A refreshing change in pop music is never easy. Heck, it isn’t easy to even imagine an element of pop culture that isn’t shaped by a generation. Some tend to go back, reflect on some art and revive a lost style of presentation. Mars Valencia does this with his new single, Nomads. It is a soothing R&B & hip-hop induced pop song. I asked some questions about the recording & his process in general. Peruse through at your leisure.
The inspiration for Nomads
1) Tell me about recording Nomads. What was your inspiration for this track?
Firstly I think it’s important to say that all the songs I’m releasing now (including nomads) are based on real life stories. I think it’s important that music-especially for new artists- has some authenticity to it.
With that being said Nomads was inspired from my time spent traveling around China and the emotional conflict of leaving someone I cared about in order to discover who I was as a person and artist. Lines such as “I was doing road with the nomads, vision never been so clear” refers to the friends I made along the way and how my outlook on life changed.
The song is a journey itself, of self reflection and what toll it takes on you being and experiencing moments alone. As the lyrical approach is a heavier aspect, the beats bounce lightly-forming an easy balance of lyrics and music. From his previous album, there has been a jump and that just shows inspiration and flow coming from different sources, maybe from the disparities and delusion breaking straits of travel. New culture and a new outlook inspires art, and its heard clearly in Mars’ new track.
Growth via albums-stories of experience
2) You’ve changed a significant sound style after Welcome to Mars. Do you think you’ve found a niche you’re comfortable with or are you exploring more?
I’m glad you’ve noticed that, that was very much intentional. As I continue to grow not only as an artist but as a producer my ear for music will naturally change.
I want to allow myself the freedom to explore new sounds without the fear of boxing myself in. I do however, have a sound I want to keep dedicated for my welcome to Mars series and explore with new sounds for my other projects.
As the production is an important aspect for the sound quality Mars focuses on, it is important to note that he creates it only for the melody and beat. The vocals however, are as close to the natural output. This makes it more relatable to the listener, forming an immediate listener-artist bond.
Signing into a new language for music
3) A hallmark of your recordings seem to be unaltered vocals, with heavy synth modulars. Do you find that portion of the melody to be something you return to consciously?
100%, that’s something I’ve been very conscious about and something I’ve wanted to experiment with. I’ve taken a back step in the mixing and mastering process recently to allow my engineer to add his creative input into my music.
We are working towards a blend of vocals that sound unaltered to the casual listener but to a seasoned lister you can hear the subtleties in the mix. It’s definitely a work in progress but I’ve found an engineer that I’m happy to lock in and work long term with.
As the batter sets in to form the shape of this mold, we hear the sound quality changing a lot since his last album. This might also be a conscious aspect of input, making it easier to find his own niche in creating this kind of music. The spectrum has been found, and now it is time to experiment within it.
4) What is next for Mars Valencia? Another EP on the way or more singles?
Personally I’ve never liked releasing singles- I’m definitely a body of work kind of artist-but I understand why singles are so important. In the very near future I’ll be releasing the music video for Nomads (if it hasn’t already been released by the time this interview is out).
Followed by another single and music video and then finally an EP which is more or less 70% completed. I have a release date in mind but I’ll get to that when the time is right.
It will be exciting to hear this new style of delivery from Mars Valencia, now that he knows the framework to work under. Creating a larger umbrella to release songs that are inspired by travel and culture. Also, the ever changing rhythm of the self.
Collaborations & future projects
5) In terms of artist collaborations, would you like to do any? Is your theme for the next track decided or is it more organic?
I’m very protective over my music which I’m sure every artist is, I can’t just work with anybody at this stage of my career it needs to be organic and authentic. I have met a few artists such as Takuanashe, Molteno and Baby Cocada who I think are amazing artists that deserve my light on their music. When the times right and we manage to link up and work together I’d be happy to do a few collaborations with them.
As for my next track it’s already done and ready to go, the real magic happens at home. I’ll make the beat, record the vocals and mix a rough demo that I’ll bring to the studio. We’ll then re-record the vocals and then create an industry standard song.
That’s great to hear from a young, energetic and inspired artist like this. This is not an untraversed genre, there are countless songs within it. So are styles and individuals, hence always an opportunity to create something that the other might not have made. The space left for the melody to sink in and grow to create a canvas of space for his vocals. This is something that I feel can catapult Mars Valencia to greater heights. For now, enjoy his single and be prepared for more from this talented artist.
Promotional Disclaimer: The content in this post has been sponsored by the artist, label, or PR representative to help promote their work.Promotional Disclaimer: The content in this post has been sponsored by the artist, label, or PR representative to help promote their work.