In the approaching (10 and counting!) days to Sonic Eclectic’s first music festival, SEV Fest, we are going to bring the fresh faces of our delicately curated line-up straight to you guys. First on deck for our Artist Series is our DJ for the day, Arsenal Sound of Queens, NY.
The Brooklyn native is relatively fresh on the music scene, but his up-and-comer status shouldn’t hinder you. He has some amazing sets on Soundcloud for your listening pleasure, his specialty being House mixes (Cruel Summer is my personal favorite), but don’t put him in a box just yet. He plays for many different crowds, starting from private parties of with doo-wop tunes to Silent Discos smack dab in the heart of New York City where the EDM scene is live and fresh.
With his music, Arsenal wants to convey an air of originality and ultimately a feel-good vibe. Not only does he want to be remembered for his new and exciting sets, but also how the music made an audience feel. He personally speaks to all of his clients so he can get an understanding for what the audience is coming out to hear, and can definitely mold to any sound. His influences include artists-turned-producers: such as David Guetta, Calvin Harris, etc., but he also is deep into the Rock scene, favoring Rage Against the Machine, Slipknot, and Ozzy Osborne among many.
Having traveled and lived in a variety of areas among the North American continent, he can extract particular influences of his current sound from places such as Canada, Florida, New Jersey, and New York City. Music has always been in his life because of travel and family, and as a result of this he has a deep connection with the art medium. In the same vein, being a DJ almost wasn’t a decision. “I feel like I fell into it, and kind of became a DJ by accident; it almost came naturally to me. I didn’t [and still don’t] want to do what everyone else does, so I grew up listening to everything: Rock, Hip-Hop… I’m Guyanese, so naturally I was surrounded by Soca and Reggae. People would often take my iPod at parties to listen to all my different genres, and eventually a friend said ‘Hey man, if people use your music to play at parties instead of hiring somebody to mix, I feel like that means something.. Why don’t you become a DJ?’”
Ever since that point, Arsenal has been working with a mentor who taught him everything, booking any gig he can find, and in his down time he practices and is constantly creating new content to hone his craft, true to his stage name.
He calls himself Arsenal Sound because of the suggestion of another friend, who one day was listening to him spin, and being blown away by what he heard, he mentioned that Arsenal definitely had an “arsenal of sound” behind him. Arsenal finds this name fitting because it’s descriptive in his many choices of genres he can choose from to mix and it’s also a refreshing change from the typical “DJ Insert-Name-Here” stage names. The talented DJ has a strong desire to be original in his life that shines through to his mixes and beyond.
When I asked if there’s a genre he particularly didn’t like, he simply said: “I don’t like playing what everyone else is playing. I don’t want to fit in to one style of music or one category or be a ‘type of DJ.’ My goal is to definitely be diverse and have people say, ‘Wow, this guy can play anything.’ [One of my goals is] I want to get to a place where I can eventually play at Ultra, or EDC.”
Among his other goals, he aims to inspire. “I want not only to uplift people, but also inspire and motivate people to create music and a good vibe. There’s so much trash on the radio and people are making money from it. I don’t want to sound like a hater, but if people put out this low-quality music and get paid for it, and I come in and don’t have to fit a mold, that would be amazing; to know that I could inspire someone to start DJ ing and better this world with that.”
Arsenal concluded by saying he aims to have a different type of style. He aims to tie his own preferences of other genres such as rock into his mixes to keep things fresh and also to maintain his originality. “I’m not really impacted by whether everyone likes it or not, because you’re not going to please everyone, but as long as they listen.”
Arsenal is gaining momentum in his creative journey and hopes to come out with a full-length album, where every track will be applicable to a different genre, so he can best reach the most amount of people. Eventually he wants to elevate himself as a DJ, similar to Major Lazer and Diplo, and start producing beats and music for other artists, similar to the popular DJs on the scene today, as well as truly becoming his own artist and come out with his own songs. Let’s cross our fingers for that goal to happen sooner than later.
Arsenal is on Bandcamp, Soundcloud, and Instagram. If you’re interested in hearing his genius at work, make sure to stop by at the Ethical Humanist Society of Long Island, NY on August 29th! More articles on the way, let us know what you think of Arsenal!