After witnessing this guy play the live-streamed Monstercat showcase in Vancouver last month, I’d have never guessed that was only his second time ever playing in North America.
Alex Vlastaras, better known as Aero Chord, has relied on his impressive production skill and determination to get where he is today. With nine years of music under his belt, it’s been a rocky road but finally it’s starting to pay off, and he’s beginning to feel welcomed and supported in this cutthroat business.
What started off as an innocent interview, soon turned into over an hour and a half of talking about everything from his early stages, to his clothing line, to the music scene in his home country Greece and his upcoming North American tour.
So here we give you six reasons why if Aero Chord hasn’t been on your radar until now, you’re already losing.
I was an only child growing up, so I’m not used to teamwork, I didn’t have any friends either. So I wanted to do everything myself.
He’s not just another wannabe trap producer
“Originally I tried making trance, I love trance, but I was terrible at it. At the beginning of 2013, I started getting into more diverse styles. Out of the 128 BPM era and into dubstep. I discovered Knife Party, Skream, Skrillex and especially Pegboard Nerds. I’ll always be a fan of them. I love the sounds they make and they were the first to get me into the whole Monstercat thing so they are special to me.”
He’s incredibly honest about what he wants
“In June 2013 I got fed up with everything. I was in school for IT and I hated it. I was like fuck all of this, I’ll just try and make it big with music.”
“Everyday I’d go into the Monstercat room on Plug.DJ and queue to play my track. There were about 300 people in there everyday. My remix of Noisecontrollers and Showtek Get Loose was the first track of mine I ever played for anyone.”
He knows that if it’s going to happen, it’s up to him
“I was hustling everyday with emails, submitting to everything I could. No one was answering back then, since I had 100 followers. And I knew that would be the case but I powered on through because I knew my music was good. I’ve been a geek my whole life so sitting in my room making music alone was natural for me. I was pushing my tracks to blogs; I was adding people on Facebook, channel owners, blog owners, and other producers.
All this work I was doing myself. I was an only child growing up, so I’m not used to teamwork, I didn’t have any friends either. So I wanted to do everything myself. And when I started working with Monstercat that was the one thing I loved and hated at the same time, their sense of teamwork. I like when someone does the artwork or the marketing and you don’t have to worry about it. But on the other hand, I want to do stuff on my own. They really take care of me though, I feel like part of the team.”
His mentors include Skrillex, Diplo and Bro Safari
“Last March I was at home watching the Ultra live stream and suddenly Skrillex was playing BLVDE. I was trying to scream but it was like 2am and everyone in my house was sleeping. That was such a moment for me. Skrillex did something for me that no one else could do; he gave me that hype. He made me realize you have to build two aspects of your career; your live fan base that come to the shows and rage with you, and the Internet fan base and those aren’t always the same. The thing with BLVDE is it pushed me into the live aspect without me even knowing it.
Positivity is a huge thing for me. The more negative I’ve been in my life, the worse I am doing.
Soon I had Bro Safari asking me to remix his massive hit Scumbag. That came out a couple weeks ago.”
His positivity is a force to be reckoned with
“Positivity is a huge thing for me. The more negative I’ve been in my life, the worse I am doing. I had a lot of negative habits and feelings towards myself in general. I’ve been at the point where I’ve been so emotional about my music because I don’t think it’s good enough. It’s just my low self-esteem. Once I really worked on that I was able to see how well I was doing. Sure some tracks are better than others, but I’ve been able to shed that negativity from myself and my music.
I’ve always tried my best to keep my feelings about myself separate from my career, I knew if those started mixing the negativity would take over and wouldn’t help me. Now I can always use these emotions as inspiration and I use my music as an outlet for them, but back then I didn’t have as much control as I do now.
My major influences are trance and orchestral music though. I would love to score movies someday. The melodies and ideas you can get from that type of music is unparalleled. I also forced myself to learn music theory which has helped. It’s given me the tools I need to create what’s in my head.”
He’s headlining his own tour starting June 3
“My biggest accomplishment this year is my tour in June. I never thought I’d have a tour this quick! Suddenly I’m seeing my own tour flyer and I’m like holy shit this is happening. It feels like a dream. This is what has been missing in my life for a very long time, the feeling of belonging somewhere. Feeling part of a community and just working my ass off.”