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30.03.11 - on release of Inspirational Power



Q: Can you tell us a bit about your early days experimenting with trackers and tape- what gave you the joy of music making back then?   It all started in childhood. We had a cassette player in our family and when I was 10 my father played me some good stuff from the Berlin electronic school and when I asked him what is this, he said: “Music from Space.” I said "Woooooowww! ! !"
The early times were a lot of fun. The first music software in the 90s was terrible to use. They was called trackers and had a vertical interface. The joy and the reason to use them was the outlet for lots of ideas and thoughts which I wanted to express, but it was a lot of headache if you wanted to create something really serious.

  Q:  With the transition to ‘professional’ gear over the years – do you still find excitement in the same areas of music making or have new things become more enjoyable for you?   Everything has changed over the years, since we have professional software now in 21st century. The first and second albums were 95% made with software synthesizers, which are really powerful now. In contrast Inspirational Power is 90% made on hardware synthesizers as in the last few years I started to learn synthesis theory: subtractive and fm, granular and modular, and digital and analog. And I try to combine all these techniques in the music. This is really fun and you can become a maniac tweaking all these knobs, eheheheh. Some of the sounds from the album are pretty retro, like "Optimistic Future" in which I used Roland synth that is older than me ;)
Q:  What have you been doing since the release of your collaboration with Catalizer, Quid est Veritas?   Since the second album with CJ Catalizer had been released and we decided to separate, I have performed a lot of live shows in Moscow and other countries with the band and session musicians. I’m also making different sound design and production works and I opened an electronic music education school with friends (
A big pleasure was to participate in wonderful compilations of Gabriel/DJ Zen on Altar records’ Elements series. Gabriel has been giving so much inspiration and kindness during our connection that it's been absolutely impossible to be sad or make bad tracks ;)

  Q: The new album Inspirational Power – what was the inspiration for this release? What were you trying to achieve?  

People and synthesizers are always inspirational elements in my life. 2010 was a very hard year with a lot of work and life lessons but even this has been a strong motivation to compose. Meeting with and discovering talented people such as: Solar Fields, Asura, Bob Moog, and others has also contributed to my musical development, during the time the album was created.

Q:  What differences would you say the fans will hear in the new music? How has your sound developed since Steps to the Greater Knowledge?  

"Inspirational Power" has an absolutely different energy than "QEV" (which was very enigmatic and esoteric) or "Steps to the Great Knowledge" (which was more ethnic and tranced). Times are changing and the times are good for now. The new album is much more lightened, a little bit romantic, spacey, and the most important thing for me is that every track is a different story with different dynamics and feelings. It's a way to express all my feelings during 80 minutes of music and also express the skill of arrangement.
This time the sets of style in the tracks are very wide; from classic Berlin Electronica and spacey ambient to Funk and Jazz, IDM and progressive dance beats, hot Spanish guitar, bagpipes, shakuhachi flutes and live recorded bells. To top it I even tried to sing and record my voice, but I’m afraid I’m not so good at it and it came out quite terrible, heheh.
So I put my voice through vocal processor of Roland synth and you can hear the result in "Towards the Light House"

  Q:  Can you run us step by step through the creation of one of your tracks – how do you get your ideas into final form?   It's always different. Sometimes melodies and even structures coming straight to my head and just start playing there and I only need to remember and record them. But most of the time is sound design, when I am playing with the synths, recording sounds on microphones or experimenting with sampling on computers.
For example, not long ago I recorded a yellow bathroom duck in the studio and through the pitch envelope changes got a scream of alien bird. It will go into one of my new tracks for sure.

Q:  Having finished Inspirational Power – what parts of the album give you the most satisfaction and why?   The most satisfaction I get from "Towards the Light House" because it's my most "massive production" work for now and also from Sky Path (folk remix), which gave a fresh breath for track which is 5 years old.   Q:  Can you tell us something about the thoughts behind the artwork for the album?   The artwork has been changed many times along this year while the album was in production, but in the end we decided to leave it simple and straight. A vision of inspiration: people and machine wheels.

Q:  Did you have any interesting experiences or anecdotes you could share connected to the recording of the new tracks?

  Yeah :-)
"Autumn Leaves"- it was a hard week in 2010 and my thoughts were that all is grey, people are mad and the sun is a stupid yellow ball. I felt I needed to create something beautiful to get balance. So I just sat over the synthesizers and started to play and soon harmony came inside and melody came outside and I had recorded it and a second one and the third one during one hour and all the melodies were done. After that people were nice and the sun was smiley.

"Deus Ex Machina" means God in the machine. I had no ideas how to make a smooth entrance to the jazzy part of the track and so invited friends to my home to have a listen.
We just sat and listened and talked and soon I recognized that this smooth entrance is already done.....subconscious or automatic fingers have done the work!

"Planetarium" had the most interesting experience. It just came from somewhere outside and high… possibly from Space.... and my fingers just caught the chords from the first try and all that was needed was just to push the record button. The most natural process.

  Q:  How does making music in the studio compare to performance for you?   They are two very different things. Work in the studio is real fun but takes a lot of energy. I had 10 hour sessions with almost no breaks during creations. After that you can only sleep or go for a walk. But it’s great.
On the stage you can jump, shout, move your arms and send vibes to the crowd and you see how people are charged and dancing and react to your music, and it's one of the most powerful emotional experiences in life.

Q:  What areas of your music do you hope to develop in the future? What’s ahead for Chronos?

  The plans are very big.
I’m Already working on the next projects. One album is a collaboration with Maria Lazareva (Violinist) & Alexey Ansheles (Guitarist) and a deep electronic vibes for this year. I’m also doing a sound design library (virtual instrument) for Best Service company.

Another massive project is "When Mars Meets Venus" with "Music For The Imaginary Science Fiction Film” which will contain two parts: A space Ambient part (Venus) exploring endless landscapes, and a sequenced part (Mars) exploring lots of different synth techniques: fm synthesis, granular synthesis, neuron synthesis and more.

Thank you,

Thanks to Nick and the guys at Beats & Pieces for allowing us that interview.