An Asian Hip Hop band group based in Korean Town LA, Far East Movement is highly respected in the US market but also among other regions in the world. Not only are they seen in the music industry doing shows and gigs for their fans around the world, they provide music to popular shows like CSI: Miami and CSI: New York. In 2014, they also made their performance at Ultra Japan and this time, they collaborated with MARSHMELLO and produced “FREAL LUV” together. Let us share Far East Movement’s interview on their new release.
Q1. Your new track “FREAL LUV” and new album” IDENTITY” are stored out now. Can you tell us more about your new track and album?
"Freal luv" is a collaboration with a rising trap producer named Marshmello, Chanyeol of the group EXO, and singer Tinashe. The song and collaborations are representative of the mentality and statement of the album, a Far East to West identity. We wanted to bridge sounds, artists and cultures from Asia and America to make a sound that represented a Far East Movement "identity". It's been about 4 years since we've officially put out a project, and for the reason that we needed to take a break from creating and do a bit of rediscovery of ourselves and our own identity culturally. Our whole careers we've been told our name is "too Asian" and we are not marketable and those words stick with you while in the studio creating music, and left us a bit uninspired. We decided to take the time and travel around Asia from Tokyo to Seoul to Shanghai to Bangkok to Jakarta and more, just learning about the cultures and music scenes and thru the process we discovered a bit about ourselves, and were inspired to create this new album "identity". It features artists from the Far East like Chanyeol of EXO, Tiffany of Girls Generation, Jay Park to artists in the US and UK like Marshmello, Soulja Boy, Big Krit, MNEK, Candice Pillay, Macy Gray, and a bunch more. This album is also a transition for the Far East movement to show the production side of what we do, and a more uplifting and inspirational tone on our sound, that kept us inspired to keep making music.
Q2. How did you decide to work together with MARSHMELLO for FREAL LUV, and how was it?
We actually knew Marshmello before he was Marshmello, was a huge fan of both his styles and were originally collabing on a few ideas for fun. We wanted to make a feel good pop inspired track with a concept that everyone could feel globally while giving a new bounce and trap feel to it all. We love his range as a producer and was a real honor to collaborate with one of the future greats in the game.
Q3. How do you get the inspiration from when producing music?
Constantly listening to music from undiscovered to classics always keeps us inspired to produce. We are big on finding new music and artists online and hitting them up to work and learn from. A lot of the artists we coproduced with on this album are newer artists we met online and hit up in their message box. No shame in always learning from the people that are changing the game in new ways.
Q4. What was your first impression of Japan? What was the most surprising or impressive experience? Something within your expectation?
First impression of Japan is the word "joy", from the tone of the music scene, to the colors and lights throughout the cities, to the welcoming and positive vibe of the people, it feels like a home away from home. The most impressive thing about Japan is the consistent quality and high standards in every industry, such a breath of fresh air to be able to trust service and products, especially since not everywhere in the world maintains the same standards.
Q5. Who or what is the most musically influenced to you? If so, why is that?
The Ktown and LA music scene and clubs definetely inspired us the most musically, from DJ-ing clubs all over LA to underground raves, that range always kept us in tune with new sounds and scenes that we brought into the studio and turned into records.
Q6. What would fans be surprised to learn about you?
We used to do online battle rap tournaments with diss tracks haha
Q7. What do you have coming up next?
This album was the first album under the new company we started called Transparent Agency and we will be launching a bunch of new artists from this label over the next year. We have always been hands on behind the scenes with our own careers and excited to expand that knowledge and network with the next movement.
Q8. What is DJ Mag to you as a DJ and producer?
DJ Mag has always been a source to watch of who is making moves and who is next around the globe. We are always in Amsterdam for ADE awaiting the announcement of the Top 100 list. We have always leaned towards being artists and producers as Far East movement but it's an honor to be recognized by DJ mag as well.
Q9. Please leave a message for your fans in Japan.
Domo arigato to the whole movement in Japan! A special message for Japan, we wanted to feature artists from Japan on the "identity" album but because of our intense delivery timeline, and we respect the process of the labels and managers in Japan we weren't able to make it happen fast enough, so we are planning to do a special release for Japan with a few extra tracks for Japan!
Far East Movement have been influenced by LA Down Town Street Culture and now have been recognised not only for their music but also for their iconic fashion. After making their debut with “Like A G6” and “Live My Life”, they’ve also opened up the show for Lady Gaga. Asian stars continue to influence the scene with their talent and style and they’ll continue to do so.
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