DISCOVER ARTISTS SUBMITTING TO 10TH IMAS: Bignic
Bigbeat/ House/ Pop act Bignic has joined The 10th Independent Music Awards. Check out his interview here!
HOMEBASE: Penetanguishene, Ontario, Canada.
GENRE: Bigbeat/ House/ Pop
CATEGORY ENTERED: Dance/ Electronica Song
SONGS SUBMITTED: “Modern Penthalon,” “Blade Runner,” “Scream,” & “Book of Days”
DESCRIBE YOUR LATEST RELEASE.
‘A Liar and A Thief’ is a zesty flourish of beats and bass that will warm your heart and make your head bob. Addictive and absolutely free.
DID FANS HELP FUND THIS PROJECT?
With money, no. But with their friendly and encouraging words, yes 🙂
ARE YOU YOUR OWN PRODUCER & ENGINEER?
WHEN DID YOU BECOME INTERESTED IN MUSIC?
My father was an avid computer enthusiast and musician, so there were always guitars, synthesizers, 4-tracks, and MIDI sequencers laying around. I always played with gear but I didn’t get ‘serious’ about music production until the first time I heard my first Chemical Brothers album. Thats when I realised that electronic music was a new frontier rather than a fad that had already died out.
WHICH GENRES BEST DESCRIBE YOUR MUSIC?
Bigbeat, house, downtempo, experimental, pop, etc… I try to do a little bit of everything.
IS YOUR BAND NAME A NICKNAME?
I’m 6’4 and 400lbs. Its not so much a nickname… more like an accurate and concise description. I am ‘BIG’ Nic.
IS YOUR MUSIC SELF-AWARE?
My music is the center of the universe. It is Buddha nature.
Music Video for Bignic’s “Thump”
DO YOU FAVOR ANY PARTICULAR EFFECTS?
I have a particular fondness for running synths through a talkbox. I don’t think this is particularly unusual but I do tend to layer and spread them to get the desired “ultimate fatness” from the sound. This usually involves recording many many takes of the same ‘phrases’ and layering the same passages over top of each other with different EQ/Compression/Panning.
I also tend to overlay many different drum samples over top of each other – sometimes 3 or 4 layers for a single instrument. Often one sample will have a ‘click’ or ‘snap’ that I like, but it will lack mid/low range, so I’ll layer some samples underneath that have a beefy low.
I tend to manually edit ‘stutters’ (clicks, pops, retriggers, etc) that can be only a few milliseconds in length in order to get the desired shuffle and timing that I want. It’s all about making a rythm that is contagious and unique. Making a piece of equipment sound like it is alive is all about introducing delays and ‘organic’ faults into the signal so that it doesn’t sound like any other synth.
I like to write things that are complex and full so that there is a ‘pay off’ to listeners who have high quality gear and who really pay close attention to the track. The trick is to balance that level of detail with a track that is also easy to listen to in passing, on a lousy pair of speakers. I want those ‘levels’ to be there so that you can still gain something from that track each time the listener experiences it; even after listening to it over a period of months or years.
WHAT IS YOUR APPROACH TO SONG STRUCTURE AND DYNAMIC BUILD?
Since most of my tracks start out as a ‘riff’ I usually concentrate on making that riff/loop as beefy and awesome as I can. Once I feel like its a good groove, I’ll work backwards or forwards, writing intro/outro flourishes for it and just experiment to see what comes up. I tend to keep my tracks shorter than most electronic music for two reasons: I don’t want people to get bored and I want them to feel like “I need to listen to that again and figure out what just happened.”
I try to always have that drop or hook moment where things build up tension until its released and the listener is dropped right back into the groove. I like that feeling. I think a lot of the ‘payoff’ when listening to really great electronic music is that they establish a groove, mess it up, and then they drop you right back into it just as you’re really craving it.
WERE THERE ANY ‘HAPPY ACCIDENTS’ IN THE STUDIO?
About 75% of my last album was just recorded from clips of me doing improv jams on a microkorg or my Wurlitzer. Whatever sounded good got looped, cut up, layered, etc.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO SUBMIT THESE SONGS TO THE 10TH IMAS?
Because they’re quality and they deserve to be heard by a wider audience. (Also the reason that the album is free.)
HOW DOES YOUR ALBUM ART AND MERCHANDISE VISUALLY SUPPORT YOUR MUSIC?
I think all of my visuals are as whimsical and unique as my sound. I don’t think they are specifically designed that way, its just what was ‘in’ me at the time. So that’s what came out.
the war on peace album cover
WHAT MAKES YOUR FANS UNIQUE?
They have exquisitely rare good taste in music 😉
HAVE YOU EVER HUNG OUT WITH ONE OF YOUR MUSICAL HEROES?
Nope. But if you know where the Chemical Brothers shop for groceries, I’m sure I can come up with a good story for you.
WHAT DO YOU COLLECT? DO YOU COLLECT ANYTHING UNUSUAL?
Instruments (obviously) because it helps lend a unique quality to my recordings when you can hear an accordian or loon call in the background of a hard house track.
Early Volkswagens/parts because the air-cooled flat 4 engine is a marvel of engineering. Power to weight ratio is excellent; Efficient use of fuel; Attractive exterior styling; In an age where most drivers could not possibly understand their engine, let alone fix it, I find it to be one of the most rewarding experiences to know that I built/rebuilt/fixed my vehicle with my own hands. A piece of engineering that is manufactured as a viable tool for 50 years is an impressive feat. Imaging if they were not only manufacturing the original iPhone in 50 years from now, but imaging being able to buy parts and actually USE your original iPhone 50 years from now!
DO YOU PERFORM LIVE DJ SETS?
Thus far, I have only done studio projects.
Music Video for Bignic’s “Book of Days”
WHAT’S YOUR MOST MEMORABLE ACHIEVEMENT TO DATE?
After winning the ‘Best Electronic’ award at the Ontario Independent Music Awards, my track was played on CBC. It was surreal. I think most independent artists really strive to make it to that milestone and I feel very grateful to have had genuine, unsolicited, national radio air-play. It’s such a fantastic feeling to hear a piece of music on the air that you created. It’s a very reassuring feeling to know that the quality of your workmanship is finally at a professional level, not only in terms of production and engineering, but in terms of songwriting too.
ARE THERE ANY SONGS YOU WISH YOU WROTE?
“The Way It Is” by The Prodigy. Its an epic masterpiece of simple but elegant sampling, synth, and breakbeat programming.
“Let Forever Be” by The Chemical Brothers. Again, simple but elegant. Bass… beats… vocals… perfection!
DO YOU MAKE REMIXES?
Sure! Although they never asked me to…
NAME 3 INGREDIENTS FOR A KILLER TRACK.
Perfect Flow (no moments you’d like to fast forward because there’s not enough going on or there’s too much going on)
Unique Hook (you wake up with the tune in your head but you aren’t annoyed – you want to hear it for real)
Perfect Dynamics (nothing that irritates the listener enough to skip the track)
WHAT WAS THE FIRST SHOW YOU EVER ATTENDED?
I think it was Kim Mitchell. He is a wild party. Rah, Rah, Ole! I was sick with strep throat but there was no way my Dad was goin to miss Kim Mitchell. So we got some tacos and went to the show. Tacos cure strep throat. I bet you didn’t know that.
WHAT WAS THE FIRST ALBUM YOU EVER BOUGHT?
Please don’t make me think about this… It was Emerson Lake and Palmer‘s “In The Hot Seat.”
I think I was about 12 at the time and I was so seriously amazed and excited to see that they were still releasing music. I had been listening to my Dad’s old LP’s and was so stunned with the synth and organ work. I think I was also an elitist since I didn’t know any other 12 year old’s who were listening to anything even remotely close to prog rock. Needless to say, I was going to eat up anything that they released. So I got this cassette and it was such a disappointment that I was left in shock. To this day, I’m very hesitant to buy new albums by musicians that I love and respect because I don’t want to lose that respect for them simply because time and age and carpal tunnel syndrome has caught up with them and they didn’t have the good grace to fall on their sword already.
WHAT ARTISTS ARE YOU LISTENING TO THAT WOULD SURPRISE YOUR FANS?
Sophie Madeleine. She’s just the cutest and most amazing talent… you can’t help but fall in love with her. I dare you not to fall in love with her. I DARE YOU. She’s probably the furthest thing from bigbeat that there is. But you love who you love. You know?
NAME SOME ARTISTS YOU ARE CHAMPIONING.
Other than Sophie Madeleine (who totally doesn’t need me championing, since she doesn’t know who I am… but anyway – http://sophiemadeleine.bandcamp.com/)
I’m always trying to enlighten people about two electronic artists: Paniq – http://www.paniq.cc/ (Who doesn’t need my support because he’s way better and more successful than me) and Soulfrost – http://www.soulfrost.com (who also doesn’t need my support because he just opened for Deadmau5 last month and he’s on his way to superstardom anyway.)
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE VIDEO GAME?
FINISH THIS SENTENCE: THE MUSIC INDUSTRY IS… The Deathstar.
WHAT DO YOU HAVE IN THE WORKS?
Hopefully releasing a four track album (two being remixes of my tracks) on beatport. Once I break into the mainstream club playlists, I’ll probably spend the rest of 2011 eating chocolate cake and not returning Speilberg’s calls.
WHERE CAN FANS FOLLOW YOU? WHERE IS YOUR MUSIC AVAILABLE?
If you are an artist submitting to The 10th IMA program and interested in being featured in an Artist Spotlight please contact [email protected]