ARDI is a sonic storyteller whose muse is a fusion between heavy, hard-hitting grooves, and edgy vocals that are similar to Ozzy Osbourne.
Keeping it true to what rock is capable of and created for, ARDI is sure to knock off your socks with each of his releases.
Since beginning as a drummer at the age of 18 and then learning singing, guitar, and bass, ARDI has performed alongside California icons that include Goat Rhythm, Rubberneck Lions, Siren, Space Panther, and many more.
Recently, ARDI released his gut-punching release “MIND MAZE” and it has us at the edge of our seats from start to end.
“MIND MAZE” opens up with an intense riff before completely exploding with energy in the verse. The combination of the heavy guitars, dynamite-like drums, and then ARDI’s epic vocals take us back to Woodstock '69 and we do not want it to stop.
ARDI tells us about being fueled by energy and freeing your mind to conquer your dreams within “MIND MAZE”. This positive energy when paired with the electrifying track makes for an inspiring tune that we cannot get enough of.
“MIND MAZE” is a brilliantly exciting tune to listen to and we cannot wait to hear what else is coming from this heavy rocker.
You can listen to “MIND MAZE” here.
Hey there ARDI! Your latest release “MIND MAZE” is FULL of high energy and power, how did you achieve this emotion? Was this something you wanted to strive for during the songwriting?
Thanks, I’m glad the energy translated! I’ve always been a fan of the riff first. A great riff through an amp turned up as loud as possible is pretty much what I go for as far as guitar. I apply this principle to every instrument. With vocals, I do my best to hit each note as hard as I can without blowing out my voice! YES! Ideally, my music strikes you with a heavy, energetic power while also wrapping you up in a warm and fuzzy rock n’ roll hug. It’s hard to explain, but I really want the listener to feel my music first, and hear it second.
Speaking of songwriting, knowing you know how to play the go-to instruments for a rock group, what does your typical writing process look like? Do you find yourself starting with one element and growing from there?
Around 80% of the time the process begins with me noodling around on the guitar and stumbling on the beginnings of a riff. If I create some sounds I like, I’ll start to develop that. Sometimes you get a good feeling about a riff and you just know it’s going to turn into more. There have also been times where I’ve started a song with a drum groove, which inspires a riff, and so on. My process definitely varies at times. If I get stuck in the process of structuring a song, I’ll do scratch vocals to help me figure out the melody. That will give me inspiration and direction to spawn the rest of the song.
Having played in a lot of bands with varying formations, I’ve been lucky to work on songwriting skills in many different ways. I’ve really been able to get to know my strengths and weaknesses and figure out my process. At this point, anytime I pick up an instrument I’m prepared to work on my memory skills in case I stumble into a sound I love. It also helps to have my phone handy in case I want to record it and put it in the vault for later use. You really never know when you’ll pull something out of the air with music!
We are absolutely loving the heavy tones in this, what was the whole recording and production process like for “MIND MAZE”?
Thank you very much! It’s definitely been a process. This (four-song) E.P. has been ruminating in my head for the last three or four years, so it feels really good to finally have them be fully formed songs. I recorded guitars first, in my room/studio when I was living in Ojai, CA. It’s been a bit of a labor of love, and with a full-time job, it wasn’t until a few months later that I was able to get all my recording stuff down to my other bands (Goat Rhythm) rehearsal space (shared with our buddies from Gygax) to at last record drums.
After three consecutive twelve-hour days (it took about five hours of running back and forth from the main room to the “control room” to get the levels on the drums right and a decent tone established) I had drum tracks done. I was on a good roll, so the next week I set my gear up back at my house again and recorded bass. A few weeks after that, amidst the global pandemic, I moved in with my sexy and supportive girlfriend and recorded vocals (she genuinely loved listening to that, so she says). Then I was able to get the mixing done for all the songs on the E.P. In the end, it took three rooms and a lot of gear moving around to get it recorded, but it was definitely worth it and a cool confidence-boosting experience!
Since playing with icons within Southern California, how do you feel you have grown as an artist and musician since then? Do you see yourself going in other directions for future releases?
I’ve definitely been lucky to have all the musical experiences I’ve had, they’ve really shaped me as an artist and taught me more about my own personal style and skill. Skill-wise, my guitar technique has tightened up and improved a lot. I’ve always considered myself a drummer since that was my first love, all other instruments were fun chores I had to do to create what I wanted to create. Playing bass in some bands really solidified that maybe I’m not just a drummer, which helped me to realize how much I truly love playing all of these instruments. My mixing/recording skills have gotten a lot better as well, this project forced me to learn so much more about EQ and how to get each instrument to sit well within the mix.
Being in bands and working with others is an amazing experience for a lot of reasons, but one takeaway is learning to understand how to service songs that others presented. It takes a certain ear to really be able to understand what direction and vision they have for that song, and how to add your part within their vision without overpowering it. It’s a fine balance of adding your flair, but also servicing the song to keep it in line with the original creator. It’s been cool to play in bands of so many styles and genres of music, it’s helped me to expand so much. His a solo project that has been an awesome practice in learning how to trust my gut instincts, as I’m fully in control. It’s helped me to gain a lot of confidence in my craft. I’ll always be creating, whether it’s in a band or by myself. I love playing different genres and exploring the world of music, but as far as my solo stuff goes, that will always be in the heavy, seventies, hard rock-influenced lane. That’s just where my heart is.
What else can we expect for 2020?
Over the next few months, I am going to release each song as a single on various streaming platforms, along with music videos. Once all four songs are released, I’ll have CD’s of the whole E.P. made. I’ve created artwork for each song, so I’m planning on getting shirts and stickers made of each design. Profits from the CD’s/shirts will go towards pressing the E.P. on vinyl unless I decide to work on a licensing deal with a label. I have four more songs in the works, so I’ll be developing those for the full length. This has always been the music in the back of my mind, so finally having it be a tangible thing I can bring to people’s ears was a huge goal of mine that I am so happy to have reached.