[INTERVIEW] Egzod Dives Into His New Remix Of 'Five4three2one', Musical Influences, His Artistic Vision, + More
Since launching his project in 2017, EDM-based phenom Egzod has already racked up over half a billion collective streams, and for good reason. His signature sound is a melting pot of musical influences and inspiration pulled from nature, technology, and other intriguing elements.
We had the pleasure of talking with Egzod on many aspects of his musical journey and project as a whole. Additionally, he shed light onto his latest electrifying remix of Layto's “Five4three2one”.
Check out our exclusive interview with Egzod below.
iEDM: Can you tell us about your journey from Portugal to France and then to the United States, and how each of these places has influenced your music?
Egzod: I moved from Portugal to France at the age of two and was raised in Nice. Although, I have always gone back and forth between Portugal and France growing up to visit my family during the holidays. My first music memories were Euro-Dance, Techno, and Trance thanks to my dad, and this has shaped my love for electronic music at a very early age.
On the other hand, I would listen to a lot of movie scores as well – I would play the LOTR (Lord Of The Rings) Soundtrack album CD in a loop. As a teenager, I would play in some nightclubs in the French Riviera – during that period, I’ve learned a ton about the art of DJing.
I moved out to the US 8 years ago to study audio engineering and music production – this period has influenced the Bass music side of my music, I would say. I’ve also grown up with Arabic influences at home, which can be heard in some of my songs that have Eastern influences. I think this whole mix is what makes my music so eclectic, cinematic, and still electronic/dance-focused.
iEDM: Which artists did you look up to as role models when growing up, and why? How have they impacted your artistic identity?
Egzod: The French scene has influenced me the most while growing up. In middle/high school, I would listen to Daft Punk, Justice, David Guetta, DJ Snake, Martin Solveig, Joachim Garraud, Bob Sinclar, Dimitri From Paris, Yuksek, Cassius, DJ Mehdi, Stromae (although he’s technically from Belgium his songs are in French), and more.
These French artists were so pioneering and pretty much influenced the modern dance music as we know it today with the complete crossover with pop and hip-hop. This legacy has truly impacted my life and was the reason I decided to start making music.
iEDM: Your artist name “Egzod” derives from the French word “Exodus.” How does this concept of a mass departure to a new world connect to your music and brand?
Egzod: I want my music to be as empowering as possible. And so I thought that the idea of the exodus to a new world through a portal could serve as a metaphor that encourages listeners to step outside their familiar boundaries, enter a world of endless opportunities, and discover their untapped potential.
Essentially, I want my music to help people surpass their limits, explore new frontiers, and embark on a transformative journey towards heightened consciousness and personal development.
iEDM: Your work is described as merging technology, nature, and spirituality. Could you elaborate on how these elements come together in your music and the messages you aim to convey to your listeners?
Egzod: One thing I admire about artists from previous generations, such as John Lennon, is their dedication to conveying messages and making statements through their music, rather than just aiming for entertainment value. Nowadays, it seems like the pop music scene has somewhat drifted away from that approach.
While dance music, originally designed for partying and entertainment, has its place, I wanted to infuse it with deeper substance through the lyrics, making them more relatable, meaningful, and laden with symbolism. To add from the previous question: my ultimate goal through my music is to empower creators and assist them in finding a harmonious balance in their lives, and that includes with technology, with nature, spiritually, and mentally.
iEDM: What inspired you to remix Layto’s “Five4three2one,” and what creative choices did you make during the remixing process?
Egzod: Been following Layto’s work for some time now, so when I first heard his latest album, I was pretty stoked about it. This track is the one that I connected with the most melodically and lyrically. The lyrics of this song describe a person's struggles with inner demons, addiction, and self-destructive behavior.
Layto’s lyrics acknowledge their battles with nightmares and feeling disconnected from their own body. I think this song relates unfortunately to so many people, and we’ve all lived through dark moments. Creatively, I wanted to keep the essence of the song and make it more bass/dance-oriented using some of my signature sounds.
iEDM: How does your remix of “Five4three2one” reflect your signature production style? What major components did you decide to keep, and what is something compelling that you added to the original track?
Egzod: The orchestral sounds in the breakdown and the main bass line used in the drop are some of my signature sounds. I kept the same melodic structure as the original but made it more haunting and darker using the dreamy plucks in the intro - but also harder in the drop/hook where I layered the vocal chops on top of the growly bass line.
iEDM: Your music has been played by prominent artists like Alan Walker, ILLENIUM, NGHTMRE, SLANDER, and more. How has this recognition affected your career, and what does their support mean to you?
Egzod: I feel so inspired and thankful every time I see some of these artists I’ve looked up to playing my music on their radio shows or at festivals. Alan Walker, for instance, has been playing my “Dreamer” remix in all his latest sets at festivals and arenas, and it gives me goosebumps every time I see the crowd’s reaction in the videos.
iEDM: Can you share some of your top memories from performing at notable events such as Amsterdam Dance Event, Miami Music Week, and EDC Orlando?
Egzod: These three events are so special to me, but EDC Orlando holds a particular place in my heart for the following reason: Orlando is where I first moved to the US, studied music production and audio engineering, and where the Egzod project was born.
iEDM: Your tracks have been licensed to brands like Samsung, GoPro, Riot Games, and Electronic Arts. Why do you think your music complements visual and gaming experiences? What aspects make it a solid fit for these brands and features?
Egzod: I believe that the cinematic side of my music is the reason why it fits nicely with gaming and trailer videos. Additionally, I’ve released music on both NCS and Monstercat, which have large gaming communities. Many gamers and creators use my songs in their videos on YouTube and Twitch.
iEDM: In what ways do you see your music as a conduit for personal growth and a higher state of consciousness for your listeners?
Egzod: My music serves as a conduit for personal growth and a higher state of consciousness for my listeners in several ways. First and foremost, it revolves around the metaphor of a portal to a new world. This metaphor encourages listeners to break free from their familiar reality and embrace a realm filled with limitless opportunities and untapped potential.
Through my music, I strive to empower individuals to transcend their limitations. The lyrics and melodies I create aim to inspire them to explore uncharted territories within themselves, both emotionally and intellectually. I believe that by delving into the themes and emotions expressed in my songs, listeners can embark on a transformative journey toward elevated consciousness.
iEDM: Your music has been associated with the concept of a portal to a new world. Could you delve deeper into how this metaphor contributes to your storytelling and artistic expression?
Egzod: Ultimately, my music is a tool for personal growth. It encourages introspection and self-discovery, prompting listeners to reflect on their own lives and experiences. My goal is to empower creators and help them find a harmonious balance in their lives, fostering not only personal growth but also a deeper connection with the world around them.
iEDM: What advice would you give to up-and-coming artists on how to stay innovative in a constantly evolving industry?
Egzod: Experiment, keep an open mind, and connect with the community.
iEDM: Are there any future projects or performances you can shed light on for your fans to look forward to?
Egzod: I have just released my first single from my upcoming “Collide EP,” which is set to come out in November, and I'm really excited about it. Additionally, there is a very special “Royalty” remix coming out in October.
As far as shows go, I’ll be performing again at ADE this year at the NCS event, have a couple of shows on Vanic’s tour, and will be playing at an Insomniac festival at the end of the year, which will be announced soon.
Photos courtesy of Egzod.