Nomad Navi chats about his start as an artist and the dystopian narrative he’s crafting through his music before the release of his newest single.
It can take years of experimentation and discovery for new artists to land on a “sound.” This wasn’t the case for Nomad Navi. His sonic identity is dark and dystopian, with hints of nostalgia reminiscent of dance music of earlier decades, complemented by his signature dark aesthetic and rounded sunglasses. Drawing inspiration from the music to which he grew up listening, Nomad Navi seeks to create a narrative through his music that captures a “dystopian reality.”
On Friday, November 3, Nomad Navi will release his third single for the year, “Blood Moon.” This follows previously released tracks “FALSE IDOL” and “Red Flag” as he continues to weave his story. The track opens with a slightly haunting synth melody that transports listeners back in time. Calivania‘s vocals take over as a rolling bassline and synth chords build and then drop out to highlight a spoken word breakdown. “Blood Moon” is exactly how Nomad Navi envisioned it: the perfect track for a late-night drive in an ’80s action movie while still retaining the dark undertones consistent throughout his music.
To celebrate the release of “Blood Moon,” Nomad Navi stopped by to tell us more about his artistic journey and gift us a mix. Despite Halloween having just passed, it is chock full of spooky and hard-hitting sounds. It starts intensely, grabbing hold of listeners and not letting go until the end of its runtime. So strap in, press play, and continue reading to get to know Nomad Navi!
Stream EDMID Guest Mix 395 || Nomad Navi on SoundCloud:
Let’s start from the beginning. What was the catalyst for you to start music production and create this project? Were there any specific influences either within or outside of electronic music?
It all started when my uncle gifted me a piano keyboard, the one with all the cheesy drum kits and synths. His expectation was that I would learn how to play the piano, but I just toyed around with the different sounds, learning by ear how to play my favorite songs at the time. Shortly after that, I got myself a DAW and kept running with it.
You put an emphasis on creating a narrative through sound. Can you tell us about the current narrative that you’re trying to convey and how you go about crafting it?
Right now, I’m crafting a soundtrack for a dystopian reality. I want my listeners to step into the shoes of the main character in their own dystopian story. Sonically, I bring in sounds that carry a bit of nostalgia, like those old synths that don’t quite hit the right notes, and soundscapes that remind you of classic movie soundtracks. These elements offer a unique way to reflect on the present by evoking the sounds of the past.
What drew you to the darker, more dystopian side of electronic music?
I’m drawn to the darker, dystopian side of electronic music because it’s therapeutic for me. It resonates with a part of me that struggled with a fear of the dark and insomnia as a child. Crafting this kind of music is a way of expressing and healing those old anxieties. I create it partly for the seven-year-old me, finding comfort and catharsis in these soundscapes. It’s my way of contributing more of what I’ve found deeply meaningful.
Are there any artists you look to for inspiration when it comes to your productions?
A few come to mind. I look towards Gesaffelstein and Lorn for their ability to really create dark-sounding landscapes. Synthwave artists such as Power Glove and Carpenter Brut are two of the many other great artists whose tracks I often leave on repeat.
Your track “Blood Moon” comes out this week. It seems to me like it’s about losing yourself to the shadows and night. Can you tell us from your perspective what the story behind the song is?
“Blood Moon” came after months of writer’s block. I was really frustrated with not having something finished, and the melody came to me out of nowhere. I wanted the track to put the listener in the driver’s seat of an ’80s action movie with underlying themes of escapism. Calivania really glued this concept together with the lyrics.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a new artist? How have you overcome that challenge?
As a new artist, my biggest challenge has been the fear of becoming irrelevant in the music industry, along with the constant pressure to release tracks regularly. This pressure can make you doubt your work’s quality and whether it will be appreciated by your audience. It’s a balancing act, as you need to release to stay relevant, yet your music also needs to be enjoyable for listeners.
I used to delay releases due to self-doubt, and I still grapple with it at times. However, I’ve come to realize that there are people who genuinely enjoy my music. Lately, I’ve shifted my perspective. My true passion lies in creating music I love, and if others love it too, that’s a bonus. I now focus on staying true to my artistic vision and letting the audience connect with it in their own way.
On the same token, what’s something surprising you’ve learned about music production, or being an artist, that you love?
In the same vein, one surprising thing I’ve learned about music production and being an artist is that there’s no strict rulebook for writing a song. Even seasoned professionals sometimes get caught up in the never-ending quest for that perfect kick, bassline, or whatever it may be. Remember that there’s no quick path to greatness. Your “sound” isn’t dictated by what’s currently popular; it comes from your own unique taste. In a nutshell, create the music you wish there were more of.
Five years from now, where would you like to be as an artist?
I would like to have completed an album, went on tour, collaborated with artists who have inspired me, and helped support my other producer friends on their journeys.
With 2023 winding down, what can we expect from you for the rest of the year?
After the release of “Blood Moon” this week, I’ll be heading back to the studio. It’s funny how my creativity tends to peak towards the year’s end, so I want to make the most of it by working on some projects I’ve had on hold. Who knows, I might even start thinking about putting together a live show. It’s all in the works, and I’m looking forward to sharing it with you.