WPGM Commentary: ARTAN On The Making Of His New EP ‘Scattered Thoughts’

My name is ARTAN. I’m from North London and went into making this project because I knew that I was going to be making music in lockdown. I was in a really weird space, If I’m honest. Like everyone else I’d never really experienced anything like this.

I wanted to go into it with a positive mindset, lift people up and give them something happy to distract them from the current situation but the reality for me is that I can’t make music unless I’m being totally and utterly honest.

I lost my grandad to Corona about three months ago, my dad lost his job and a lot of other people around me lost their jobs and have found themselves in tricky situations. It made me think “why am I going to lie to myself?” and force myself to be in a state of mind that I’m not.

There’s so much going on I thought “you know what let’s touch on these aspects”. That’s why I came up with the whole Scattered Thoughts concept because there were a lot of different emotions I didn’t understand.

The things affecting me could be losing people, friends losing jobs or even small things like smoking too much and not being a good cook, like why have I never learnt?

So I wanted to encapsulate everything and all the emotions I experience over lockdown and put them into a project that could not only help myself but help other people to not feel like they’re such a “weirdo”. It’s important to know other people are also going through things and to know that “it’s ok to not be ok”.

The reason this project is close to me, is that I spent a lot of time with my close friend: Kilo Victor, he’s the producer on a few of the tracks on the EP.

We were both in the same mindset while making the songs. We kept trying to make happy songs, trying and trying but it didn’t really work. We did Zoom sessions and he would send over beat after beat but as much as I wanted to make feel-good music it just didn’t come out.

He is a guitarist and because of that resonates with a lot of rock especially noughties rock where people often express their emotions, so we then tried to incorporate that into the music.
Because he’s a close friend we were able to connect on a personal level and really try to give ourselves the best tools to express ourselves. I’m happy with what we achieved.

The actual process itself took four months from February to May. I had to edit it down because some of the songs didn’t feel like they fit the times or narrative of the project.

Each song had to fit a certain time and in lockdown people need certain things and so I kept the songs that worked for that. It took a month or two to decide if I wanted to release in the middle of lockdown because I didn’t know where people’s heads were at.

What made me eventually decide to release was the honesty I need to have in my music. I was thinking back and forth wondering if anyone was paying attention. That was my “scattered thoughts”, my anxiety, when really and truly I should just release music because that’s how I was feeling right then.

This is all part of my journey, there may never be another lockdown so I wanted this project to represent how I was feeling at this time so it’s included as part of my journey basically.

The only problem with making songs about how I’m feeling at a specific time is it depends on other people and how they are feeling whether they want a depressing tune in summer for example.

There are two sides to my music, to have people connect to what I’m going through or the other side which is making music people will just enjoy. It’s all about timing, there’s a time and place. There are some songs I didn’t release for ages because it wasn’t right for the time. But generally when it feels right, it’s right and I put it out into the world.

What really sets Scattered Thoughts apart from my other music is the production. I’m being a lot more melodic and improving my music theory. I’ve never had any musical education so for me this is all a learning curve and if i’m honest I don’t understand what’s improved until I release and then look back. All I want to do is release music that grows as I grow in life.

Listen to Scattered Thoughts below!

Words by ARTAN // Follow him on Twitter + Instagram

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