EDM music tops the popularity list in 2022. Famous music producer and DJ Ilya Truskovsky, also known as QAMmade a much anticipated return to the EDM scene after so long with a brand new release, ‘Catch-22’. The track is a rhythmic symbol of the artists’ truest thoughts and opinions about humanity and its future.
The budding artist took some time out of his busy schedule to sit down with us for an interview. He was kind enough to answer our questions about his music and upcoming works.
Hello QAM! First of all happy new year, hope you are doing well and congratulations on your return to the EDM scene. Thank you very much for doing this interview with us. Let’s start:
DMRs: Tell us a bit about yourself and what is the story behind your pseudonym MAQ?
QAM: It’s the “when I was a little boy” kind of story and that’s exactly how it starts – I started learning music when I was 3 years old. My mum is a music teacher and my dad was a dedicated music fan for all of the hottest bands of their time, like the Beatles and such, so it kind of was meant to be. Until I was 17 I was going to be a solo pianist, I was very serious about it, but something happened in my mind and I started experimenting with synthesizers and composition and I got carried away with the studio stuff.
Many years passed, I was writing a lot of music under different names, but at some point I started looking for a permanent pseudonym. It was a very long time ago! About 2010. I started looking for a name, because I started DJing around that time. I wanted something really short and catchy. And there aren’t many options with three letters, trust me. So I started channeling that idea it was around that time where I was really into the new all the latest Paul McCartney records and also I was into the latest Mac computers and all the music creation on those computers that seems incredibly magical at this time. As Mac-Mac was spinning in my head and I thought maybe I could spell it differently and that’s how I got the title MAQ
DMRs: So, you decided to make EDM music again after so many years? What inspired you to do it?
QAM: I have always made electronic music but in the form of film music. So it never left me. Then over the last few years something changed in me and I started rebuilding my studio and I was all the latest synthesizers I created my modular system which is amazing and it will continue to grow more and more more. So I started experimenting with all this stuff and realized that I had lots of new ideas, that I had changed, that I had matured and that I wanted to share my ideas with others, whatever he is coming.
DMRs: Why did you choose “Catch-22” as your return number? What’s so special about it?
QAM: Big question! In fact, I had and still have a few singles in the works, but this particular track captured all my feelings when our world changed with the pandemic, with all the most powerful countries in decline in quality of life, and not because of the pandemic but because of a deep fundamental crisis going on, and the whole world has started to become a worse place than it once was. Those eerie feelings are reflected in this track and I’m just starting to think about it more and more, where can this all lead? This can lead to a very sad ending, or not…
DMRs: Tell us about the rhythmic structure and chord arrangement of the track. What kind of instruments did you use to create the symphony?
QAM: The way I created the whole concept and melodic/chord structure of this track was a live improvisation that I set up in my studio, with all the synths as well as my modular racks all set up and ready to go. ‘use. So I started with this rhythm that I programmed on a few analog modules then I improvised and added layers in real time. So there was the bass line, then the harmonies and then this solo. Incidentally, this solo is an unpublished original performance. This process took two days, actually two nights, one night for the improvisation itself and the second night to cut all the most interesting material. Then I had about two months working on the shape, the structure and the mix itself.
DMRs: How is its rhythm different from other contemporary rhythms? What is the main distinguishing factor in the song?
QAM: I never thought of it. I never dissect anything I do. It is therefore difficult for me to judge whether he is different from the others. I mean that’s how any music is made, we process tons of music, some of that music that we love a lot and that music represents our tastes and it also represents a brine in which new ideas are born. So it’s up to everyone to decide if it sounds like something else or if it’s a bit original. Personally, for me, I think the shape of this track is quite distinctive in its ever-changing form, no repeats, once you start – you’re in the flow until the end, and there’s a big arch. i think i like it
DMRs: Did you use only electronic beats or did you also incorporate influences from other musical genres into the track?
QAM: It was pure electronics, I didn’t go into other genres. But I always had a hard time understanding what kind of genre I ended up with. I thought it was techno, but my experienced friends told me it was too emotional to be techno and they were right. So in that respect it’s more of a trance track. So… I don’t know )) Maybe someone can help me identify it?
DMRs: When did you start making music? Tell us about your early years in the music industry?
QAM: I started making music when I was a kid. I was trained to be a professional solo pianist. But then I moved. I started digging into all modern electronic and experimental music. I like the atmosphere of the studios. All of this captivated me, so when I was 18, I changed my path forever and entirely. Then fate was very kind to me and I got to meet a few people who defined many years of my life and some of them continue to define it until now.
I participated in the creation of a few labels when I lived in Russia. I started in 2002 when I became co-founder of an incredible electronic label “Deja Vu records”. I had a few releases at the time and they were all CDs at the time. The most important album from that era was remastered and re-released in the UK years later in 2017 and is available on all major platforms – it’s a very special project for me: Solaris ÒPyramid ParadigmÓ, I wrote with my best friend Vladimir Khlopovsky
Then a little later, me and Vladimir created another label “Rombida records” and we had some releases then, including a very special album “Voice of Lama”. It was a very successful project. We actually recorded a real Lama Tenzin Sangpo chanting his mantras. He asked us to put his mantras to western music, but the only request was that we couldn’t change the number of his repetitions of each mantra. The result was amazing! I have a lot of stories like this and it’s getting harder and harder to remember them all.
Then I became a film composer and it became my main thing and it still is. After working in the film industry for about 10 years, I took a big step forward: moving to Los Angeles, the capital of the film industry. It was the most important decision of my life that changed everything. I had to rebuild my life from almost zero and now that I am rebuilt, rebuilt, reborn – I thought it was time to start making records again! )))
DMRs: What or who inspired you to start making music in the first place?
QAM: My parents and only them. I was surrounded by music since day 0. In this situation, you simply have no other destiny.
DMRs: Which EDM musicians and DJs influenced you the most? How do you use their influence to shape your soundscape?
QAM: Shpongle – that name needs no introduction, does it?
Agoria – a French genius
Guy J – another genius from God knows what universe, he’s a universe of his own!
YELLO – OMG, they are pioneers!
I can go on and on!
DMRs: Do you work under a record label or do you have your own production company?
QAM: I started my own production company simply because it’s easier to navigate the world of streaming, but I will definitely look to collaborate with other labels!
DMRs: What are your plans for the future? Will you release more EDM issues in the future?
QAM: There’s another very big release coming in about a month or two, it’s going to be a 4 track single, which is a collaboration with an amazing Russian musician Vladimir Khlopovsky. I did two of these tracks based on his two amazing themes, resembling the style of the baroque period, but these themes are produced in an extremely electronic aesthetic. It is something not to be missed. It will be that rare case where modern electronics will blend seamlessly with the eternal music of the Baroque.
Also, I have 4 more singles in the works and they will be released later this year. All tracks are very different from each other. I’m super excited to finalize them soon and get ready for the new releases
DMRs: What message would you like to convey to your fans and newcomers to the industry?
QAM: I am convinced that the most important thing for a musician is to find as many people as possible who think about music in a similar way, people who would explore the same ideas and would like to continue to exchange in this endless cycle of creation-perception of music. Music is recreated each time it enters someone’s head and in everyone’s head it’s a little different. It’s the magic of music. It’s not about golden chains and limos, but consistency between a musician and a listener. Many people have forgotten the purpose of music
Jennifer Stone turned her love of music to writing. She is one of the writers of Daily Music Roll and indulges in creating positive reviews, music blogs and music press releases for various artists here.