Echogecko is an electronic music artist from Scotland, UK. On January 9th 2023 he released his first LP ‘Joules’. The electronic music album consists primarily of melodic dubstep tracks with unusual twists from start to finish. The theme of the music is somewhere on the spectrum between melancholy and excitement, and is often exploring the extremes of these thematic moods.
Where are you from?
How long have you been making music?
Twenty years in total if I include music written for playing in bands. I’ve been making electronic music for about ten years now.
How many songs /albums have you released to date?
I’ve released one album called Joules. There are also some extra songs that are not on the album that have been released on Soundcloud. Some of those are more of a work-in-progress than finished works though.
Can you tell us about your latest release and the background and inspirations behind it?
I spent a long time creating various electronic music tracks over the last ten years, but I was never happy enough with any of them to declare them ‘finished’. Then I had one year where I completely stopped making music entirely. After taking that year away from creating I re-listened to all the music I had made, and actually thought quite a lot of the tracks sounded finished after-all. So I gathered the best mixes I had and threw them all together to make an album.
My inspirations often draw on video game soundtracks, and other times on music by other melodic dubstep producers (like Panda Eyes and Kotori). Personally what inspires me most of all is just creative expression in general. I love to build up musical ideas and watch (or hear) them grow over time.
How have you ended up in the music industry?
I’ve only just released an album without a publisher/label. The fact that music distribution services for solo artists exist nowadays makes it incredibly easy to release music if have some to share with the world. So in short, I clicked ‘upload’.
What do you think of the present music industry?
It’s competitive as hell. It’s really hard to get noticed because so many people are making music now. There is also the issue with streaming services like Spotify that pay a very low amount of money to artists unless they are getting millions of plays. Coming up from the bottom of the barrel and trying to make a living off of creating music is a very difficult endeavour.
On the contrary though, I think that the live music scene is better than ever. It doesn’t really apply to my music because I don’t DJ or do live performances, but I do really love to see other artists play live. I’m supposing the live music industry is alright given the number of my favourite bands that come to play in my home city.
Who do you think the most influential artist?
Masato Nakamura. He composed the soundtracks for the much loved Sonic the Hedgehog games for the Sega Megadrive. Nothing quite beats the melodies of Sonic for me.
Although I also have to mention Tipper. He is an insanely talented producer and his music just blows my mind for sounding better than anybody else’s.
Who have you collaborated with so far in your career?
I haven’t actually done any electronic music collaborations. I was at one point somewhat in talks with my long distance friend Flash Ray Laser about collaborating, but we just never got around to it.
I’ve been in some bands if that counts. I joined Surrender’s Not an Option as their drummer some years ago, but soon after they came to a stop because of other work and life commitments. It would be really cool to be able to play with them again in the future but that doesn’t look too likely.
How do you think you differ from other artists?
I think the main thing about my music that is different to other artists is that I’m not afraid to use unusal and/or progressive song arrangements. The majority of dubstep tracks have exactly the same formula for song structure – They start off all atmospheric, then they build up, then they drop into big bass or synth sounds, and then they repeat the previous steps. I don’t do that sort of thing very often. For example, sometimes I go straight into a drop without doing a build up. Other times I do tempo changes to change up the rhythm of a song.
I also am a little bit more explorative of genres than other producers, so it’s sometimes hard to label my music with a particular genre name. For example I have a track called Swoon that is mainly a liquid drum & bass track, but it has a kind of melodic dubstep section in it.
Dead or alive, who would be your dream collaboration?
I’ve always wanted to collaborate with October Child – I’ve just never reached out to them about it. Maybe one day… And also Panda Eyes. Both are alive as far as I’m aware!
What was the first album you bought?
I honestly can’t remember the first album I bought. The first album I ever owned was given as a gift, and that was B*Witched’s self titled album. Quite a far stretch from what I listen to now. I think the first album I bought might have been Gorillaz self titled, or maybe Wheatus self titled.
What’s your favourite song at the moment?
Enter Shikari – Pls Set Me On Fire.
If you had to sell your music collection tomorrow, what album would you leave in your draw?
Papa Roach – Infest. That album gets me through anything and everything.
What is your favourite saying?
What other hobbies or interests do you have?
I’m quite into programming. I love to code. I work on projects like music plugins and video games. I also enjoy reading books about these subjects and always learning new things. Making games kind of gets divided into a lot of different hobbies like digital art, coding, and sound design. I find all these things fun.
I quite like to collect concept art books for various video games. They let me see the process of imagination that went into making some of my favourite games, like Bioshock. In one case I actually had a digital copy of a concept art book for a game called Soulstice that I had specially made into a hardback printed book just so that I could add it to my collection.
Less often than the above, I do also spend time playing video games too.
Do you have any tattoos or piercings?
I have two lip piercings and four tattoos. I have the Red Hot Chili Peppers symbol tattooed on both wrists, a kind of biomechanical eyeball tattooed on my left forearm, and a tree tattooed on most of my right arm. I definitely want more tattoos but I can’t decide on what to get. I’m too lazy to think of anything. Maybe I’ll get some birds flying, or some kind of nerdy coding related design…
Tell us more about your upcoming project or this new project?
So ‘Joules’ is the name of the LP I just released. I decided in the space of about two minutes that I would call it Joules after one of the tracks on it that’s just a synthesizer instrumental piece. For the most part the music on Joules came from long nights of staying wide awake, sitting in the dark, and smoking a lot. The whole album seems to me to have quite a melancholy theme right up until the last track ‘Lilac’ which just explodes into joy.
I can’t really say a lot about the project because essentially it’s just a collection of tunes that I’ve produced over the years. But I can say it goes hard, and it goes soft. It goes happy, and it goes sad. It’s a bit of a melting pot for experimental dubstep ideas that I just ran with.
What’s in the pipeline after this project?
I hope to return to making music in the not-too-distant future, but for the time being I will probably be focusing on a video game project that I’m working on. It’s called Harmony. It’s about this girl character who can play musical notes. I just haven’t really figured out what the purpose of playing notes is going to be in the game world. The project is still in the concepting stage, so it might take like 5 years to finish it, if I even can finish it. When I do eventually return to music I’ll firstly be looking to finish off some of my existing works that haven’t been released yet, and then finally I’ll be able to focus on something brand new.
Thank you for your time and may you carry on making great, fresh music.
Thank you – this was fun!