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A sonic journey into ‘Nostalgia’ with Alex O’Rion

Alex O’Rion is a Dutch progressive house artist, renowned for his music on record labels such as Guy J’s Lost & Found, Hernan Cattaneo’s SUDBEAT, and several tracks on compilations by iconic brands like Global Underground.

Photo credit: Alex O’Rion – Official

‘Nostalgia’ is Alex O’Rion’s new album, inspired by classic music with a timeless sound. The album blends various music styles, fusing grooves, organic elements, and progressive melodies into a soulful journey filled with deep emotion. The album is now available through Alex O’Rion’s record label, Solis Records. Stream and download here.

In order to gain a deeper understanding of this new release, as well as to get a sneak peek into his other upcoming projects and endeavors, we have invited Alex for a comprehensive interview. This will provide us an opportunity to delve into the creative process behind his work and understand the inspiration and effort that goes into creating such impactful projects.

EG: Hi, Alex! Welcome to EG. It’s a pleasure to have you here with us. How have you been? What have you been up to?

Alex O’Rion: Hi there! Thank you for having me. I’ve been doing great, thank you for asking. Lately, I’ve been fully focused on the creative process, finishing my upcoming album, ‘Nostalgia’. It’s been quite the journey I must say.

EG: First of all, congratulations on the upcoming release of your new studio LP, ‘Nostalgia’! You must be very excited to share your latest record with everyone. What has the initial reception been like so far? What are some of your initial feelings?

Alex O’Rion: Yeah, I’m very excited to finally be able to share it with everybody else, and the reception has been great. I received so many nice messages from people saying they have not been looking forward to an album like this in years, which is so awesome and heartwarming to read, of course. Whereas my previous music was pretty much focused on the dance floor, this album is really for my listeners when they are at home or on the road. Similar to when I make music for my DJ sets, I now tried to picture that moment and strived for creating music that matches that setting.

EG: So, how did ‘Nostalgia’ come to be? What drove you to create this 14-track record now?

Alex O’Rion: At that time, I was releasing so many tracks and also primarily geared towards club nights and festivals. It often felt I was turning into a machine, which can have its perks, but after a while, I started craving for something else. When you’re aiming to create tracks that energise large crowds, there’s a tendency to focus on certain aspects of the production process, which can inadvertently stifle creativity. I really felt the need to break free from this cycle and reset myself creatively.

I wanted to approach music-making with a more open mind, allowing myself the freedom to explore new sounds and ideas without the constraints of what’s expected for the dance floor. I must say, it was incredibly liberating to experiment in this more unrestricted creative space. New ideas and tracks were popping out rapidly and I felt amazing, I was really flying. So that’s when the idea of doing an album quickly came to mind.

EG: And what’s the story behind ‘Nostalgia’? Is there a concept or thread connecting these works? What is ‘Nostalgia’ to you?

Alex O’Rion: As I get older, I often find myself craving the earlier days, particularly when it comes to music. I think that through the years, we’ve lost some soul in our music and I wanted to sort of revisit that sentiment again. I really tried to capture that feeling and let it out in most of the tracks.

“This album is really for my listeners when they are at home or on the road”

EG: What was the process of recording the LP like? For how long was ‘Nostalgia’ in the works? How did the process change you?

Alex O’Rion: I began working on the album in late 2022, dedicating myself to it on a daily basis. While I found the process liberating, being immersed in 14 projects simultaneously was undoubtedly stressful at times. However, the satisfaction of finally finishing the album outweighs any challenges encountered along the way.

EG: What would you like for listeners to take away from ‘Nostalgia’? What would you say is the ideal setting to listen to it?

Alex O’Rion: I prefer not to overthink what listeners should take away from ‘Nostalgia.’ Once the music is released, my role is complete, and it’s open to interpretation by each listener. Whether it uplifts someone during a low moment or sets the mood before they go out, I appreciate any connection they make with the music. There’s no manual for how music should affect people, and I think that’s the beauty of it.

EG: And ‘Nostalgia’ will be out via your newly founded Solis imprint. What else can we expect from Solis in the coming months? Is there anything you can anticipate on that front?

Alex O’Rion: We’ve already signed so many fantastic tracks for the coming months. I’m enjoying running the label a lot, and I’m so happy producers really seem to specifically select tracks that they think will suit the label. I think the label has developed a distinct identity, and I hope it’s positively inspiring other producers.

When I started the label, I made the commitment to myself to try to maintain the same level of quality and integrity that I’ve always tried to uphold, to avoid fillers, but only go for the special ones. If we don’t find tracks that meet our standards, we’re willing to pause our release schedule until we discover the right ones. Thanks to the great producers we’ve had on the label, we have been able to avoid these pauses, and the future is looking very promising.

EG: Let’s step outside of the studio for a bit… What are your thoughts on the current state of the music scene? Are these gigantic LED screens taking too much away from the music? What’s your take on the use of AI? Has any form of AI been used in ‘Nostalgia’?

Alex O’Rion: I don’t really concern myself with those matters. For me, when I’m performing, it’s all about connecting my music with the people on the dance floor and ensuring they have the best night possible. If giant LED screens help with this, then bring them on!

“There’s no manual for how music should affect people, and I think that’s the beauty of it”

EG: Finally, can you provide some insights into what’s next for Alex O’Rion? What can we expect from you in the coming months?

Alex O’Rion: After a period of more intimate music projects, I’m going to change my focus a bit and try to get those bangers out again. Back in machine mode!

EG: Thank you so much for your time, Alex! We wish you all the best for the future. See you on the dance floor!

Alex O’Rion: Yeah, thanks a lot for chatting! It was great to reflect and look ahead with you.

Alex O’Rion’s ‘Nostalgia’ is now available via Solis Records. Stream and download here.

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