Julian Lamadrid Talks about his new album, "Rebels of the Neon God"
The Mexican artist brings a refreshingly global perspective to his craft, culminating in an infectious blend of new wave, bedroom-pop and British rock.
How has the last year changed you, both as a creator and as a person?
I guess the things I want and desire have become a lot clearer. In the past, I attempted to balance the line between relevance and artistic integrity. But I have found that I mostly care about artistic expression, risk taking and growth above all else, so I’ve gone further into my own aesthetic biases and sonic impulses.
What has been the biggest moment of your life so far?
Probably being signed to a record label, that first deal changed my life forever. I was finally given the economic opportunity to be free, to focus on art, to go deeper inwards, and to create. It has been a blessing. People give record labels a hard time, and I’m no different in that regard, but nothing can change the fact that as a struggling artist a record deal is everything. Absolutely life changing.
What’s one thing you hope never changes?
I hope we are always able to dance, eat and talk with one another in a real physical space. All this talk about the meta-verse is exciting and yet it also leaves me feeling a little empty and worried. We can’t lose touch.
What does it mean to be a creator in today’s world?
My definition is probably a lot different to the majority of the “creatives” of our time. Even the word “creator” makes me uncomfortable. Most would probably say being a creator is about standing up for what you believe in, tackling cultural and social issues, fighting for what's right etc, and that’s all great, but it misses the mark for me. I think that to be a creator in this world, you simply have to not pay attention to all the noise. Do whatever you want. Make whatever you want, even for no reason at all. Creators and artists can be very pompous at times, particularly now. If you clean toilets you’re a creator, you are creating cleaner toilets. If you’re a construction worker putting up scaffolding, you are a creator. Same goes to most professions and people, we are all creators. Just go out there and do something… anything.
What inspired you to create your 'Rebel Universe' NFT?
I wanted to be the first artist to create a virtual city for my conceptual record. I wanted the album to transcend sonics and become a habitable, three dimensional space. NFTs are great, but without any utility it seemed pointless. So by utilizing NFTs I was able to create keys into my own meta-verse. Art for art's sake. In the Rebels Universe there is a club that plays unreleased tracks and remixes I’ve made, there is a museum that reflects on the years I’ve spent making music and art. It’s all very touching and personal, and within the blockchain it can live on eternally.
Which concert location were you most excited to play on tour and why?
I was really excited to play in Austin. I had heard so many great things about Austin and have been really curious to visit since I saw Terrence Malick’s film ‘Song To Song’. I was only there for about 2 days but it really felt great. I’m excited to visit again soon.
Listen to Rebels of the Neon God out now on Spotify and all streaming platforms. Make sure to follow Julian Lamadrid on Instagram to stay up to date.