Australian EDM producer, M4SONIC has hooked up once again with emerging artist MYLKI on new track 'Stay' – the follow-up to their first collaboration 'Midnight'.
An in-demand producer and songwriter, M4SONIC has spent the majority of the year thus far working in the studio on a collection of new music to be released and performed live over the following months.
M4SONIC joined forces again with MYLKI for 'Stay' (out 26 July), a song that aims to empower listeners, with the lyrical content discussing MYLKI's own emotional journey to finding her feet in the electronic music industry and taking risks to pursue her passion for writing and performing.
It's another impressive addition to M4SONIC's discography, which already includes collaborating on Ylvis' viral sensation 'The Fox (What Does The Fox Say)'. We catch up with M4SONIC for a wide-ranging chat about music, MYLKI and much more.
What have you been up to so far in 2019?
I've just completed an intense 12-month studio period where I collaborated with 20+ artists as collaborators, writing music for their projects as a ghost producer. I have also had some international shows, and am now in the planning phase to release all this music I've completed and tour for the remaining half of the year.
New single 'Stay' is your second collaboration with MYLKI – how did you two come to work together?
MYLKI was visiting my home town and we connected at my studio to hangout, but ended up working on several projects. What was meant to be a single trip turned into several back and forward interstate trips for MYLKI. ‘Stay’ was recorded on the final day in Adelaide before MYLKI returned home to Melbourne.
What did MYLKI bring to the track?
What really interested me in MYLKI’s work was that she was from a punk-rock background. Her experience with working with bands and live performances brought an attitude that was unlike anything or anyone I had previously worked with. The original idea was a simple chord progression with a house-style pluck. MYLKI listened to this loop and wrote the entire story and melodies within a few hours. We tracked a demo version and I spent the next few days building the project around her vocal.
Can you tell us a bit about the story behind the song?
'Stay' is about a journey of discovery and adventure in life, looking both within yourself and out. It’s about travelling on a journey towards your truth and being accountable for your actions. 'Stay' represents the beauty that lies in relationships, whether that be family, friends, strangers and importantly life itself.
Essentially, 'Stay' is a song about hope and not fighting against the current, but surrendering to the flow of the universe and what 'is'. “Stay with me, until forever is mine and yours,” is about being at one with the universe and creating peace through your relationship with it. And the lyrics: “Alive with me you’ll see the colours of the air and we’ll start to breathe,” is the universe saying “come with me, release, celebrate life, there is so much beauty here” - MYLKI.
You're also the co-founder of the Global League label; what have been some of the label's major successes since starting in 2016?
Luke Jamieson and I started the idea as a way to have control over my master recordings, but with hope to scale up eventually if the business model proved itself successful. What we didn’t expect upon announcing to the world that I had co-founded a record label was to receive demo submissions, and good ones too. We successfully merged two independent artists into a new duo called V O E, who had no fans but now have hundreds of thousands of streams and a huge fan base in Europe. We currently distribute music for over 50 artists from France, Norway, the United States, Germany and Australia.
This month we broke 1,000,000+ streams on Spotify, which is pretty large considering we remain fiercely independent (we are not an imprint or partnered with a larger major label). On a personal level, it has created a family of super-talented individuals that Luke and I feel very honoured to be part of their musical journey. We know that if one artist wins on Global League, then the entire roster also wins – each supporting one another with collaborations and remixes. For 12 months the label had a recording studio and label office where artists could hang out and collaborate. We’ve recorded some really amazing records from having that space. Luke has since moved to Spain to explore and expand our international operations (as we have called ourselves ‘Global’ this was pretty important). Now we’re in a position to focus more on marketing this amazing catalog of music and grow a really genuine audience that will become part of our family.
You have a classical music background – what first got you interested in EDM?
It all began when my Mum complained that I was practicing piano too much and if only there were a way to plug headphones into the piano so as to not pollute the airways. Well that answer naturally was an electronic keyboard which had hundreds of sounds, not just piano but syntherziers, fx and percussion. So from about age 13+ I began to lose interest in Beethoven and started following the likes of Robert Miles.
Benefits of classical training in EDM production?
Music theory, the understanding of melodies, harmonies and composition were all the key takeaways. I can’t easily read sheet music - hated it at school and spent ten years committing all my music to memory to avoid having read music properly. If I liked how something sounded I learnt from a really young age that I could emulate the melody almost instantly. It’s all formula and technique. There is a direct correlation from how I learnt music to how I performed music on the launchpad. With anything auditory I seemingly have eidetic memory. My brain seems to learn instantly where a sound is placed on a 64-button grid and can then perform sequences and patterns that create music. Happens pretty naturally when I don’t think too hard about it.
You also produce music via Matrix Publishing House – where might we have heard some of this work?
I signed on to a publisher called Stellar Songs (which is a part of SONY ATV) and they put me in the studio with a production duo called Stargate. We accidentally co-wrote an electro house record that later became “What Does The Fox Say?” so basically Matrix operates as a company to which I can make music that does not suit my M4SONIC project. I currently ‘ghost’ write for all types of artists.
How do you stay creatively motivated?
The honest truth is I don’t. I’m either highly motivated or I’m a potato. When I’m feeling flat (usually due to lack of sleep / gym / nutrition) I just ride the wave until I’m in a better frame of mind. Turns out I can’t conform to 9-5 business hours, so I just work all the time until I burn out. Stop, repeat.
What's coming next from M4SONIC?
A ton of music releases from all types of genres with vocalists and lots more music videos for YouTube. I’m also fortunate to have some really cool brands jump in for collaborations this year including Lenovo, AKAI, Google Home, Google Pixel, DJ Tech Tools, TikTok and some other secret projects that will launch later in the year. I’m making my first appearance in China this month for some shows as the team works towards making Asia a regular trip on the touring schedule. The next ticket hopefully is to Europe to be among the scene when ADE takes place in October.