TFword in Conversation With IZREAL

We had a chat with the prodigious South Korean techno talent about her latest release, her DJing style, upcoming plans and lots more.

It’s not often that you come across an up-and-coming talent that has the kind of maturity and command over their sound as IZREAL does. A regular on South Korea’s club and festival circuit, she is currently one of the finest talents coming out of her country.

A thoughtful producer with a clear storyline at the heart of her productions, IZREAL’s penchant for laying her deep and driving output over crisp, dynamic percussion and synth riffs has now led to the release of her debut EP called ‘HYEONJIN’ via CONECTD MIX.

IZREAL’s debut record is a genuine reflection of her artistic perspective, which integrates the contemporary and emotional style of techno seamlessly. The “HYEONJIN” EP is also a reflection of IZREAL’s own personal story of becoming an artist and how she found the strength to break free from the restraints and doubts of entering electronic music’s incredibly competitive space.

As she embarks on her journey to break several career milestones at break-neck speed, we had a chat with IZREAL about her latest release, the creative process of the EP, her DJing style and lots more.

TFword: Congratulations on the release of your debut EP. What are your thoughts on how the release has taken shape?
IZREAL: This is my first full-length release and it is so satisfying to see it all come together! I am also having a release party this week to celebrate so it is all very exciting these days.

TF: One prominent aspect of the EP is its piercing narrative and the evocative atmospherics you’ve created in all your tunes. Talk us through the creative process of the EP.
IZREAL: My first EP is really a documentation of my own growth process, not only as a DJ, but as a person as well. All of the tracks on the EP reflect a different part of that journey. The opening track, “In Motion” is about a kind of wake-up call moment. It is about finding yourself in an unsustainable situation and realizing that the only way to change your current situation is to leave your old self behind and move forward.

“Rainy Day” is a melancholic song about depression, and how to overcome it, even on the days when it feels impossible to do so. “Work On Yourself” is a song about finding and getting to know oneself, and “Journey Into Now” is a track about coming out on the other side of hardship and starting fresh from the present! There have been some difficult times, but in the end, I overcame it one step at a time and grew a lot in the process.

TF: We’d specifically like to focus on ‘Rainy Day’; it is indeed a tune we’d listen to on a hazy rainy day to uplift us. How did the tune come to be?
IZREAL: This song was written after having witnessed a close friend of mine walk with heavy steps on a rainy day. That friend was going through a lot of troubles at the time, and so I wanted to write a song to reflect my own emotions as I stood on the sidelines. It is a song that contains the weight of life and the feeling of a gloomy day, and I think that is a feeling that a lot of people can relate to.

TF: How did the IZREAL journey begin?
IZREAL: I believe that the greatest power of music is how it allows people to communicate, to empathize, and to share emotions without speaking. And so my desire to start creating music came from a desire to able to become better at sharing greater emotions.

TF: Who were the artists that inspired you to make music?
IZREAL: I have always felt the most inspired watching the artists who perform on big festival stages. Watching their sets I always wish that it was me up there, feeling the satisfaction of finishing with one of my own songs.

TF: How would you describe your DJing style?
IZREAL: My DJing style is combining melodic music with a heavy, full-bodied, solid and quick sound. Whenever I play my 1h-1h30min set I always try to tell a story on a certain theme throughout the set.

TF: What’s coming next for IZREAL?
IZREAL: Right now I want to focus on doing more collaborations, so that is something I’m working hard on and I hope to be able to share some new stuff with you soon!

TF: 5 tunes you are feeling at the moment?
IZREAL – Work On Yourself
IZREAL – Journey Into Now
IZREAL – In Motion
Adana Twins – Uncompressing

IZREAL debut EP is out now via CONECTD MIX

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