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Music Interview

Avicii interview: "I'm not the new David Guetta"

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Avicii

© Credit Frey + Martin Photography



For Swedish DJ Avicii, praise doesn't come much higher than when Madonna recently labelled him "amazing".

In between re-swizzling Madge's latest single 'Girl Gone Wild' as well as working with Leona Lewis and Flo Rida, the 22-year-old producer - real name Tim Bergling - is also carving out his own mark in the busy world of dance music.

With his new single 'Silhouettes' out this week, we met up with the star to find out how he's coping with his newfound fame, whether he's a fan of David Guetta and what Madonna is really like.

You've had a very successful 12 months. How are you coping with fame?
"It does hit you once in a while - people start recognising you or your parents start telling you about their friends who have read something about you. I haven't had much time to relax and take it all in. I've been playing shows every day and spending most of my time at airports."

Your rise to the top seemed to happen very quickly; did it take you by surprise?
"It wasn't really much of a surprise. My team have been pushing me hard for a while and been working as hard as I can for two-and-a-half years. Nowadays it's just that my shows are on a bigger scale."

Your new single 'Silhouettes' is a big, euphoric dance track - what's it inspired by?
"It's hard - some people get inspired by a feeling, but I'm mostly inspired by melodies. The person who co-produced this track with me is incredible - he can play every instrument you can think of. We took as much of that as we could and tried to make it dance-friendly and something different from what is in the charts now."

There is a lot of dance music on the charts. Is it hard to compete with what is already out there?
"I don't really look at the charts at all. If anything, I try to out-do what I've done before. I try to make music that I like and I trust my own judgement with what will work with a wider audience. If you compare yourself to the charts you lose perspective on what you're doing and why you're doing it."

Madonna recently said she is a big fan of yours after you worked on her track 'Girl Gone Wild'; what was it like meeting her?
"She presented me at the Ultra Music Festival which was incredible. She introduced herself to me about an hour before that and it was completely surreal. She's arguably the biggest artist in the world. She's someone everyone has grown up with and it was such an honour. It was also nice of her to come to my scene rather than me putting stuff forward for her."

Avicii

© JoeGazzola.com



So she was nice then?
"She was super sweet! Very professional. Nothing was uncomfortable. I'd definitely work with her again, if she wanted to."

You've been playing clubs and festivals around the world. How do you adapt your show for different audiences?
"Obviously there is stuff that I wouldn't play in a club that I play at festivals and vice versa, but my sets are still dominated largely by my own music. I think that's what makes me stand out a bit. My music is also festival and club-friendly, so it generally works out well."

What makes a great dance track?
"Lyrics are important, but it's hard, because English isn't my first language - although it feels like it is these days! I grew up with amazing melodies, so getting that right on a song has always been the key thing for me, but there's no reason why a great melody doesn't deserve great lyrics."

People are touting you as the new David Guetta; is that annoying?
"It's not annoying, but I definitely don't consider myself the new anything. It's not the way our camp have been selling ourselves. We're definitely about new things musically, so I'm not the new David Guetta. Obviously, it's still a compliment that people think we're alike."

Are you a fan of his music?
"For sure, though I'm more a fan of what it's done for the scene. I have huge respect for him as he really opened the world up to dance. A lot of what he does is super catchy too."

He works with a lot of big name singers. Would you like to do that?
"We've been approached by lots of different artists, from Flo Rida to Leona Lewis. They obviously released their own versions of those songs, and we've been asked by lots of other artists as well. It's important we feel comfortable about the track, rather than who is on it. At the moment, we're pushing who Avicii is as an artist, rather than who he's working with. David's already followed that path, and what we've done so far is working great."

Are there any plans for you to release an album?
"We've not consciously sat down and thought about an album. We'll get to that when there's time, and at the moment we're just focusing on releasing singles. There doesn't seem to be much need for an album these days - if I did one it would probably be something just for me. With the schedule I'm on at the moment, I can't see me bothering with an album any time soon!"

Avicii's new single 'Silhouettes' is out now. Watch the official music video below:

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