ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Dvii
With one week until Crescendo Live, we're spotlighting a new artist every day of the week to give you to a better taste of what to expect at the show November 23 at Adelaide Hall. Crescendo sat down with DVII and fellow musician Jimmy Lee to chat about starting in the industry, branding, and his unique sound. Get your tickets now for Crescendo Live at Ticketfly.
Tell us who you are and a little about yourselves
DVII: My name is SJ, and I go by the artist name DVII. I'm a Toronto based artist and producer.
JL: My name is Jimmy Lee, I'm a musician and I work with SJ on various music projects.
What was the song you just performed for us?
DVII: The song we just played is called No Use which is the third track off the EP which is coming soon. The song takes place between 4am and 6am - I don't know if you caught it in the lyrics. That's one of the things to come.
You mentioned you have an EP called Cinema. What has the process been of crafting that EP?
DVII: Making Cinema was a huge learning process just because I had never delved into this music style seriously until maybe a couple years ago. This is the first project I've put out under this name and under this style so every song has been 'oh, I've never tried that before.' So I guess mostly it's just been a big learning process.
What is the process of making your music?
DVII: I usually start out with instrumental first - sometimes I would have lyrics stored away on my phone or on my laptop but usually I just like to open up my Cubase and lay down grooves or whatever comes first whether it's guitar, drums or keys. Then if I like it, and I feel like I have a flow on top of it I'll try it. And if it doesn't, I'll just save it for another time and hopefully I can come back to it but that's generally how it goes.
What has it been like building a music brand from the ground up?
DVII: Very interesting. I'm definitely not used to it because the other projects I've been working on until now are projects that I've started when I was in high school. So starting completely from the beginning kind of feels like time travelling back and attempting to face all these things again - meeting the new promoters and meeting new producers. But other than the fact that it feels like taking a step back, everything feels so new that once again it's just a huge learning process. Which is great.
You mentioned that your music style is changing. How do you think the Canadian music industry itself has been changing itself over the past couple of years?
DVII: The Canadian music industry I think isn't too different from other mainstream music industries, but I think the biggest thing that's effecting the sound is probably the rise of technology. Because as soon as all this technology that allows you to record yourself and things became portable and more accessible, artists have been popping up left and right, doing all kinds of stuff that they weren't doing before. So I think we're just going to see a little more leaning towards the digital side of things more so than the acoustic, at least for a few years.
JL: Yeah definitely. Basically the way the audio and technology space has advanced in the most recent years it's so much easier to get high quality sound without high costs. So I think what we're seeing nowadays is a lot of artists being able to find their self-expression and being able to create all the sounds they want to but maybe previously never were able to. Now they're able to without having to heavily invest in huge studio spaces or things like that.
When should Toronto be expecting more music from DVII?
DVII: Hopefully soon, right now all the music is done and right now I'm actually working on a new video with Jimmy. When we get that video done we just want to release it altogether, so hopefully late this year if not early next year.