Behind The Beat | Moonbeam Interview
Poignant. Original. Brilliant. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg when describing the genius behind the brothers of Moonbeam. Pavel and Vitaly Khvaleev are true artists who are involved with every single element of their craft. In addition to producing music they personally create all their own artwork and videos. Hailing from Nizhny Novgorod, Russia their experimental dance music (primarily trance) is supported by Armin Van Buuren, Markus Schulz, Ferry Corsten, Paul Van Dyk and many more . With two radio shows: Moonbeam Music & Moon Magic, a film studio: The Moonbeam Film Studio and their own music label: Moonbeam Digital and also an agency for artists their regularly work with: Moon Magic Agency, they are constantly pushing the creative envelope while maintaining integrity and originality. They recently tackled the daunting task of creating an entire film score and to accompany their studio’s first feature length film and thus their fourth album The Random was born. The Random has two versions: the film score and the club version of such. With releases on Black Hole, Armada Music, Ultra, Coldharbour, Kickin’, Spinnin’, High Contrast and Traum Schallplatten it’s evident that Moonbeam has a prolific and prominent presence in the EDM world. Read more about Moonbeam: their roots, inspirations and what’s in store for 2013. The sky is the limit with these two…
OTB: Growing up who was the greatest musical influence for each of you? Did you both like electronic music in your youth? Can you give us some insight to how Moonbeam was formed and or what the catalyst was for teaming up musically?
MB: We were influenced by Daft Punk, Bjork and by many others. And yes, we both fall in love with electronic music and realized that EDM will be part of our lives. After some time we start working on Russian radio stations, produce tracks on amateur level under other aliases. And only in 2003 we launched Moonbeam.
OTB: What’s in store for Moonbeam in 2013? Are there any specific goals Moonbeam would like to achieve in the future?
MB: It’s a big tour with our new album which has already begun, and in some cities it will be in format of big live concerts, with several vocalists. Also, we have already made a few new singles; also we will release a few new music videos, and of course getting ready to release the film The Random.
OTB: Can you tell us a little bit about the creative process when working with a vocalist? Any vocalists you would like to work with in the future?
MB: Nothing difficult here. First of all, our vocalists record a vocal part in his studio. Then they send us a demo and we working on a new track, trying to use this vocals as much as it possible.
Yes, it will be perfect to work with Lana Del Rey, Bjork and 30 Seconds To Mars.
OTB: The Random is your first original film score and fourth album: a huge accomplishment! Can you tell us a little bit about the origins of this project and the approach you took making music for it?
MB: For the first time, we release 2CDs edition. CD#1 includes soundtracks for our “The Random” movie. As always, we were trying to experiment and find something new in electronic music. We worked with many artists from around the world, including Andrea Roma, Jacob A, A*S*Y*S and others. This allowed us to use virtually all styles of music in the album. Since we set ourselves a task to dive into the creative process and to transmit mood of each track, as the result of it we got a very deep, but at the same time relevant and interesting “music book”, consisting of two volumes. “The Random” has a cinematic approach. But, only those who will watch our film can fully understand it. First of all, it’s a soundtrack, so it’s necessary to listen it as soundtrack directly in “The Random” movie.
OTB: I’ve read that you both create all the artwork for your music and even direct and write your own music videos! Is their one brother that prefers the visual side of your art or is it an equal endeavor? And conversely, when you begin to create music do you see imagery attached to your beats? Or do you create artwork for your tracks and albums when they are a finished project?
MB: It’s a question for Pavel, because he is engaged in this process. As you said, we are working on our videos from scenario to youtube uploading. And Pavel do this all. And usually, all artworks and music video makes after music is done.
OTB: Any up and coming Russian producers that have caught your attention recently?
MB: Now there are a lot of Russian artists which becoming more and more popular from day to day. We can pick out a few names which have really unique features. For example ARCHNGL. Their style of music is difficult to attribute to the dance, but the depth and incredible vocals is mesmerizing. We can also mark Matvey Emerson, Blackfeel Wite, J-soul, Loolacoma, Eximinds …
OTB: It is very admirable that both you are involved with every single step of the creative process with your music, artwork and videos – any advice you would give to aspiring artists?
MB: Be original. It’s the most important thing.
OTB: What are a few tracks that have been on repeat for you both?
MB: Jamie Woon “Night Air”, The XX “Angels”, James Blake “Limit To Your Love”
OTB: Can we expect a visit from you in America in the future?
MB: Probably this autumn
OTB: Any last words for your fans?
MB: Be the best in everything and may the force be with you
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