Photography: Joel Melbourne (@joelmelbournephotography)
“It’s my passion project” reveals Fitzroy’s Reinier Owen, a promising gem amongst the dance scene in Melbourne.
Emerging prospect, REINIER, delved into the world of electronica only two years ago and has already established himself as a worthy producer. Weaving lo-fi house with bouncy percussion, his discography is already off to a good start.
Drawing from artists with a knack for speciality, Reinier has managed to create his own signature sound through his music. The seasoned veteran artist has extensive experience as a musician. However, he decides to take his solo project by the horns, branching out into new territory.
This year saw REINIER's most recent EP release that had been in the works all throughout the year.
The project began with keys and synths, then later crafted into a solid 6-track experience. Considering Reinier is still learning the ropes, his work is still nonetheless impressive.
Give us an insight into what sparked your interest in electronic/dance music? Were you always pursuing that genre of music?
I remember getting a free version of FL Studio when I was really young and loving it. At the same time, Bomfunk MC's dropped Freestyler and I was obsessed. 1999, I think?
Then FL studio got wiped off my computer and I decided to focus on drumming. After being in bands for years I was pretty keen to do something where I was in control of my creative side. I went to the states and saw some sick electronic acts, when I came back home I saved up my money being a milkman at the time and got a MacBook Pro + Ableton. I haven’t looked back since!
Just glancing over your Spotify, you seem to have a larger audience in the states, do you have any idea why that is?
No idea actually... I think I may have got added to a pretty decent playlist on Spotify. They said they liked “A little bit Turbo”, which isn’t really the sound I’m going for to be honest.
Who are some artists in the scene that you draw direct influence from? Big or small.
I’m into artists with a unique sound design like Lorn, Bicep, Stephan Bodzin but also into artists like Mallgrab, a creative who's able to change their sound from album to album. I love darker electronic artists like Willaris K also.
Have you got much experience playing live gigs? If so, can you remember back to your favourite show?
Being in bands for the last 15 years I've been fortunate enough to play around the world. I'd love to be able to do the same one day with my own set.
Are you one to sample older sounds or tracks? Or do you create your sounds from scratch?
I like to make my sounds from scratch or at least manipulate them to make them my own. It's the most fun part in my opinion. I'm always open to finding samples if they work well with a project.
Give a run-down on what goes on when you’re making a track, how does the creative process on-fold?
I usually get home from work and I’m straight on the tools. Depending on my mood I'd just have a play in Ableton or get on the synth and see what comes out. But I find most of my time is spent on mixing and mastering which has been a learning curve, to say the least!
Every day is different but more recently I’ve been creating the drum tracks first as a foundation when I have an idea. For the EP it started with soundscapes or keys and I went from there.
Talk to us about this new EP? What influenced its creation and what sort of work went behind it?
It was pretty on and off due to Covid. I was picking it up and putting it down with the ever-changing lockdowns meaning I was taking full advantage when the pubs were open and producing when they weren't.
In saying that I threw loads of time into it as I'm still learning this side of music. I guess my influence for the EP was my new synth at the time! Always get obsessed with new hardware.
I think some people might like to know what the EP cover art actually is.
It’s a Lamprey. A blood-sucking sea creature haha. Google it, they're a pretty crazy looking ancient fish. My girlfriend came across this Instagram page randomly and I was like " That's pretty sick".
Shout out to @monster_fish_taxidermy for letting me use it!
Are there any venues in Melbourne or any events in the world you dream of performing at?
Honestly, just playing to people who are enjoying my music would be dope. Doesn’t matter where or how many people. But in Melbourne Glamorama would be pretty sweet as it’s just down the road, kick ons at mine haha.
How can fans and audiences best support you during this time of unpredictability?
Just playing a track or two. Or if you like any of my tracks add it to a playlist or ten. I mostly do it for fun so I'm just happy if people are out there listening. The music scene, in general, has taken such a big hit the last year and a half including the band I'm in. So, support your favourite acts in any way you can.
You can stream REINIER’s EP now on Spotify
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