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Synthesizing Worlds

  • Mario Rojas
  • 22 November 2023

Synthesizing Worlds: DI SUN's Melodic Odyssey from Classical Mastery to Electronic Pioneering.

Embarking on a unique journey from the classical music halls to the electrifying arenas of electronic music, DI SUN stands out as an artist whose musical evolution is both intriguing and inspiring. Her transition from a classical background to becoming a vanguard in the electronic music scene exemplifies a seamless blend of tradition with contemporary soundscapes. In this interview, we delve deep into DI SUN's artistic journey, uncovering the roots of her musical transformation, the influence of her diverse heritage, and the creative impulses that drive her distinct sound in the ever-changing world of electronic music.

You've transitioned from a classical music background to electronic music production. How did this shift occur, and what aspects of your classical training do you find most valuable in your current work?

I'm quite surprised myself because I come from a strong background in classical music. I sing classical songs, play classical piano, and even dance classical styles. But upon reflection, it might be because I used to frequent clubs with friends, we'd hit the clubs every weekend, dancing from night till morning. Initially unaware of the music genre, I later discovered it was House music. This experience might have planted the seeds for my future in electronic music production. Later on, when I started learning Logic, I found it fascinating. Initially, I delved into Tech House production, then shifted towards making Techno.

The classical music system is entirely different, and adapting to this change took some time. However, regardless of whether it's classical or electronic music, the music theory remains the same. For me, this theory has been tremendously helpful in composing melodies. This understanding of melody has been a significant advantage for me in both classical and electronic music.

What was the pivotal moment or experience during your college years that drew you irresistibly towards electronic music, and how has that initial spark influenced your career trajectory?

I started with classical music from a young age, initially learning classical piano and picking up the Chinese instrument 'Guzheng' at the age of six. In college, I majored in classical vocal with a minor in piano. It wasn't until just before coming to the US for studies that I delved into electronic music production. Beginning with Logic, the magic of piecing together various samples gave me immense satisfaction. Initially, I only knew about the four main elements—drum, bass, piano, and vocals— creating songwriter material. It was later that I discovered clubs played house music, which led me to explore producing tech house. After arriving in the US and studying Turntable at MI, I sought learning resources on YouTube and stumbled upon Amelie’s videos, which captivated me. Discovering her music was Techno, I frequented underground scenes to immerse myself in Techno music. It all started with Layton Giordani's 'New Generation,' sparking my journey into Techno production. Subsequently inspired by Adam Beyer, Hi-Lo, Eli Brown, I dived deeper into mastering the craft of producing Techno.

Growing up with a rich cultural heritage and learning to play the Guzheng, how do these experiences shape your approach to creating electronic music?

Growing up surrounded by diverse cultural influences and learning the Guzheng has seriously spiced up my approach to making electronic beats. The rhythms and melodies I picked up from classical music and playing this traditional instrument sneak their way into my electronic tunes, giving them a cool twist. The Guzheng taught me how to play around with different sounds, mixing tones in ways that make my electronic tracks pop. Plus, my background inspired me to mix up various sounds and rhythms, making my music more vibrant and giving it an edge.

As an artist, you're continually evolving and being inspired. Who are some of the other artists, both within and outside of electronic music, that have significantly influenced your sound and approach?

I've been influenced by artists from various domains. Within the electronic music sphere, artists like Adam Beyer and Hi-Lo have had a profound impact on my music. Their unique styles and innovative music production methods sparked my creative inspiration. Additionally, artists such as Layton Giordani and Eli Brown have played pivotal roles in my music creation process. Their creativity deeply attracted me and motivated me to explore more possibilities in music. Moreover, pioneers like Kraftwerk and Daft Punk have been significant inspirations along my musical journey. Furthermore, artists from different music genres have significantly influenced my music creation. From rock bands like Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin to jazz maestro Miles Davis, the creativity and sonic explorations of these musical giants have influenced my musical perspectives. Their approaches to composition and exploration of sound have given me inspiration to transcend across different music genres, allowing me to be more daring and innovative in creating electronic music.

Apart from music, are there any other forms of art or life experiences that fuel your creativity and influence your musical style?

The aesthetics and creativity of the fashion world significantly impact my approach to music creation. Browsing through fashion magazines, observing various styles, and exploring design elements such as clothing, color combinations, and trends fuel my creative inspiration. Also, discussions with my close friend, who specializes in film scoring, also play a significant role. She often shares her film scoring pieces with me, although our music styles are entirely different, each interaction becomes a source of immense learning.

Strangely enough, I've discovered an odd quirk within myself – when I'm feeling down, I tend to channel that energy into my work, especially when seated in front of the computer. Surprisingly, these moments of melancholy become opportunities for intense focus and concentration, allowing me to delve deeper into music production.

Could you walk us through your creative process? How do you approach the production of a new track, and are there any unique elements in your studio setup that you find indispensable?

Basically, whenever I have an idea, I'll jump right into it and work on it until it's finished. If I'm not in the studio, I'll write it down immediately to make sure I don't forget. But often, it all starts with selecting vocal samples, a process that frequently sparks my creativity.

I believe hats are the soul of a track. Every time the hat comes in, it injects a burst of vitality into the entire song.

You've had the remarkable opportunity to release music on some of the industry's leading labels like Drumcode, Nervous, and mau5trap. Could you share with us how these collaborations came about and what it means to you to have your work recognized by such influential platforms?

Drumcode's appearance was truly a surprise: when I was creating 'Freaking Out,' I was deeply discouraged and spent a long time doubting myself. During moments of breakdown, I'd scream loudly to release the pressure. Suddenly, an inspiration struck, and I decided to incorporate my screams into this track. Ultimately, I never expected it would lead me to my coveted 'Drumcode' record label. This release has given me tremendous encouragement and further solidified my determination to pursue my dream in electronic music.

mau5trap has been a true gift: I vividly recall the moment when the head of the label reached out after I released 'Dancing in the Desert' Mix set on Youtube and asking for demos. I couldn't believe it was real - I mean, it's Deadmau5's label! Who into electronic music wouldn't love Deadmau5? My first release with mau5trap was 'You're My Ecstasy' featured in 'We Are Friends Vol. 11' compilation. Being alongside Deadmau5 in a compilation, you can imagine how thrilled I was. Then came the 'Dance' EP, where I took the release very seriously, even work with a visual artist to create an MV. The overall vibe leaned towards a darker vibes. Please stay tuned for what's next on mau5trap! It's a whole new breakthrough, and I hope you will enjoy it.

Nervous Records: It was actually a friend who suggested I give it a try, but I initially refused, thinking, 'How could that even happen?' She insisted, saying, 'Just send an email, worst case scenario, they won't reply.' With not much hope, I sent the email. Surprisingly, the very next day, I received a response. It was incredibly fortunate to release the 'Disco Light' EP on this legendary label.

You’ll be returning to mau5trap with a highly anticipated single soon… Can you give us a sneak peek into the creative inspiration behind this track and what fans can expect from this new offering?

My upcoming single set to release on mau5trap breaks away from my usual arrangements approach, merging elements of tech house and dance. It incorporates a substantial number of vocals. Stay tuned for this exciting fusion.

Your recent release 'Love Is Special' on AfterTraxx has been well-received. Could you share the story behind this track and how it reflects your artistic evolution?

When I stumbled upon that vocal, I instantly fell in love with it. I just knew I had to weave it into my song. The line "Love is special" resonated deeply with me because when you truly care for someone, they become the most special entity in your world, someone you treat in a unique way.

During that period, I was contemplating ways to create something different. This project, I would say, is a result of ongoing exploration. This vocal and its lyrics inspired me to venture into crafting something distinctive, a piece that reflects continuous exploration and effort in my musical journey.

Your music often reflects a blend of diverse cultural influences. As you look towards future projects, how do you envision incorporating your heritage and global sounds into your electronic music, and are there specific cultural elements or collaborations you're excited to explore?

I've been attempting to incorporate the Chinese Guzheng instrument into Techno, but it's proven to be quite challenging. The traditional pentatonic scale in Chinese music and the style of electronic music are difficult to seamlessly blend. So, I've been slicing and sampling the Guzheng into Techno, but it's still a work in progress. I hope that one day I can share with everyone a piece that I feel represents the perfect fusion of Eastern and Western music. That moment would bring me immense joy.

DI SUN's story is a vivid tapestry woven from diverse musical traditions, personal evolution, and relentless artistic pursuit. Her journey from the disciplined world of classical music to the liberating sphere of electronic beats exemplifies a daring exploration of musical possibilities. As she continues to interlace her rich cultural heritage with innovative electronic rhythms, DI SUN not only enriches the genre but also serves as an inspiration for aspiring artists. With each new release and exploration, she solidifies her role as a significant figure in the music industry, continually enchanting and engaging her audience with her unique sonic creations.

DI SUN ‘Love Is Special’ is out now on AfterTraxx.

Get it here:

Look out for her next release coming on mau5trap early 2024.

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