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Sonic Alchemy: An Interview with KASIA on Weaving Spirituality into Music

In this enlightening interview with A&R Factory, artist KASIA opened up about her latest single, “Heartstrings,” and its deep-rooted connection to her spiritual journey in music. She reveals how her songs, emerging from personal struggles, have become a sanctuary for healing, with a special focus on the transformative power of specific musical frequencies.

The interview promises an intimate glimpse into her artistic evolution and the profound impact of her music on both personal growth and the collective human experience.

KASIA, welcome to A&R Factory! Can you share the story behind your latest single and music video, “Heartstrings”; where did the inspiration come from? 

“The inspiration behind my latest single and music video, “Heartstrings,” comes from personal experiences, as most of my songs do. The lyrics were born out of a pretty bad relationship, where I found myself struggling with difficult emotions. Throughout my life, music has served as my safe place, providing a certain protection from harsh realities. In many ways, music has been my reality, offering a means of expression and understanding in the face of adversity.”

How has music helped to shape your healing journey? And how important is it for you to light the path towards empowerment for your listeners? 

“Music has played a huge role in my healing journey, serving as a powerful form of catharsis and expression. It’s difficult to fully articulate the transformative effect that music has had on me. There’s a certain magic that occurs when you listen to music in specific frequencies. While most modern music is tuned to 440 Hz, which can sometimes evoke a sense of melancholy, I’ve found that music tuned to 432 Hz resonates more harmoniously with the energy of the Earth. Many older pieces of music were tuned to this frequency, and I tend to use it for my own work, including tuning my healing instruments to 432 Hz.

The impact of music extends beyond mere sound waves; it can deeply affect us on physical, emotional, and spiritual levels. For me, creating and listening to music in these frequencies has been a source of profound healing and growth. As an artist, I feel a responsibility to not only share my personal journey through lyrics and music but also to be vulnerable and real with people – hopefully to the effect of empowering my listeners.”

Your goal is to create a spiritual and energising journey through your music. How do you incorporate this intention into your creative process?

“Creating a spiritual and energizing journey through my music is paramount to me. I focus on making empowering lyrics that resonate with listeners on a deeper level. I integrate the ethereal tones of sound bowls into my electronic productions using Ableton. My creative process is deeply intertwined with meditation and spending time in nature, where I find wisdom and inspiration. Through the practice of gnosis, a process of inner exploration and connection with our higher selves and nature, I tap into somewhat hidden creative expression. I want to authentically express myself while offering something meaningful to others on their individual paths. I believe that music serves as a conduit to higher states of consciousness and my goal is to channel that energy and share it with my audience.”

How did you come about developing your unique blend of house, bass house and pop? Were there any particular influences which shaped it? 

“My musical journey has been a fusion of diverse influences. Growing up, I was drawn to pop icons like The Spice Girls and Britney Spears, followed by a deep dive into hip-hop with artists such as Biggie, Tupac, WestSide Connection, Naz, and J Cole during my high school years. As I matured, I became more drawn towards house music. It was during this phase that I connected with the producer of Fan Death, SZAM, who invited me to step in as the lead singer, replacing Dandi Wind. Fan Death’s synth-pop style marked a pivotal moment in my musical evolution.

The more I got to know Vancouver’s music scene, I discovered a blend of techno and house influences. Although I wasn’t initially drawn to techno, I found my niche in Bass House, a genre that merges elements of house, pop, and rap. My journey is driven by a genuine love for music and a desire to create something uniquely mine. Recently, I’ve been particularly drawn to the lyrical style of Caroline Polachek.”

How indicative is “Heartstrings” of what is to come from your debut album? Which other themes does your LP explore? 

“While “Heartstrings” serves as a starting point, it’s just a glimpse of what’s to come with my debut album. I see it as an opportunity to test the waters, to gauge reactions to both my music and the visuals I create. Part of me is inclined to wait until there’s a readiness from the audience, while another part recognizes that significant change often arises from bold actions, regardless of initial readiness. As Theodore Roosevelt aptly said, ‘It’s not the critic who counts.’ So, while “Heartstrings” sets the tone, my debut album will delve deeper into a range of themes, exploring aspects of personal growth, resilience, and the human/spiritual experience.”

Did your transition from being a lead singer in a synth-pop band to becoming a music producer influence your current style? 

“The transition from being the lead singer of a synth-pop band to stepping into the role of a music producer has profoundly shaped my artistic trajectory. Fan Death was my first experience writing and recording professional music. I learnt what a DAW was and how to use it! Fan Death truly served as a pivotal chapter in my musical evolution.

Despite the stylistic differences between synth-pop and my current direction, I owe a great deal to SZAM, the creator and producer of Fan Death. The band imparted invaluable knowledge and skills. Looking back, Fan Death was ahead of its time, and I often reflect on the synchronicities and patterns that have guided my journey towards future endeavors.”

You’ve had your fair share of high-profile live performances; do you prefer writing music or performing and seeing first-hand the effects of your music on your fans? 

“Thank you for the question! It’s a tough call because I genuinely love both aspects. On one hand, there’s nothing quite like the energy of performing live and connecting with fans face-to-face. Witnessing firsthand the impact my music has on them is truly special. But then, there’s also something incredibly fulfilling about being in my element – in the studio, wearing my glasses and hoodie, lost in the creative process of making music. I find joy in every aspect of my artistry, including dreaming up music videos and bringing my vision to life through visuals.”

As a delegate of The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, what insights have you gained about the music industry?

“Just being around other artists pursuing similar goals is such an amazing experience. The most profound insight I’ve gained revolves around the power of community within the music industry. Coming from a small town where artistic pursuits were rare, I often felt isolated in my passion for music. However, being surrounded by other artists who share similar aspirations has been so refreshing. The opportunity to connect with full-time artists who understand the language of creativity has been incredibly inspiring. It’s a reminder that I’m not alone in this journey and that there’s this supportive community, rallying behind each other’s artistic pursuits.”

Stream KASIA’s latest music video on YouTube now.

Interview by Amelia Vandergast

Goshok’s Make It Right is a Tropic House Triumph of Fervid Soul and Blistering Hot Beats

Goshok started his latest tropic house pop hit, Make It Right, with an instant hook to cleanly cut through the layers of sound and instantaneously leave a lasting impression. From there on out, Make It Right is a masterclass in how to arrange tension and release; from the transcendence in the oscillating builds to the bursts of euphoria in the breaks, every progressive twist and turn will lead you further into the genius of Goshok. The scintillatingly curated sonics amplify the visceralism within the lyricism and vocals, which scorch with the heat of an old flame that you can’t bring yourself to reduce to ash and embers.

At 27 years old, the Czech producer, DJ and songwriter has effortlessly surpassed his influences and definitively come into his own as an EDM artist. If he keeps producing tracks in the same flawlessly deeply affecting vein as Make It Right, which will make you move and move you simultaneously, there’s no reason he can’t be bigger than his greatest influence, Kygo – especially as he will continue to drop hits throughout 2024.

The official video for Make It Right premiered on January 5th. Stream the video on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Maze Of Afflictions launched a tumultuous Electro House juggernaut with ‘Step Outside The Silence (89Keys Remix)’

Maze of Afflictions’ latest Electro House offering, Step Outside the Silence, is a tempestuous and ground-breaking track that redefines the boundaries of electronica. It’s a sonic odyssey that demands attention and captivates the listener from the first beat to the last.

The track begins with an electrifying energy, taking glitchy motifs and elevating them to a monumental level. The result is a tumultuous juggernaut of sound that is both overwhelming and utterly irresistible. Maze of Afflictions demonstrates a masterful understanding of the genre, pushing the limits of Electro House while paying homage to the heavy trip-hop tracks and industrial sounds of acts like Celldweller.

The unexpected and brilliantly executed rap interludes are a broadside that transforms the entire dynamic of the song while adding a raw, gritty edge that complements the electronic backdrop perfectly. This fusion of genres is seamless, creating a track that is as innovative as it is infectious.

The track’s volatile yet cathartic progression is a rollercoaster of sound that is impossible to experience just once. While electrifying nature makes it a seductive and sublime journey through sound. The Atlanta-based producer has created a piece that is superlative in every sense, from its intricate production to its powerful delivery.

Step Outside the Silence showcases Maze of Afflictions’ exceptional talent and unique vision, marking them as a force to be reckoned with in the EDM scene.

Step Outside The Silence (89Keys Remix) will drop on the 31st of January; stream it on SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Desire oscillates through MXY’s latest hypnotic house anthem, Since I Met You

MXY, a trailblazing artist hailing from Bradford, UK, has once again demonstrated her unparalleled prowess in blending genres with her latest hypnotic house single Since I Met You. The track is a masterclass in musical alchemy, seamlessly fusing MXY’s innovative house and garage influences with the sultry undertones of contemporary R&B. It’s a potent testament to her evolution as an artist, producer, and songwriter since she began her journey at the tender age of fourteen.

Since I Met You is imbued with an intense, fervent desire that is almost tangible. MXY’s skill in crafting a fiery anthem is evident as the song oscillates, capturing the transformative power of desire. This transformation is not just lyrical but also musical, as the track delves deep into the core of our emotional spectrum.

The true genius of the track lies in its ability to ensnare the listener’s rhythmic pulses as captivatingly as it compels you to surrender your emotions and kneel at the altar of the progressions. The vocal lines are a force, ensuring that you feel the gravity of the emotion conveyed. Each note pulls you deeper, immersing you in an impeccably polished transcendence that is both uplifting and introspective.

MXY’s background, collaborating with industry stalwarts like Chad Dexter and Elliot James, shines through in the production quality of Since I Met You. As she continues to evolve and expand her horizons, there’s a palpable sense of anticipation for what she will bring in her debut album.

MXY’s debut album will drop on February 1st, 2024; stream the title single on SoundCloud now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Someone Famous has made a transcendent debut with their ambient deep house/90s Euro dance mash-up, This is a Pleasure

Someone Famous’ moniker is going to become a self-fulfilling prophecy if they continue to produce tracks in the same future-defining vein as their blister of electronic euphoria, This is a Pleasure.

The debut single was right on the titular money for the way the transcendentally bright tones and luminous textures scintillate through the progressions as they juxtapose the depth of the basslines which bolster the track with rhythmic prowess. With melodic elements of ambient deep house fused with a 90s Euro dance energy and captivating vocal lines which effortlessly embody the soulful catharsis within the meticulously layered and produced instrumentals, This is a Pleasure couldn’t be closer to what it says on the tin.

With new releases locked, loaded and ready to infuse the airwaves with refreshing syntheses of innovation, Someone Famous is an artist to keep on your radar through 2024. It’s only a matter of time before the Brighton-based artist gets offers from reputable labels for their ability to fuse nostalgia with intuitive ingenuity.

This is a Pleasure was officially released on November 25; stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Georgina White gave us a shot of Europop euphoria with her empowering anthem, Not Your Baby

Reminding us that it has been 24 years since the launch of Don’t Call Me Baby by the Australian house duo Madison Avenue, Georgina White’s latest floor-filling Tour De Force, Not Your Baby, is a groove-embellished anthem that strikes hammer blows of nostalgia with every bass-drenched beat in the exhilarant Europop hit.

With a little bit of disco and tropic funk flavours to drip vibrance into the tonal palette, Not Your Baby simultaneously feeds empowerment and euphoria as Georgina White powerfully projects the liberating lyrics which are the ultimate cure to breakup scorn. It is the perfect testament to the fact that there’s nothing sweeter than emotional freedom after letting go of the hands that have held you down.

Not Your Baby, produced by John Carr, is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Spotlight Feature: The Bermuda House Icon Korie Minors is Infectiously Euphoric in His Latest Hit, The Way We Used to Be, ft. JaySoulO

For his latest polished to the nth degree progressive Afro-house production, The Way We Used to Be, the Bermuda-born, internationally-raised DJ and producer Korie Minors collaborated with JaySoulO to deliver the ultimate hit of tropic indie pop reminiscence.

There are few things as bitter-sweet as taking a retrospective view of someone you never wanted to leave in the rearview mirror. The smooth crescendos in The Way We Used to Be, which runs with a flood of tenderly hued euphoria in the pulsating basslines and indie guitar hooks, will efficaciously take the edge off as the sun-bleached melodicism proves that even when love is lost, that’s no excuse to let optimism fade into obscurity. If you want to supplement your EDM playlists with sonic serotonin, you know where to turn.

Korie Minors said: 

“For The Way We Used to Be, I wanted to create something that exudes cross-over radio-ready appeal while never letting go of what makes my sound unique; the incorporation of my house influences and infusion of guitar melodies and afro percussion into a solid song structure enabled me to fulfil that goal.

The single communicates that sometimes you have to let relationships go for you to grow, regardless of how much it may hurt to make that decision and leave someone behind.”

Korie Minors started his DJ career in the UK while studying architecture, when taking his academic work to Istanbul and Hong Kong, he also shared his gift of making crowds move. In 2015, he became a full-time DJ in Bermuda and was voted Bermuda’s best DJ in 2019. When COVID put the brakes on his DJ career, he started to hone his production skills, which has seen him working with internationally revered artists and filmmakers and affiliated with brands, including Bacardi and Louis Vuitton.

The Way We Used to Be was officially released on September 22; stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Goshok explored the pleasure-pain parallel in his visceral EDM single, Reach You, ft Otto Palmborg

For his latest single, Reach You, the independent Czech music producer, DJ, and songwriter Goshok teamed up with Otto Palmborg to reach the pinnacle of electronica fervour.

Ironically, we couldn’t get his last single, On My Mind, off ours; if Reach You is anything to go by, his talents in infusing his momentous Kygo-inspired tracks with visceral emotions have become superlatively honed. Once you hit play, you’ll be immersed in a bitter-sweet hit that errs on the side of affectionate rapture. If you know how it feels to be caught in the middle of a relationship that forces you to explore the pleasure-pain parallel, the resonance in Reach You will be phenomenal.

By pulling in elements from across the EDM spectrum to enliven his tropical house edge and augment his pop hooks until they’re ensnaringly sharp, Goshok created a hit that could facilitate his dream to become the first producer from Czechia to feature on the line-ups at Tomorrowland, Coachella, and Balaton Sound.

Reach You hit the airwaves on August 25; stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

UK producer, James Urquhart, delivered a transcendent EDM anthem with Fire on the Track

James Urquhart

While some artists and producers need an entire discography to demonstrate their versatility, the Chichester, UK-based electronica chameleon James Urquhart only needed one blazingly high-octane dance hit, Fire on the Track.

With grime and pop vocals adrenalizing the mix and enhancing the eclecticism of the EDM earworm that defies the laws of gravity with the transcendence it provides, you only need one hit of Fire on the Track before you’re obsessed with the progressively exhilarating groove-oriented mix that would make even the most rational crowd lose their mind on the dance floor.

Even though it has been a while since James Urquhart delivered his latest mix, as he has focused on honing his talents, he’s released on labels including Duffnote, Let There Be House, INK, and Soulful Evolution. He has also worked with everyone from Amanda Wilson to Amy Pearson to Everette Peters to Meshach Broderik. If Fire on the Track is anything to go by, his hard-hitting house production skills have been well and truly honed.

Fire on the Track hasn’t hit the airwaves yet; follow James Urquhart on SoundCloud and Instagram to be the first to know when it drops.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Izzy Trixx created a rhythmic firestorm of an introduction you’ll never forget with ‘Our Friend Manuela’

The Indonesian-Irish DJ and producer Izzy Trixx made no bones about shaking the EDM scene to its core by unleashing the vibrantly electrifying house mix, Our Friend Manuela.

With one of the most transcendent drops you will ever follow the descent of while the euphoria floods through your synapses and rhythmic pulses, Trixx lets it be known that there are few better producers equipped to lead you to a euphonic utopia. With over 7k monthly listeners after releasing her debut single, success isn’t just on the cards for Trixx, it is a given.

After spending ten years behind the decks, Trixx learned what it takes to make a crowd move; all her experience DJing everywhere from Singapore to New York, Jakarta to Germany was infused into her debut single that teased even greater things to come in her upcoming 5-track EP, But What If It All Goes Right. It is safe to say that there’s never been a better time to deliver hypnotically high-vibe sonic sanctity. For your own sake, get her on your radar.

Our Friend Manuela was officially released on July 21st; hear it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast