Long wait over for latest Nozuka album
Justin Nozuka says he needed four years to learn more about music production and find the sound he was looking for. (PHOTO SUBMITTED)
Four years since his last album, Justin Nozuka returns with Ulysees. Joe Leary spent 24 Seconds with the insightful Canadian singer/songwriter.
24: As you tour across the country are there any cities that you particularly enjoy returning to and do you find certain vibes with certain places?
JN: Certainly. We’ve been looking forward to Vancouver. I think every city has its own culture and you certainly get a sense of it after the show, especially if I’m meeting people. Even just driving around the city you can see different landscapes and the way the city is set up. I’m sure it all has an effect on the culture.
24: This album was four years in waiting. That’s a long time in the music business.
JN: I think the way that it kind of played out was that after I toured for the second album, I took a bit of a break. I had been working with different producers and writing, but I wasn’t really content with the stuff that I was doing. I ended up talking to a producer friend of mine and he said that I should get into production and do it myself. It took about a year for me to learn the technical aspects of how to build vertically and horizontally and all that stuff. Then the creative process of this album took a few years to complete.
24: It took that long before it got to the point where you were where you wanted to be?
JN: It was like, yes — OK — we have a clear direction. It became a lot clearer within the last three months.
24: Even prior to this release, as an artist you certainly had input into the production of your material.
JN: I think it was always very abstract because I knew what kind of music I enjoy listening to, but I didn’t know what I was going to do with my own sound. I think that’s why I took such a long time for this album because I was fleshing out all these ideas. I knew I had something I wanted to express, but it became clearer along the years.
24: When you are on the verge of releasing material that your fan base don’t really know, is that somewhat nerve-racking or do you feed off the fact you’re rolling out new music?
JN: It certainly is nice when people know the songs. If they don’t know it, it’s also kind of nice to see them experience it for the first time. Sometimes I think it can be challenging, but I think people do enjoy older stuff because they’ve been with it longer. We’ve had a good response with the new material on this tour though.
24: What kind of music do you listen to currently?
JN: I always go back to classical music. That’s kind of been a recent discovery for me, but I find it soothing. I really enjoy it and find the compositions are so dynamic. I’m not really used to listening to that kind of music, but it’s just so vast. I’ve been going back to pianists playing Beethoven, Chopin or Debussy.
24: I find it unusual that you follow no one on Twitter.
JN: At this point, the way that we’ve been using Twitter is kind of as an informative tool to just let people know when the shows are happening and when things are released. It’s strictly an informative platform that we use it for. It’s not really a personal thing. I’d rather just keep it about the project and the music.