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Back Stage with Sonic Element Print E-mail
User Rating: / 117
Written by John Mig   

Back Stage with Sonic Element This month, The Art of Music 062 is back stage with the Australian DJ/ Producer "Sonic Element". We would like to know more about him so the following questions covering aspects of his life and music career since he started.

Hello Fotis (Sonic Element) and welcome to The Art of Music.
Thank you for giving us the time to interview you. Let's get to the questions now.

John Mig: Can you tell us some words about yourself? How did it all start for you?  How did you come up with the name Sonic Element as an artist?

I started playing piano when I was 13 as I always had an interest in music.  After discovering Trance music at this age, I also started learning how to produce.  The name Sonic Element is actually a silly combination of Sonic (from Sonic the Hedgehog) and Element (from Photoshop Elements).

John Mig: What was the breathtaking moment of your career?

Probably when I first started working with Rob Stevenson (Activa) and releasing my tracks on his label (Borderline) and other larger labels.

John Mig: Which artists do you admire and with whom if any, would you like to collaborate with in the near future?

I think that artists like James Dymond, Darren Porter, and Jorn Van Deynhoven would be amazing to collaborate with.  They are just amazing producers and are doing some great things right now!

John Mig:
What are your influences in both the past and the present time? What is your favourite album and tune of all times?

Growing up, I was all about Above & Beyond, Paul van Dyk, Ferry Corsten and Matt Darey.  I think they have shaped Trance music over the years and many of them still continue to do so.  In recent times, I’m enjoying artists like James Dymond, Darren Porter, Jorn Van Deynhoven and several others I’m sure I forgot.  I can’t say I have a favourite trance album per se, but my favourite tune is probably Luminary - Amsterdam (Smith & Pledger Remix).

Back Stage with Sonic Element John Mig: We have seen recently that Trance is using other elements like electro, tech, minimal and house to make a whole track.  In your opinion do you think Trance has changed for the best or for the worse?

Overall, I like that people are experimenting with the genre, but I do feel that some of the purity of Trance has been lost in the process in certain tunes. However, there are many artists who have managed to provide a fresh sound yet keep the essence of Trance music in their productions, and I think these are the ones which I admire the most.
As an example, my upcoming track Evolve takes much inspiration from Psy-Trance, but I still feel that I’ve managed to capture the elements of Trance which I love.
When taking into account the good Trance tunes of our time today, I think that Trance music today is still every bit as inspirational as it was in the past. The production level has definitely increased over the years, so I would say that Trance is better now.  My only gripe with current productions is that many labels do tend to over-master tracks and squash them to bits, which really hurts the dynamics and punch in many otherwise fantastic tracks.

John Mig:
Do you think it is all about marketing or to have talent these days?

It is a tough industry and there’s no doubt that having a big name instantly gives you the edge.  I do think that many talented producers are indeed being heard, which is absolutely fantastic, but ultimately it’s up to the big DJs to make that happen, or most people simply won’t pay much attention. As such, sadly it is a combination of both which is required to help one succeed as an EDM producer in today’s world.

John Mig: What was your favourite track produced by you and why?

I think I would have to say that my track 'Destruction' turned out to be one of my best.  It really captures everything that I think Trance is about.

John Mig: What inspires you to produce music?

I think my biggest inspiration comes from productions of other great Trance artists.

John Mig: How many hours do you spend at the studio daily, and what could be the critical point of every DJ/Producer to succeed?

Sadly not so many any more as I do work full time in a different industry, but I try to spend a day or two every few weeks working on production when I can.  I think that persistence is the key to succeeding in the music industry.

John Mig: Any new tracks working in the background?

Yeah, in fact, it should be coming out before the end of the year and it’s named 'Evolve'.

Back Stage with Sonic Element John Mig: Do you prefer to remix tracks or producing original ones?

This is a tough question. I absolutely adore producing originals, but I think I slightly prefer remixes (particularly of tracks I enjoy) because you already have an idea where you’re going with it before you even start. Also, it gives you a chance to show your interpretation of an already existing tune, and it’s fun to produce a complement to someone else’s work.

John Mig: Which hardware and software do you use to produce?  Any favourite plug-ins?

I use Cubase (6.5) as my main DAW.  My main instruments of use are Massive, Spire, Omnisphere and Sylenth1.  For effects, I tend to mainly reach for DMG Audio, u-he, ArtsAcoustic and Native Instruments plugins. I think my favourite plugin right now would have to be Spire (just in front of Massive), it’s really an amazing synth.

John Mig: Do you have any tips that you may want to share with us for the new producers out there?

It’s a good idea to keep your setup lean and simple. The more tools you have, the less you can focus on the music. I also learned that it’s a good idea not to change your production system too often as it leads to new problems that can slow you down.

John Mig:
How do you relax when you are not producing or doing gigs? What do you like to do most?

I try to spend time with friends when I can and also travel from time to time.

John Mig: What should we expect from Sonic Element in 2015?

Not quite sure yet, but hopefully some more productions and a remix or two on Borderline

John Mig: What would you like to say to your fans and The Art of Music listeners?

I would like to sincerely thank you for all your support over the years.  It means the world to me!

That was it!

Thank you Fotis for the great interview.

We are looking forward to listening to your guest mix.


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