Electric Dance music phenomenon YVONTI has caught the attention of countless for their distinctive take on concealing their identity. Though mask mandates have slowly been lifted in the year 2022, YVONTI keeps themselves hidden by wearing a mask. That’s right; this artist’s true identity has been kept completely secret.
So, why exactly do they do it? Why did this choose this route for their career?
YVONTI decided to hide their identity to take a stand in opposition to societal norms, forcing audiences to throw away preconceptions revolving around race, gender and sexuality. In hopes to remind audiences that it doesn’t matter who you are or what you look like, the true matter at hands matters is the music that is being produced. An artist unlike any other that we’ve seen modernly, YVONTI continues to break boundaries.
Adding in the likes of Swedish Dance Pop Music producer/artist MVRE, we see the two powerhouses collaborate on YVONTI’s latest single “Looking For Me” with a fresh remixed track. The track is full of modern, reimagined pop and dance music influences, showcasing the duos true mutual power.
MVRE, too, stands up for what is truly important to him through his musical endeavors. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, MVRE has continued to voice how he often grew up with no other artists inside of the Electric Dance music category that he truly connected with. Speaking on such important topics has cemented himself as an advocate within the musical realm.
The 360 team had the opportunity to chat with both YVONTI and MVRE about their artistic careers.
When speaking with YVONTI, we were able to learn more about their reasoning behind the choice to conceal their identity, their musical inspirations and so much more. Let’s dive in.
Q: When did you know that you wanted to pursue a career in music?
A: Music has been a key part of my life for as long as I can remember. In my teens I discovered Electronic Dance Music and fell in love. After that I started producing and realized I wanted to pursue a career in music.
Q: What artists do you look up to the most?
A: I feel quite connected to bands like The Beatles when it comes to my message but musically my inspiration comes from artists like Avicii, Swedish House Mafia, Marshmello, among others.
Q: Tell us a little more about your decision to mask your identity as an artist, and when did you make that artistic decision for your brand?
A: I believe that many uprising issues in the world revolves around preconceptions about colour, sexuality, gender, etc. and I’ve seen it affect the music industry as well. I want people to judge me for my music not judge me for the way I look or the way I act. People are different and if there was more acceptance around the differences there would be fewer conflicts. Strong forces are clearly trying to polarize our society and have so far succeeded since friends/families now can become enemies solely based on different political views. Though I understand that emotions are powerful in questions like these, it shouldn’t ruin those important relationships. I want to be a force to counter the polarization that is connected to preconceptions by letting people judge my music not my person. My plan is to reveal my identity in the future to prove my point.
Q: What type of artist would you describe yourself as? What genres are your favorite to create for?
A: My roots come from the EDM genre but recently I’ve enjoyed producing more pop-like music as well as hiphop.
Q: What does music mean for YVONTI?
A: When I was young, music took me to another place where I could escape reality for a while. I believe that many people feel the same as me, an example is when we’re on a bus or plane and we plug in our headsets and listen to music to escape the less entertaining reality. It’s a way to ”capture the moment” even when the moment isn’t the most enjoyable one. In these situations (and everywhere else) you can choose music after your current mood in order to make yourself feel the way you want to feel. Music is powerful, it can help people in all kinds of situations and my goal is to play a part in my listeners life by creating music that connects them to their emotions.
Q: Will YVONTI’s identity ever be revealed?
A: As noted above I will reveal my identity in the future and if you pay attention you might notice when I start dropping clues on who I am.
Q: What’s next for YVONTI?
A: We’re soon revealing my next release which I am really excited about and more news will follow shortly after. Stay tuned!
360 then got to speak with MVRE about their early beginnings, what LGBTQ+ representation truly means to them and about diversification in the electronic music scene. Let’s take a look at what they had to say.
Q: What was it like growing up in a small town with a lack of diversity and inclusion?
A: I guess you never think of it much as a kid cause all you know is your hometown, but as I got older I slowly started to realize that I didn’t relate that much to the people around me and that there were a few too many that I didn’t share views or values with. Anything that stood out in any way wasn’t really received or accepted particularly well amongst (not all but) most people. I do love my hometown and growing up there, but as with all small towns, however charming, people have a tendency to become cut off and conservative in a way. It’s very sheltered if you don’t actively venture out to see and experience “the real world”.
Q: Did you admire/look up to any artists while growing up that have influenced your artistic career?
A: I think Blink 182 were my first idols going into my early teens and pop punk was the first genre that I really fell in love with. I think I picked up a lot of my way of playing guitar from pop punk, something that I’ve carried over into my EDM productions. I always try to incorporate at least some guitar! Justice was a huge inspiration for getting into electronic music and still holds a special place in my heart and I’ll never forget the first time I heard Swedish House Mafia or Skrillex. I think that speaks a lot for how varied my productions can be, I really take inspiration from most music I like in some way.
Q: When did you decide to pursue creating dance pop music? Did you grow up listening to the genre?
A: No, not really. Like I mentioned, I got into Pop Punk early and from that more Punk and Metal as I started to play in bands. It wasn’t until High School when I heard Justice and similar acts that I started to dabble in making electronic music, though I knew nothing about how to do it. At the end of High School I had gotten into more House music and Dubstep as well and I had my first few DJ-gigs at small clubs. I practiced my productions and my sound started to slowly move towards the Dance Pop-ish sound it has today and 10+ years later here I am, still learning haha! MVRE didn’t come around until around 2017, which was when I decided that I wanted to get more serious about my music.
Q: How important is it for the youth, specifically LGBTQ, to see themselves in the people that they look up to the most?
A: I think it’s very important! It’s about feeling validated, that you belong and knowing you can achieve your dreams, the way you want, just the way you are. Seeing someone “like you” that you look up to can mean a lot.
Q: Do you think that the electronic music scene is making steps towards diversification, or do you think that there’s a long way to go?
A: Yes I do, I think that it’s moving in the right direction. You see more female DJs and artist-producers now than 10 years ago, and more LGBTQ representation too. The mainstream EDM scene is still very “straight-male” dominated, but again, I think it’s moving in the right direction. The more diversity in any genre or field, the more vibrant and meaningful the experience can be for everyone and we all learn and grow from it.
Q: What does electronic music mean to you?
A: I think it’s such a wide and interesting span of sounds, emotions and expressions. You can go deep and vibey, dark and distorted, uplifting and melodic and everything in between. To me I think electronic music is both freedom and constraint at the same time. I can express myself really freely and genuinely, but I also want to make you move, to dance, and that keeps me grounded in a way.
Q: What can we expect from MVRE in the future?
A: A lot of new music, I’m really excited for the projects coming up! Also it would be really fun to get out and start playing shows again. Nothing is in the books yet but who knows what the future holds!