Interview by Arnold van der Walt
“The only option for me, is music”
22 year old electronic music and record producer, FATE, released a brand new aggressive track titled ‘2077’ exclusively on The Playground. The Vermont-based producer released his debut EP ‘Pathways’ earlier this year to critical acclaim from the underground Soundcloud community. Not one to slow down and take a break, FATE released yet another EP during the year with ‘A Place Below’ which was released in July.
FATE’s music can be described as bass heavy, atmospheric and emotionally driven. The last part really shines true, as he has the ability to create ethereal soundscapes with his style of electronic wave music without using any vocals; yet you know exactly what’s being portrayed. There’s no apparent narrative here, but that’s because that’s not the goal; FATE has the intrinsic ability to tap into the soul.
It is with great honour, that FATE shared his brand new dystopian track, ‘2077’ with us. It’s a bit darker and aggressive than his previous work, but he does experiment with a little bit of vocal samples in ‘2077’ and even added gunshots; it’s always refreshing to see an artist experiment with their own sound.
Listen to another exclusive from The Playground here:
Along with the premiere, we also sat down with FATE to find out more about this up and coming producer:
Set the tone for us. Why the arts?
I’ve been interested and passionate about music for as long as I can remember. I discovered hip hop and electronic music when I was young. I wanted to use production as an outlet for my own creative ideas.
Which comes first when you’re producing – the sound or the idea?
A bit of both. Sometimes a sound will inspire me. It could be as simple as a kick and a snare, or a song I hear randomly in the car. Other times, I will have an idea of a mood and I will try to capture that the best I can when writing progressions.
Does your material feature any collaborations?
It’s very rare that I collaborate with another producer. I need to feel some kind of creative chemistry with their work or them as a person. If the energy is there, I love to collaborate.
What’s on your current playlist?
Currently a lot of different artists and producers spanning across different genres but mostly Rap and Electronic Music. Sean Leon is my favorite rapper right now. I draw a lot of inspiration as an artist from him as far as the quality of my work and making cohesive projects. As far as producers go, I love Clams Casino, Sidewalks and Skeletons, Lorne, Wondagurl, Kastle, Eestbound, Vacant, and so many more. Those are just a few I’ve been listening to lately.
Tell us about the chemistry you have with your fans on stage.
I actually haven’t performed yet! I would love to be heavily involved with playing shows in the near future.
What techniques do you experiment with to get your original sound?
Creating a space and an atmosphere for a track is equally important to me as rhythm and melody. When you have a solid atmosphere, it is easier to create a specific feeling. It’s sort of like having the right backdrop for a scene in a film.
Take us through a day in the recording studio.
Usually, I will start in the morning with some sound design and sample searching. I will make basses, leads, drums, tweak sounds and make loops until I find something that inspires me. When I get the inspiration, it could quickly lead to the creation of a track. Other days, I won’t complete anything and I will design sounds the entire time. Pieces of music are never planned, they just sort of happen.
Was there a specific moment in your life where you thought, “this is what I want to do”?
This actually occurred to me very recently. I realized that I have a creative mind and if I do anything else besides work towards my goals I get depressed. Once I started working a 9-5, I quickly realized that lifestyle is not for me. I would rather be broke pursuing music and being creative than being financially comfortable and trapped. The only option for me is music.
What do you keep close by while you’re playing a set?
My friends. The people that have been with me since the beginning mean a lot to me. I am lucky to have friends motivating me everyday. It would be a party.
Any emerging artists on your radar?
A bunch actually. I think what’s happening in the Wave scene is really special. There are too many names to choose from but anyone that makes unique music with feeling. Vibe Digital, Gravity and Dark Future are a few collectives that slay in the underground right now.
What gets your creative juices flowing?
Watching movies gets me creative. Especially movies that are dark and gritty. Zombie and Sci-fi movies especially. I gain a lot of inspiration from movies like 28 Days Later, along with sci-fi stuff like Chappie and Black Mirror. Something about post-apocalyptic or futuristic films grabs my attention.
Take us through your collection of gear, tech or software that accompanies your creative expression.
Right now I’m rocking Ableton Live 10 as my DAW with Push 2. As far as plugins go, I love Serum. It’s my favorite tool for sound design. I use a lot of reverbs, delays and tape saturation. Valhalla Room is an amazing plugin and really allows my music to live in a certain space. I don’t use much hardware, but I occasionally will run things through an SP-404SX.
Any side projects you’re working on?
I’m in the process of making some more simplistic tracks with room for artists to sing and rap over. It’s still in the experimentation phase but that’s my side project at the moment!
How have you refined your craft since you entered the industry?
I would say I’ve gotten better with experimentation. I like to move around stylistically. Being in the current electronic scene is exciting because everyone is so diverse. It makes it easy incorporate new sounds and influences. The more you experiment, the better you can find your own sound. I would also say a lot of my friends who produce help me refine my skills because they are all setting the bar so high. It naturally makes you better when you have homies pushing boundaries.
Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you this year?
This year I’d love to put out another EP. I’m brainstorming the concept. In the meantime you can expect a bunch of singles and another ‘Sounds From The Future’ sample pack. Definitely be on the lookout for new music. I’d also love to dive into the world of visuals and start working with directors to create visual content. I have so many ideas.