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Interview: 3V3C3S3

Photo by Vero Mata

A few months ago we featured 3V3C3S3, a Chilean dark-wave/synth-punk duo comprised of Daniel Cornejo and Fernando Figueroa. Since then we have been lucky enough to have a chat with Daniel about the origins of the project, their art and their creative process.

Let’s start with the conception of 3V3C3S3. I read that you initially started the project co-producing remotely, how did you meet and start collaborating?

I have known Fernando for more than 10 years from a job in advertising. We both are Art Directors and we have collaborated musically on various projects such as deltadelta, from Mesopotamia, Pariahatma. At that time we both lived in Santiago de Chile. For family reasons I came to live 2018 in Valparaiso, a city 2 hours from Santiago. In 2019 I began to create the first ideas and letters of the project and later in 2020 with Fernando we started to conceptualising to create what 3V3C3S3 is. Then the global pandemic came and isolated us, so we decided to create a remote system to be able to finish our first EP and give meaning to the confinement. It is there where we manage to find the meaning of our lyrics and the art to continue creating our editorial line.

What were some of your influences and ideas about how the project was going to sound in the early stages?

We are influenced by synth-punk and dark music of the 80s but with a "current sound". Although it is true that we are inspired a lot from the 80's/90's and all the music that synthesizers can generate, whether they have an analog or digital sound. We always want to sound fresh and we are not closed to experiencing different things to achieve that goal.

It may be a cliche question, but I have to ask about the name 3V3C3S3 because it looks so bizarre. Is there any symbolism or hidden meaning, or are we overthinking?

The word in Spanish is read "Three times three" or simply 333. I have an obsession with numerology and the occultism. The number 3 is a number that attracts us.

You recently released your new single ‘ARDE’, what is the meaning behind the song?

It is a criticism of the modern world where there is no time for contemplation and despair reigns.

The distinctive elements of your sound are the intricate layers of synths and detailed electronic percussion, tell us about your recording setup and gear?

In the creation stage we work with ideas that are constantly being born in "Daniel's Kitchen" made with DAW (Digital audio work station) such as Logic Pro or Ableton Live. All these new ideas are being listened to by both of us and normally we begin to build from there, the midi in the first stage is everything.

Later we move on to the voices and lyrics where we prioritize the recording of Daniel's voice and his interpretation. In the production stage we work with a hybrid concept, which is prepared in “Fernando's kitchen” in an analog/digital way either as a live setup or a way to record, produce and mix the music we make.

As a first line we use analog machines old synthesizers from the 70s and 80s (Minimoog Model D, Oberheim OB1, Yamaha CS15, AKAI AX80) that we mixed with virtual analog and digital synthesizers (Prophet 08, Synthstrom Deluge).

In a second line we work with analog/digital rhythm machines (Jomox Airbase99, Vermona DRM1 MKIII) combined with a 1010 music BlackBox “brain” machine, where we create samples with the many many sounds that we are producing. We are combining different colors and timbres with the synths and drum machines.

Basically it's really everything we do and how we work. =)

Your music has a sense of urgency and impending doom that is perfectly visualised with the artworks of the singles. What can you tell us about the artwork design process?

We both are art directors and we love the design and aesthetics. We seek to find a visual proposal that has a different look at the present without necessarily being literal. So we decided to use the photography of a talented local photographer @raulitofixa for our first three singles. His photos made the perfect match between what we wanted to convey with our lyrics and sound, the multicultural clash.

Are there any artists or bands in your local scene that you would recommend?

We really like what Hablemos del Alma is doing in Santiago and Valparaíso Alondra Nocturnal. We have also collaborated with Arachnida, very interesting what he does and actually Chilean music in general is producing very good music and sound.

Finally, what do you have planned next for 3V3C3S3?

We are currently working full time on new material with 8 new songs. We hope to be releasing the first singles before the end of the year. This September 25th we will be performing at the international streaming festival "black moon" with a live set. In addition, we will soon have surprises from a remix we did for Arachnida and more live streaming presentations.

Follow 3V3C3S3 on Instagram. Follow 3V3C3S3 on Spotify.


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