Synthronicity: So delighted to bring you this candid interview with Oceanside85. This lady is a force to be reckoned with on the synth scene with a voice that echoes through the halls of a predominantly male genre. With some great facts and a scoop or two I really enjoyed putting together this interview...take a look.
Tell us a little about you, where you’re from and how you got started in Music?
Hey I'm Oceanside85 I enjoy long walks on the beach, candle lit Netflix and chill and retro jams. I'm from Victoria B.C Canada. Part of a very small posse of female producers on the west coast of Canada. I'm proud to represent West Coast Canadian Synthwave and Electronic music. I was first just making my own radio shows and singing into my cassette recorder when i was a punk kid and have really never stopped making music in some way. I started in bands when I was 22 and was a psychobilly vocalist to start. I switched over to my own project after my bands dissolved. I had tons of music that was stuck inside me and I was done waiting for everyone else to get it together. So happy I decided to do this project alone because this is the most music I've ever created and the most artistic freedom I've ever felt and its amazing. <3
How has your sound developed over the years? & has the current market been of any influence in that?
I started seriously producing about 5 years ago. My sound is always developing because I haven't produced for that long a time. I've been trying to learn how to be a better producer every day. Its going good..i think. I feel like my best is yet to come. My sound has gone from super 80's cheese to cinematic soundscape to mutant creatures such as the half synthwave half Vaporwave album Blue Waters. I look forward to continuing to be a enigma weirdo and freaking out my fans with constant randomness ha-ha. I say that because I know people expect certain styles from artists once they get used to it. That's me though. If you like a synth adventure at random you've hit the jackpot. I'd say the current market has absolutely no influence on my work. The former market like Miami Nights 1984 and others like Lazerhawk influenced me in the early days but now I try to avoid other producers work. I want my music to be unabashed unapologetically me. I know I am not the super 80's queen or the uber model. I am Oceanside85. All I want is too make you feel rad and synth your face off is that too much to ask?
How would you describe the music you make?
Its basically my soul in music format with VHS distortion. A cosmic journey through retro futuristic dimensions and alternate timelines from the point of view of a retro kid who kept their heart and all of their pogs.
How has your 2020 been? With the Gig situation how have you managed to stay reasonably sane?
Well 2020 just went way off the grid didn't it? I hope we can heal from this virus quickly as a world. Personally my 2020 so far before it all happened had been full of hard work and late nights working on this album. I've been more creative this year then any other year but once the isolation started I've found it a bit harder to focus. I wasn't planning gigs until the Summer but it hit me how lucky I was before all of this too play shows. So when I can again I'm going to go hard. I hope its soon. I pray for everyone dealing with this crisis. Its really hard for some and I send my love to those who are having hardships. May angels be at your side.
Who are your influences in music today? Who did you listen to when you were growing up?
My influences are really varying. My favorite singer is Nina Simone
I'm also a huge Motorhead fan. I could listen to Eric Satie for hours.. Stevie Nicks is my alternate timeline witch mom...and David Bowie is my star dad. Pat Benetar, Cyndi and so many more. I just love all types of music. If you play talking heads I will be forced to dance. I was raised by a mom who loved Madonna to Bowie to Iggy to Ozzy. As for music of today I don't really use it for inspiration but I will shout out my homies some of my friends who I love and enjoy their music. Elevate the sky, Czarina, Beckett, Driver86, Hamerzya (who are legit my fav synth band) Ethereal Delusions. So many are absolutely killing it.
Tell us your best and worse gig experience?
Not much bad thankfully except one thing which was my fault ha-ha I had a gig and I was setting up and my laptop decided mins before soundcheck that it would start updating. Ok cool..wait ten mins...20 ....30...45 mins at this point I'm in tears and my sound guy says we cant do a soundcheck for you we will do it when you play your first song. Luckily I was 2nd. After what seemed like legit 1 hour 30 mins the laptop finished its update. You know that scene in office space where they smash that copy machine? Sad end to that laptop.
Is there anything new you’re working on currently that you’d like to share a little bit about?
Yes!! The album I have been toiling away on for 2 years. Neon Dreams. It will be out July 5th and I am super stoked to reveal it will be all collaborations with some of my favourite producers. I will be revealing who exactly closer to release but so far I have released 2 singles leading up to the album..one with Octal Drive called While The City Sleeps and one with 20sixhundred and Cody Carpenter called Shifting Frequencies. Ok you twisted my arm Ashley ..I will reveal one more...Super SUPER MEGA excited to announce I will be having METEOR on the album! His first vocal collaboration too! I'm so honored. <3
If you couldn’t make the great music you are making today what would you be doing?
I'd probably be the crazy lady on the corner singing into a garbage can. I love music that much I'd probably still try ha-ha.
Who would you like to play you in a movie of your life?
Hmmm I'd say what I'd like is Brigitte Nielsen she was really badass. I dont look at all like her so maybe If I could time travel..and have the power to morph my body.. I'd say Brigitte. Keepin' it retro for the kids. Google it youngins'. If I had no such powers Id say Rebel Wilson..she's be good at emoting my level of sass and sarcasm and overall goofy tendencies.
What sound do you love the most?
The sound of the waves rippling off the shore.
Do you have a day job? How do you balance this with the passion for creating the great music that you do?
Yes ma'am Oceanside the Barber at your service. I will give you hair where people will stare..in a good way. I will make you look both fresh AND fly. Its a real balancing act I tell you. I am just grateful my husband is not totally insane from all the mixing. Its cute though when he starts humming my new track cause I've tortured him with it for days.
If you’re having a bad day what do you do to make yourself feel better?
This may sound silly but I like to cut open a coconut put a little umbrella in it and listen to hawaiian music pretending I'm on vacation. Or one quick dash to the water to chill and smoke one at sunset is always a win. You may find me in the reeds at any given moment.
Who is your celebrity crush?
KURT RUSSELL ALWAYS AND FOREVER. <3 SORRY GOLDIE BUT YOU ARE ALSO MY FAVORITE ALWAYS AND FOREVER. <3
What’s next for you as an artist?
More music making and content creating. I have a bunch in store. Dimension O85 will start to be fleshed out in the coming future. Soon the tapestry will unfold. Hold on to your scrunchy.
If you could collaborate with anyone else on the scene who would it be and why?
Kalax because when I first heard his music I fell in love with Synthwave oh Kalax oh Kalax where for art thou? <3 Did I come on too strong Ash? ha-ha
Favourite Movie and why?
Breakfast Club because they were my friends when I didn't have any ....
imagine Ally Sheedy but more awkward..that was me in high school. I have since fell in love with the weirdo I am but movies like that helped me when I really needed them. I hope my music does that for someone one day. Keeps them company or makes them feel something deeply.
Who or what got you into the Synth scene initially?
I met London Lazers on twitter and he steered me to a Facebook group Synthetix and then when I researched more Miami Nights 1984 Ocean Drive and Kalax got me hooked.
How do you feel about the popularity of the Synth Genre as a whole and the new Generation of Producers who keep evolving?
Its awesome seeing it grow and become well known...a thing that mainstream media and artists even steal! Thats amazing ha-ha. It seems to only be growing and I hope that the magic sparkle dust can come and drop on some of us that are in the scene. I see lots of producers making big moves though and getting their music into big games and tv and things so that's really cool. Everyday there are new producers trying it. I welcome all the new synth brothers and sisters and no I don't mind if you like The Midnight or if you have a number after your name. No one should shame you for trying to fit in or for enjoying a certain aesthetic. Be yourself you are amazing. Like what you like or hate what you hate ..but if you hate you have to compensate and dance and if you don't dance then your no friend of mine. I'm sorry those are the rules. I didn't make the rules. I'm just kidding you don't have to dance but just know I definitely will. You know that song by Crystal Method 'Wild Sweet and Cool'.."just let me do my thang. Very pertinent song for my attitude towards music and life really. Also Safety Dance by Men Without Hats. We can dance, we can dance everybody take a chance. We are all beautiful and vibrant beings! Excuse me while I make a scene about it.
What type of Hardware/Software to you use, do you have a preference?
I use Ableton live and I have a Ax edge keytar and a Novation ultranova as well as a push and laptop. I love serum and Diva vst. I used to use fruityloops but I like the workflow of ableton better and the layout.
Learn more and support Oceanside85 via the following links:
With grateful thanks and appreciation to Oceanside85 from Forged in Neon for doing this interview. We look forward to hearing more