Dark content, happy tune

By Chloë Williams, Columnist

For Tony Holsapple, a Towson University art education major, the songwriting process begins with an idea. He has a thought of a melody or rhythm, and tries to “get it out as soon as possible.” Since his music is made digitally through the use of different software, Holsapple is able to articulate his visions without having to touch a keyboard.

He currently has several songs on his SoundCloud account, created using GarageBand and Logic Pro, including his favorite, “Spielzeughaus,” which he describes as a happy hardcore song made by mixing “dark content with a happy tune.”

What makes Holsapple’s music unique is his use of different aliases to release music through three types of genres. His first alias is called CHLOE, which he describes as containing “trans and happy hardcore.” Holsapple describes this genre as a square-based style using sawtooth sounds, and enjoys creating happy hardcore music because, “you just respect it for all the carefree and distracting sounds that come from it.”

He envisions happy hardcore as something that may be a little cheesy, but a style that you can laugh at despite hard beats. His trans genre is explained by Holsapple as atmospheric music designed to “put you in a trance,” but still make you move.

Euroyote is Holsapple’s second alias, which he uses for his standard Eurodance music. This style includes electronic dance music that pulls inspiration from the ’90s. In this genre, listeners will find driving bassdrums, mostly female vocals, and synthesizers that make the music go “every which way.”

“In the age of the ’90s there was a need to remix everything,” said Holsapple. “I think you’ll see that in my music.”

Holsapple’s final alias is STRAVINSKY PROJECT, showcasing his covers of Russian classical music, as well as his hardcore rave and remixes.

“I was always a fan of ‘Fantasia,’” said Holsapple “That’s what influences my interest in classical music the most.”

In this very original style of music, he transforms classical music, like the works of Stravinsky, and turns them into electronic remixes. He recalls one of his favorite songs from the film “Fantasia” entitled “The Rite of Spring.” Intrigued by the scientific and brutally realistic visuals that accompanied the song, Holsapple found inspiration for his song, “Rave of Spring.”

Along with “Fantasia,” Holsapple gathers innovative vision from “Dance Dance Revolution.” Many artists featured in the game use aliases to release their music, drawing Holsapple in to the idea. When playing “Dance Dance Revolution” or listening to its soundtrack, he analyzes song length and style, using these factors as inspiration for his own music. He also uses the online resource, Zoundshine, in order to locate ’90s happy and hardcore music to enjoy.

On his SoundCloud account, Holsapple has created some of the artwork that accompanies his music. These images are extremely bright and colorful, as Holsapple uses “Dance Dance Revolution” as an inspiration for his art as well. He also researches ’90s CD covers in order to emulate those distinctive styles.

Holsapple said his favorite part of the music-making process is “raving to my own tracks.”

He claims that the best part of song creation is finally enjoying the finished product. However, Holsapple said new ideas can arise at any time and sometimes he finds a desire to modify songs after he thought they had been completed.

Holsapple explained that his music-making software makes it easy to try out new instrument sounds or audio choices that might work better than what he had designed originally.

Holsapple has big plans for his music, hoping to release an EP or  a full-length album on bandcamp.com. He is also looking to try out music in the “jungle” style, which he describes as having heavy bass and drums with minimal synthesizers. Holsapple is intrigued by jungle-style music because he envisions it as “stylized combating visualized in a soundtrack.”

He also hopes to expand his solo projects and collaborate with other artists and vocalists. You can check out Holsapple’s music and follow his musical journey at www.soundcloud.com/tonyakita.

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