Independent Artist of the Week: Chonzu

April 10th 2024

  • Chonzu :: Interview with Ify

Chonzu’s bio describes him as a “20 yr old artist/producer from Eora/Sydney creating bubbly electronic music.” And that’s one way of looking at it I guess. But our Independent Artist of the Week seems to be more in the business of leading guided tours through alterterranean sonic landscapes. His latest mixtape Echo Reality is a warm blend of ambient, dreamhop, and trance. While cumulatively only a relatively short runtime of 21 minutes, each of the 10 tracks is a satisfying micro snapshot of his curious electronic-yet-natural landscape. Chonzu joined Ify on Up For It to tell us all about it.

The Echo Reality mixtape was a result of almost a year and a half of experimentation. Chonzu took a deliberately refreshed approach to his production style, moving away from samples to focus on creating his own percussion.

“Some of the songs even have, like, analogue synthesisers on them, which is new for me.”

The resulting music is rich and warm. Listening through the mixtape a couple times I felt as if I was meandering through a secret alien garden filled with sun-filled bass, playful synths and carefully placed percussive clicks and zips. It sounds like sitting in a room full of Animal Crossing gyroids, but better.

“Even if I’m not releasing anything, I’ll happily just not release anything for two years and make a million songs and keep them all to myself. It’s just what I like spending my free time on.”

Turning outward, Chonzu’s music fits into a local scene that is more focused on ethos and community than the constraints of genre. Similar to the way hyperp*p spawned a “scene” of artists as opposed to a specific genre (clank snare notwithstanding), this micro-scene is built on local connections and friendships between a new generation of creators. It’s an ever expanding web of “prod. by”s and “feat.”s.

“It’s hard to say what exact scene I would be in, because I feel like it’s broadening and all becoming this kind of big scene soup.”

The young artist has been collaborating with and playing shows alongside some notable FBi faves including Sidney Phillips and lil ket, EKO ATARI, and Mayke. It’s a promising start for both Chonzu and his peers, in a scene which will hopefully continue to blossom just like the sunny sonic landscapes of Echo Reality.

Catch Chonzu performing at an upcoming show at Lazy Thinking Record Store on April 28, tickets tba. In the meantime, buy/stream his new mixtape on Bandcamp below.


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