Aotearoa duo FOVOS and Sydney’s own HIJCKD recently came together in a big way on their collaborative Antipodean anthem “LET YOU KNOW”.

A heaving mass of techno energy, the track was an early highlight of FOVOS’ early 2023 releases, wonderfully placing the listener on a darkened ’90s basement dancefloor.

Both festival and club-ready, “LET YOU KNOW” was the type of striking production link-up that makes you think we might hear more from FOVOS and HIJCKD together in the future. Endless vibrancy, pure adrenaline, intoxicating drops – the collaboration had the exact mixture needed for a replayable banger.

Following their single release last month, both FOVOS and HIJCKD have been busy, with the latter DJ heading back to where it all started, Sydney’s Home The Venue, this Friday, March 31st for a huge set including two new original tracks.

FOVOS, meanwhile, have kept steadily releasing pounding tunes, including remixing MADDIX’s hit “The Formula”.

To celebrate their impressive collaboration, Tone Deaf asked FOVOS and HIJCKD to interview each other, and they discussed their influences, career goals, hobbies outside of music, and much more.

FOVOS and HICJKD’s “Let You Know” is out now. 

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Part 1 – HIJCKD interviews FOVOS

What does the name FOVOS stand for?

We knew that we had to find something that hadn’t been used before and that we could make our own. After a while digging, we came across the word “FOVOS” which means “fear” in Greek. We felt that the darker connotations aligned nicely with our dark-leaning style of music. Nobody else was using it, it’s simple and it stands out, so it was the perfect fit. 

How long have you boys been producing music? Was it always something you wanted to do?

We’ve been producing since high school, so it’s been about five years now. We definitely knew that we wanted to make music together but for a long time we couldn’t figure out what genre. We made big room and future bass and even some trap for a while. However, I’m glad to say we’ve settled down a bit and picked our lane.

What kind of music did you listen to growing up? How did that influence your sound today?

Whatever mum and dad were listening to! For Lorenzo, there was a lot of old-school house and stuff that you’d hear on Ministry of Sound CDs. For Mario it was a lot of classic rock tunes and The Beatles.

Both of us were exposed to a lot of music when we were younger which gave us the confidence to explore different genres even if our peers weren’t listening to the kind of sounds that we were. 

What’s next for you in the coming year? Where do you see yourselves in a year’s time?

Lots of new releases! We’re also looking to make the move out of Auckland to set up a basecamp somewhere else. Hopefully we’ll continue getting the amazing support we’ve been so lucky to have so far!

What are your favourite hobbies outside of music?

Lorenzo loves to play tennis with the lads when he gets the chance. In fact, he still coaches it from time to time. Mario is quite keen on playing a bit of water polo and getting a swim in. 

We’ve learnt it’s important to get out of the studio once in a while and stay active. It’s good for your mind and certainly for creativity.

Part 2 – FOVOS interview HIJCKD

Tell us about yourself man. What do you do outside of making sick techno?

Outside of my passion for electronic music I’ve also been running my own construction business for the past five years. I also love to travel and spend time with family and friends. My life is always on the go. However, all roads always lead back to my true love of music. I also LOVE tennis and, of course, my dog.

How did you get started, DJing or producing? From the looks of your shows, it seems like you’ve been DJing since day one?

Before I was a DJ/producer, I always loved listening to music. My parents love ’80s funk and Spanish/Italian tracks. Every weekend our house would have this sort of music playing. 

Growing up, my brother and I would avidly collect all the old Ministry of Sound CDs and this is where my love for electronic music really started, admiring the likes of John Course, Calvin Harris and AVICII to name a few. I took a liking to playing guitar and this may have been a stepping stone to my productions in later years.

Back to the topic, I originally started off as a DJ a number of years ago, building up from private gigs as a teenager to club gigs at the age of 18. I’ve been fortunate enough to play at staple venues here in Sydney and Melbourne as well as overseas in Croatia at Noa Beach Club on Zrce Beach.

The DJing aspect of my career as an artist has been so influential in regard to the style of music I wanted to produce and really forced me to keep my productions fresh and unique. My producing journey really kicked off around three years ago, learning off my good friend JaySounds. My style has always been heavy hitting underground productions and I really enjoy giving back to the music industry in the form of new music and remixes.

How did you get into techno?

My journey into the world of techno has come off the back of taking bits and pieces from other genres that I like and mashing it all together. Artists like Neelix, with his melodic breakdowns, and Reinier Zonneveld, with his heavy kick and synth orientated style, really opened my eyes to morphing into my style.

In recent years I’ve been quite inspired by the likes of T78, Nico Moreno and Will Sparks who seem to push the boundaries when it comes to techno. 

Give us your top track for these three scenarios: opening track in your first Tomorrowland set? Go-to track to get the crowd out of a lull? Go-to remix at the moment?

Opening Track – “Adagio For Strings” – Tiesto (HIJCKD Remix) 

Crowd Pleaser – “HARD GAAN” – Reinier Zonneveld

Official Remix Dream – If I can officially remix any Drake song, I’ll die happy.

Finally, what’s the plan for HIJCKD? What are your goals for the next five years?

I’ve got a lot of plans for HIJCKD but briefly over the next five years I’d like to accomplish the following:

Fix the damaged Sydney nightlife scene and bring it back to what it was in the Kings Cross days.

Not sit on so much music and just get it out there via my label Sandbox Records.

Collaborate with Will Sparks on a track.

Build my Sandbox show into a renowned festival/club night both here in Australia and overseas.

Hit an ARIA number one.

Reach 10,000,000 monthly listeners on Spotify.

Play at Tomorrowland.

Give DJs the opportunities that were so hard for me to gain back in the day.

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