After enduring life’s crashing waves, Songwriter and Producer Aaron Kennedy resurfaces from the deep cold water to bring to life Boxtrod.
It is a project that was born in the process of its own making. Boxtrod is a unique blend of natural and unnatural sounds. The personal meanings and emotions behind this track bring in symbolic and clashing influences of folk, electronic, and ambient music.
The first collection of tracks released by Boxtrod is titled, “Ascension Poetry”, and was recorded at a studio outside El Paso, Texas. This project documents the process of shedding and growth through songs about loss, rebirth, fear of death, and ultimately a path away from an old self.
The feature track from this collection “Feevr”, is a dynamic 4-minute journey. The electronic atmosphere draws in the listener and as it builds throughout the entire song, it keeps the listeners engaged and craving more. The ambient space created within the track gives the listener the space to think deeper about the overall song's message and meaning.
A powerful message about the fear of death or lack thereof. The many unique production elements will make you want to play it over again. Boxtrod believes that the path forward is ever-evolving. “Feevr” is unique and original and we are excited to follow Boxtrod on their creative journey.
We loved listening to "Feevr"! What was the inspiration behind writing this track with such a deep message?
The idea for this song started on the thoughts surrounding what you leave for those around you after you die. For me, thinking about what happens or where you go is boring. I think fostering what you can while you are alive is most important. I wanted to confront those feelings in this song, and it’s sort of a pillar for me to remember that what’s happening now and the people you’re with are much more important than worrying about what will happen after this all ends.
This track is so unique and fits well with the others on this collection. How would you describe your creative process on this track? What was it like bringing it to life through the production? Has the song changed significantly from the original version?
The path from beginning to end on this one was very strange honestly. Some songs start with a message, and I know what I want to say and how to say it. Others will start with some production ideas, and that will inspire the message of the song. For me, experimentation is paramount and this song started with the drumbeat and that autotune vocal. The vocal loop was a series of autotuned vocals that I set up in Ableton and was modulating the pitch in different ways to make the melody. It stayed there for a while, and because I liked the feeling of it, I kept coming back to it to see what was left to find in it. Every once in a while I would have a breakthrough, and it would keep the song going. Eventually, a form started to reveal itself and that’s when the lyrics came in. I really like the juxtaposition of having a heavily autotuned vocal expressing deep human emotions. Often times autotuned vocals are associated with being nonhuman, or nonemotional, but I think that having “a robot” expressing these emotions has a deep impact. So the idea of addressing death, and getting over the fear of it with that in mind felt exciting. From the first day of coming up with that drum beat and the final version the song has gone through so many stages, I could never remember all of them.
We are loving the vibe of this track! Who were your musical inspirations when starting to get into music? Who are the creators that still inspire you?
I got into music when a lot of people do which is usually those early formative teenage years. My entry point was the blues and guitar-based music. Since then I’ve gone all over the map. I suppose a bit of those early inspirations play into this song, but I think I find myself tucked into the independent alternative songwriter feel more than anything. That said, it’s hard to assess what I do, while I do it… I think that’s for others to decide. For me, the people that inspire me the most are those who follow their intuition more than anything. For that, I think of bands like Radiohead, or James Blake even. But I find a lot of inspiration in non-musical creators too. Francis Mallman, who is a chef from Patagonia really inspires me because of his approach to his craft. Same with artists like Mark Rothko, or Willem De Kooning. They are forging their own path, and that’s really exciting to me.
There are so many unique elements within this track! Is there any production or lyrical elements within “Feevr” that you hope listeners will pick up on? Is there anything you would like people to take away from the listening experience?
If anything, I hope the song moves people, and that can connect with it in whatever way they do. That’s all I’m really looking for, the connection in some way. The production was a real journey for me, so I’m sure that if someone is listening who is into producing music, they will hear that journey. This song has a lot of iPhone voice memos tucked into it. One in particular is that piano at the end of the song.
What's next for you?
We have two new songs coming out on July 24, which I’m very excited about. It’s a little bit of an extension into new territory for Boxtrod. Some psychedelic western feelings. The current state of the world has obviously turned a lot upside down for just about everyone, and for artists and bands playing shows is pretty much at a standstill. So I’ve been using this time to write a lot and keep trying to find new zones for this project to live in.