Interview with dubstep producer Trollphace
Trollphace has gone from relative obscurity to man of the moment in a matter of months. He’s the new phace of dubstep and you’re going to be hearing a lot more from him in the months and years to come. Then largely unknown, Trollphace’s no-nonsense approach to dubstep caught the attention of OWSLA head honco Skrillex, who gave Trollphace props during a Reddit AMA. That namedrop was all it took to get the ball rolling. Within 24 hours, Trollphace had clocked up an extra 100,000+ listens on his Soundcloud.
But that was only the beginning. Fast forward to the Ultra Music Festival this past March. Skrillex and Diplo were tearing shit up on the main stage under their Jack U monicker when who should appear on stage with them for a brief cameo but Trollphace, right in time to see the crowd go nuts to his tune Vengeance like a B0:55. It was another standout moment for a young chap who had been through a rough time in recent years. It’s not an exaggeration to say that music saved his life. Thankfully those times are firmly behind him and with support from Skrillex and co, Trollphace is set for big things.
So who’s the man behind the beard? We decided to find out.
It’s been a hectic few months now since that big namedrop on the Reddit AMA. How’s the journey been?
It most defiantly has been hectic, that’s for sure. The journey has been out-of-this-world insane, and a lot to process. Highlights would have to be the feedback I’ve received from the fans and community on all the stuff going on, how receptive most have been, how funny people assuming I’m not going to maintain my sound is (my friends and I get a pretty big kick out of that), and being asked to remix David Heartbreak’s music. That was a fun challenge!
Rebel remix is sounding sick. How did that come about and do you have any other big remixes in the pipeline?
Thank you! It’s funny because that remix was quite a process. At first I was approached to take a really dark approach to it, a lot like my track Throats, but it just didn’t work. So we thought maybe a wonky approach like my track Vengeance like a B0:55 (along with my boo thang JUJU) – and instantly it worked. It was a great challenge for me, and I put more effort into that track than anything I’ve ever done in my life, and I love the the way it came out. I don’t have any other remixes really lined up that I can discuss, mainly because if I don’t pull it off I don’t want to get hopes up, but there are some projects.
What was the most memorable story from your time in Miami?
Besides the stage appearance, which I had no idea was going to happen until it happened, and standing next to Lil Jon while my song played full of his vocals and how intense that was, and how unbelievably humbling hanging out with Sonny and the OWSLA crew was, I’d have to say my most memorable story would have to be how amazing my team down there was when all this went down.
My BFF Rekoil, my manager Lee Glaister of Phase, his crew, my crew, we all watched and experienced this happening together. Lots of smiles, tears of joy, things like that. I never once felt a vibe of negativity, and everyone was so happy for me, that I finally felt like everything had finally been set in place for something like this to happen. It was an incredible bonding experience for our family of artists and managers.
It sounds like the past few months have really given you an opportunity to turn your life around for the better. Are there hints of those dark times in your music?
Ahaaaa…. ya. Every track I’ve written has been a direct result of an incident in my life. Most of which were negative. While its hard to be as pissed off these days, given what has happened and is happening, its been kinda challenging for me to write pissed off sounding tracks!
But now that I’m not venting negativity through speakers anymore, I’ve had a lot more patience inside of my DAW and with my studio time. Songs that I would normally try to bust out in a day or two are now taking weeks and weeks and weeks to do, which has really given me the ability to really define my sound and get a lot better at technical aspects and song writing. There will always be hints of the dark times though, I believe thats what gives me my aggressive bass line patterns and straight to the point drops
Haters gonna hate. What do you say now to all those people who have given you a hard time getting to where you are today?
LOL. What can you say to haters other than, thanks for fuelling me to become what I’ve become, and thanks for keeping me in your thoughts as you type your bullshit behind your social media shield?
You’ve signed a contract with OWSLA now. So… what can we expect in the next 12 months?
I actually like that you addressed this, because I feel like my post on my fan page was misunderstood by a lot of people. I didn’t sign a contract making me a full time exclusive OWSLA artist, I was just stating that I signed the contract for the Rebel remix, which is still huge for me. However, I have been green-lit for an album, and it will take a very very long time to complete, but I have them pushing me to do it so I guess you can say, expect an album! I don’t really assume that things are a done deal till its on Beatport.
What is a typical Trollphace DJ set like?
I go up there and play what I would want to hear if I was in the crowd. Mostly robo-butt-fuckery. relentless drop after drop transitions as well as three to four deck full-time double and triple dropping. Coming from metal I believe in and take a lot of pride in my energy on stage, and crowd interactions. I will scream into a microphone that if the crowd doesn’t move, I will come down and make them move. It happens all the time, and they love it.
Sometimes it doesn’t work out though, like the time I slipped on the dance floor with the mic after starting a pit and busted my ass mid set. That was funny as fuck. After I’ve exhausted my crowds with a barrage of heavy hitter thrasher tunes that all my homies make (Rekoil, Getter, Funtcase, Algo, Aweminus, JPhelpz to name a few) I will tell the crowd they are a bunch of pussies for standing still and it gets them all riled up again. My boys and I throw down the most violent sets in the game, and we’re just getting started.
Any plans to come over and visit us here in the UK to share the love?
Yes, very soon…
Are you dubstep 4 life or are there other genres you’re interested in that you’d be keen to explore with your producing?
Fuck no. I love all kinds of music so I couldn’t limit myself, but figuring out how to incorporate my love for soft pussy shit and brutal skull fucking sounds without pissing my fan base off has been the most fun challenge of my career. Its a lot of fun. Makes me sad though when people say, “Just change your style if you want, your true fans will appreciate it.” But I say fuck that. Usually with the analogy of “what if coca-cola changed its flavoor on you?”
I remember every time an artist really liked upped and changed his shit dramatically with no warning or prior subtle incorporation used to really piss me off. So I don’t want to do that to my fans, because they don’t deserve bullshit. They are my everything. So its a slow process, but so worth it.
If there’s one tune, by yourself or someone else, that best sums up the Trollphace ethos, what would it be?
Within the Ruins – Invade
Thanks for taking the time with this. Any final words for the fans in the UK?
The UK is where my fan base originated because of my first signings being to my baes CHRONOS RECORDS, I love my UK following and always have. What I have to say to them though, is check my boos REKOIL, GETTER, D-JAHSTA, TWINE, AWEMINUS. SNAILS AND ALGORYTHM (ALGO)!