Timbaland

277978ba-b387-4865-b56c-0b67a2f1475b Timothy Z. Mosley (born March 10, 1971), better known by his stage name Timbaland, is an American record producer, composer, rapper, and singer. Primarily known for his work in urban pop, Timbaland has produced albums and singles for a number of artists from the mid-1990s to the present day.

Timbaland’s first production work was Ginuwine…the Bachelor for Ginuwine, in 1996; the album was both a commercial and critical success. He was later contacted by Aaliyah to help produce her second album, One in a Million, which went on to sell over two million copies worldwide. In 2000, Timbaland produced several hit songs including Ludacris’ “Rollout (My Business)”, and contributed three singles to Aaliyah’s self-titled third album. Embracing an international audience, he helped produce three tracks for Japanese Pop star Utada Hikaru’s debut English album, Exodus.

In 2006 Timbaland collaborated with Nelly Furtado and Justin Timberlake which resulted in multiple million selling albums and singles for both artists. In 2007 Timbaland released the album Shock Value, a commercial success, while 2008 saw Timbaland help produce Madonna’s new album, Hard Candy.

 

Biography

 

Early life

3459bdc4-a4f4-495f-9893-88d0325f936a Mosley was hhuhh born and raised in Norfolk, Virginia, where he lived for the first years of his life. Originally a disc jockey known as “DJ Timmy Tim” or “DJ Tiny Tim”, Mosley began making hip-hop backing tracks on a Casio keyboard. Rapper Missy Elliott heard his material and, taken by Mosley’s unique sense of rhythm, began working with him. She and her R&B group Sista auditioned for DeVante Swing, a producer and member of the successful R&B act Jodeci. Devante signed Sista to his Swing Mob record label and Elliott brought Mosley and Barcliff along with her to New York, where Swing Mob was based. It was Devante who renamed the young producer Timbaland, after Timberland construction boots, which were popular in hip-hop fashion.

Sista, Timbaland, and Magoo became part of Devante’s stable of Swing Mob signees known as “Da Bassment” crew, joining artists such as R&B singer Ginuwine, male vocal group Playa, and the girl group Sugah. Timbaland did production work on a number of projects with Devante, including the 1995 Jodeci LP The Show, The After-Party, The Hotel, and Sista’s debut LP 4 All the Sistas Around the World, which was shelved and never released. At this time Jodeci was pivotal in defining the 1990s new jack swing sound. He later joined the production ensemble S.B.I. (Surrounded By Idiots) that also featured Neptunes producer Pharrell Williams.

Elliott began receiving recognition as a songwriter for artists such as R&B girl group 702 and MC Lyte. Due to Timbaland’s connection with her, he was often contacted to produce remixes of her songs. One of these, the remix to 702’s “Steelo” in 1996, became Timbaland’s first major production credit.

 

1996–1999

music_rajeshwari_timbaland In 1996, Ginuwine released his debut album, Ginuwine…the Bachelor, which was produced by Timbaland. The album was both a commercial and critical success. On many of the tracks, Timbaland can be heard either rapping or providing ad-libs, similar to what both Elliott and Puff Daddy were doing at the time; Timbaland’s deep voice was usually vocoded to give it an electronic sound. While work was being completed on Ginuwine…the Bachelor, R&B artist Aaliyah contacted Timbaland and Elliott to write and produce songs for her second album, One in a Million. The tracks that were crafted for Aaliyah featured musical arrangements similar to those on Ginuwine…the Bachelor. One in a Million went on to sell over two million copies worldwide.

Asian instrumentation is present through much of his early work (Xscape’s “My Secret” remix, especially, with a sitar outro and Timbaland ad-libbing “Let’s take a little trip…to India”), but was most successful and prevalent with Jay-Z’s “Big Pimpin'” in 1999, which borrowed directly from the song “Khosara” by Egyptian composer Abdel Halim Hafez. Elliott’s 2001 hit single, “Get Ur Freak On” from her third album, Miss E…So Addictive, also used a speedy Tabla drumline typical of Hindustani classical music.

 

2000–2002

c7200065-e86f-4b1a-9d51-a598cc15639eTimbaland produced songs including Ludacris’ “Roll Out (My Business)”, Jay-Z’s “Hola’ Hovito”, Petey Pablo’s “Raise Up”, and Beck’s cover of David Bowie’s “Diamond Dogs” during this period. He also contributed three songs, all eventually released as singles, to Aaliyah’s self-titled third album, the exotic lead single “We Need a Resolution” (featuring himself rapping a verse), “More Than a Woman”, and the ballad “I Care 4 U”.

Timbaland & Magoo’s second album together was slated for release in November 2000. Indecent Proposal was to feature appearances by Beck, Aaliyah, as well as new Timbaland protégés — some from his new Beat Club Records imprint–Ms. Jade, Kiley Dean, Sebastian, Petey Pablo, and Tweet (who was a member of Sugah during the Swing Mob days). The album was delayed for an entire year, finally released in November 2001. It was a commercial disappointment. Beck’s vocals for the track “I Am Music” were not included on the final version, which instead featured Timbaland singing alongside Steve “Static” Garrett of Playa and Aaliyah, who had been killed in a plane crash that August.

The first release on Beat Club was the debut album by Bubba Sparxxx in September 2001, Dark Days, Bright Nights. The loss of Aaliyah deeply affected Timbaland, whose work was less omnipresent after 2001. In a phone call to the MTV show Total Request Live, Timbaland said:

She was like blood, and I lost blood. Me and her together had this chemistry. I kinda lost half of my creativity to her. It’s hard for me to talk to the fans right now. Beyond the music, she was a brilliant person, the [most special] person I ever met.

Timbaland, MTV

 

2003–2005

11736047-11736049-largeTimbaland contributed three tracks to Tweet’s debut album, Southern Hummingbird, and produced most of Elliott’s fourth and fifth LPs, Under Construction and This Is Not A Test!. He also produced tracks for artists such as Lil’ Kim (“The Jump Off”) and southern rapper Pastor Troy during this period. Collaborating with fellow producer Scott Storch, Timbaland also worked on a number of tracks on former *NSYNC lead singer Justin Timberlake’s solo debut, Justified, including the song “Cry Me a River”.

Late in 2003, Timbaland delivered the second Bubba Sparxxx album, Deliverance, and the third Timbaland & Magoo album, Under Construction, Part II. Both albums were released to little fanfare or acclaim even though Deliverance was praised by reviews and embraced by the internet community.

Timbaland continued to produce hit singles and albums for artists; in 2004 Timbaland-produced singles by LL Cool J, Xzibit, Fatman Scoop, and Jay-Z became staples on urban radio, and he produced the bulk of Brandy’s fourth album, Afrodisiac. The Timbaland-produced song “I’m So Fly” on Lloyd Banks’s 2004 debut album The Hunger for More is significant in that it was the first official Timbaland production bearing a co-production credit from Danja, who would go on to become a requisite collaborator with Timbaland in the future.

Embracing an international audience, Timbaland lent a hand to three tracks off bilingual Japanese Pop star Utada Hikaru’s debut English album, Exodus. He continued working on tracks for Tweet and for Elliott’s sixth album, The Cookbook: “Joy (feat. Mike Jones)”, and “Partytime” and continued to expand his reach with production for The Game and Jennifer Lopez (“He’ll Be Back” from her fifth studio album, Rebirth.)

 

2006–2007

Timbaland started a new label distributed by Interscope, Mosley Music Group, bringing some talent from his former Beat Club Records label. On the new label are Nelly Furtado, Keri Hilson, and rapper D.O.E.. During 2006, Timbaland had seven singles receiving airplay worldwide by Nelly Furtado and Justin Timberlake. Additionally, Timbaland also appears in most of the videos.

In early 2007, Timbaland was accused of plagiarism regarding his work on the Nelly Furtado track “Do It”. He is alleged to have plagiarized elements from the song “Acid Jazzed Evening” by Finnish artist Tempest, without giving credit or compensation.. Further allegations of plagiarism have surfaced in both fan publications and music editorials (see Main Article).

Timbaland provides vocals on the singles the Pussycat Dolls’s “Wait a Minute”, Nelly Furtado’s “Promiscuous” and “Ice Box” by Omarion, all of which climbed the U.S. charts. In an interview published in August 2006 in the UK, Timbaland revealed he was working on a new LP by Jay-Z and that he had been working on tracks with Coldplay’s Chris Martin.

timbaland-nelly-furtado-justin-timberlake-400aTimbaland worked on seven songs for Björk’s new album, including “Earth Intruders”, “Hope”, and “Innocence”, and he later worked on tracks for the new Duran Duran album, Red Carpet Massacre, including one featuring his frequent collaborator Justin Timberlake. Later in the year, Timbaland produced songs for Bone Thugs N Harmony’s LP, Strength & Loyalty and the song “Ayo Technology” on 50 Cent’s album Curtis. Timbaland also produced most of the tracks on Ashlee Simpson’s third CD, Bittersweet World, including the song “Outta My Head (Ay Ya Ya)”.

On April 3, 2007, Timbaland released a collaboration album featuring artists such as 50 Cent, Dr. Dre, Elton John, Fall Out Boy, Nelly Furtado, Missy Elliott, and others called Timbaland Presents Shock Value. The first single, “Give It to Me” featuring Nelly Furtado and Timberlake, topped Billboard’s Hot 100 chart and received a nomination for the Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals. The fourth single from the album, a remix of the OneRepublic song “Apologize”, was on the Billboard Hot 100 for 28 weeks.

A rivalry flared up between Timbaland and record producer Scott Storch in early 2007. The tension initially started on the single “Give It to Me”, when Timbaland anonymously called out Storch, rapping, “I’m a real producer and you just the piano man”. Timbaland confirmed that he was talking about Storch in an interview with MTV personality Sway Calloway. Storch responded with the track “Built Like That” on February 26, 2007, featuring Philadelphia rapper NOX. The end of the feud was confirmed by Timbaland in the final issue of Scratch Magazine.

In November 2007, it was confirmed that Timbaland has become a father to a baby girl. The mother is publicist Monique Idlett, who works at Timbaland’s Mosley Music Group record company. They have been dating for two years and will marry in 2008. Timbaland proposed to Idlett at their baby shower in October.

 

2008–present

blog9-madonna-timbalandTimbaland helped produce Madonna’s new album, Hard Candy. Bittersweet World by Ashlee Simpson, and other untitled albums and songs by such artists as Chris Cornell, Beyonce, Teairra Mari, Keithian, The Pussycat Dolls, Nicole Scherzinger, Missy Elliott, Jennifer Hudson, and Sugababes. He produced several songs for Usher’s new album, Here I Stand. Timbaland also produced some of the tracks on Swedish singer Robyn’s self-titled album set for released on April 29, 2008 in the United States.

On February 8, 2008, it was announced that Timbaland would be releasing an album solely on a mobile platform for Verizon Wireless’s V CAST cell phone service and was designated its very first “Mobile Producer in Residence.” Timbaland will be joined by Mosley Music Group/Zone 4 singer/songwriter Keri Hilson to begin work on the mobile album’s first track aboard the fully-equipped Mobile Recording Studio. The only track to surface so far is “Get It Girl.” In his first effort within the video game industry, he is working with Rockstar Games to produce Beaterator, a music mixing game for the PlayStation Portable to be released in the summer of 2009.

 

ASTIST DISCOGRAPHY

Timbaland Presents Shock Value

Timbaland Timbaland Presents Shock Value

Released: 4/3/2007

Under Construction Part II

Timbaland & Magoo Under Construction Part II

Released: 11/18/2003

Indecent Proposal

Timbaland & Magoo Indecent Proposal

Released: 11/20/2001

Tim's Bio: Life From da Basement

Timbaland Tim’s Bio: Life From da Basement

Released: 11/24/1998

Welcome to Our World

Timbaland & Magoo Welcome to Our World

Released: 11/11/1997

 

PRODUCER DISCOGRAPHY
Swing Mob affiliated
  • 1996: “Pony” by Ginuwine (recorded in 1993)
  • 1996: “If Your Girl Only Knew” by Aaliyah
  • 1996: “One in a Million” by Aaliyah
  • 1997: “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)” by Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott
  • 1997: “When Doves Cry” by Ginuwine
  • 1997: “Sock It 2 Me” by Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott (featuring. Da Brat)
  • 1998: “Same Ol’ G” by Ginuwine
  • 1998: “Are You That Somebody?” by Aaliyah (featuring Timbaland)
  • 1999: “She’s a Bitch” by Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott
  • 1999: “Hot Boyz” by Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott (featuring Nas, Eve, Q-Tip, & Lil’ Mo)
  • 1999: “So Anxious” by Ginuwine
  • 2000: “Try Again” by Aaliyah
  • 2000: “Bangin’ (Don’t Lie)” by Nicole Wray (featuring Prodigy of Mobb Deep)
  • 2001: “Ugly” by Bubba Sparxxx
  • 2001: “Lovely” by Bubba Sparxxx
  • 2001: “Get Ur Freak On” by Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott
  • 2001: “One Minute Man” by Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott (featuring Ludacris, Trina, and Jay-Z)
  • 2001: “We Need a Resolution” by Aaliyah featuring Timbaland
  • 2002: “More Than a Woman” by Aaliyah
  • 2002: “Oops (Oh My)” by Tweet (featuring Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott)
  • 2002: “Call Me” by Tweet
  • 2002: “Work It” by Missy Elliott
  • 2002: “Back in the Day” by Missy Elliott (featuring Jay-Z and Tweet)
  • 2002: “Ching Ching” by Ms. Jade
  • 2003: “Gossip Folks” by Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott
  • 2003: “Don’t Know What to Tell Ya” by Aaliyah
  • 2003: “Pass That Dutch” by Missy Elliott
  • 2003: “I’m Really Hot” by Missy Elliott
Outside performers
  • 1999: “Jigga What, Jigga Who” by Jay-Z (featuring Amil and Big Jaz)
  • 1999: “Word Up!” by Melanie B
  • 1999: “Big Pimpin’” by Jay-Z
  • 2000: “Hey Papi” by Jay-Z (featuring Memphis Bleek)
  • 2000: “You Owe Me” by Nas (featuring Ginuwine)
  • 2000: “Snoop Dogg” by Snoop Dogg
  • 2001: “Diamond Dogs” by Beck
  • 2001: “Raise Up” by Petey Pablo
  • 2001: “Rollout (My Business)” by Ludacris
  • 2001: “Turn off the Lights (Remix)” by Nelly Furtado
  • 2002: “Cry Me a River” by Justin Timberlake (co-produced by Scott Storch)
  • 2003: “Dirt off Your Shoulder” by Jay-Z
  • 2003: “The Jump Off” by Lil Kim
  • 2004: “Ryde or Die, Bitch” by The Lox
  • 2004: “Who Is She 2 U” by Brandy
  • 2004: “Afrodisiac” by Brandy
  • 2004: “Headsprung” by LL Cool J
  • 2004: “I’m So Fly” by Lloyd Banks
  • 2004: “Potion” by Ludacris
  • 2004: “Hey Now” by Xzibit
  • 2005: “Put You On The Game” by The Game
  • 2006: “Maneater” by Nelly Furtado
  • 2006: “Promiscuous” by Nelly Furtado
  • 2006: “Wait A Minute” by The Pussycat Dolls
  • 2006: “Maneater” by Nelly Furtado
  • 2006: “All Good Things (Come to an End)” by Nelly Furtado
  • 2006: “Say It Right” by Nelly Furtado
  • 2006: “SexyBack” by Justin Timberlake
  • 2006: “My Love” by Justin Timberlake featuring T.I.
  • 2006: “Ice Box” by Omarion
  • 2006: “What Goes Around…” by Justin Timberlake
  • 2007: “Give It To Me” by Nelly Furtado, Timbaland, Justin Timberlake

Serj Tankian

17041865-17041868-slargeSerj Tankian (Armenian: Սերժ Թանգեան) (born August 21, 1967 in Beirut, Lebanon) is a Lebanese-born Armenian-American singer, songwriter, poet, activist, and multi-instrumentalist. He is best known as the lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist and keyboardist of the alternative metal band System of a Down. In 2002, Serj and Tom Morello co-founded a non-profit political activist organization, Axis of Justice. During his entertainment career, he released five albums with System of a Down, one with Arto Tunçboyacıyan (Serart), and also recently a solo album, Elect the Dead, on October 23, 2007.

 

Biography

 

Early life and career

Tankian was born on August 21, 1967, in Beirut, Lebanon. He and his family immigrated to Los Angeles in 1975. He took flute lessons as a young child. He earned a degree in Marketing and Business from California State University, Northridge and started his own software company before beginning his music career. In 1993, he founded the band Soil (not to be confused with SOiL) with Daron Malakian, Domingo Laranio, Dave Hakopyan, and later, Shavo Odadjian. Two years later, in 1995, after one supposed jam session recording and one live show, Dave and Domingo left. Shavo (who went on to become the bass player) brought in drummer Andy Khachaturian. This part of the group then named themselves System of a Down.

SerjTankian-06-bigDuring System’s days, he sang in other bands for certain songs such as Mushroom Cult by Dog Fashion Disco and lent his vocals to the song Mein by Deftones. He produced “Enter the Chicken” by Buckethead, and provided vocals to the Buckethead songs We Are One, Coma, and Waiting Here. With Serjical Strike Records, he endeavours to offer those musicians often ignored by the mainstream a possibility to release their music and be heard. The first release of Serj’s new label was Serart, a project consisting of Tankian himself, and Arto Tunçboyacıyan, an Armenian friend of Tankian’s.

More recently, he sang with Les Rita Mitsouko on the song “Terminal Beauty”. Also, he sang with the band Fair to Midland during a live improvisational version of their song “Walls of Jericho”, from the album Fables from a Mayfly: What I Tell You Three Times Is True, which was a massive hit with fans. He often collaborates as well with his close friend, director Diran Noubar on various projects, including the voice-over of Noubar’s “Armenia, a Country Under Blockade”. Noubar played some guitar on Tankian’s Elect the Dead album on the track “Saving Us” and directed the music video for “Baby”.

Tankian is also very involved politically. Together with Tom Morello, he founded the organization Axis of Justice. Tankian has a secondary (vacation) home in New Zealand. There has been a misconception that he intends to stay in New Zealand until the Iraq war is over, but as stated in an interview, Tankian has no intention of doing so. Tankian often speaks publicly against violence and injustice in the world.

 

Discography

 

System of a Down
  • 1998: System of a Down
  • 2001: Toxicity
  • 2002: Steal This Album!
  • 2005: Mezmerize
  • 2005: Hypnotize

 

Serart
  • 2003: Serart

 

Axis of Justice
  • 2004: Concert Series Volume 1

 

Solo
  • 2007: Elect the Dead
  • TBA: second studio album

Collaborations/soundtrack contributions

 

Albums
Performing and/or writing
  • 1999: Limp Bizkit featuring Serj Tankian – “Don’t Go Off Wondering” (Demo) – Demo for Significant Other
  • 2000/2006: Hed PE featuring Serj Tankian and Morgan Lander – “Feel Good” – Broke and The Best of Hed Planet Earth
  • 2000: Tony Iommi featuring Serj Tankian – “Patterns” – Iommi
  • 2000: Snot featuring Serj Tankian – “Starlit Eyes” – Strait Up
  • 2001: Dog Fashion Disco featuring Serj Tankian – “Mushroom Cult” – Anarchists of Good Taste
  • 2003: Serj Tankian – “Bird of Paradise” – Bird Up!: The Charlie Parker Remix Project
  • 2004: Saul Williams – “Talk to Strangers” – Saul Williams
  • 2003: Kittens for Christian featuring Serj Tankian – “Had a Plan” – Privilege of Your Company
  • 2005: Buckethead featuring Serj Tankian – “We Are One” – Enter the Chicken and Masters of Horror Soundtrack
  • 2005: Buckethead featuring Azam Ali and Serj Tankian – “Coma” – Enter the Chicken
  • 2005: Buckethead featuring Shana Halligan and Serj Tankian – “Waiting Hare” – Enter the Chicken
  • 2006: Deftones featuring Serj Tankian – “Mein” – Saturday Night Wrist
  • 2007: Les Rita Mitsouko featuring Serj Tankian – “Terminal Beauty” – Variéty
  • 2007: Serj Tankian – “Bug Theme” – Bug Soundtrack
  • 2007: Serj Tankian and Petra Jolly – “Innermission” – Bug Soundtrack
  • 2007: Serj Tankian – “The Essenece of Tequila” – Stranglehold
  • 2007: Serj Tankian – “Chicakong” – Stranglehold.
  • 2007: Wyclef Jean featuring Serj Tankian and Sizzla – “Riot (Trouble Again)” – Carnival Vol. II: Memoirs of an Immigrant
  • 2008: Praxis featuring Serj Tankian – “Sulfur and Cheese” – Profanation (Preparation for a Coming Darkness)
  • 2008: Serj Tankian – “Beethoven’s C***” – Rock Band.
Live Performances
  • 1999: Fear Factory featuring Serj Tankian – “Cars”
  • 2000: Incubus featuring Serj Tankian – Live Improvisation
  • 2000: Metallica featuring Serj Tankian and Daron Malakian – “Mastertarium” (“Welcome Home (Sanitarium)” part)
  • 2003: Metallica featuring Serj Tankian and Daron Malakian – “Creeping Death” – Reading Festival 2003
  • 2006: Buckethead featuring Shana Halligan and Serj Tankian – “Waiting Hare”
  • 2007: Tool featuring Serj Tankian – “Sober” (improvisational version) – Big Day Out 2007 (Auckland only)
  • 2007: Fair to Midland featuring Serj Tankian – “Walls of Jericho” (improvisational version) – Coachella 2007
  • 2007: Foo Fighters featuring Serj Tankian – “Holiday in Cambodia” – 2007 MTV Video Music Awards
  • 2008: The Nightwatchman (acoustic) featuring Serj Tankian – “Lazarus on Down” – Big Day Out 2008 (Auckland only)
Remixes
  • 2005: M.I.A. – “Galang” (Serj Tankian Remix) – Galang ’05
  • 2006: Dredg – “Ode to the Sun” (Serj Tankian Remix) (Unreleased)
  • 2006: The Notorious B.I.G. – “Who Shot Ya?” (Serj Tankian Remix) – Marc Eckō’s Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure

Awards

  • In 2005, they won for System of a Down the award for Best Alternative Act in the Europe Music Awards
  • In 2006, System of a Down won their first Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance for “B.Y.O.B.”
  • In 2006, they won the “MTV Good Woodie Award” for their song “Question!”.
  • In 2006, they were #14 on the VH1 Top 40 Metal Songs with “Toxicity”.
  • In 2007, they were nominated for a Grammy Award in Best Hard Rock Performance for their song “Lonely Day”.

References

  1. Serj Tankian, MTV
  2. Stereo Subversion – Meaningful Music Exists
  3. SERJ TANKIAN Paints Grim Picture With ‘Sky Is Over’
  4. Two Hard Rockin’ Compilation CDs Set for Release This Fall. NY Rock. Last accessed November 04, 2007.
  5. Serj To Appear On New Praxis Album, by “pwned”, SOADFans.com, 8 March, 2007
  6. Diddy Joins Ecko in Getting Up. IGN. Last accessed November 09, 2007.

 

External links

Astrix

astrix3Astrix (‘Avi Shmailov – אסטריקס) is a Psychedelic Trance DJ and producer specialising in the sub-genre  of Full On Psychedelic Trance.

He was born in Russia in 1981 and grew up in Tel Aviv, Israel. He began recording music under the name Astrix in 1997, sometimes misconceived to be taken from the “Asterix” comic books. An interview on UK clubbing website Harderfaster.net revealed the name was chosen for simply sounding good, and not directly influenced by anything in particular.

In 2006 Astrix reached #41 (+34 raise) in DJMag’s “Top 100 DJs” yearly rank along with raise of several other Israeli musicians (the highest being Infected Mushroom ranked #12) marking significant worldwide popularisation of Israeli electronic music scene.

In 2007 Astrix reached to #18

 

Early career

astrix1Astrix started as a DJ in 1995 playing alternative and 1980s music. It was during this time that he learned about electronic music. In 1997 he began his first in-house studio recordings using a personal computer. He discovered trance in 1997 after being invited to a Trance party. “At first it was a very new and strange experience for me and I couldn’t find myself, but I was impressed by the energy and the impact that the music had made on the people at the party.” At the beginning of his career in the late 1990s he produced tracks in the “nitzhonot” style of trance, an uplifting, anthemic off-shoot of Goa trance. His first tracks were “In Peace” and “Eakhis World,” which both appeared on the well-known nitzhonot compilation “Ptzatzot 3.”

During the late 1990s and into the early 2000s he continued in this style and collaborated with several major Israeli trance artists such as Yahel and the Eyal and Oren Barkan. In 2001 he collaborated with Alien Project on the album “Midnight Sun,” which marked his switch from nitzhonot to full-on psytrance.

 

Musical style

astrix2Astrix’s music is known for his solid, driving basslines and ascending melodies. It is very uplifting and,   as far as psychedelic trance goes, fairly “hard” and is also usually played during sunrise and the morning at outdoor trance parties. Many would consider his style to be a crossover between “full-on” and the “clubbier” end of Trance, exemplfied by his Psychedelic Academy Mix.

 

Influences

Astrix is musically influenced by Infected Mushroom. “I look up to them for inspiration and for some kind of spiritual fuel as it were.” Other influences include Linkin Park and Tiësto. “I also have a love for mainstream bands like Linkin Park, and for ‘club personality’ I like Tiësto, he inspires me very much to see how well you can mix business with music and how big you can become from something that was so small in the beginning.”

Astrix has worked with:

  • kerneL.
  • Infected Mushroom
  • Alien Project
  • Atomic Pulse
  • G.M.S.

and other musicians.

 

Discography

  • albumEye to Eye (HOM-Mega Productions) (2002)
  • Artcore (HOM-Mega Productions) (2004)
  • Coolio (HOM-Mega Productions) (2004)
  • Closer to Heaven (Tokyo Dance) (2007)
  • Psychedelic Academy (compilation) (Hit Mania UK) (2005)
  • Red means distortion (upcoming)
  • Future Music (2007)

External links

References

  1. DJmag.com: Top 100 DJs – Results & History
  2. Chaishop: Astrix — interview and biographical info
  3. 4Clubbers: Interview with Astrix written by Caroline Banx

Infected Mushroom

infected07_03Infected Mushroom – Erez Eisen and Amit Duvdevani (aka Duvdev) – has been the leading group within the global psy-trance scene for nearly a decade. Incorporating pumping, bad-ass grooves and infectious melodies and live instruments and vocals into their songs, they’ve performed live – a feat that many of their DJ peers aspire to accomplish – for well over a million people around the globe.

The band’s energetic live show has triumphed at some of the world’s biggest and most important music festivals (OMIX Festival in Mexico, Miami’s Ultra Festival, Tribe in Sao Paulo, among countless others), and they continue to regularly sell-out top clubs such as the Brixton Academy in London, Toronto’s Koolhaus at the Government, and Avalon in New York and Los Angeles. Their success as an electronic music band on the global concert circuit has translated into record sales in excess of 150,000 albums over the course of six acclaimed independent albums. Not bad for two guys from Haifa who started producing music mostly to escape boredom.

“We met in 1996 through a DJ friend,” recalls Erez. “Duvdev was in Goa at the time, and I was working on another project with a German guy. We met and tried to do one track together, and we’ve continued on since then.”

A year later, Erez and Duvdev started buying equipment and began to take Infected Mushroom – a name they stole from a disbanded local punk band – seriously. Finding little influence in Israel’s music scene, they drew inspiration from bands like Metallica and The Prodigy. Early productions led to club dates and gigs at local parties. Before long, the twosome had developed quite a loyal following. While the headlines were filled with news about violence and bloodshed, Infected Mushroom’s music touched the hearts of the burgeoning Israeli trance scene, and clubbers began looking to the band’s music for a respite from the tumultuous political situation.

im3“People were dying and the government saw that dealing with that as more important than abolishing trance parties,” says Erez. “And now the government is supporting trance parties. They want people to party, instead of staying home. There are places in the United States that you cannot go to because it is too dangerous because there are crazy people living there. It’s the same thing in Israel.”

Brandishing a multi-influenced trance sound that hadn’t been heard before, Erez and Duvdev were  turned down by nearly every record label in Israel when they attempted to get a deal. “Nobody wanted to sign us,” recalls Erez. “We went to the biggest and smallest labels in Israel, and nobody was interested. At the time, we really believed in our music and continued looking for people to sign us. Fortunately, there was this A&R guy from BNE named Avi Youssef [and BNE’s owner, Avi Brand] who gave us a chance.”

In 1998, BNE released Infected Mushroom’s debut album, The Gathering. Inspired by the surreal ambient styles of Simon Posford, X-Dream and Transwave, it took a few months for the forward-thinking album to catch on. But once it did, the buzz within the global psy-trance scene became deafening.

The group’s second album, Classical Mushroom, was released in 2000. “This album was totally different that the first album,” says Duvdev, who, like Erez, is a classically trained musician. “Not only did we expand our style, but the album was big in Europe and Japan. It sounded totally different that the other trance music that was happening at the time.”

“The trance scene at the time was really monotonic as opposed to melodic with chords,” adds Erez. “We put a lot of classical elements into that album; it sounded different, and that’s why it stood out. At the beginning, nobody believed in that one as well.”

art_19477_bigInfected Mushroom’s third album, B.P. Empire, followed in 2001. The combination of their live show and diverse electronic palette eventually won them the support of critics and a new legion of hardcore fans in North and South America. In 2003, Infected Mushroom issued their sprawling double-disc album, Converting Vegetarians. Perhaps one of their most ambitious recordings to date, Converting Vegetarians was a sonic departure away from trance. Leading the listener through trance, freestyle and ambient sounds, the album paved the way for 2004’s I’m The Supervisor.

“After we made the chilled-out non-danceable side to Converting Vegetarians, we wanted to make something for the trance fans that was danceable and full-on,” says Duvdev of I’m The Supervisor. “This album is trance, except for the last track. There’s more singing, and it’s the most difficult thing we’ve done. Using the voice as an instrument is tough to do. We’re like every band in that we’re trying to search for something new with every album.”

Always one step of their audience, Infected Mushroom are constantly pushing themselves. With fame and success in their homeland and in the global electronic music community, Infected Mushroom threw caution to the wind and relocated to Los Angeles in January 2005. The purpose was to take themselves out of their comfort zone in order to take their music to the next level.

“The weather is a lot like Israel’s,” says Erez, “and we still don’t know the city very well. But we’re here and we’re looking to push ourselves and do the sort of things that we couldn’t do in Israel.”

im2As they work in their adopted surroundings and continue to tour the world, Erez and Duvdev have added famed Israeli guitarist Erez Netz and Brazilian percussionist Rogerio Jardim to select live shows. They’re also busy finishing material for their seventh album, Vicious Delicious, which contains a myriad of new musical explorations, from Flamenco guitar, to hip hop, to thrash-metal undertones. They have even been commissioned to remix recordings of rock legends, The Doors. But today they are especially proud to be recognized by their fans – Infected Mushroom was named #12 in DJ Magazine’s Top 100 DJ list, a 14 place jump from their debut on the list last year.

While they see themselves more as an electronic band rather than a psy-trance outfit these days, their track record of producing everything from trance to downtempo makes them feel that they can realize all of their musical aspirations.

“Being in the studio is like playing a PlayStation game, where you have to pass a level each time,” says Duvdev. “That’s our goal every time we do a session. The energy that you get at the parties makes you want to go right back into the studio and create new tracks. You need to be in the studio and do the shows; they’re both connected to each other. Our mission now is the same as when we started out, and that’s to get Infected Mushroom’s music out to more people.”

Tarja Turunen

tarjaface2The brightest star of the Finnish rock scene, the soprano singer Tarja Turunen has in a short time become one of the most well-known Finnish faces in the world of music.
Turunen, who was born in the city of Kitee, Finland, started her musical studies at the age of six, and moved to study classical singing at the age 18 at the Sibelius Academy of Kuopio city.
At the same time Tarja’s classmate Tuomas Holopainen was starting his acoustical project, and invited Turunen to join the band. Tarja said yes to the invitation, and thus Nightwish was born.
The band’s first demo-tape was enough to get them a recording deal with Spinefarm Records. Shortly after signing the band in 1997 Spinefarm released their debut album “Angels Fall First”, a masterpiece mixing modern metal music with operatic, classical vocals.
At the time, Tarja was joining the Savonlinna Opera Festival Choir where she performed Wagner and Verdi among others. It was the beginning as well for Tarja Turunen to establish a career that compromises two different kind of music and a long way to go until the audience in general has accepted this fact.
The debut was followed in 1998 by Nightwish’s breakthrough album, the platinum selling “Oceanborn”, which contained such hit songs as “Sleeping Sun” and a cover version of the main theme of the “Snowman”-animation, “Walking in the Air”.
“Oceanborn” took the band to the stage in Finland and abroad, and Tarja’s unbelievable stage charisma instantly made her the number one singer favourite of metal fans all over the world.
Tarja’s face has been illustrating magazines from all over the world. Just to mention some of them we need to come with an amazing list from several countries like Norway, Germany, Spain, Brazil, France, Sweden, Belgium, Netherlands, Finland and Argentina. Scream Magazine, Roadie crew, Inferno, Rumba, Sue, Metallian, Blue wings (Finnair), Iltalehti (novedadespaper), Metal Hammer, Rock Hard, Metal Heart, Aardschok, Epopeya, Rock Brigade, Heavy Oder Was!?, Hell Awaits, Flash, Legacy Magazine, Orkus, Rock Tribune, Close Up Magazine, Hard N’Heavy, Maelmströn.
In many of these publications, Tarja has been several times recognised among the best singers and specially in her home country, Soundi Magazine’s reader’s poll elected Tarja in 2002 as best Finnish singer and as the most wonderful person.
Despite the band growing success Tarja made time available for her studies and other projects. In the end of 1999 Turunen took part as a soloist singer in a modern ballet production of the Finnish National Opera House called “The Evankeliumi”.
tarjabodyThe show was written and directed by the famous Finnish choreographer Jorma Uotinen together with Kärtsy Hatakka of the Finnish band Waltari. All performances of “The Evankeliumi” were completely sold out.
In the beginning of 2000 Nightwish took part in the Finnish qualification of the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Sleepwalker. Nightwish was second despite an overwhelming win in the public televoting.
This hasn’t been the first time for a TV appearance by Tarja that has also been in some well-known Finnish programmes such as Lista Yle TV, Kokkisota MTV3, Hotelli Sointu TV1, Vaarallinen risteys MTV3, Huomenta Suomi MTV3 and Jyrki MTV3.
In May 2000 Nightwish released their third album ”Wishmaster”, which immediately rose to the charts all over the world and went platinum in Finland in a matter of weeks.
“Wishmaster” sold over 150.000 copies worldwide.
The year 2000 was very busy for Tarja and Nightwish, who constantly toured Europe, Finland, Canada and South America.
There was more demand for gigs than the band could handle, so in 2001 the first live Nightwish-recording was made on New Years Eve 2000-2001, when Nightwish played a gig at club Pakkahuone in Tampere, Finland.
The gig was filmed and recorded, and that material was then made into a DVD and VHS. The Finnish fans also got a limited edition full-length Live CD. All of these formats were released under the name “From Wishes to Eternity – Live”, and every format proved to be a huge seller reaching once again, gold in Finland in CD format and gold in Germany in DVD.
Before making their next full-length album, the band released a Mini-CD called “Over the Hills And Far Away” which quickly sold platinum in Finland and has achieved already double platinum status in their home country. After the “Over the Hills and Far Away” -EP the band started working on their 4th full-length studio album “Century Child”, but while the musicians were recording and writing the album, Tarja decided to go one step forward with her vocal studies by enrolling in the Music University of Karlsruhe, Germany.7-200x200Although the studying schedule of Karlsruhe was very tight, Tarja managed to find time not only to record her vocals for “Century Child”, but also to record vocals for the Argentinean bassist Beto Vazquez’s album “Infinity” that become also an immediate success worldwide with releases in far East, Russia, hole Europe and South America, outstanding achievement for the band just because of the link with Tarja’s name.
After some warm up concerts in Germany, Tarja also tour the classical stages of South America in Chile and Argentina performing a Lied Concert named “Noche Escandinava” (Scandinavian Night) together with Marjut Paavilainen, Ingvild Storhaug and Izumi Kawakatzu
The sold out concerts sponsored by the Embassies of Finland, Germany, Japan, Norway and the Government of the City of Buenos Aires brought to South America songs from Jean Sibelius, Ture Rangström, Leevi Madetoja, Oskar Merikanto, Hugo Wolf, Richard Strauss, Gustav Mahler, Johannes Brahms, Felix Mendelssohn performed by Tarja Turunen creating a special connection between Tarja and the audience that will see her later once again developing her classical career in these countries.
Nightwish’s fourth album Century Child was released in the spring of 2002, and it has sold nearly 250.000 copies worldwide. The album release was followed by the massive “World Tour of the Century” which was three months long and took Nightwish’s to ten countries around the world where the band performed 25 shows in front of 150.000 people.
Exhausted of the world tour, Nightwish made a decision to have a long break to give its members some time of their own. Most members of Nightwish quickly engaged in several side projects, and Tarja went back to Karlsruhe before the end of the year to continue her studies.
Once again the huge demand for more shows pushed the band to perform two extra headlines sold out shows for 15.000 people at Oberhausen Arena and Munich in January 2003.
When the official break was finally over, Nightwish got into the Summer of Innocence tour starting in June 2003. The experienced left behind 14 countries and 400.000 eyes that have been witnesses of those incredible nights.
After three huge tours the band had in their hands an unbelievable amount of good off-stage and on-stage material. A documentary was an obvious choice when a usage for the material was planned, but the band felt that something extra was needed to support the various touring scenes.
tarjaface3The answer was found when the Finnish music journalist Mape Ollila, who has been closely working with the band since the very beginning of Nightwish, asked Tuomas for an in-depth interview. Tuomas agreed, and the interviewers were then taken to Tuomas Holopainen’s summer cottage with Nighwish members and crew.
With the interview combined with the touring material, the result was the 2 hours and 15 minutes long documentary, which tells the band’s tale in their words, from the very beginning to the present day.
The new DVD “End of the Innocence” was released in October 2003 worldwide.
At this point the year has already been very successful for Tarja, but it was definitely crowned by the invitation received from Finnish President Tarja Halonen and husband Dr. Arajärvi to assist to the President’s Palace for the Finnish Independence Day Party, the most important social event of the country that takes place every year.
Tarja Turunen achieved a new status when Yle TV Station official web page named her as The Most Impressive dressed lady in the party according to the people vote. Also the most important Finnish daily Newspapers as Ilta Lehti and Ilta Sanomat awarded her as the Queen of the Night and the Second Most Impressive dressed lady respectively.
Many magazines and novedadespapers reflected this new mentioned status in their publications in the following month with a full national coverage of the issue.
To end with an astonishing year, in December 19th 2003 Tarja Turunen performed, after tree years, an intimate Christmas Concert. The small Valkeala’s Church welcomed 600 people whom stood up to return a warmth applause to the artist after 60 minutes of traditional Finnish Christmas music from Sibelius, Kotilainen and Melartin as well as some arias from Bach and Mozart.
Nightwish started recording a brand new studio album and Tarja Turunen, after registering her parts, once again in the classical field, travelled to Buenos Aires, Argentina to share her voice this time offering a one month singing course to already trained musicians.
Among the facts we can expect for 2004, we’ll find Tarja flying to Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and Romania for a second tour with her classical line up of Noche Escandinava.
tarjabody2The first official web page (already many not official ones can be found) for Tarja will be launched under www.tarjaturunen.com Nightwish has released their new album, “Once” what will take Tarja to uncountable photo sessions, press conferences and interviews in Finland and worldwide.
Just a warm up for the 2004 World Tour expected to be biggest one so far for a Finnish act abroad.
Still Tarja will need to find some time to co produce and sing in her brother Timo’s iskelma (schlager) debut album.
What seems in advance to be the most busy year for Tarja Turunen so far, 2004 will also show the beginning of her solo career with a long time planned Christmas Album.
Album global sales with Nightwish exceed 1.000.000 copies.
Tarja has already performed for more than 500.000 people worldwide.
Many songs and video clips from Nigthwish have already been in high rotation in several countries.
The TV broadcasting of the Independence Day’s Celebration at the Presidential Castle introduced Tarja Turunen to more than 2.000.000 people in Finland according to Yle TV Station.
So far, this has only begun…