T.O.P. Interview:Antonio Marini aka Healing Force Project

Healing Force Project is the dynamic alias of Antonio Marini, an Italian dexterous producer with astounding releases on labels such as Bedouin, Berceuse Heroique, Wicked Bass, On Board Music,Acido, Sequencias, Eerie, Eclipse Musica and Firecracker. His refined, well-made sound and his jazzy and  experimentalist finesse gives us first-rate tunes. A serious, knowledgeable and low-profile musician whose attitude is admiring.  We are very pleased to include this interview on our Tales of Psychofonia.

T.O.P.: What is your Healing Force and who is Antonio Marini?

AM: Antonio Marini is a guy with  passion for music and and he is been playing records for about twenty years now and this is my personal “Healing Force”. But, of course it’s too  simple just to say this. So, yes I am  a simple person who lives in an Italian small town in the province of Veneto. In fact it’s difficult to share certain things in certain areas. There aren’t not many clubs and most of them have a business philosophy. The moniker “Healing Force Project” was born from my personal listening and from a personal inspiration till today. I’ve changed a lot of monikers in the past, but it was mainly everything set up on djing art, this last name it completes me.

 

T.O.P.: Your last EP Visual Alterity an ambient gem with jazzy attitude had a major impact on us since the very first listening. Are there any specific influences which led to this very deep and sophisticated sound?

 

AM: “Visual Alterity” released on On Board Music (label based in Barcellona),was conceived as a kind of variety of sounds. You can listen to  ambient soundscapes with jazzy attitude as first thing, but you can also find  lots of references about I.D.M.  (especially in the 90’s ), or  dancefloor structure in “Alternative Currents”, to finish off with a  more percussive part with African matrices in “Abduction”. I’m very happy about the way it was produced, thanks to the contribution of Laura Le Marchand (label’s owner), of course. There was a good feeling in building everything in perfect harmony.
Some of my  influences  were : – Psychick warriors ov Gaia, The I.D.M period (90/95), Aphex Twin (Selected Ambient of course), Break Beat and a little bit of drum’n bass rhythms (L.T.J. Bukem) and also Omar S.’s music. I have also been “influenced” by many rhythmical sounds and all this for the last twenty years of my life. Trip-Hop Period (Always in the 90’s, of course) has been a big influence,  with labels like such as Ninja Tune, Cup Of Tea, Dorado, Warp. Jazz and jazz-rock period have been big influence ,too. Artists like : Harbie Hancock, Miles Davis, Weather Report, Lonnie Liston Smith, Dave Holland and others…Clearly, I can’t compare myself to these sacred “monsters”  I am only  talking about simple sound contaminations.
T.O.P.:What gear do you usually use for your music production? Any particular piece of equipment you are obsessed with and why?
AM: One thing that can not miss is computer, which I need to manage external devices. Obviously, I have got a small external expanders,for example, the pads. I’m not obsessed, but pleasantly inside certain structures and I’m always glad to share what I do with others, especially in the digital platforms. My favourite synthesizers that I’ve used until now are the “Little Phatty”  MiniMoog and the Korg Ms 10.
Healing Force Project@Spazio Aereo

T.O.P.:Any forthcoming plans/ collaborations/ events?

AM: At the moment I haven’t any  plans or future projects. But, for me it’s not a problem because I can manage my things better and I can do my tracks  absolutely calm. So,there will be something coming up, but it’s too early to talk about it right now( I am a little bit superstitious too…:/)

T.O.P.: Since you have started your journey into the music production, have there been any significant changes or realisations?

 

AM: I’ve started around fifteen years ago at the home of a musician. It was difficult not knowing how to play ( I hadn’t studied music) and so it was difficult to have the first ideas to do something. First,  I’ve learned how to edit and the sampling art and then I’ve have started searching my personal style in order to  create projects and sounds. Step by step, I’ve refined my technique and still today I try to improve myself. It’s always a “battle”. Sometimes I “win” , sometimes I “lose”, but it’s always a personal challenge to create a track from nothing.
T.O.P.: Which tune  would you suggest as a mind healer ?
AM: There are too many tunes that can be  a mind healer. One that  I’ve in mind is: Miles Davis “Agharta”.

T.O.P. Interview: MEAT Recordings (AT)

 

T.O.P. has always been supported people with strong attitude around music and life. When these two things are combined miracles can happen. For that reason, T.O.P. travels to Austria to meet Matt Mor, Gerald VDH and Specific Objects, the guys behind Meat Recordings. Passionate about techno and  dedicated to their MEAT Market parties in the city of Vienna, they dare the next step by creating their own record label. Their bizarre, raw and provoking aesthetics and non conventional attitude are ready to shake both dancefloors and our minds. They talked to us about their releases, the scene and the strong political and social meaning behind anything they do.

 

 

T.O.P. Guys who are you and why MEAT?

MEAT: MEAT Recordings is the next step n the history of MEAT MARKET, which is a gay, queer and mixed party taking place in Vienna. We decided to call theh label MEAT recordings instead of MEAT MARKET  Recordings, because it sounds and looks much better. If you ever come to one of our gigs in Vienna,you will learn WHY our parties are called MEAT MARKET. It has to do with the raw lust and sexuality we promote during our events.

T.O.P.: Is there any common idea behind your releases?

MEAT: Even though our artists all sound very different, I think our music has a lot in common. We want to release music that can be played in clubs. Our focus in on the dancefloors of the world. Also we will stick to techno for the foreseable future of our label. We all love house music and we know amazing house producers that we would like to support. But, should we decide to release house, we will find a new name for that project.

T.O.P. We love your aesthetics as they are depicted through your videoclips (for example CAKE) and the artworks of them. Is there any specific/critique behind them?

MEAT: We believe techno, music,arts etc are by nature political. So yes, there is a lot of message in our visual work. We promote a life without fascism,racism, sexism and homophobia. We believe in personal freedom and are pro-sex. I think these things are also reflected on all of our work.

T.O.P. Are you planning any events for the close future?

MEAT: We have lots of parties coming up in Vienna. Some of our artists are also touring a lot. Just follow us on facebook, and we will keep you posted.

T.O.P.: How would you describe the techno scene nowadays?

MEAT: The world techno is so big these days. There are so many techno artists but very few share the same ideas that we have. We think that we need to accept that using the world “techno””is a bit like using the world “music”. For us techno is something completely different than to many other people. And that is ok. From our perspective, techno is a very non-commercial and underground thing that takes place in dark and dirty clubs, with hardcore ravers, that know the music very well an live for this kind of music and culture. We don’t judge people who have a different approach towards techno, but we don’t feel we want to work with them either. Or speak to them.Or like what they do.

T.O.P.: Is there any record you would suggest as mind healer?

MEAT: We subscribe to the idea that any old Surgeon or Luke Slater record can save souls

More on MEAT Recordings:

https://www.facebook.com/ClubMeatMarket/

https://meatrecordings.bandcamp.com/

 

 

 

 

T.O.P. Interview: Abyss X (Halcyon Veil, Danse Noire)

 

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She first enchanted us with her Mouthed EP on Halcyon Veil, released in 2016. Now the Greek dark artist/performer comes back  with a forthcoming emotive album on the Swiss Danse Noire. A lyrical journey full of emotions and abyssal, chaotic  waves. Her Lyrical Waxing is something like a manifestation of archetypes and deep rooted human expressions. An exploration of the  psyche. This is an interview with Abyss X for Tales of Psychofonia.

T.O.P. : Why Abyss?

Abyss X: Abyss is like a vacuum and a doorway at the same time. I believe there’s also a lack of Abyss as a Goddess in ancient Greek mythology, a fact that proves its fierce nature.

T.O.P.: How would you describe your journey into the music?

Abyss X: It feels like an accidental encounter.

 T.O.P.: What are these elements that most influence your work? Is there anything particular that fires your creativity and imagination?

Cyclothymia, intense emotional states, beauty and nature.

T.O.P.: Who is your favourite artist for this period?

Abyss X: My favourite artists have been the same ever since I remember exploring the vast sea of music. I would say Velvet Acid Christ really expanded my sonic perception ever since I was in my early teens.

T.O.P.: What’s the story behind the “Lyrical Waxing album and the Danse Noire collaboration?

Abyss X: The label initially reached out to inquire for a remix for one of their artists’ forthcoming release. As I don’t really do remixes, they suggested we collaborated on a release. I so happened to have the material so we initiated the process right away.

T.O.P.: Do you have any plans for the near future?

Abyss X: I’d like to bring back my performance, theatre and dance work so I will try to focus a bit more on developping projects of this nature.

T.O.P.: Which record/tune would you recommend as a tale of psychofonia, a tale to heal the mind?

Abyss X: I think my EP ‘Mouthed’ is very much about that.

photography: Kostis Fokas and NSFW 

More on Abyss X:

 

 

 

 

 

T.O.P. Interview: ​Kaltès & Nene H. on their forthcoming release PROTEST EP on Eomac’s Eotrax.

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Our first 2018 post will be dedicated to the jaw-dropping Protest EP which is the fruit of the collaboration between Kaltès and Nene H., two of the most exquisite artists of Berlin´s techno scene. The EP is released on the 16th of February on Eomac´s label Eotrax and it is its fourth release. The result is like a powerful explosive manifesto which marks new paths of expression. A spelling game PERSIST –RESIST which plays, on and off, as an existential conflict in our minds. Protest sounds like a hidden message, ready to be decoded by those who are able to feel it. It is like a deep scream of an unravelled mystery, of a suppressed ego. When powerful and creative women come together then the music has indeed something to say and the outcome is more than successful. It is a robust statement.

A revolutionary sound which is supported by the mind-blowing remix of artist Christina Sealy (Orphx). Christina´s remix turns Persist into an industrial hymn, a modern shamanistic prayer.  On the other hand, LAIR aka Laura Kilty is soothing the mind with her remix of Resist converting it into an ambient landscape with spacey interferences, which gradually hypnotise the most RESISTant listeners.

Tales of Psychofonia asked both Nene H. and Káltes few questions on this astonishing collaboration.

T.O.P.:  Two powerful artists with dynamic appearances and great solo careers come together and give us a high-class product. The collaboration is enriched by two remixes by LAIR  and Christina Sealy. What is the story behind this high fidelity project?

Kaltès: The way things got together on this one is quite fantastic. Like it was meant to be. I discovered Nene’s music and was immediately in awe. The next day, totally out of the blue, I got a message from her, telling me that she really loved my work. We had never talked to each other nor met before. It was such a weird coincidence. We started to chat and in less than a day, decided to work together. It was so spontaneous. Instinctive. We literally met each through the process of music making. We completed the EP quite quickly, everything so perfectly flowing. Once we were done with that part we decided to choose 5 labels each. Without consulting each other, we ended up both having Eotrax as the number one on our respective lists. Another coincidence. We sent the EP to Eomac. No one else.  And the rest is history.

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T.O.P.: The title and the spelling game with the words Persist Resist give the impression that there is a special message behind the release. Why Protest? What is the statement behind it?

Kaltès: “Protest” is the expression of our struggles and political stand as musicians in this world. A reflection of our time. A time for women’s voices to be heard. To be Loud. And Louder!

T.O.P.:  Shall we wait for more common projects in the near future?

Nene H.: We both love to work with various artists. Since we are personal and emotional people, we search for connection and bond in our work. We believe it is more honest to do it this way. So it is likely that we’ll work together again but in what concept we don’t know yet. We will see.

T.O.P.: What do you persist in? 

Nene H.: I persist in being honest and open. I persist in kindness. I persist in learning.

T.O.P.: Why resist?

Nene H.: Systems that are built until now didn’t lead us here where we are. What led us here is the resistance that came with it. We need contrasts to improve, collisions to build out of.

Kaltès: nothing to add.

T.O.P.: Thank you both for this amazing sharing!

“When I received the tracks from Kaltès and Nene H. it took me about 30 seconds to decide I was going to release it! I loved the rawness and intensity of the music and I was drawn to the vocal scream used in both tracks. Also the intention behind it. This is music that has a voice and is really saying something. I am happy to give music like that a home on Eotrax”. Eomac

Support the artists: https://eotrax.bandcamp.com/album/protest-ep

 

 

 

T.O.P. Interview: NWRMNTC (UK)

Her music breathes and evolves as a sentient being. Organic heavy beats, explorative melodies which show that Ana has great potential and a bright future in the scene. She takes the risk and she wins. Ana Quiroga through her  NWRMNTC  project challenges the established electronic sound and dares to go beyond.

Ana is also half of the female electronic duo LCC, who have several releases on Editions Mego and play live at international events including Sonar Barcelona, Berlin Atonal and Barbican Centre. Following a residency in Iceland at Heima Art Residency during summer 2017, Ana is developing music, sound design and soundtracks for audiovisual and multimedia projects. Besides, she has been a special guest at NTS Radio (Fractal Meat) and Netil Radio.

Today we are very happy to host Ana’s interview on Tales of Psychofonia,  just a couple of months before her performance at London’s Corsica Studios alongside Silent Servant, Kangding Ray and Broken English Club. Ana’s music is coming to mesmerize you, to tickle both your senses and mind, to drag you to the deepest levels of her unique world.

 

T.O.P.: What defines NWRMNTC? Does it express a specific style or is it a multifaceted project? 

NWRMNTC: NWRMNTC started as a project to explore music as a solo, parallel to my work as half of LCC. In the beginning, I started making sessions and live mixes, seeking new electronic soundscapes evoking cinema scenes and future worlds. The project is really open to navigate among different styles around the main topic that is storytelling through emotional landscapes. Currently, I’m working on my new album or ep which is at the beginning of the creative process after spending two months in Iceland making an artistic residency in collaboration with Estela Oliva.

T.O.P.: What are your influences and how did your journey into the electronic sound start?

NWRMNTC: My musical influences come more from alternative rock and pop music. Especially, bands which mixed it with electronics and using a lot of synths, like NIN, Depeche Mode, New Order, The Cure, Air… Slowly, post-teenager I started to discover electronic music beyond dance and mainstream. Electroclash, ambient, industrial, dub techno… And the trip started until today!

T.O.P.: How do you perceive the contemporary music and especially in the UK where you are based?

NWRMNTC: Totally fascinating! I’m so happy to be here. Every day, I discover something new. I love the huge natural mix of styles you can find in UK, especially in London. There are so many people making amazing new things, clubs, parties, radio programs, talks… I’m trying to absorb and enjoy everything, even things a priori I wouldn’t say are my type and then I discover then super positive to continue learning and growing.

T.O.P.:  What are your top five records this year?

NWRMNTC:

Arca – Arca (XL Recordings)
Pan Daijing – Lack (PAN)
Machine Woman – When Lobster Comes Home (Technicolour)
Akkord – RCVR / XMTR (Houndstooth)
The Trascendence Orchestra – Modern Methods For Ancient Rituals (Editions Mego)

T.O.P.:  Apart from your solo project, you are the other half of the female duo  LCC. You also produce music and you turn it into an audiovisual experience. Are there any new projects or upcoming collaborations?

NWRMNTC: Yes, apart of NWRMTNC and LCC, I’m also working in sound design with Clon Studio. We’ve launched reacently a concept film and now we’re working in a VR experience which we will present at Nocturnal City, next 27th of January at Somerset House Studios, London.

T.O.P.: Ana, you have a wicked upcoming gig alongside magnificent artists such as Kangding Ray and Silent Servant at Corsica Studios. How does it feel being part of this unique event at one of the top clubs in London?

NWRMNTC: feel glad and happy to be part of this amazing night. I want to say thanks to Billy Allen who invited me and always has been supporting my work. Getting ready to play different soundscapes from dark ambient to techno in a 3h set!

Corsica

T.O.P.: Is there any dream you have regarding your art/music and you want to share with us? (We might bring you good luck)

NWRMNTC: One of the biggest dreams I’ve done it already and I feel so lucky! I always dreamed to have a band or a musical project and play around the world. I really enjoy to play live, makes me feel alive and excited. I feel really proud what we’ve done with LCC. We started from nothing, we didn’t have musical studies and we are from Spain, a not particullary easy country for this kind of music. We have played in some venues and festivals we really admire as Berlin Atonal and Sónar and released in Editions Mego, a label we really respetc and we feel grateful to have had this opportunity. Now I dream to be able to continue this adventure also with NWRMTNC and enjoying life and music.

T.O.P.: Finally, what is the deepest favourite record of yours, one that you think it could heal the mind?

NWRMNTC: No doubts which one is one of my favourites, an essential but not too sure if it could heal the mind of everybody because it’s a bit tricky but for me it’s an amazing trip to different states of mind: Nine Inch Nails – The Downward Spiral.

 

More about Ana on: www.anaquiroga.net

T.O.P. Interview: B/B/S

 

B/B/S: If music was a statically developing scene full of experimental patterns leading us to a neverending explorational state of mind, without any limits.

The B/B/S experience happens when the musicians, Aidan Baker, our today’s guest, Andrea Belfi & Erik Skodvin put their talents together. Based in Berlin they have released high-quality albums such as  BRICK MASK (Miasmah, 2013) and PALACE (Miasmah, 2016) showing us a powerful alternative to the mainstream electronic sound of Berlin. Their exquisite perception and taste, in terms of music production, is wonderfully translated into deep and elegant sounds.  Their music is dark, obscure and dynamic, with  jazzy  attitude and hypnotising psychedelia.  B/B/S can gradually lead us to a dreamy meditating state of mind classifying themslelves as a totally avant-garde band.

T.O.P.: How did you come together as B/B/S and what’s  the main ingredient of your connection?

Aidan: We began playing together in 2012 with the very simple idea of just seeing what might happen…no plans, no concepts, just experimentation. We were, of course, familiar with each other’s work before we started playing together, so we did know we shared certain aesthetic sensibilities, at least.

T.O.P.: Is there any special moment during the creation of your last LP on Miasmah records you want to share with us?

Aidan: “Palace” is made up of material from two separate sessions that were actually recorded two years apart…which I think says more about how we create and work with music, than the music itself, as there isn’t especially a noticeable difference between the two separate performances. Rather it took us some time to chose, edit, arrange, and mix the best material to create a consistent album as a whole.

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B/B/S/Palace

T.O.P.: How is the music creation perceived by each of you and when do you know that something is ready to go out there?

Aidan: Given my response to the last question, I think the three of us have quite different perceptions of when a song is finished and suitable for release. But again, I think this stems less from the music itself than it does the way we work, both individually and collectively. Our music is entirely improvisational, which makes for quite different experiences depending on whether we are playing live or recording. Live performances are so much more about the experience, being in and of the moment, both for ourselves playing and the audience listening, while recording is an attempt to capture both the sound and the feeling of that experience and trap it in a form that bears up to repeated listens. Which, separated from the immediacy of a live performance, is not necessarily the easiest thing to do — this takes a considerable amount of listening and crafting by all of us before we can agree on a final form that we all feel is successful.

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T.O.P: What is your viewpoint regarding the contemporary music in Europe and how do you experience being part of the Berlinesque scene?

Aidan: Speaking as a North American, Europe is so much better connected and appreciative of the arts, that living and working as an artist here is much more rewarding. There is lots of great music in Canada, of course, but the population of the whole county is about of third of Germany’s so there simply aren’t the same opportunities for an experimental musician. And even if there are a lot of concerts and musicians in Toronto, I would say there are even more in Berlin and quite often musicians end up staying in Berlin for extended periods, which offers more opportunities for performing together or collaborating.


T.O.P.: Is there any venue/ location/country you would love to perform at and why?

Aidan: We have performed in both Norway and Italy to date, the home countries of the other two band members, so I would like us to play in Canada someday, which would most likely be in Toronto or Montreal…but who knows when or if that might happen…

T.O.P.: Do you have any plans for the close future?

Aidan: Nothing definite, at the moment. We often do a short tour in the early months of the year, so perhaps we will do so again in 2018.

T.O.P.: We often ask this; Which is there any record you would recommend as mind/sound healer?

Aidan: I only discovered this album relatively recently, but I’ve been finding David Sylvian & Holger Czukay’s “Plight & Premonition” very soothing of late.

More about B/B/S: http://www.miasmah.com/BBS/index.html 

T.O.P. Interview: Marguerite Records+ Podcast Alter D (IT)

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Tales of Psychofonia travels to Italy and brings fresh Mediterranean air. We indulged into the magic of the beautifully dark world of Marguerite records, a very upcoming and promising label that supports vinyl and promotes exquisite music of different genres. Lucas Martinez and Alter D are the guys behind it and they are committed to quality,  fiddling with new sounds from experimental/ ambient to raw and mindful techno. Tales interviewed Luca Martinez and we are very pleased to present our 34th mix by Alter D. This an hour of organic, noir and primitive but also romantic mix, made exclusively for Tales of Psychofonia. Ritualistic whispers from a forbidden landscape.

T.O.P. : What is Marguerite Records?

L.M.: Marguerite Records is a creation of the twisted and definitely deviant Davide and Luca’s minds, signed by evergreen records by Gene Hunt, Dj Damage, 3 chairs, Shinici, Robert Owens and experimental sounds. We are open-minded guys; we listen from house old school to noise.

Marguerite record is a home-made workshop of music where you can find downtempo, acid, raw house, lo-fi and modern techno.

From the beginning, we have strictly believed in cassette format with the hope of market’s raising.

Our flexibility is tested by the choice of Mixtape Series, an opportunity to show the real essence of artists we like, as a product of their music research without filters and hype conditions.

Mixtape by Filippo Zenna was supported by artist like Volcov. MRG001(tape) was sold out in three weeks, we have received full support from Willis Anne, Brassfoot and other good names of the European scene.

T.O.P.: How would you describe your sound and how is this represented through your releases?

L.M.: Marguerite Records wants to show the power of contemporary sounds. We have started from raw vibes but that’ s not all. Here in Italy, we made lo-fi before it becomes a hype musical product and just business. We don’t follow the Italian scene or a particular label from Europe. We just want to be honest to our concept of sound; a sound that takes inspiration from the past but it’s strictly connected to the future.

T.O.P.: Can you tell us few things about your last releases and what are you up to next?

L.M.: MRG002 was our first vinyl release and it was one of the best experience of our life. Except for mastering (shouts out for Marco Pellegrino) we did everything ourselves, including distribution!It was hard but incredible. This experience made me more confident within the vinyl world.

Now, we are ready to come back!! Out soon MRG003, another Various artist composed by five Italian talents, all good producers with other releases in their discography. We are so proud of this release!! We have just received some requests for Marguerite Records Showcase.

T.O.P.: Any influences?

L.M.: We are always focused on listening new stuff from different producers around the world. Fortunately, we have contact with many of the artists that are an inspiration for us. We are addicted to Trilogy Tapes, 1080p, Apron Records, L.I.E.S, Relative, LLM, Exotic Dance Records, Proibito Records, Lobster Theremin, Bank Records, Crème Organization, Pan, Dko Records, Brothers From Different Mothers, Noorden, Renascence, MMODEMM, Pinkman, Farbwechsel and Berceuse Heroique.

T.O.P: Do Italians do it better?How do you perceive the electronic music scene in your own cultural context? Things that you like and others that you don’t?

 L.M.: Basically we support artists that we appreciate as producers but also for their human values. Marguerite Records is a workshop, as I said before, for friends at first, but also for European talented people who want to be part of our family. An artist on Marguerite is not just a name but h  also part of the project and we also love to create connections out of Milan, where we are based.

I like cities like Berlin, Copenhagen, London, Bristol, Paris, Lyon, Bruxelles because their people are always pleased to listen to new stuff and keep in touch with new crews. In Italy, it’s completely different, but it’s a long and sad story….

T.O.P.: Finally, we like to ask this; Which album would you recommend as a soul and mind healer?

L.M.: Moon B – Lifeworld (1080p). Thanks so much for the opportunity, guys!!

Alter D is co-founder of Marguerite Records with releases on Hardmoon, sub label of Wilson and Raw Culture. New stuff by him is coming soon, on a USA label with together with two big artists.An Italian guy, Alter D is the hot name of outsider electronic scene in Italy. He loves exploring new sounds and keeping an ear on the new vibes from the world. Alte D is well-known as a producer and very good selector with a huge musical background. He has been hosted by Rinse Fm, Radio Raheem, Intro-Spettiva Radio and excellent podcast series Mushi-shi Radio. He has also been chosen as selecta by the Attic Magazine.
He played alongside Philou Louzolo, MGUN and he also did the warm up for the famous jazzman Gianluca Petrella. Currently, he is working on his first solo ep!

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Alter D

Check more on: 
https://soundcloud.com/alter_d