Keeping in time with his other two EPs (Nth °& After Hours), both of which were released almost exactly one and two years ago, OVERWERK drops Conquer today, rounding out the Canadian electronic producer's first three EPs with a hat trick. Four weeks ago Edmond Huszar teased the release when he gave up the track "Conquer" as a free download. Today, three more tracks follow in its footsteps: "Rise", "Force", and "Control". "Rise" sets course with a string melody in the forefront, piquing your interest with tinny plucking and a classic electro house structure. Following this, "Force" catches your attention with piercing bell lines, which combine with running synth progressions and chopped, syncopated melodies to offer a solidly complextro track. Capping off the new tracks, "Mind Over Matter" brings the previous elements into one, housing them under Nick Nickon's vocals, "No peace without violence", "No light without darkness". Of course driving bass lines, refined grinds, and stuttered mids pervade the entirety of Conquer, making it a true OVERWERK craft. Click "purchase" below to buy at your own price.
Such clarity in music stems from Huszar's unambiguous outlook on life, something that comes across in today's exclusive interview with EARMILK. It seems that under his seemingly playful motto, #DoWerk, lies a commitment to continually improve, expand his creative capacity, and avoid capitalistic complacency. If you're as curious about the last one as I was, read on for more OVERWERK.
EARMILK: How have you grown as an artist since your first big tracks, like the Hyper Crush remix?
OVERWERK: That remix did help accelerate things - I think I’m always growing as an artist. I try to push myself every day to become better. Growing is learning, it’s being open to all possibilities. I will try to keep my mind open for as long as I live. That’s how I’ve grown and will continue to grow.
EM: What would be your greatest accomplishment so far and how did you achieve it?
OW: I’d say my greatest accomplishment has been my ability to touch people with my music and art. The fact that I can influence or provoke and emotional response in a listener or viewer is extremely meaningful to me. My goal is to make music/art that inspires people, that introduces them to new ideas or thoughts they haven’t considered. I think I’m starting to accomplish this goal. - I achieved this so far by always taking steps forwards.
EM: Did you enjoy working with GoPro on the commercial? What was that like?
OW: I did enjoy working with GoPro a lot. They are artists and creators themselves and they respected my process. I was able to stay true to my vision, and worked with them to structure it to their video. It was great working with them and I’m sure I will again in the future.
EM: What was the process like for this EP? Was there anything out of the ordinary?
OW: I would say that this EP was a more drawn out process than the previous ones. This was a very busy year for me. Unlike many artists, I spend a lot of time on each track, arranging them in a way to have a very specific effect. I think my fans really recognize the thought and effort that goes into my music, and I think they will appreciate this new EP for that reason.
EM: Your other two EPs (Nth ° & After Hours) have six tracks, and this one only four. With such a focused release, what did you hope to achieve with each individual track and also as a whole EP?
OW: This EP is exactly that, more focused. I think the direction of this EP is more clear and I want people to focus on the tracks individually. Each one has a different feel and vibe, but as a whole they evoke a certain feeling. I want people to feel inspired to Conquer their own obstacles in life, and this EP is the soundtrack to inspire that.
EM: A bit random, but, if you could have two additions to your studio, how would you modify/renovate it?
OW: One addition would be more space. I always want to fill it with things, and despite getting a custom desk that’s 8 feet wide, it still doesn’t seem to be big enough. Another addition that I’m waiting for is the new Mac Pro. I have a couple computers but I need a major upgrade and I’m just waiting to start fresh on that brand new beast.
EM: You’ve talked about a design agency in past interviews. Do you still dabble in graphic art and have you had time to do any big projects in that medium?
OW: I do what I can when I have time. I still think I will establish some sort of creative agency. I’ve been building so many amazing contacts over time. But for now, I still do all of my own graphic work. All my logos, all my album artwork, everything. I do it all myself. That’s how I can squeeze in a little visual art into my hectic life right now.
EM: Are you upset that Diplo and Miley stole WERK from you and created this twerk abomination?
OW: I don’t usually do this, buy my response to that question is actually a link: American Psychosis.
EM: You’ve said you would never play Ke$ha, but “12:30” samples Madonna (originally ABBA). I wonder what your thoughts are on other pop divas, like Britney and Gaga?
OW: Ke$sha is an abomination, she isn’t a “diva”. The difference between her and the others is that Britney, Gaga, Madonna etc is at least they contributed to culture in some sort of artistic way at some point in their lives.
EM: As for your taste in music, do you listen to anything that might surprise us? What are some of your favorite childhood songs?
OW: I used to be into rock and metal, before high school I got into electronic and it consumed me. When I really got into listening to music, I was listening to The Strokes, Queens of the Stone Age, System of a Down, Muse. - In high school I got into some really trippy euro stuff like Hardstyle, Jumpstyle, Happy Hardcore, Disco. I feel all that has shaped the music I make today.
EM: How about some of the side projects that you don’t publish under OVERWERK? Are they out there? Can we find them?
OW: Ooooh, digging deep here. I have a fun plan to start a whole new project and never tell anyone, that is in the works ;) - maybe two years later we’ll do an exclusive Earmilk expose and stir up the scene a bit.
EM: Finally, have you started thinking about any resolutions for 2014?
OW: Resolutions, hmm, I try be introspective and steer my life more positive direction on a daily basis. It’s not my tradition to save self-improving sentiments to a single time of the year.