Star Sightings: ARMADA @ MYST 2017.03.04 Part 1
Mar 14, 2017 3:18:49 PM ⋅ Shanghai
By Roger Brown
Trance mega-label Armada was in town with Andrew Rayel, David Gravell and Khomha who put on an amazing show at MYST. 1AMJOY.COM was there to interview the three DJs before theirshow on Saturday night. Part 1 features interviews with David Gravell and Khomha; upcoming Part 2 features Andrew Rayel.
If you had to pick a favourite from one of the songs that propelled your career like “Bulldozer", "Timebomb", "The Last of Us" "Megatron' and "Supernova”, which one would it be?
The first one that got a lot of attention, especially from Armin, was “Bulldozer”. That was one track that got a lot of attention; the BBC played it, it was the track which made people go “who is this kid? With the strange music with a lot of energy?”. The next year I produced “The Last of Us” which was also very important for me because it was very different to any you’d ever heard before.
What does “A State of Trance” mean to you?
I remember when I was not doing what I’m doing now, I was there with friends, and years later it was hard to believe I was working with the DJs I was watching earlier on “A State of Trance”. Armin van Buuren has been supporting me over the years.
Do you feel Trance is increasingly gaining ground in the current EDM scene?
Of course the Trance scene has people who’ve been listening to trance since 1990, but it’s changing a little bit with the sounds, with the buildups, but the feeling will always be the same. It’s about how you bring it into your music. That’s why I try to do something new with my Trance music. I go to a lot of Techno parties as well; I try to combine it with melodies; you know old school techno vibes.
A message for your fans at MYST?
It’s my second time here in Shanghai, I remember when I played here the first time, they’ve been following me for years already before I came to China, and they already had signs and pictures of me. The second time I came, the fans were more! So I just can’t say enough for my fans who follow me and my music, so I’m thankful to them.
What lead you to start your journey into electronic music at the age of 14?
First of all, thanks for the interview! I’m from Colombia, and I of course I started listening to all the Latin music like Merengue, Salsa and all of that, but then one day my sister came back with an electronic music CD called “Trance Factory”, so that was the first CD I’d ever heard of this music, and I really fell in love with it. The scene was just starting there; Tiesto was the first big DJ who went to Medellin. That was back in 2004, that’s all I remember. In Latin America the scene is very different but now it’s changing because music is global now. But what inspired me back then was the energy and melodies in electronic music.
On Andrew Rayel’s “Moments” you have a song together called “All Systems Down”. Can you describe that collaboration?
I always wanted to make something with Andrew; he’s such an amazing producer and friend of mine. We’re very good friends, and I wanted to make a cool track. Before “All Systems Down” one of my biggest tracks was “Asylum”, this dark, powerful tribal feel. Everybody loved it, especially Andrew, so I tried to combine both worlds; the energy of the melodies of Andrew, and the drums in my track, so it was a super amazing experience to work with Andrew.
At the beginning of your career, your sound was more pure Trance; you’ve moved towards Progressive House and Progressive Trance, what caused that change?
Actually, my influences are so different, from Trance, Trip Hop, from Electro. If I had to name my influences I would have to name Daft Punk, Chemical Brothers. Then you go to Armin van Buuren. So for every track in every step in my career, I’ve been trying to incorporate all those sounds and to make something very very unique; so if you listen to my music, it’s like a combination of everything. That’s why it’s called “Khomha-style”, it’s a combination between Techno, Trance, Progressive, House all coming into one place. Music is evolving all the time. Sometimes you’ll hear me more melodic, other times more powerful.
A message for your fans at MYST?
Thank you very much, this is my first time in China, and it’s crazy to see the love from the people. I wasn’t expecting it, so many people knowing me, supporting my music. Thank you very much for your support, it’s such a pleasure and an honour to play at the best club in China.