He may only be 23, but Audien is already emerging as one of EDM’s hottest young producers. After exploding in popularity due to his massive remix of Bastille’s “Pompeii,” the Connecticut-born artist has been a staple on the festival circuit, making headlining appearances all around the world.
Most recently, however, Audien stopped by Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) Las Vegas. While there, we had the chance to catch up with him for an exclusive interview, in which we discussed his production process, why he loves melodies so much, how he puts his sets together and much more.
Check it out below, and enjoy!
WGTC: Tell us a bit about your production process. What comes first? How does it go from beginning to end?
Audien: I usually start with a melody. That’s where the spark comes from. And then I build around that. It gives you something with substance to work off of.
WGTC: Do you know at the start if you’re going to have vocals or not?
Audien: Usually about half-way through, once I’ve got a good, tangible demo.
WGTC: Where do your ideas for melodies come from?
Audien: Just messing around on Logic. They just come to me and then I flesh them out into a song. It’s a real fluid process.
WGTC: You have a bit of history with rock music. Does that factor into your production process at all?
Audien: Yeah, totally. I always try to make my songs sound like they have a rock energy in the drop. But in a melodic way.
WGTC: Why is melody so important in your tracks?
Audien: Without a good melody it’s not even really a song. For it to be a song you have to have a good melody that makes you feel good or is memorable and catchy. That’s the most important thing. Getting the melody takes me days, sometimes weeks to get right. But it’s so important. It all matters.
WGTC: Do you think there’s a place in EDM then for genres that don’t focus too much on melody?
Audien: Melodic music is the best. If you feel it, then it’s awesome. There’s still a place for other music though. Big room and stuff like that, it’s always going to do well because it has such a high energy, and it works so well at festivals. But those songs will never touch you and you’ll never remember them longer than the 2 weeks that they live on Beatport. With a melodic song that has a great vocal, you can live with that for years. And that’s what I’m more about.
WGTC: Do you think you’ll ever branch out past melodic music?
Audien: I kind of did with “Elysium,” but it was still kind of melodic. I have to keep it melodic though, for myself.
WGTC: Any plans for a debut album?
Audien: Maybe an EP. I don’t want to announce anything yet though. I do have a new single coming out in a few weeks that’s going to be HUGE. It’s with Lady Antebellum and called “Something Better.”
WGTC: Being so young in this industry, what do you find the biggest challenges are?
Audien: Definitely the travelling. You’re always on the road. Flying sucks, too [laughs]. It’s worth it though, I love my job. It’s amazing to play my music for people. And I do take my friends and family with me on the road sometimes, so it’s alright.
WGTC: Your “Pompeii” remix is what really put you on the map, and it’s absolutely exploded in the past year or so. Does it bother you that a lot of people know you just for that remix and that it may overshadow some of your original tracks?
Audien: It’s a challenge, for sure. But “Pompeii” is also kind of an original. It’s pretty much my own record just with Bastille’s vocals. But I’m in the process of getting past that. I have a lot of new records that are really going to drive that idea home. They all have the same feeling as that remix, but they’re originals.
WGTC: At what point did you know your remix “Pompeii” would be a massive hit?
Audien: It was more of a gradual thing, really. But I guess I started to notice it once everyone started playing it out at festivals, and once I saw the Grammy nomination, of course.
WGTC: You played at Marquee Dayclub yesterday. How does a set for a venue like that differ from the set you’ll be playing at EDC tonight?
Audien: It really depends on the set time. If I’m playing for 2 hours at Marquee, I’ll build more of a gradual set. Start off with some house and build into the more harder stuff. But at EDC, I’m playing at 3:30 AM for 55 minutes, so I need to fit everything in. I do plan my EDC set as well, because I make so many edits to every record, but I usually don’t finish it until the day of because I want to see what other DJs are doing.
That concludes our interview, but we’d like to thank Audien very much for his time!