1. How would you describe the music on Become? What’s the story behind it?

I tried to do my best to encompass everything that Zardonic has been, is and will become. I went through a very testing time of my life and have probably used that exact same line in too many interviews, but it’s the bare truth and the influence of my immediate surroundings was undeniable. Become kind of hints at the topic of my homeland Venezuela, but at the same time it tries to let go of it. Learning to live with what I had and letting go of the things I couldn’t control was a key personal issue. Of course, at the end of the day, this is still dance music. You don’t twerk to Thus Spake Zarathustra, so I still tried to keep things as simple as possible while being able to say some of what I wanted to say.

2. How did you work with the artists—Celldweller, American Grim, The Qemists, etc—in writing and producing those tracks?

I used this wonderful tool we have these days called the Internet :) - jokes aside, I am always amazed by how technology has brought us together so much. I still remember when having people from the other side of the world listening to your music was such a limited luxury. All you have to do these days is make good music and upload it to YouTube. Then you start getting attention, and eventually start networking with fellow artists. Celldweller, for example, is someone I deeply respect because of how he shaped the future of Electronic Rock hybrid music. The Qemists are no newcomers either. They’ve been shaking dancefloors and festival arenas for a very long time now, with a strong stage presence and solid fanbase. Since we share the same passion for mixing rock and electronic dance music, it was only obvious we should collaborate. As for American Grim, I produced their first record which got them signed to Entertainment One Music, the label I’m also signed to. They are family to me and I am very much acquainted with their sound because of this. I knew since I heard their music that I wanted them on my next record, and there you have it!

3. How much time did it take to record Become?

That depends on how you see it. How much time passed from the day I wrote the first track until the release is a different measure to how much time was actually invested in the recording and composing process. As I said, I did this album during a very trying time of my life in which I had to constantly move from different places to work on different projects that kept setting me back from writing music for myself, then I moved to the East Frisia region in Germany chasing love and I set up my studio there. Then our relationship failed and I had to move elsewhere. I think I moved a total of 10 times during the last four years since I left Venezuela. That might seem fine when you’re a nomad and all you have is a backpack, but the gypsy lifestyle is not exactly practical when you’re a one-man circus and the circus keeps growing. I left Venezuela with a backpack and a piece of luggage. Last time I moved I had to rent a truck. I guess change is the only constant in life, but I kind of had way too much of it, too soon, too fast. Time to settle down for me, and I hope that happens soon. For the meantime I am content in the Cologne area in Germany. Let’s see where I end up next, but I do hope wherever it is, it’ll be the place where I’ll finally grow my roots. Having a place I can call home and a family are way too important things for me.

4. Does Become compare to previous albums and EPs, like Antihero, Vulgar Display Of Bass or Those Who Know The Truth?

In a way, every single of my previous releases has an influence in everything I do, but I also like to try new things. It’s just how things flow, and I go with the flow of my creativity. I guess that’s why the output of Zardonic has so much variety. I can’t just keep doing the same thing over and over again, much to the discontent of some fans, but there’s always new fans who like new sounds, and fans who appreciate someone with artistic freedom. Become is, in a way, not as angry as Antihero. It’s trying to go back to Vulgar Display Of Bass a little in the sense of recovering the dance element. I must have done something right because the first single “Takeover” already has half a million plays on YouTube within two months. To put things in perspective, my most played track which is Bring Back The Glory, takes five to six months to reach the same number of plays since it was uploaded. I’m happy things are moving forward the way I want them to. It feels good to know that there are some factors that you can control after all.

5. Do you like to change it up for each release with lyrical themes?

Yes and no. As I said, it all depends on my current situation and where I want to take the project at that particular moment in time. The lyrics are more of a secondary element for reasons previously mentioned, but as long as the energy is in the music, that’s all I care about. Lyrics in my case are complementary to the energy of the music. Too much of it can take it away, too little might not be enough. And when I can’t nail the exact lyric idea for a song, I can always rely on someone badass like Coppa to do his thing like he did with Children Of Tomorrow. That’s easily my favorite lyric in the entire record, and it came entirely from him. He is a true poet, that rudebwoi!

6. You mentioned how your personal life has a direct influence in the music you do. Is there any other place where do you draw your influences and inspirations from? Any artists you look up to?

Musicwise, there are a ton of musicians I respect, but even other forms of art can translate into music in my head. I could make an entire album just from my recent visit to the Vatican Museums. It’s a wonder to watch and experience. So I guess you can count Michelangelo as an artist I look up to as well haha! But going back to the music itself, names right off the top of my head right now are Devin Townsend, Trent Reznor, Danny Elfman, Nobuo Uematsu, Antonio Vivaldi, Remo Giazotto, Arvo Pärt, Erik Satie, Ihsahn, Tosin Abasi, Trey Azagthoth, Anaal Nathrakh and so on.

7. What has been the most enjoyable thing you have done as a musician/singer?

It happens every day, and that is the reaffirmation that I am doing something that is positive to people somehow. When I hear things like my music has saved someone from depression, from suicide, from any personal struggles and first world problems as well as real issues like grieving the loss of a loved one, or even the loss of an entire city decimated by the brink of war, that satisfies me. I have dealt with my good share of all of that myself. Zardonic is the strength in the struggle. It reminds me to stay alive.

8. What do you feel is biggest challenge going forward with your career?

My constant challenge is to continuously better myself, learn from my experiences, and rise from the ashes like the Phoenix, burning ever brightly with the flame of life. Everything else comes on its own. Only hard work brings results, and nothing else.


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About Ancient Visionz

Gaz Visionz is a writer and Internet Radio DJ with the punk/metal show 'The Wastelands'. He is also a YouTube podcaster/creator, host of Ancient Visionz Talk Radio, co-host of Paradigm Radio with Planet X Films, and a passionate fan of hardcore punk, metal, underground hip hop, movies, science-fiction, comics, and indie film.
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