Ravenscoon sat down with us to discuss his past, future, and everything in between before making his debut at Summer Camp.
Ravenscoon has been absolutely crushing it in the bass music scene with his distinguished psychedelic and expressive sound – and he only continues to turn heads with each passing release. Early bodies of work like the Mind EP helped set the tone for what was to come from this rising star while his Rapid Eye Movements EP only further catapulted him into the hearts and minds of bass lovers near and far.
This year has seen Ravenscoon build an even larger fanbase with the release of the Inertia EP on WAKAAN and add extra depth into his mind with new episodes of his radio show In The Nest. Additionally, he’s been getting into a groove behind the decks as well at festivals like Ubbi Dubbi, Illfest, and recently made his debut at Summer Camp Music Festival this past month.
Prior to taking the stage at Summer Camp, we caught up with Ravenscoon to dive into his background and artistic growth, as well as his latest release and some details on what’s to come in the future. Listen to the Intertia EP on Spotify and read on for the conversation!
Stream Ravenscoon – Inertia EP on Spotify:
Hi Ravenscoon, thanks for chatting with us today. What has been your first impression of Summer Camp so far?
It’s big. I haven’t been to a camping festival in so long, so it’s a shock but in a good way. I love how there’s a mix of jam and dance music, and there’s Bone-Thugs-N-Harmony here; there’s just so much different music. It brings in so many different crowds, some older, some younger, and you can tell who’s here for what. But yeah, I like it. This kind of reminds me of Electric Forest; it has a similar vibe. The first year I went to Bonnaroo was in 2012, and that’s a similar vibe I gravitate towards.
Your set is at 2AM, so what are you most excited about playing a late-night set on the final night of Scamp?
So, it’s a little intimidating because you have to win over people who have been partying since Thursday at a camping festival. Which is hard, I’ve been there, and on Sunday night, you’re tired. But I’m right after Jantsen, and he’s the party maker, so I feel like people will be energized after that.
Besides Daily Bread, I’m pretty much the last set of the festival, so I feel like I’m going to have a crowd of people still wanting to party. I’m going to start with the energy high and then make it a little more psychedelic by the end. I’m honestly intimidated by every time slot I get. I always want to make sure everyone is having the best time ever.
So switching gears a little bit away from the festival, you recently dropped your latest stunner, the Inertia EP. Can you walk us through the creation of the release?
It took me at least a year to work on that one. I haven’t had much time until recently to sit down and plan things out. I was working a nine-to-five job, and I didn’t quit until December – and then we moved to Atlanta the last week of February. It was a big move from California to Atlanta. Before that, I could only sporadically work on music, but I had written two or three of the tunes on the EP, and I try to have a big release at least once a year.
Before this was Rapid Eye Movements, I had a couple more singles and smaller EPs after that, but this is what I’ve been working on. This is my sound now; that’s what Inertia was for me. Once I had those few songs that I felt were in the same vein, I wrote more and scrapped a few of them, which is pretty common for me. If it doesn’t make the cut, it’s not good enough. I want things to feel cohesive.
One of my favorite electronic albums is Welcome Reality by Nero. The whole thing, front to back, is a story, and it feels like it belongs together, and that’s what I try to have my EPs sound like. I wrote the last two tracks, “Velocity” and “Inertia,” not that long ago. I think it was in December or January. But once I had all of my tracks, I could package them together. Sometimes I write them with specific meanings, and other times, I apply the meaning afterward. It’s a lot of back and forth, just really going for the feeling that the whole thing gives you.
One of the biggest things that stood out to me about the Inertia EP was the cohesion I felt from the beginning to the end. I feel that’s something we’re losing because there’s such a demand for artists to push out music constantly. We’ve lost some of that emotion that pulls through, and I felt that for the first time in a long time with your EP.
Thank you! Yeah, and I feel the same way. There’s like the TikTok-ification of music, if that’s a word, where people’s songs are now like a minute and a half to two minutes long. Labels or managers want songs that are popular on TikTok or release bangers all the time, or mish-mash tracks together just because you need to put an album out.
I feel it’s important to have music that feels intentional and has a vibe. Even if I’m not writing the songs simultaneously and planning them out, it’s still possible to try and package something together. I hope more people continue to do that. I’m not the only one doing it, obviously, but yeah, I totally agree with you. I want my music to be a listening experience.
How do you feel your production skills have leveled up from your earliest releases to the most present?
Like night and day, especially since my first couple of songs. I’ve been producing since the beginning of 2018, but back in high school, I had a directed study. So, I could take anything instead of taking a class since I had all of my credits already. I wanted to learn. I did music production, but I was so ADD and kind of a shithead that I just watched YouTube videos for a semester. I watched many videos on producing, and many of my friends were producers from that time. One of them is in an Indie Pop band, and the other made beats for “Walk It Like I Talk It” and for Migos. So he’s a beat maker now, which is crazy.
It’s really about putting in the practice and the time. They say it takes ten thousand hours to be a master at something, and I’m not sure if I’m at that many hours, but pretty close to it! I don’t feel masterful at all, but I’m a lot more comfortable at producing. Now I have more time to be intentional, and I feel my music reflects that.
Sound design takes time. I save all of my good sounds and have templates I’ve made now. So I can just start with a shell of a song and then go on from there. There are two ways of doing it, I have friends that produced for like ten years before releasing anything, and then they release a song, which is amazing. Where I just started producing and was like fuck it, here’s what I can do. Now it feels much more like my own sound, and I’m growing into where I want to be with the project.
You recently transitioned from living in San Francisco to Atlanta. What would you say has been the biggest difference in bass music culture between the two regions?
That’s a good and interesting question. I grew up in Atlanta, so I lived there until I was 18, went to college, and then moved to California. But I was in California for six years and then college for four years in North Carolina. So I’ve been away from Atlanta for about ten years.
Being back, there have been a lot of changes. But in general, the two scenes have always been different. Specifically talking about the Bay Area market’s bass scene, I feel there’s a huge gap between the kind of music I make and the mainstream stuff – including the fan bases that accompany it.
You can have somebody in my genre that’s pretty popular on the East Coast that may sell out a venue like Terminal West, and an 5,000 cap venue like Aragon Ballroom, who will then come to San Francisco and struggle to sell like 300 tickets.
As for genres, house music is in for sure in the Bay Area, and if you go to any festivals outside of Insomniac, it’ll be pretty house heavy.
Then there’s the sub-genre called desert bass. That’s the stuff you see less of in the Atlanta scene. It’s very different. For me, I hardly played any shows in the Bay.
I’d like to mention my friends over at DEF, who are pushing the underground in Atlanta. I know Player Dave and Daisy Chain in San Diego, Brownies & Lemonade in LA, and others are doing stuff like that so that the bay area will have that. The first show I ever played was like a renegade beach party and a barn party. Stuff like that is where I got my start.
The last time we spoke was in April 2020, just after the pandemic began. What has your experience been like getting back on track now that the scene has kicked back into full gear?
I’ve had such a large transition in my life since then. We talked about moving, and I quit my job. I was doing ads, so they were always running, and I was always on call. The pandemic gave me a lot more time to write music.
That’s when I first realized I had a lot more time and then all the live streams that happened. That’s where I gained a lot of momentum. That was like the first time I had time to start doing stuff. Whereas a lot of artists who were touring, that was their first time to catch their breath. I had a renewed wind to do more.
I don’t know if the pandemic is necessarily over, but things are back open. I’m touring more than ever, especially without a job. I did 17 dates last year on Peekaboo’s tour, and I’m doing festivals this summer. I feel like I’ve hit the ground running. I’m doing a tour later this year. I can’t tell you what it’s called yet, but I’m super excited, someone else’s tour, not my own yet!
What are some things that we can expect to see from you in the rest of 2022 and beyond? Are there any specific goals you hope to achieve by the end of the year?
I can’t say many things yet, but I can give some hints. I will be playing support on someone’s tour in the fall. I think I’m doing thirty stops. So that’ll be exciting, that’s the first time I’ll be on a bus tour, and I’m doing the whole thing. At the same time, it’s a little foreboding because I’m going to be away from Taylor, my fiance, for that long.
But yeah, that’s a huge thing for me. I’m super excited. I get to focus on creating so many different DJ sets, and that’s one of my favorite parts of doing this. Performing for people who haven’t yet seen me is super exciting. I have more music that I’m working on. I’ll probably do two more EPs, and I have a few singles, a collab with Smoakland, one with Sully, and one with G-Rex. I am writing a ton of music. I think I have 15 or 20 songs I’m looking to wrap up right now. I’m not sure if this means an album or not next year, but that could be something that I’m working towards.
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