New album Zephyrus by Groovestudio: Enjoy epic cinematic music with Hollywood sound
Groovestudio is a group of music producers from Slovakia. Due to their highly specialized niche, people might not know their name, but they certainly know their music, from TV commercials. They composed music for many well-known advertising campaigns; they worked for brands such as O2, Suzuki, SONY Cinemax, Eset, Siemens or Apollon Pictures.
Groovestudio is currently planning to release a very unique album. The album will be filled with epic cinematic music, which will not lack strong themes, angelic choirs, dramatic vocals, ethnic instruments, modern electronic elements and Hollywood sound design, all combined with great synergy.
We interviewed the guys as they were finishing up the last tracks of their new album named Zephyrus.
How are you? Tell us about your very own musical evolution in the past few years?
Thank you, we´re doing great. After producing music for countless advertising campaigns, we found ourselves with drawers full of unreleased music. You know, we always create various music solutions and genres for the client´s campaign, the client only chooses the one he thinks best underlines and describes his product. So no matter how amazing the other songs are, if they don´t fit into the specific vibe of the campaign, we simply cannot use them. This way we accumulate great musical material in our drawers, which would be a shame not to use one day and not to develop into complete songs. Last year, we felt it was the right time for us to undust our “archive materials“. Now we´re finishing a new album and we´re really looking forward to it.
You’ve created music in all possible genres for your clients´ campaigns. What genre will prevail on your new album?
To put it simply, the album will be an epic, cinematic, orchestral work, intertwined with various new age elements, occasionally underlined by modern electronics. Epic, cinematic music is currently experiencing a big boom, not only in Slovakia, but even more so internationally.The music has been popularized by artists such as Hans Zimmer (The Lion King, Dark Knight, Gladiator), John Williams and his immortal film soundtracks (Indiana Jones, Star Wars) and many others. Trailer giants such as Two Steps from Hell and Audiomachine have made the epic, cinematic genre popular as the sountrack for trailers. However, music for trailers is usually centred around one simple motif, that builds up and culminates at a certain point. The songs on our new album will be a bit more complex: they will have their own development and they will be closer to movie soundtracks. In other words, it will be a mix of songs with a big orchestra sound, that is often combined with hybrid electronic elements that are mixed with a bit softer, sometimes melancholic, but mostly strongly emotional motives. This is approximately how we picture our work and how we would contribute to the world of music.
So far, you have focused on games, commercials and events. What was the original motivation for creating your album?
Freedom. Creating music for TV spots, movies and games means creating music for someone: for a client or a product, or for a campaign. The client or the agency will guide us exactly what musical style they imagine for the advertising; how long the song should be; they recommend the instrumental cast and then the director will enter hitpoints (places in the movie that must be synchronous with the music). These are all limiting factors for our work. It is as if you were walking on a very defined hiking trail and suddenly you would see a beautiful view, but you couldn´t get off the trail to have a look. In other words, you are simply obliged to stick to well-defined boundaries and directions you can´t pull out of. However, over time, as an artist, you just want to have freedom to create without all these restrictions. In fact, you want only one limiting factor- your own imagination. Making music for an album is extremely liberating; you can fully develop your ideas and melodies. You don´t have to worry about ending your song at a certain timestamp or what instruments to use. You can simply allow your inner feelings and free will to guide you
Many people might not really know what epic, cinematic music is like. Could you decsribe it a little further?
The term epic music came along with the music for movie trailers, but it was popularized mainly by the aforementioned Hans Zimmer, who was the first to create music for movies with the characteristic – pompous and spectacular – sound of the orchestra. He was the one to start the trend that many directors and composers have since followed, and thus, it became very popular, even among ordinary listeners who would otherwise never listen to orchestral music. The epic, cinematic style is only a label that represents orchestral music, which has a bombastic sound and is inspired by classical and movie music. However,I personally don´t always agree with this description. Epic music does not always need to be a heroic mega-sound with a 100-piece orchestra, that supports a movie´s masculine action scenes, but it can also be soft, emotional music that complements a romantic scene of a movie.
How did you actually get into the field of orchestral music? It is known that you started the electronic scene sometime at the beginning of the millennium.
Yes, we started with electronic music around that time. We fell in love with all those electronic toys: samplers, synths and sound modules, which we used to produce songs in the style that was popular in the club scene at the time. During that period we also created several albums in that genre; we will definitely release them one day as retro (laughs). During the creation, we sometimes added orchestral elements to the music and we observed what strong effect it had on the emotions of our listeners. We started studying movie sountracks and their effects on emotions. Composers such as John Williams, Alan Silvestri, James Horner and Hans Zimmer for example, are an inexhaustible well of inspiration. Not to mention classical music. Later, when creating music for commercials and games, we began to benefit from the knowledge we had accumulated. Many times, orchestral music was the only solution. However, we did not ignore other styles either; each of them enriched us as musicians and expanded our musical expressive ability.
Back to the upcoming album. What will be the album´s strengths besides the songs themselves? What will you be proud of?
We focused on creating music without compromise on the composition, sound quality or mixing. We want to continue the strong tradition of full, romantic Hollywood sound, with sophisticated orchestration and characteristic sound mastering. This is how we will fulfill our long-time dream.
So when can fans expect your new album?
The album will be released on 18.12.2020. We will announce the release on social networks a few days before this date.
Finally, is there any advice, or experience you have gained over the years in this industry, that you would like to share?
Everything has its time, nothing can be forced to go faster. If you want to do something, do it to the fullest, don’t look for excuses and be patient. Shortcuts don’t usually work in life. And most of all, stay humble. If you start to think you are the best, it is the beginning of your end. Never stop learning, there is always something to improve.