SHMN embarks on an enthralling musical odyssey with his sophomore album, “Amadeus.” This release, arriving just 12 months after his debut album, “Interstice,” delves deep into the themes of faith and transformation, inviting listeners to explore a spectrum of emotions.

Known for his genre-defying prowess, SHMN’s sonic landscape is a fusion of electronic music including Melodic Techno, House, Indie Dance, Electronica, Breakbeat, and more, showcasing his versatility and finesse. His music strikes a delicate balance between nostalgia and upliftment, weaving a tapestry of sound that resonates on both personal and dance floor levels.

In this conversation with SHMN we dived into his musical journey and passion, his new album, future plans and much more…

Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and the journey that led you to discover your passion for music and eventually transition into the professional realm?  

My journey into the world of music has been a fascinating and evolving one. Music has  always been a deeply ingrained part of my life, even from a young age. I grew up in a family where music was not just an art form, but a way of life. My parents had a vast and diverse  record collection, and I was exposed to an eclectic mix of genres and sounds from an early age. This upbringing created a strong connection between music and my emotions. As a teenager, I started experimenting with different musical instruments and software. I was drawn to the idea of creating my own sounds and melodies. I began to understand that music was not just something I appreciated; it was something I needed to express myself. This realization led me to delve deeper into music production. 

The transition into the professional realm was a gradual one. It involved countless hours of learning, experimenting, and honing my skills. I explored a wide range of musical styles and techniques, allowing me to develop a unique approach to music production. Along the way,  I had the opportunity to collaborate with other talented artists and learn from their  experiences. Over the years, my passion for music grew into a dedicated career. It was a  thrilling and sometimes challenging journey, but my unwavering love for music kept me moving forward. ‘Amadeus,’ my latest project, is a testament to this journey, encapsulating my personal growth, creative evolution, and the deep connection I have with music. It’s a project that embodies the emotions, stories, and experiences that have shaped my path as a music producer.

Speaking of your second album, “Amadeus,” it comes just 12 months after your debut album  “Interstice.” Could you tell me about your musical style and how it has evolved between these two albums?  

“Amadeus” is the second installment of a trilogy I conceptualized while working on this  project. The album draws inspiration from various forms of art, including literature, philosophy, fine art, cinematography, and more. In the realm of cinematography, I’ve been influenced by the works of directors like Park Chan-wook, Wong Kar-Wai, Christopher  Nolan, and Jim Jarmusch, among others. Beyond the narrative and visual elements that  make these directors’ work remarkable, I’ve always been moved by the importance of  soundtracks in cinematography. Essentially, “Amadeus” served as a soundtrack to my life over the past 12 months, and it was my intention to share this story with those who may be experiencing similar journeys. “Amadeus” showcases a more polished and cohesive sonic landscape throughout the project. Both sonically and visually, it was important for me to establish a unique identity for this album. I approached this project from a more conceptual perspective, focusing on storytelling through sound. When comparing the two projects, “Interstice” was more about displaying my musical influences and experimentation, while  “Amadeus” represents my signature sound and the artistic direction I’m headed in, both musically and artistically. 

Diving deeper into “Amadeus,” what was your inspiration behind the album? Can you tell me about the themes of faith and transformation that it explores?  

“The creative universe of ‘Amadeus’ was constructed upon introspection, conflict, and  transformation.”

During the process of crafting this album, I’ve come to realize how  intricately my music is intertwined with my own life, complete with its trials and tribulations. Introspection stands out as a primary instrument in my current creative process. It was crucial for me to identify my intentions in both music production and, of course, my personal life. This ongoing internal dialogue allowed me to shape and gain a deeper understanding of the ideas I wanted to convey to the listener. 

Another significant element in  the sonic universe of “Amadeus” is conflict. Specifically, I explore conflict through the lens of the ongoing duality of human nature, with its corpus and anima counterparts, which I aim to synthesize in this project. 

Transformation serves as the third and final pillar upon which the creative universe of “Amadeus” rests. This concept relates to both my personal evolution and the further development of my distinct musical style, which I aimed to showcase in this album. 

The title track of your album is particularly captivating. Can you share the creative process behind it and what it represents in the context of the album?  

The track “Amadeus” played a pivotal role in shaping this project. It was originally inspired  by a soundtrack from Devil May Cry, an action-adventure game series created by Hideki  Kamiya, which draws inspiration from Dante’s Divine Comedy. This game greatly influenced the track and the project as a whole. From the very first chords, I sensed the track’s potential, but it remained instrumental for quite some time. After reconnecting with Jonatan Bäckelie and sharing the ideas behind the track, I received the first demo, which left me awestruck. Jonatan contributed an ethereal church choir segment that elevated the track to its full form and set the tone for the entire project. Once I received that initial demo, I knew that this project had to commence with this track.

“Catharsis” is described as a peak time explosion of bright synths and fizzy melodic fireworks. How do you build and release tension in your music, and what role does catharsis play in your creative process?  

“As the music unfolds, it takes you on a transformative odyssey, echoing the ebb and flow of life’s most powerful moments.”

“Catharsis” opens with a delicate and haunting melody that feels like a whisper from the  cosmos. It’s as if you’re standing on the precipice of a grand revelation, awaiting the  unveiling of hidden truths. As the music unfolds, it takes you on a transformative odyssey, echoing the ebb and flow of life’s most powerful moments. Throughout the track, the listener will experience ethereal synth work and carefully crafted percussion build an atmospheric soundscape that’s both introspective and expansive. It’s a tapestry of sound that invites introspection and reflection, akin to a journey into the depths of one’s own soul.

The title, “Catharsis,” is aptly chosen, as the track invites the listener to experience a purging of emotions and a release of the burdens of the heart and mind. It’s a sonic cleansing, a cathartic release that leaves you feeling refreshed and renewed. 

“Impermanent” is noted for its pixelated leads and rousing techno drums. Can you share your insights into aspects of sound design and rhythm in this track?  

“Impermanent” is a mesmerizing tapestry of sound, an ode to the fleeting nature of  existence, and a celebration of the beauty found in life’s imperfections. This track is a sonic reverie, a dreamlike landscape where shimmering synths and resonant bass notes create a  sense of weightlessness. It’s a musical paradox – simultaneously grounded and ethereal,  much like the profound yet transient moments in life. The title, “Impermanent,” encapsulates the essence of the track. It is a sonic exploration of impermanence, where the artist invites you to embrace the ever-changing nature of reality. “Impermanent” mirrors the  ephemerality of emotions, memories, and the world around us. With this track, I wanted to  invite the listener to embrace the beauty of imperfection and transience. This track is more  than music; it’s a profound meditation on the human experience. It’s a reminder that in the impermanent nature of life, there is a rare and exquisite beauty waiting to be discovered. It is a musical journey that will leave the listener with a sense of wonder and a deeper appreciation for the evanescent nature of existence. 

“Arcane” serves as the closing track of the album. What significance does it hold in  the context of the entire project?  

“Arcane,” as the closing track of the album, holds profound significance in the context of  the entire project. It serves as the grand finale, the culmination of the musical journey that  “Amadeus” takes its listeners on. This track encapsulates the essence of the entire album, drawing together the themes, emotions, and experiences that have unfolded throughout the musical odyssey. This track acts as the musical summation of all the themes that make this project. As the final piece of the puzzle, it provides resolution and closure, inviting the listener to reflect on the transformative journey they’ve embarked throughout the album. Musically, «Arcane» weaves together elements from earlier tracks, creating a sense of musical déjà vu that evokes a profound sense of nostalgia and familiarity. This track brings the listener full circle, returning to the themes and motifs that have shaped the album. 

Among these and the rest of the tracks, do you have a personal favorite and could you explain why?  

Selecting a personal favorite from this album poses a formidable challenge, as each track  weaves its unique narrative, a vital thread in the tapestry of the project as a whole. Two  compositions from this album that merit special mention are the titular piece, “Amadeus,”  featuring the mellifluous Jonatan Bäckelie, and the evocative “Decadence.” These tracks, in their own subtle ways, have contributed significantly to the forging of this project’s identity and the ongoing evolution of my signature sound. 

As you continue your musical journey, what can we look forward to from SHMN in the future?

“The future is set to crescendo with innovation and creativity.”

In the upcoming year, I’m eagerly anticipating the release of my new EP, set to drop on Edu Imbernon’s renowned label, Fayer. This musical venture will feature a dynamic duo of emotionally-charged original vocal tracks, complemented by the creative wizardry of  celebrated artists within the melodic genre, who are crafting powerful remixes to electrify  the senses. Moreover, I’m in the throes of crafting the final installment in a trilogy that took root during the creation of this album. My goal? To cement my own unique sonic footprint and pave the way for a music collective or label dedicated to nurturing and championing emerging talents in the industry. As an exciting twist, I’m poised to incorporate my own vocal prowess and songwriting skills into the musical tapestry, an aspect I’ve been diligently honing over the past couple of years. The future is set to crescendo with innovation and creativity.