Winter is coming! At least to those languishing in musical mediocrity. And it’s gonna happen sooner than later by way of Norilsk City, Siberia, the northernmost city on Earth. Regarded as the coldest city in the world where temperatures can plunge to a frostbite-inducing -55°C and residents endure two months of total darkness during winters, it’s the home of ‘VANDVL’, one of the most frigidly audacious Breakcore artists in today’s unsettlingly sunny music industry.
Like an arctic blast, ‘VANDVL’s music has pillaged and swept through genres like a horde of ‘White Walkers’–laying waste to the conformists of the industry–one unimaginative soul at a time. Speaking with Bassfuck, it’s easy to see why ‘VANDVL’ (now based in St. Petersburg) is such a cold-blooded musical slayer. Not only was he born and raised in the Far North of Siberia where its unforgiving climate is only allayed by its beauty; but his musical sensibilities were honed by an eclectic and at times discordant genres at a young age.
“I began to get involved in music when I was 10 years old. I remember buying my grandmother tape like Rock’n’Roll, hip-hop 90th, etc.,” he recounted.
“I was a big fan of ‘Nirvana’ (Kurt Cobain) – he then influenced me to become a musician. As time progressed, I got tired of playing an imaginary guitar in a mirror so I asked my childhood friend to teach me how to play some Nirvana songs. So I started that way.
“I did not understand electronic music for a long time because I was attracted to instrumental music such as Blues, Punk Rock, Nu-Metal, Alternative Rock. But later when I heard ‘DJ Aphrodite’ (UK) and ‘FatBoySlim’ in 1998, it completely changed my understanding of what electronic music really is. Some time later, my eyes were further opened by ‘Dark Side of Drum and Bass’ artists like ‘Tech Itch’, ‘Limewax’ and ‘Dylan’. Then in 2008, I discovered Breakcore through ‘Babylon Disco’, ‘Venetian Snares’, ‘Distimia’ and ‘Passenger of Shit’.”
These varied musical influences have undoubtedly shaped ‘VANDVL’s uniquely frosty musicality today.
“I like when the music is different especially in one composition. I like complex drums with melodic sounds that grab the listener’s soul and make them cry, laugh and scream. Basically I use Breakcore, Glitch, IDM, Metal and Scream to conjure those emotions.”
When asked who inspired him musically, he confessed:
“’Airborne Drumz’ gave me a powerful teach-kick in understanding the attitude and a small amount of information about creating electronic music. Thank him for that!”
As far as what the future holds for him career-wise, ‘VANDVL’ has set his sights on the world stage.
“I would like to perform at parties in different parts of the world. But for now it’s all a dream and thoughts about the future. But I plan to visit the whole world and show what Russian Breakcore truly is.”
Nature vs. nurture, it’s one of the oldest persisting arguments in the history of psychology and even in the arts. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that in ‘VANDVL’s case, it’s both. His frigid and uncompromising musicality is not only predisposed in his DNA but was honed by the sub-zero climate in the Arctic, where only strong and beautiful souls can survive.
Winter is coming whether we like it or not! It’s not a matter of how but when. It’s inevitable! Listen and be forewarned. The future is upon us and it’s icy!