The defining line between EDM and mainstream music grows thin, and with it a shift in the landscape of digital art. As our society slowly accepts the next step in music evolution, the influential minds that make up the upper echelon of musicians have taken notice.
The possibilities in producing electronic dance music are literally endless.
Any successful musician will tell you one of the toughest parts of making it in the industry is creative consistency. Have you ever heard of a one-hit wonder? Don’t answer that.
A one-hit wonder stems from a lack of creative consistency and there’s no greater setback for an artist. Throw in a catalyst like social media and what do you get?
So-called fans turn into so-called followers, and so-called followers turn into fading glimpses of nostalgia as your career tumbles into an exonerated pile of junk.
Too many artists concentrate on quantity over quality.
Creative consistency is a two-way street, and you can’t have one without the other. It’s so evident in electronic dance music that websites have created an entire marketing scheme aimed at killing creative consistency by allowing artists to pay for an assured amount of traffic using brand identity as a unique selling point.
To the average user, SoundCloud is great because it has a limitless amount of new music from around the world. To the experienced user, SoundCloud has become yet nother marketing ploy for music labels and noteworthy brands to monetarily capitalize off aspiring producers; making them think an augmented distribution tactic could mask the shittiness of a song. The balance between quantity and quality equates to creative consistency.
Jeff Montalvo is the embodiment of creative consistency.
Known professionally as Seven Lions, the American producer, DJ and instrumentalist has pioneered the progressive dubstep & trance scene since his artistic inception in 2011. The moniker Seven Lions comes from a character in a fantasy book called Latro in the Mist by Gene Wolfe.
Jeff’s interest in music began at the age of seven, when his dad came home with a Macintosh and keyboard.
[quote_box_center]”For me, it was the most accessible thing, to start picking up something like drums as opposed to something like electronic music. My transition out of playing with a band was because I got tired of waiting for my band all the time – I wanted to just start making music so I started composing electronic music by myself.”[/quote_box_center]
After a friend gave him the program Fruity Loops, Seven Lions’ legendary rise to stardom had begun.
A long-time metal and fantasy fan, Seven Lions says his inspiration to produce stemmed from his love of Viking metal as well as his favorite band Opeth. While Jeff produces primarily electronic music in the studio, his iTunes primarily showcases artists from outside the genre.
“I don’t listen to electronic music regularly, I still listen to metal honestly. I mean I only really listening to electronic music when I’m looking for songs, actively, to put in my set. I’m always into Viking Metal, I like folky stuff. I like stuff that really takes you out of somewhere you are and puts you somewhere else.”
On March 3rd, Seven Lions released his brand new EP, The Throes of Winter on Casablanca Records. In an attempt to break the industry trend of releasing single after single, Seven Lions said that this six-track EP is the first in a series of releases this year.
“I wanted to start making the music more thematic, interesting, and part of something larger. Since artists aren’t releasing proper albums anymore, it makes sense to create something that’s digitally artistic with real cohesion as opposed to tossing out singles and just haphazardly seeing what sticks. This is one big piece instead of a bunch of little slivers.”
And it all comes full circle.
Seven Lions has the opportunity to change the recent marketing trends in music and return to the glory days of album releases. And he’s doing it the right way by bringing new meaning to the art of music production and performance.
A wide-eyed imagination can go a long way in our cluttered society, and his newest album serves as a testament to his inventive methods and progressive attitude towards our only universal language.
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