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Synth journeys and Sci-Fi inspirations: A chat with Dmitry Larionov

Hailing from Voronezh, southwest Russia, Larionov finds inspiration in the golden age of electro, paying tribute to iconic labels like Underground Resistance and International Deejay Gigolo. His unique analog sound, crafted with Roland SH-101, Juno-106, and JV2080 synthesizers, captures the essence of raw, modulated melodies, and sci-fi atmospheres.

Photo credit: Larionov – Facebook

In a world where sound becomes his medium, Dmitry Larionov takes us on a captivating journey through his latest release, ‘I Want To Believe’ With a spectrum of electronic tracks that push the boundaries of creativity, the artist combines vibrant melodies and deep basslines to create a shimmering dawn of sonic exploration.

Larionov’s album goes beyond sound, incorporating the famous Billy Meier UFO story contact pics in its artwork. Inspired by sci-fi movies and encounters with extraterrestrial beings, he invites listeners to embrace the unknown and embark on a journey across space and time.

EG had the opportunity to catch up with Dmitry Larionov  to learn more about his latest release, as well as his future endeavors and projects.

EG: Hi, Dmitry! Welcome to EG. It’s a pleasure to have you here with us. How have you been? Where are you right now?

Larionov: Hi Electronic Groove! All is fine, thanks! I’m in Voronezh, southwest Russia with my family. My studio is based here too. It’s not far from Moscow and St. Petersburg, where we usually have gigs with my mates from Electro Music Coalition.

EG: Congratulations on the release of your album, ‘I Want To Believe’! You must be very excited to share this one. Can you tell us a bit about the inspiration and emotions that fuelled this project?

Larionov: Thanks! Yes, I’m very excited about this release. It took almost three years to get it out. Most of the tracks I wrote in 2020 and signed the release with Ian Harry Hall. And then the pandemic hits. All these things with pressing plant delays are started to happen. And now we are here… but it was worth the wait, I’m sure!

As for inspiration, there are synthesizers, always. I used Roland SH-101, Juno-106, and JV2080 in this release. Specific vintage Rompler’s sound associated with Italo disco in my mind on the one hand, and the analog SH-101 on the other hand invited me to the bass-heavy electro journey. Also, I’ve been inspired by sci-fi movies about extraterrestrials and UFOs. You can hear Mulder and Scully’s voices sampled in some tracks for example. We are so grateful to have official permission to use the famous Billy Meier UFO story contact pics for the cover as well.

EG: You’ve been known for your distinctive analog sound that pays homage to the golden age of electro. Can you tell us what drew you to this style of electronic music?

Larionov: I grew up on the music of Underground Resistance and International Deejay Gigolo. My first vinyl records were from those labels. I like modulations in music, as well as some sci-fi atmosphere and melodic elements, which are very important too. Music should be not overproduced, sometimes raw and a bit crazy! And electro as a genre just has it all. I use my limited studio possibilities to get maximum results. Limitation is the key. In the tracks of ‘Drexciya’, for example, you will find only a few synth lines, but they are involved in an interesting way during the track. This kind of minimalism is where I’m going.

EG: Your album features a diverse range of tracks, each with its own unique character. Can you give us some insight behind the different songs and the emotions you aimed to convey with them?

Larionov: I always try to convey through music what I feel at the moment. And every time I start a new track, I try not to be tied to a particular label or sound… Then, when I have a few of them ready, I try to compile different tracks for release and show them to the label.

“Music should be not overproduced, sometimes raw and a bit crazy!”

EG: ‘Morning Lite’ is the opening track on the album. Could you describe the musical elements and ideas that shaped this bright and melodic piece?

Larionov: ‘Morning Lite’ was the first track I recorded using 2080 and it was based on the ‘Morning Lite’ preset, started with an arpeggio, and then I discovered the harmony. When the track was ready I checked it on the dancefloor during my DJ sets many times and it always works — so it’s a great opener for an A-side.

EG: ‘Across The Sky’ has a distinct aquatic and soulful feel. What do you hope listeners take away from it?

Larionov: This track was started from the sample ‘Moving Across The Sky’  cut from some YouTube video, where people were watching UFOs in the sky. I had a drum loop and immediately started to build up the atmosphere with Juno pads. It’s a kind of soundtrack for an object drifting in the sky…

EG: ‘Eternal Twilight’ is known for its bold synth stabs and rasping rhythms. Can you tell us about the creative process that brought this track to life?

Larionov: This track has a darker atmosphere and a more dancefloor-oriented vibe. I’ve started it on Juno and then added some modulated bass, synth-choir, and the TR-808, of course.

EG: By the way, ‘I Want to Believe’ is out via Scottish label Schrödinger’s Box. What was the process of working with them on the album like? Why did you decide to go with Schrödinger’s Box? What do you usually look for in a label?

Larionov: Hard Ton liked my track ‘Never Forever’ and asked me to remix one of their tracks from an album on Schrödinger’s Box. At that time I already knew the label and played a lot of releases in my sets. So we started to communicate with Ian Harry Hall and I have shown my demos to him. He is also a big fan of extraterrestrials so we have much in common.

“Limitation is the key”

EG: “Although sound is his medium, what is seen is central to Larionov’s new 12” can be read on the description for the album. In which ways can one find “what is seen” on ‘I Want to Believe’?

Larionov: Do you remember ‘The X-Files’ series? There is a scene in Fox Mulder’s office with a picture of Billy Meier’s ‘I Want to Believe’ — that’s what I had on mind when recorded this EP.

EG: Your album concludes with ‘Space and Time’, which has a future-gazing quality. Could you share your vision for this track and how it fits into the overall narrative of the album?

Larionov: This one was recorded later than the others. I already had the base of the track and couldn’t finish it. At the same time, I was experimenting with vocoders and finally found this phrase, which perfectly matches the sci-fi idea of the album “without any boundaries of the mind, across space and time”.

EG: Finally, can you provide some insights into what’s next for Larionov and how fans can keep up with your latest updates?

Larionov: My release schedule currently looks like this: an EP for Central Processing Unit, an EP for Electro Music Coalition, VA on Artificial Intelligence, and a bunch of remixes for different labels. You can follow my latest updates via Facebook or Instagram.

EG: Thank you so much for your time, Dmitry! We wish you all the best for the future. Take care!

Larionov: Thank You! Bye!

Larionov’s ‘I Want to Believe’ is out now via Schrödinger’s Box. Stream and download here.

Follow Larionov: Spotify | Soundcloud | Instagram

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