Jauz is, for sure one of the most exuberant producers that the last years of electronic music have given us. And it’s thanks that virtue, for which the details and the dictates of the so-called “golden age” of the electro are fundamental, that the American producer is ready to release his new album, “The Wise and The Wicked”, doubtless debtor of a solid experience consolidated over the years, made of research, but also new meetings and inspirations, combined with a very respectable cultural baggage.
Divided into chapters, introduced by powerful vocal, between darkness but also security, Jauz’s new album is an incredible trip, in which the artist wants to tell us a story, but also find his-self and his real artistic soul.
Trip’s stops are twentythree, all ordered but, not for this, they turn out monothematic, discounted or flat. Jauz is able to give different shades to his productions, which result different from each-other, but they also have different shades in their-self. This way to write an album, thanks to a natural feeling, but also thanks to collaborations, make “The Wise and The Wicked” a complete album. Completeness that makes the album not so easy to understand: this is the case in which you have to pay attention while you are listening, your mind has to be open, and you have to be critic. Jauz made a really well-done work, which will be, for sure, fundamental point of his career.
“The Wise and The Wicked”: such an interesting title! Tell us about this.
The whole concept came together while I was writing the album. I realized that not just while writing this album, but as long as I can remember, my creative brain has been split into two sides – one where I want to make heavy, aggressive, “bangers” for clubs and festivals, and one where I want to make more melodic, emotional, “smarter” songs for listening. The two sides are always fighting against each-other. I thought that concept was a perfect story to tell with this album. I figured that instead of it being about the two parts of my brain, they could be represented by two warring factions of a city, who both think they’re methods for trying to save their dying world is the only way humanity will survive. That’s where “The Wise” and “The Wicked” come into play. The moral of the story, and the album, is that they’re actually both stronger together, represented by “The United” at the end of the album. This to me is represented by tracks like Super Fly, Gassed Up, etc that all have very melodic sections but also still have heavier, energetic drops. My goal is always to try to take the both of best of those two worlds and combine them to create something even greater.
Your album looks like a story thanks to the chapters, too: I really love how you decided to introduce the chapter, with this strong vocals and the magical atmosphere. Which situation inspired you for it?
I decided early on that if I was going to make the album have a theme and story, that I would want to add a cinematic and theatrical element to it. The songs on the album are great on their own, but these interludes separating the “worlds” that all the songs live in is what to me really make the album feel like a complete piece. It makes it feel like you really are listening to a story instead of just a bunch of different songs in a row.
There are really a lot of collaborations. How did you decide who to collaborate with?
Kind of how the album is split into “The Wise” and “The Wicked” sides, the collaborations are almost split in two as well. Half of the people I worked with on the album are pretty well known names – Kiiara, DJ Snake, Adventure Club, Krewella, etc. I wanted to showcase artists that have been around for a long time in my career, and also who have had a lot of influence on me as an artist. DJ Snake is the guy I go to when I can’t decide what to do in life. He always inspires me to work harder. Adventure Club were the first people to ever believe in me, back when i was 17 years old. The other half are almost the opposite – artists who I have found who I believe in who I think the world should know. There are some like Holy Goof and Gerald Le Funk who are already more established, all the way to completely unknown artists like Fabrice and Hypression. All of these kids taught me so much about producing music over the course of writing this album and it wouldn’t have turned out the same without all of them. I think that’s why the album is so cool – it has so many polarizing things to it. Wise and Wicked, Good and Evil, New and Old, etc.
As you just said, you have so much shades in this album. How can you explain your style right now?
My goal was to show people that I really can make just about every different kind of electronic music and still make it feel like Jauz, and I think I achieved that.
Among many collaborations, but also more personal pieces, I imagine that there is a track that represents you more …
I don’t think I could just pick one if I tried! I resonate with every song on this album so much, each one represents a different part of me. Every single song on the album is there for a reason and the project wouldn’t feel complete without each track that made the cut. There are even some songs that didn’t make it onto the album that were so amazing that I connected with! I’m sure those will make it out into the world eventually as well though.
Which tracks do you think listeners will appreciate most and ones less?
This is going to be my favorite part of watching the album release and seeing people start listening to it. There’s so many different songs on the album that I honestly can’t really tell you which ones are going to be “the one” or not! There’s more pop-leaning songs, heavier more dubstep leaning songs, techno-inspired house tracks, drum n bass, and everything in between. Everyone will listen to the album in their own way, and I know everyone is going to attach to a different song in a different way. That’s the beautiful thing about music, is that one song can mean a million different things to a million different people.
I think “Acid or Techno” is the most experimental track in the album. I think, for some aspects, that it’s really out of your comfort zone, but you was great in it!
Thanks! It seems like a lot of people have really enjoyed that track. I really love the more techy side of house music and I had so much fun writing that song. I think it will be a bit of a shock for a lot of fans, but I also think it has the potential to be one of the more widely enjoyed songs on the album. It’s so simple and straightforward I think pretty much anyone can enjoy it!
How much time did the album take?
I decided I would write the album in November of 2017. I already had 10 or 11 songs written, and I thought it would only take me a few months to write another couple tracks and finish it up and then put it out at the beginning of 2018. I got so excited about writing the album that I ended up writing around 20-25 more demos for the album, and then over the course of the next few months we whittled it down to the 18 songs we have now. The process ended up taking so much longer than I thought it would, and became a completely different project than it was when it started. But that’s the beautiful thing about writing an album! You never can know where it’s going to go, you just kind of have to hop on and take the ride wherever it brings you.
What about the album artwork?
We spent a lot of time creating the visual side of this album. I think the graphic side of an album like this is almost as important as the music itself, because it really helps you feel like you’re in that world. Not just the album art, but all of the video visuals we’ve created for the album really detail exactly what I imagine the world of The Wise and the Wicked would look like.
What have we to expect from your future?
This album is really just the foundation for so many things we have planned for the future. I wanted The Wise and The Wicked to be able to set the groundwork for so many things I want to develop, such as new live shows, future music, etc. I already have at least the next few years planned out ahead of me but I don’t want to give away too much, you’ll just have to wait and see.
You founded the label “Bite This”, for which you have published this album: how is it going?
It’s been a long time coming for me to start a label, we pretty much only release music by ourselves already as it is so it just made sense to put an actual name behind it. I’m putting out my album on “Bite This” because if I can’t believe in my own label to do a good job with my release, then why should anyone else? We’ve slowed down releases on the label to focus on TWATW but once it’s released we have tons of new music from some amazing artists in the works. I can’t wait for you guys to hear everything!
Did you think things will change after this album?
I went into this album with zero expectations of what would come from it. If the album does nothing and I end up right where I started, that’s OK with me. I wrote this album more for myself than anyone else. Writing an album is such a milestone in an artist’s life and even if it flops, I know in 30 years I’ll be able to look back on it and be proud of how much effort and emotion I put into this project. That being said I hope that it does amazing of course! Either way, it will be the beginning of a whole new chapter for Jauz and I can’t wait for you guys to see where we take it!
Taken from soundwall.it