Family is the most powerful f-word.
And for the brotherly duo of The Doppelgangerz, DJ Fariz and producer Fazrin, blood ties are the crucible in which its unrelentingly kinetic and infectious brand of dance music is forged. Besides their disparate skill sets and abilities, the brothers mine from the incredible proximity of their shared experiences to imbue their transmissions with an added emotional depth and scale. And it has been paying off, handsomely.
The duo has a formidable battery of club-ready tracks including cuts such as 'The Leap' and has shaken the stages at notable big ticket events such as the Siloso Beach Countdown Party 2017. This year, it clinched first place at Live Mix Maestro, the annual DJ competition for tertiary students held by Pioneer, and affirmed what it brought to the table emphatically.
To celebrate the release of the duo's recent EP Confessions, Bandwagon caught up with Fariz and Fazrin for a chat about their ongoing journey in music. Peep the interview below.
Congrats on Confessions. How does it feel to have your EP out in the world?
Fariz: Thank you! We’ve been working on this EP since late last year and it feels amazing to finally be able to share it with everyone!
What influenced the decision to have more tropical sounds on the EP?
Fazrin: Actually, I came up with the idea of making a chill EP because I wanted to listen to songs with lyrics that had deep meaning but were still easy to listen to. Somewhere along the way, my brother and I realised that we were making hard-hitting club songs like ‘Easy Come Easy Go’ and ‘Reverberations’ so we thought that it would be fun to experiment and create an EP that was easy to listen to.
The use of vocals is definitely a refreshing touch. How did you decide which singers to collaborate with? Were you also involved in the lyric-writing process?
Fariz: During the production process, we came across many different vocalists with different styles, so we hard time choosing the right vocals for our EP. The lyrics were done by the singers and we picked the vocals that made the most sense to us and crafted the tracks around them. At the end of the day, we want to release music with lyrics that people can relate to.
And in terms of your musicality and production, what’s changed the most for you since ‘The Leap?’
Fazrin: As the main producer for the duo, I feel like I’ve learnt a lot more about music production since our first release. What’s changed the most is that I am more willing to experiment with different production techniques and new sounds. Lately, we’ve been making tracks with vocals in them so we are constantly on the lookout for singers who can contribute to the vibe that we’re trying to create.
As DJs and producers, what keeps you inspired about making music?
Fazrin: Making music is just another way to express myself. I’m motivated to keep creating tracks because it keeps me happy and I enjoy making something out of nothing.
Fariz: Our goal has always been to travel the world and share our music with everyone. Strangely enough, for me, the fear of failure motivates me and keeps me inspired to keep grinding hard to achieve my goals. I really want Doppelgangerz to go on tour, one day, and in order for that to happen, we have to keep creating good music that people will hopefully enjoy.
What’s it like making music as brothers? Would you say the process is easier?
Fariz: I would say that its a little bit easier because my brother and I are on the same wavelength when it comes to music. It’s easy for us to collaborate and brainstorm ideas for new tracks. I have an ear for good music while Fazrin is more technically skilled at producing the tracks. Sometimes, when I think of a melody in my head, I would hum it to my brother and he’ll know exactly what sound I was thinking of. I guess the synergy that we have makes the production process a little easier!
How did it feel to win Live Mix Maestro this year? What was your biggest takeaway from the experience?
Fariz: It was surreal. I worked really hard to come out with my routines for the competition so I’m glad that things turned out the way it did. The biggest takeaway from the experience is that I’ve learnt that with hard work and determination, I can achieve anything that I set my mind to. I started off as a bedroom DJ and I didn’t have any kind of DJ training so winning the competition was kind of like my way of introducing myself to the industry.
What are your hopes for 2019?
Fazrin: To see Doppelgangerz playing more festivals and international gigs!