Our featured artist of the week is DJ and producer R/D, who has recently been giving his listeners hard-hitting sounds, alive with symphonic energy. His Cloud Pound EP which dropped late November is a composition of deep driving bass and hard hitting synths, producing some beautiful melodic builds and break downs. R/D shows off his eclectic taste while demonstrating decisive production all while emoting to his listeners. Check out my interview with R/D and his new EP, along with some free downloads below.
How would you describe your signature sound(s)?
My signature sound is generally left field, verse-chorus-verse writing with catchy melodies. But, I’ve really changed my whole sound with this new EP. It’s much more aggressive and ‘above-ground’ than my past releases.
What genres/artists have influenced you?
I’ve been inspired by all genres of EDM; Dubstep, Trap, Moombah, Electro House. Feed Me and Kill The Noise are some of my fav’s at the moment. They have this production quality that’s so unique and incredibly polished. They’ve both been at it for a long time, and you can hear it.
A lot of your songs have different symphonic vibes that emanate from them. When you start composing a song, does feeling/emotion have a large part in this process?
I’m ALL feeling! I very rarely make or DJ a tune that doesn’t have a melodic aspect to it. It’s ingrained in my DNA. There’s no escaping it. My new EP has some of the hardest sounds I’ve made, but at the same time some of the most melodic. My song writing process changes from year to year, but I can’t get too far into a tune without injecting feeling and emotion with melody.
How do you choose the types of songs that you want to remix?
I’ve been immersing myself in contemporary indie/pop music lately and the tunes I want to remix generally jump out at me. I love remixing vocal tunes, especially with female vocals. They speak directly to my melodic nature. I generally lean towards the darker, edgier sounding tunes. My Ellie Goulding remix of High For This (by The Weeknd) was the most pop-sounding tune I had remixed, but the vocal melody had this progression that killed me every time. I heard it and immediately fell in love.
Do you think that the cities you have lived in (San Francisco, L.A.) or the people you have surrounded yourself with have influenced your style of music over the years?
The people I’ve been surrounded by have always had a huge influence on me. It’s only been the past year that I’ve really looked outside my circle for influence. I’m a huge fan of Skrillex’s label OWSLA. Kill Paris, Kill The Noise, Seven Lions and Dillon Francis are incredible! A lot of them are from LA, but I didn’t start getting into them until I moved away to San Francisco. Finding influence for this new EP was totally different than ever before. It wasn’t necessarily about the city or circle, it was about immersing myself in a completely new setting, making a huge life-change and finding inspiration completely outside my comfort zone.
You’re new EP is called Cloud Pound. Out of curiosity, what is a cloud pound?
Hah, it’s named after the title song, ‘Cloud Pound’. It serenades the listener’s heart in a gorgeous, fluffy cloud, builds up massively, then pounds them in the chest with huge beats and heavy synths. Sometimes easy, sometimes hard. Just like life!
What is the craziest thing you have seen or heard while you were on tour?
Watching someone cannon-ball from 2 story, snow covered ledge into a small, 107 degree hot tub in the middle of winter in Park City, Utah. That, and hearing all the Stewardesses scream as our tiny jet took a nose dive in a storm over Portland. Thrill-a-minute!
What’s next for R/D?
I’ve just finished an official remix for Kaskade’s new project ‘Late Night Alumni’ due early next year on Ultra Records. I’m deep in the studio working on my indie side project Pair Of Arrows as well as some collaboration tunes and gearing up for Trinumeral festival in Atlanta with Flying Lotus, Nadastrom, Break Science, Eliot Lipp, etc. I also have December shows in Los Angeles, Flagstaff and New Years at 1015 in San Francisco! Hoping to hit the road heavy next year!
Connect with R/D