Meet the past, present, and future of Centineo in this exclusive interview. There’s no doubt, the multi-faceted brothers Tim and Rob are rising talents in the global dance music scene. It should be highlighted they produce, sing, and write their own upbeat tracks. Top-notch compositions with Pop sensibilities are their specialty. Learn more here.
1 – First of all, what made you decide to form a duo?
It happened very naturally, we’re both very musical and taught ourselves how to play multiple instruments. Rob had been more into rock/punk music and Tim was writing songs/raps early on, but we both got into dance music and the scene around the same time – showing each other songs and artists we discovered, etc. Sharing the same genetics, we both had similar tastes and it just naturally progressed from being listeners to want to learn production and create our own music together.
2 – What does the name Centineo mean?
Centineo (Cent-In-Ayo) is our last name – it’s of Italian origin. We’re told by our relatives that it means “hundreds of beautiful flaws”.
3 – Do you remember the first piece of equipment you bought for this project?
The first purchase we made was a Windows Desktop and the software “Mixcraft”. We’ve upgraded to Ableton and Mac computers since then.
Both of us are musicians and producers but Tim has more of an executive role in terms of musical/creative decisions. He’s an incredible talent with a great ear and sharp musical instincts – he almost always gets it right. Rob prefers to be more behind the scenes but he’s a tech- wizard engineer with degrees in music theory and audio production. When we have different opinions, we both write/present our own ideas and hash out which one we think works best.
5 – What about songwriting? Who is responsible for writing the lyrics?
Tim is our primary songwriter. He writes the lyrics himself and moving forward will be the featured vocalist performing them as well. Rob is the only set of ears/opinions I trust during the writing process. He always gives me critical feedback and helps me bring the song home.
6 – What are the benefits of working together as brothers? Is anyone else in your family musical?
The best part of working with your brother is how honest you can be. If an idea sucks or someone has a strong opinion – there’s no holding back, no judgment and no one’s feelings get hurt. Whether it be making music or business decisions – the degree of trust we have provides a great environment for creating and being comfortable/vulnerable.
Our family is full of creatives in the music & entertainment industry. Our cousin JoJo Centineo is an extremely talented producer and recording engineer, and our cousin Noah Centineo is a Netflix/Movie star. There’s a lot of creative talent in our family.
7 – Where can we stream your latest single? Why should we listen to it?
We’ve released multiple remixes more recently that are available on our Soundcloud, but our last single was ‘Otherside’ released on Revealed Recordings. You can listen to it on any major streaming platform of your choosing (Spotify, Apple Music, etc.)
“Otherside” is an emotionally charged story about conquering fear, mental health, and injustice with love. Something that is critical and very relevant given the state of the world today. It’s also a great introduction and indication of the music we are releasing soon:
BIG and emotional.
8 – Big names in the industry like David Guetta and Hardwell have praised your tracks. What’s the key to reaching success in this competitive industry?
We wish we could be more helpful but there’s no sexy answer/real secret to success.
It’s multi-faceted but simply put: You need to work your ass off relentlessly, never give up and ignore the competition – Focus on yourself. There are a lot of skills necessary to be successful in the industry: technical ability, artistic ability, and last but not least business/administrative ability. All of which require a lot of time, hard work, sacrifice, practice, and failure to develop.
Our advice would be to have patience in the pursuit of developing these skills, trust the process, surround yourself with the right people and believe in yourself delusionally while having the awareness and perspective necessary to make good decisions.
At the moment we don’t (Tim in FL, Rob in NJ) but we have plans to live together in the near future. (Tim) An average day for me consists of working on music all day. Whether it be production, writing, or administrative – I don’t leave my home studio, or as everyone who knows me likes to call it, the “cave”. I lock myself in my studio and take breaks to workout, eat, and occasionally relax on the beach/by the pool with family & friends. I’m also a huge movie buff so I always find a way to sneak a movie in before bed.
(Rob) I spend most of my day in front of a computer – writing, mixing, and drinking coffee (My coffee cup is always full). If I’m not at my desk I’m somewhere in my apartment with a guitar in hand. How I spend my day really depends on where I draw inspiration from. I consider myself forever a student of music. I educate myself and expand my knowledge in as many aspects of music as possible. When I need a break – I love to cook, hit the gym, and dive into new synths and plugins.
Despite this quarantine and global pandemic, our lifestyles haven’t changed much and we’re not sure whether to be concerned or impressed. We’ve been social distancing for years now!
10 – Tell us more about Centineo’s upcoming plans or ideas for the next months.
So, we took a break from releasing music for the entire 2019 calendar year. Despite the fact that our music was being received well and supported – it wasn’t enough. Something was missing.
We felt like we were chasing validation (support and label releases). We realized we would never get to where we wanted to be if we just waited in line with everyone else relying on the gatekeepers/bigger names & labels to make it happen for us. This became glaringly obvious after two separate events: First, we submitted a track to a major label for signing (*which we had already received huge support on) and after weeks of waiting for a response, we were told, “Your hi-hat is too loud, pass.” Second, A great conversation we had with an executive at a major label who told us, “I’ll tell you a secret that no one else will – the labels will only want you when you don’t need them”.
This was as eye-opening as it was invaluable. It became very clear to us that in order to get to where we wanted to be, we needed a new strategy and we needed to do this on our own. Artistry should never be about pandering or compromising your expression, let alone giving someone who could care less about you, power, and influence over your work. Now more than ever, it’s possible to be a successful independent artist – and after those interactions, we spent the next year and a half strategizing, building our brand, developing our voice/product, and becoming self-sufficient.
On top of all that, we want to connect with people in a more meaningful way than just music that they party to. We want to bridge the disconnect of being an “EDM” producer and being considered a true musician/artist in the eyes of the listener. In an industry where the shelf life of a song is a handful of weeks, we also want our music to have longevity, to truly touch and impact people’s lives for years and years to come. Artists like Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso, Steve Angello, Alesso, Martin Garrix, and Calvin Harris have been successful in doing just that with their timeless classics and crossover hits. (*See: Don’t You Worry Child, Reload, Calling, In the Name of Love, Sweet Nothing). We’re pretty sure they didn’t wait around giving a f**k about someone’s opinion of their hi-hat! The only way we were going to accomplish our goals would be by taking the time to adjust our trajectory, rethink the music, and incorporate more of ourselves into the listening experience.
In the coming months, we’ll be releasing music ranging from Progressive House all the way to Pop/R&B. All of the songs are produced by us and feature Tim as the vocalist and lyricist with the exception of one. The exception being our first release (in over a year) which is coming out very soon. It features a legendary writer and vocalist that has worked with the biggest names in the industry – it’s a bomb. We’re super proud of it and can’t wait for you to hear it.
We’re so excited to begin and share this new chapter of our journey with the world, and we hope to inspire some of our fellow artists to push themselves and follow in our footsteps. We’re confident that among the new music coming out, there is something here for everyone. Stay tuned!
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Exclusive Interview: COY SWEDE & J.O.Y Collab On “Never Ever”
This is the first time COY Swede ventures into RnB by joining forces with J.O.Y. In an instant, you will be blown away as the quality of his new single “Never Ever” feels like charting song material. Read our exclusive interview with both artists!
1 — How did you end up working together?
COY Swede: Me and J.O.Y also did “Closer” through Soundbetter platform together. And RnB being one of J.O.Y’s genres I knew we could make another magic track together.
It’s very rare I work with the same singer again. But we speak the same language musically and we connected, even more, this time.
J.O.Y: Me and COY Swede first met up online on Soundbetter (the leading platform where singers and producers meet to finish each other work). He wrote me to be his singer for his track “Closer.” From there on we became friends and collab more frequently together!
2 — How would you define RnB music?
COY Swede: It depends on how far you go back in time, 50, 70, or 90, and our time. Genre changes very fast in our time and gets a bit blurred or, some genres evolve into something new.
But for me, RnB is still pure Soul and Blues and also can be a flavour of Chill Pop and influences rhythms from Hip-Hop. That’s my personal thinking.
J.O.Y: RnB was my first love in music! I remember listening to greatness such as Joe, Brian Mcknight, and Craig David and was impressed by the runs, variation of tone, and vocal skills these guys have! This made me do a lot of cover songs of the RnB genre and me ending up having my singing style from them.
COY Swede: For me, it evolves me as a producer. Gives me more experience. I work only with the best singers that share my passion among the independent areas.
Over the years I also have learned how to know what I’m looking for around a genre and theme for the song. What vibe do I want to create.
Marketing strategies change all the time and we Indie artists work really hard with the tools we have.
The most important thing for me is to keep going and deliver the music to my listeners. Show interest in other artists, be helpful if I can, and also learn more about how to get my music out there.
J.O.Y: Doing collabs is one of the best ways to showcase your music and learn from it. You learn to see different kinds of colors of music. You are also forced to go out of your comfort zone which allows you to grow.
4 — What new things did you learn while recording “Never Ever”?
COY Swede: Well, it’s actually the first time I produce an RnB track 😊 I would be very happy if the listeners can connect to it. The bells in the intro are actually recorded by an instrument and then I added some effects using “Thermal from Output.”
Every track I make gives me something new. I’m very happy with the variated bridges in this track to be a little technical. And my challenge was, how to make a short song feel longer than it actually is. We also wanted this song to have a good hook and a chorus to sing along to.
J.O.Y made awesome work with his skills as a singer and writer.
J.O.Y: As a songwriter, you always get to learn a new perspective after each song. Especially here I evolved my songwriting by having the hook be a statement and the verses describing my story. I will definitely write more songs like this, where the hook is simple yet catchy and the verses a bit more complex.
5 — Who is the main songwriter of this new track? What inspired you to write the lyrics?
COY Swede: We worked from a theme I sent J.O.Y. And for the chorus, I recorded a sample of my voice. Then J.O.Y did his magic. Just a note, only the VOCAL is mixed together from 15 stems to give you a perspective. 😉
It’s also a love song for people that found new love and how to carry it forward. But as a songwriter/producer you are open to how a listener feels about it. You can, “Never Ever” know. 😊
J.O.Y: COY Swede presented me with the theme of the song, and explained it to me pretty well. From that on I felt inspired and tapped into some of my experiences to replicate this feeling.
The unique bells in the song maybe is a slight try to call on that upcoming Christmas vibe. Mariah Carey, are free to make a cover if she wants. 😉
J.O.Y: To all the listeners that go through a tough time right now. It’s that season again when tracks like these are needed.
7 — How would you imagine the music video?
COY Swede: No plan at this moment. Maybe a lyrics video on my YouTube channel.
8 — Are you planning to drop remixes for this release?
COY Swede: No plans at this moment.
9 — How do you spend your free time when not making music?
COY Swede: Family first, I love to travel around the world, health, training, and love cooking if I have time. I also read everything that has something to do with space research and am also engaged in earth’s environment and climate.
J.O.Y: Coy Swede nailed it. Family first. Sometimes music can feel like a job where all you think of is music. It’s good to have breaks to enjoy with your loved ones. Also, it’s very good for your creativity and finding new inspiration to write music.
10 — Lastly, what are your future plans?
COY Swede: Next year maybe I will try to do some more DJ appearances. I did one this year 2022 in Stockholm. Maybe together with my music bro Alan Walker or, even Tiesto would be really cool!
It would be cool to finally meet them both in real life, and talk about music experiences and future experimental stuff. You “Never Ever,” know! 😊
One thing is for sure I will keep doing this, and create more music. I would also like to try to make a score for movies or TV in the future, would be cool, if one of my released songs were featured.
J.O.Y: Be more active as a songwriter and have a lot more placements with bigger companies or TV/Film. I want to watch a show and hear my music in the background – that’s something I can imagine would be super cool and surreal.
Blind Mutation Discusses Experimental Music Video “Shadows”
If you’re into hypnotizing Ambient Techno tracks, then Blind Mutation should be on your radar. Her latest experimental music video “Shadows” was awarded and this exclusive interview explains it all!
1 — If I’m not mistaken, electronic music is your passion. How does this interest has come about?
I actually think my dad’s taste in music really influenced me a lot. He used to put on a lot of quality electronic music for me when I was a child, from classic Depeche Mode to more underground experimental electronic How to Dress Well. So, my interest in electronic music started growing from a very young age. When I became a teenager, my mental health started to get worse, and I started to relate, and thereafter, listen to darker and gloomier electronic music like dark ambient, triphop, or hard warehouse techno. That’s basically how my music taste was formed, and why I love electronic music.
2 — When exactly did you become Blind Mutation?
In theory, I think I became Blind Mutation pretty much as soon as I started producing and composing music which was 2 years ago. I began writing tracks with an emphasis on cinematic melancholic sounds that translated my deep intense emotions, and I still continue to do it exploring more and more ways to express my feelings through music. But, officially, let’s say, I became Blind Mutation when I released my first DJ Mix called “WAVE/PHONK MIX” on SoundCloud almost a year ago.
3 — Musically speaking, who is your biggest influence or inspiration?
I love to answer that question 🙂 I would say that my influences/inspirations have been changing throughout the years. When I was 14-16 my favorite band was Coldplay. I loved their not-that-well-known tracks which were more on the electronic/ambient side, like my all-time favorite “Midnight”. As for now, I very rarely listen to Coldplay. Now I am more into experimental dark emotional stuff like Techno, Dark Ambient, IDM, and Trip-Hop. Some of my inspirations/influences at the moment are Aphex Twin, Arca, Trentemoller, Clams Casino, Hans Zimmer, I Hate Models, and Crystal Castles.
4 — Congratulations on winning Best Experimental Video at the Indie Online Film Festival. Did you ever expect this result?
I was hoping for it 🙂 But I don’t really like expecting something to happen, especially when it comes to receiving awards. Because if you think you would win the prize, and then you don’t, you would probably get upset. But if you don’t really think about it and just let it happen, you get more excited if you win, and don’t really care if you don’t get an award 🙂
5 — Tell us more about how your collaboration with All Around came about.
We met a little more than 4 years ago in college in LA. He was a directing major, and I was an acting major. We’ve been very good friends since that time, and we’ve done small projects together here and there in college and just for fun. Then, when I switched from acting to music and started releasing my DJ Mixes, he began doing all the visuals for them. So, when I was ready to release my debut track “Shadows”, I knew that All Around would be my director, cinematographer, and editor. We have a similar vision when it comes to art (music/video/films, etc.), and so it’s very comfortable and fun for us to work together.
6 — Would you interpret this clip as a short horror film or is it something else?
Shortly, I would say, yes, it could be interpreted as a short psychological horror film. To elaborate: it’s interesting that when we showed the music video to our close surroundings, a good amount of people said that “Shadows” looked more like a short horror film rather than a music video. “Shadows” indeed has a much slower pace than a usual music video. In terms of cinematography, it’s also shot more like a film rather than a music video. But I think I would still call “Shadows” an experimental music video rather than a short horror film, because, in my opinion, it still has a dynamic of a music video, and our initial idea was to create a music video not a short horror film.
Well, the track itself was produced, mixed and mastered in Ableton. As for “Shadows” music video production, My friend All Around who I collaborated with, has an amazing RED Komodo camera, the music video was shot on it. Also, my face, chest, neck and my arms had to be bandaged in the shot all the time. We needed special bandages, the ones that stick to the skin and to each other. We had 3-4 shooting days, and not all of the bandages could be reused. So, I had to buy lots of them. Was driving from one CVS to another buying the entire available supply of those specific bandages 🙂
We also had a chance to work with an amazing super professional makeup artist, Darya Kholodnykh, who did the make-up for the “demon’s” hand that appears in the music video. She managed to find a creative way to make the hand look realistic and creepy although we had a very small budget.
8 — What can we expect from Blind Mutation next? Are you keen on exploring science fiction themes?
I love science fiction, and I would like to explore themes connected to it in the future. But as for now, I think I’m more focused on expressing my inner feelings and emotions through my music, and treating producing/composing/creating DJ mixes more as a therapy for myself. I’d love to dive deeper into the psychological aspects of our lives and have an influence on people’s emotions and their unconscious through my music. That’s what my next release will hopefully do! It’s a dark ambient track called “I come with the rain”, and it’s coming out in the beginning of January! I’m also working on a new dark warehouse techno DJ mix which will also come out around the same time.
9 — What do you think you’d be doing if you weren’t an artist?
I’ve always loved to think about this. I am very interested in psychology, so I would definitely study it in college, and then probably become a psychotherapist (do not mistake with psychologist or psychiatrist), I would do scientific research and come up with new more effective therapies.
I would also love to direct and shoot (be DOP and operate camera) my own film(s) in the future! It’s a big dream! Plus I got my first degree from a film college, so I am familiar with that stuff. By the way, I’m also super interested in graphic and game design! Would love to try doing that in the future too!
And just to top off the list with more geek stuff: if I had another life, I would become an astrophysicist to study and explore space.
10 — Lastly, do you have any specific goals for 2023?
The most important and clear goal is to get the artist visa in order to be able to stay and work in the U.S. Speaking of my artist goals, I would love to get my first DJ gig in 2023! I would also love to explore new music genres in my productions (like trip-hop or hard dark techno)! Finally, I have so many things I still have to explore and discover in terms of production, mixing sound design, etc. So, another very important goal is to just continue learning!
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Bubba Brothers Talk Last Summer And Tribal House EP ‘Basstribe’
Bubba Brothers continue to take the Electronic Dance music world by storm. Their latest release, ‘Basstribe’ was well received by listeners all over the world, marking a new milestone for the duo. Alongside impressive releases and powerful live shows, the duo recently celebrated their anniversary by playing at important venues all over the summer.
We found time to talk with them about their summer season, what they were up to and what was coming for them.
1 — Hello Bubba Brothers, how are you?
All good thanks. 😊
2 — Summer is now over, what have you been up to this past season?
This was a fantastic summer… we had great moments. A big thank you to all our fans all over the world.
3 — You released your EP ‘Basstribe’ around summertime, can you tell us more about what it was like working on this production?
It was really exciting; the timing was perfect and it was great to see and hear DJs playing the tracks live around the planet, so yes… ‘Basstribe’ was really fun. 😊
4 — Have you got any summer highlights?
So many… playing in Ibiza, having Oxia at our anniversary party, and sharing the decks… many good moments. And as said, we are very grateful for that.
5 — Which artists were on repeat for you during this summer?
Hahaha… great question! Tube and Berger, Dennis Ferrer, Kolsch, Themba, and many others. 😊
6 — Did you develop new projects or ideas during this season?
Yeah… just came back from Iceland, and a new track is already in the horizon. So, stay tuned! and also 2 finished tracks will be launched in a few weeks.
7 — What’s the last thing you learned over the summer?
To stay focused and humble. Keep your feet on the ground.
8 — Aside from performing, what other activities did you enjoy doing during the summer season?
Like any Portuguese, the beach and anything that involves the sea is our thing 😊 Missing summer already.
9 — What are you looking forward to doing next summer?
Playing in Europe as much as people book us and I hope they will do, a lot!