Tell us everything we will need to know about you.
In 2014, two Canadian guys collaborated on some music. What started as a simple chip-tunes track soon grew into the best song that either of them had ever written. Alon Rodovinsky and Ivan Popov quickly realized that they could create much greater things together than they could on their own.
They went on to form a Toronto-based duo Audio Insurgency and have been working together ever since, creating genre-bending music with elements of cinema, EDM, orchestra, and rock. They just released their EP “The Beginning” and will be releasing music frequently in the upcoming year.
Alex: Alexandre was born in Montreal and moved to a small farm town in Massachusetts (USA) until the age of 18. After graduating high school, Alex moved to Toronto to start his life. Since then, Alex has been working on creating a sound that takes influences from all the places he has lived as well as all the genres he has been brought upon. Everything from RnB, Folk, Hip Hop, and Jazz have come together to create a unique sound that Alex continues to build on.
State your favorite genre of music and your reason.
Alon: Hard rock because it’s aggressive, full of rage, and the songs deal with real-world issues.
Ivan: That’s hard to say, it’s far from typical. I mostly prefer modern genres of music such as Drum n’ Bass, Chip-Tunes, and EDM in general. I also indulge in post-rock.
Alex: RnB because of its potential for deep and introspective storytelling.
Tell us your experience as a musician.
We are a duo of producers coming from different backgrounds.
Alon has been doing music since he was 9. He’s been in bands of various genres from roots rock to heavy metal to acoustic folk. Alon produces music for other people and has made an effort to compose at least one song in every genre he can think of to be as proficient and diverse as possible.
Ivan has always had a keen interest in listening to music since his early days. He has a background in physics and started to do audio engineering when we formed the Audio Insurgency project. The reason Ivan is such a great asset to the duo is that he can analyze the individual elements of certain genres and use that knowledge to help Alon come up with good ideas.
Alex grew up singing in the choir and is self-taught in piano, guitar, and production.
Tell us the theme of your song.
Doomed relationships. Would you fake your way through a broken relationship to avoid loneliness? Or would you leave and experience the more crushing kind of loneliness of being single again?
Name the people behind your success and thank them on this platform.
Audio Insurgency would like to thank our parents and our relatives. And most importantly our fans, however small that group may seem at the moment.
Alon: My mom especially. She’s been my biggest fan for this entire journey.
Alex: Audio Insurgency has helped me start to get my voice heard. Much love to them. My Family. My friends back in Massachusetts that keep me working.
Tell us about your future goals.
Alon: We definitely want to write the music for more films and video games.
Ivan: We also want to get as much music out as we can in the year 2018, sticking to a twice-monthly release schedule if possible.
Alex: I want to be taken seriously as a songwriter, singer, and artist.
Go into detail about your opinion on religion and politics.
Alon: I’m a staunch atheist and believe that all forms of extremism are to be strictly avoided. A balanced, well-informed value system is the way to go. There are lots of problems out there, sure, but not much that can be done without a violent revolution. And I’m not really into that.
Ivan: I tend to avoid most discussions about religion or politics. People simply aren’t informed or educated enough to have productive discussions.
Elaborate on how you think your music is inspiring your fans.
Ivan: Our music tries to deliver feelings. Soothing calm or soaring highs. Energy and excitement.
Alon: There’s no in-between here. No one listening to our music should be compelled to say “meh”.
Alex: A window into the stuff that happens in my life. I am always shocked to see how similar some of my struggles are with people in my life. So, maybe other people can relate.
Explain the changes you have observed so far in the music industry.
Alon: The industry is completely inundated with music due to the ease of access to decent recording equipment. A lot of it is mediocre which has led to noise in the signal when it comes to getting your music and name out there. Meanwhile, influential organizations within and outside of the industry have been devaluing music and art as a whole by making it essentially free. It’s not all bad though.
Ivan: Recently the music industry has seen some progress as the loudness wars seemed to have quieted down, at least a little bit. Indie artists also have the tools and resources to represent themselves better on the global market. The ability to publish and distribute themselves on the global market is beneficial to artists because although it leads to saturation in the market, it also makes the chances of having your voice heard much higher than ever before.
Alex: It’s so easy to create music and have people hear it. The rise of home studios is breaking down the barriers to entry into the industry. However, it’s harder to break through the noise as well. It will be interesting to see how the market adapts; whether our attention spans to albums and EPs differ from singles and other forms of music distribution.
State the artists you cherish most and your reason.
Alon: Mike Shinoda for being so versatile and creative. He inspired me to rap. He inspired me to rock. He inspired me to experiment. Sia for being so influential behind the scenes and writing uncompromisingly good melodies. Trent Reznor for making the transition from radio music to film music and being an inspiration to me all along the way.
Ivan: Pendulum, Prodigy, 65 Days of Static, Enter Shikari. All of them for having an inspired and unique sound that nobody has been able to reproduce.
Alex: Otis Redding, Ray Charles, Frank Ocean, James Blake. Their words and voices can bring me to tears. I can’t say that for many artists.
Give us the links to your social network and stores.
Elaborate on how you develop your lyrics.
Alon: I write most of Audio Insurgency’s lyrics. I try to make each song about one specific topic and really get as much as I can out of it. My lyrics are usually written on the metro or in a flash of inspiration while I’m trying to fall asleep. Then I mull it over for a few days and use a rhyming dictionary to pick the choicest, freshest rhymes.
Alex: I take from personal events. When something strange or confusing happens in my life. I write about it and it helps me understand it more. Sometimes it creates a nice song too.
Tell us if you enjoy collaborating with other artists or just singing as a solo artist.
Alon: I definitely enjoy collaborating with other artists more than doing work all on my own. It turns out way better.
Ivan: Most of our songs are collaborations. We work with indie artists all over the world. We would love to expand our library of collaborations and delve into new genres and styles. Definitely contact us if anyone reading this is interested!
Alex: I love collaborating with producers as well as singers and rappers. Anything that will help me expand my boundaries and get me out of my comfort zone is more than appreciated. I also just love talking about music. Feel free to reach out!
Brief us about your opinion on making music that makes people dance or making the kind of music with a genuine message that inspires them.
Alon: There’s a place for both and I love both equally. When I’m writing I tend not to overlap them. Songs for introspection require you to sit down and think so that’s not typically the kind of music to dance to. And sometimes trying to writing mindless lyrics about getting down on the dancefloor is just as difficult as writing a song about the political climate.
Ivan: An important part of any song is a nice, interesting beat and a good bass line. Without those, the singer will have to rely 100% on themselves to create energy and that’s not possible in every genre or situation. Exciting synths or guitars help too.
Alex: I dream to find the balance between both; a song someone can dance to at a party and then reflect on their evening to when the sun comes up. Justin Timberlake and Frank Ocean have been able to do both and it seems to be by splitting up melody and instrumentation apart from lyrics. A beat can get your head moving at the same time as the words can make you think.
Tell us what you know about copyright.
Copyright is a legal construct designed to protect creators from having their intellectual property stolen or exploited without their consent.
The copyright for a song is created when any recording is made of it (on paper, on a computer screen, on a cellphone’s microphone, as a demo recording).
The rights are split into two parts, the publishing rights, and the master rights. Publishing relates to composition and songwriting (lyrics etc.) while the master rights relate to the recording of the song itself.
Discuss the impact of a Performing Rights Organization.
Performing rights organizations represent artists in collecting royalties from the broadcasting of their music. Songs can be registered with a PRO and the royalty splits between multiple artists can be assigned and automatically processed.
It makes a lot of sense that royalties are collected and distributed this way because it gives artists power through a collective voice as long as the PRO is operating in the best interest of the artists it represents.
Artists could supposedly represent themselves individually. But who would want to spend so much time going to every radio station and music venue to collect money?
Elaborate on how you develop your melody and instrumentation.
Alon: Melodies and lyrics typically go hand in hand. It’s a lot harder to write lyrics once you have a melody and instrumental but haven’t thought about the content of the words. Instrumentation is usually inspired by a random sample in my library and it goes from there. Once I have a fairly decent idea going, I pass it to Ivan for further analysis.
Ivan: I look for a solid balance of frequencies from super-low bass to white noise. Having the right samples for instruments is also important for a song to come out well. Sometimes to be successful the song needs just a little bit of extra melody or bells and whistles. I try to listen and come up with those little details that will add a final layer of sheen to make it pop.
Go into detail on the recording process of this song.
Alon: I originally made the demo with a piano and a guitar to a click track. Then I added drums and once I had that going I added bass. After that, I recorded demo vocals and started looking for a vocalist. Thankfully it didn’t take long till I saw Alexandre on stage. From the moment he started singing I knew he was the perfect voice for this song.
Recording the vocals took about 4 hours with the post-chorus of the song being written the day of recording. We had a lot of fun recording the choirs for that part. Getting the final instrumentation, mixing, and mastering took another two weeks after that.
Discuss your music performance.
Alon: Most of this was written straight into Ableton, which is a performance in and of itself. I’ve been become quite adept at using Ableton and can knock out a fairly decent demo in less than 2 hours. I liked giving suggestions to Alexandre and I think it helped him get the vocal tone and inflections just right.
Tell us how you will rate yourself as an artist.
We would rate ourselves as fairly decent; we still have problems in certain areas with composition and production. However, we continue to improve our process and hope to achieve excellence in a few years. We’re fairly new to the scene and have already made some major strides.