but also follow a sort of theme. What sort of story did you want to tell with these three tracks?
NOM: Thank you! We’ve always been interested in the kind of music that makes the listener feel something; sometimes happy, sometimes sad, sometimes excited and other times frustrated, there’s beauty in all of that. This EP follows the same thing; each track is a mini-script of an experience or a feeling that inspired us some way.
The idea of “Amsterdam” was laid out while we were visiting Amsterdam last summer. The city has such a good vibe about it; it’s up-tempo yet laid back, it’s a city where most views are accepted and different ideologies can co-exist without conflict. “Amsterdam” is our sonic interpretation of the way we feel about this city; always happy to see it and always sad to leave it!
“Dubby Downer” was inspired by a set that we heard from Matthew Dekay the last time he visited Toronto. When we arrived home that morning, we started this song and basically came up with the drums and the overall mood of the song. We got to witness a gorgeous sunrise that morning.
“Lejos” means faraway in Spanish. Besides the fact that we both love the language and the culture of Spain, we named this song Lejos because of the contrast that exists within it. The intro is dark and otherworldly, but the ending is warm and familiar.
EARMILK: Your overall sound provokes a lot of emotion and different experiences for listeners. What personal experiences inspired your EP as a whole?
NOM: To be honest each song of the EP is inspired by a different series of personal experiences but as a whole, probably travels, relationships, achievements, failures, agreements and disagreements have inspired us the most.
EARMILK: The vibe your tracks convey is much different than a lot of electronic music that listeners are likely used to. What is one thing you hope people take away from your EP after listening to it?
NOM: We hope that the listeners feel some kind of emotions when listening to this EP. The moods that they experience and how they feel them is based on their own interpretation, but for us to know that we’ve been able to make them feel something is the ultimate pleasure.
EARMILK: Who are your main influencers in the industry when it comes to your sound?
NOM: There are too many, but some of the main ones are Yapacc, Robag Wruhme, Kollektiv Turmstrasse, Rodriguez Jr., Dub Taylor, Chymera, Hernan Cattaneo and Lee Burridge.
EARMILK: With that, who are three artists you’d recommend to people who are huge fans of your music?
NOM: Lawrence, Powel, Gorje Hewek & Izhevski
EARMILK: Being a duo, what’s your collaboration process like with one another in the studio and at your live shows? Does your flow change depending on the setting?
NOM: When playing shows we normally have a live/DJ set up, where one of us is DJing and the other one adds drums layers, sound effects, accapellas and more. It’s a fun set up that allows us both to do something to the sound whenever we want, this way none of us gets bored or lose the momentum of the set, it keeps building up and building up… This set up also allows us to edit the songs on the spot and basically create a slightly different version of the song depending on the crowd’s energy.
In studio we tend to work separately most of the time, we used to sit together the whole way through making a song and realized it was counter-productive. Ever since we separated the production, we’ve been working much more seamlessly. This way we feel less limited and ideas flow a lot easier; it’s like not having to worry about making mistakes which is necessary when taking risks… At the very end and to make sure we’re both happy with the final product, we playback what we have for each other, we exchange feedback and we make some changes.
Last question – We’re dying to know where the name “Dubby Downer” means or where it came from?
Hahaha ☺ from time to time we like to get silly and play with words, this is an example of it… The other reason is, the track has a downing mood to it so to balance the stigma behind the word “downer”, we added “dubby” at the beginning. Dub’s dope!