Hometown: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Latest Project: NEGATIVE
EKKSTACY’s music is full of mystique, but it could be a bit misleading if you read too deep into it. Three songs into his 2021 LP NEGATIVE sits a track called “it only gets worse, i promise.” In the 20-year-old’s case, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Since the release of the project back in November, the indie darling has cemented himself as a Pigeons & Planes favorite, a man on the road with a hit single in “i walk this earth all by myself,” and as he describes, someone who put down an Amazon vest to go all-in on a music career. And things seem to be working out pretty well.
His upward trajectory is only going to continue when fans hear what’s next. For now, however, they’ve got the 2021 project, a live EP of the same name, and dozens of black-and-white photos on his Instagram page to scroll through, for anyone looking to see a rockstar in the making. Plus, now his feed is in color, and with a new perspective, EKKSTACY is setting even bigger goals for himself this next year, like going platinum and ultimately taking over on his own terms. “This next year will be the best year of my life so far,” he tells us. “I still feel like I’m in the mud. I don’t feel important yet. I’m going to take over.”
Working with Mike Dean, executive producer of Pigeons & Planes’ upcoming See You Next Year compilation album, EKKSTACY explains, was “tight.” The synth maestro worked some of his magic on SYNY track “I Guess,” and putting finishing touches on it together only helped. “Mike Dean is tight, we got f**ked up and made that song,” EKKSTACY tells us. “I feel like everyone knows Mike Dean, he’s a legend.” As for what EKKSTACY has learned from Dean: “Stay geeked in the studio and you’ll make better music. That’s the rule.”
One could call EKKSTACY’s track “I Guess” a riff-heavy bright spot on See You Next Year, or the sonic-equivalent of taking a stroll in the park on the prettiest day of the year, before a thunderstorm of synths comes raining down right at the tail-end. But EKKSTACY prefers to keep things simple: “Well, it’s definitely a good song,” he says. “There’s not much to it.”
Before his new track drops and the global takeover continues, we caught up with EKKSTACY to talk about this year, last year, and the years that mean the most to him. Learn more about the See You Next Year compilation album and the other artists in the Class of ‘22 here. Pre-save the album here and listen to the first single, “Drive” by Fana Hues here.
What’s changed for you in the last year?
Everything has changed for me in the last year. I went from being a bum and working at Amazon to hanging out with models on tour counting money. I’m different now!!
What’s been the biggest lesson you’ve learned about yourself creatively in the last 12 months?
I still work best alone and with my friends. Studios aren’t for me. Although I did meet some producers in LA that I really like.
What’s been the biggest risk you’ve taken in the last year?
I used to be really scared of performing but I toured for months and months anyways. I guess that was a risk?
What do you hope these next 12 months mean for you and your career?
I want to see my name everywhere. I want to see my face everywhere. That’s all I really care about anymore.
What’s the biggest goal on your bucket list in the next year?
I don’t know. I don’t set goals but I’m tryna go platinum, though. I said I would love to move to Berlin in a few months, so that needs to happen.
Looking back, what was your favorite year ever and why?
2021 and 2022 have been my favorite years so far. I’m doing a lot of cool shit. It’s hard and it’s lonely and it’s a lot but it’s also a lot of fun.
What’s the biggest secret you’ve kept this year?
I don’t really keep secrets. I tell my friends everything. I guess Misery has been finished forever. I haven’t told anybody that.