The Texas-based Cromatik takes us on an epic, cyberpunk-influenced journey with this jaw-dropping debut four-tracker on Never Say Die: Black Label. Fans of Cromatik already know what to expect as the young producer continues to power forward with his own dark and haunting take on the dubstep dancefloor. With past cuts like “Hacker” and “Malware” showcasing the glitched-out vision that the producer is capable of, the past year has been a mad one as the producer has not only come into his own as a producer and DJ, but received the ultimate blessing in the scene when tapped to support none other than Midnight Tyrannosaurus on hisMutation tour.
Scheduled to appear at the Bassrush x Midnight Tyrannosaurus takeover of Exchange LA in Los Angeles on April 27 (full details here), Cromatik wastes no time in letting the heads know what kind of heat he’s bringing to the table with his debut EP on Never Say Die: Black Label that drops today. While the entire Cyberpunk EP is rammed with chest-rattling floor-killers including the long-awaited “Malware VIP,” we’re amped to be premiering one of our favorite cuts off the EP, “Zap,” alongside a proper chat with one of the most exciting producers to emerge in the past year.
Check the premiere of “Zap” followed by our Q&A below—and don’t forget to lock in your copy of Cromatik’s Cyberpunk EP here.
Texas isn’t the first place we think of when we imagine a “cyberpunk” futuristic world…or do we have it all wrong?
It’s really not what I think of either. [Laughs] The cyberpunk genre in art and movies is definitely an escape from that barren isolation we all feel from time to time, and I guess Texas is a good metaphor for that. I only recently dug deeper into the genre after picking up the book Neuromancer by William Gibson, one I highly recommend to anyone interested in the subject. I think they’re making a movie about it as well. Ever since then I’ve been a junkie for the art, music, posters…it can be really aesthetically pleasing. Some flicks I think got it really well are Tron: Legacy, Logan’s Run, and Ready Player One.
While we’re interested in protecting ourselves from malware in general, we get the sense that “Malware VIP” is more about electronic bugs infiltrating our brains. What’s the best defense against that kind of technological trickery?
Never trust robots. [Laughs] No, but really, you’ve got it spot on. The idea behind the tune is you’ve voluntarily signed up for this digital experience that promises to “purify” your thoughts and bring you to a “heightened state of mind” but, as is the case in the original, things go wrong and malware infects the people who’ve attended. My personal advice is to wait out the bugs and development issues with new products, and back up your HD.
It’s no doubt been a wild ride from your Insomniac Discovery Project days to premiering a cut on Bassrush. Have you had a chance to take it all in? Looking back what are some of your favorite highlights so far?
Man, it really, really has. To say it’s an honor is an understatement. There are a huge number of insanely talented producers and DJs putting everything into their music and I salute every one of them. Even though I wouldn’t consider myself to be extremely well known, anyone can swoop in and take your place. In terms of highlights, being put on the Midnight Tyrannosaurus’ Mutation Tour, sliding in Funtcase’s DMs, and releasing this EP with Black Label are at the top.
We’re stoked to be offering up “Zap” as a premiere to the masses. Tell us about the inspiration behind the tune and what kind of cinematic visuals we should be imagining when we hit play and close our eyes.
I’m genuinely stoked as well. “Zap” features a clip from the Orson Welles adaptation of The War of the Worlds, which apparently freaked out a lot of people when it aired on the radio. There’s a good Netflix documentary on it you should check out. I was super excited to use an excerpt from it in a tune. Most of the imagery comes from the actual radio broadcast itself, so I highly recommend checking that out as well. The line before the drop “Zap zap zap” is supposed to make you feel like you’re put in that world or a video-game world where you’re just zappin’ aliens.
Sounds amazing and the perfect companion to the entire EP. Before we go, hit us with any final shouts and let us know what other projects you’ve got lined up we should be looking out for in the coming year.
Thanks so much for having me! I’m always working on new music so make sure to make it out to the Mutation Tour and you’ll definitely hear some new bits and also get a glimpse of the visuals we’ve got in store to complete the experience. Huge shout to my fiancé and our cat. Also my fans and supporters, y’all are the best. If you want to get more involved check out SPACECAMP on Facebook!