I had the honor of interviewing ambient techno artist Optical panda, check out his new music-
Me: So my first question is, for those not familiar with you, how would you describe your music?
OP: Dreamy, vague, random and mostly nonsense arrangements of acid sounds, ambient pads, chaotic drums. I don’t know what genre it falls in exactly, but yeah.
Me: And it’s all done on synth or computer?, what’s the writing process like?
OP: Everything is done on my laptop. Only equipment I have is my laptop, headphones and around 500 free plugins from the internet of which most of them I still have to checkout. The writing process varies. I start with a little tune in my head. Some songs are thought out or inspired from something and I already have some part of it in my head and then I try to recreate that mood or emotion. Some songs are entirely random and not inspired from anything. I like those ones better.
OP: VST Plugins-Virtual Studio Technology. These are softwares that simulate sounds of hardware synthesizers and effects. They are really common in electronic music production.
Me: Would explain why your music sounds like synths!, so you said “Some songs are thought out or inspired from something”, what inspires you?
OP: I love synths. They are diverse. They help me recreate whatever is in my head much better than other instruments. I get inspired by emotions, moods, science, psychedelia, alternate states of mind, euphoria and basically anything. Like bathrooms even haha. I am a really emotional person, I end up putting a lot of emotions into really simple things. A huge huge inspiration in whatever I do is Aphex Twin. He is my favorite person in music. Each of his song inspires me in a different way. His sounds have touched me so deeply I am obsessed with whatever he does.
Me: You have a song about bathrooms?, lol
OP: Haha yes. Fluid Dynamics, it is on my SoundCloud. I stay up late and I usually take a warm shower after 12 am and I had a playlist on my iPod which I especially made for listening during those early morning showers. Then I thought I should make my own track for this setting. So I did haha. It’s nothing serious really. It makes me laugh when I think about it, but I do it with passion.
Me: Sounds like you really are inspired by everything!, lol, so what are your current/upcoming projects?
OP: Currently I am working on an album which should have at least 10 songs. It is inspired by the timeline of the universe. Musically it will have elements of ambient, ambient techno, acid techno, downtempo, experimental. It should be done and uploaded by sometime in mid or early September.
Me: “Timeline of the universe”?
OP: The scientific timeline of the universe. Each song is suppose to represent an important event in the formation of the universe that ultimately led to today, but I don’t expect people to understand or relate to that idea when they listen to it. It is not meant to either. It just helps me to build a foundation in my head to keep things in flow and then that whole idea again forces me to think of new sounds.
Me: I see, so does each album you make follow a theme?
OP: This is the first time I am making an album. I made a 6 song EP a couple months back. It was not based on a theme though. I just wanted the whole thing to flow musically. It was a little practice I did before I started on what I am doing right now, but yeah, I think in the future, almost everything I make will be around an idea, but I never expect people to understand that idea, neither do I want them to understand that. These themes are just for myself. In fact, I will never reveal any underlying themes of future songs and albums. I like to have some things just for myself, haha.
Me: So what can we expect from you in the future?, more CD’s?, any concerts?
OP: I am about to start playing live starting next month. I have some friends who are willing to get me gigs at major forest party events in India. It should be fun. I am starting from there then I don’t know. Apart from there, yes I will always keep making a lot of albums. That is what I do all the time.
Me: Major forest party?
OP: India has a major underground psychedelic culture that I don’t think much people are aware of overseas. There are numerous psychedelic and experimental events in the northern mountains, much like a hippie trail. I will hopefully start from somewhere around there.
Me: So an underground drug party is where you’ll get your start next month?
OP: Haha, drugs don’t have to be there, but yeah, people who come to such events tend to be on something, but yeah, that’s where I will be starting. After that I hope to get signed.
Me: So your long-term goals are to be signed and touring?, what else can we expect from you in the future?
OP: Yes, in a way, but I am not so serious about all this getting signed and touring stuff, it sounds too professional, haha. At the end, I am most comfortable at being just a kid messing around with sounds on his laptop. Anything more than that sounds too huge at this moment, but of course, it would be great if I start earning enough by just making and playing music. That would be great.
Me: Well we definitely look forward to seeing what all happens!, thank you so much for this interview!
OP: Thank you so much. Thanks for this