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Interview: Savant
On the electronic scene, his musical message, and more

The definition of “savant” according to Dictionary.com is, “a person of profound or extensive learning or learned scholar.”  The Norwegian producer, Aleksander Vinter, aka Savant, fits that definition to a tee. He uses his  expansive knowledge of trance, techno, trap, and house to create a truly unique genre-bending blend of sounds.  In the past, Vinter has gone by many names: Vinter in Hollywood, Vinter in Vegas, Datakrash, Blanco, Megatron, to name just a few, but he seems to have found his stride as Savant, and is now well on his way to becoming a household name. Luckily for us, Joonbug had the privilege of asking this multi-facetted artist a couple of questions about the electronic scene, the message he would like to send through his music, and much, much more:

The EDM genre means a lot of things to many different people. What does the genre mean to you?

Nothing. It's not a genre, it's a buzzword. It's a generalization of several different genres of electronica. They are labels that people use to classify things, and I don't like that. People use genres as a niche, I don't want any of that. I want to push out of that. I find the current genres so boring, so I might as well call my music CDM then, Classical Dance Music.  As far as the cultural significance of the term, to me, it's how people coped with so many new sounds popping up at once, and marketing took hold of it and pushes it out front. As far as I'm concerned, none of this really affects me or what I do. If people want to call me a DJ when I'm a producer/composer, so be it.

Is there a certain message that you are trying to get across through your music?

Yes. I'm trying to show humility by showing people as much as possible of my art. Good or bad. Through Savant, I've seen how it affects some people for the better, I want to show them that there is no need to compete and to be themselves. Ultimately, I want to tell stories and make music that they can listen to as much as dance to. I want them to feel it both in their brains and bodies. I want to inspire people with a different kind of theme that isn't typical of the “scene” to show them that they don't have to conform to the norms of belonging.  As for other producers, I want to show them not to be scared to fail and  to just put themselves out there.

What's the meaning of the mask that you wear?

At first it was to generate a sense of mystery and let my fans imagine what's happening behind that. But, it also has to do with what that mask symbolizes. Revolution, not conforming. The Guy Fawkes mask in part is a cultural meme at this point. It brings everyone down to the same level. It helps us fight fear, and the mask does that for me too.That visual will evolve as I do into my own, but right now it just fits.

Which song of yours is your favorite?

It's irrelevant to me. I don't look back on my music. I'm looking forward as far as I can. My favorite song is the one I haven't made yet. It's the carrot I use to keep creating. As soon as I have a favorite song, it's over.

If you could tour with anyone, who would it be?

I have two: Skrillex. I think he really believes what he represents and is doing a lot to foster the community in the scene. Those are my roots, so I think it would be amazing to share some time together. The other is Dimmu Borgir, look them up and you will know why.

What should people expect when they see Savant live?

Never the same thing. It's what I am feeling and experiencing at the moment. And, I always look forward to hanging out with my fans. I don't care if there are 1,000 people waiting for me outside after a gig, I want to hug them all.

What is your preferred performance space: small clubs or large venues? Why?

I want to play for as many people as possible and where that happens doesn't matter to me. I do prefer the concert format because I play mostly my own music. I am not a DJ.

You seem to always be working on new and exciting projects. What's next?
Following up Cult, which was a darker diary of what I was experiencing in the first half of this year. Next album I want to be brighter, I want to hear angels singing on it. Happier. Expect this to happen before the year is up.