Artist Showcase

PinkMilk Presents: Son-J

Remember the name, this boys going places.

Will Marsh


espite being as small a place as it is, there’s no denying that Perth is brimming with an abundance of talented underground producers.

The deeper you start to delve into it, the more you begin to realise just how much real, unexplored talent there really is floating around this city of two-million people.

Sadly, whilst people keep listening to loops of ‘Mo Bamba’ and let Spotify decide what they should play every week, many of these potentially groundbreaking artists remain largely unheard of throughout the community.

This week for PinkMilk Presents I was lucky enough to sit down with a bright talent by the name of Son-J.

With six songs on Spotify, Son-J’s a name that’s unlikely to have popped up in any of your playlists, but it’s one I’m certain you’ll be hearing big things about before long.

Eccentric, talented and stylish, he’s gearing up to hit the scene as hard as possible in 2019, with plenty of big projects lined up.

Having already gained support on his tracks from the likes of Dillon Francis and Alison Wonderland, Son-J’s music is a must listen for anyone with a taste for Trap, and if it’s not your flavour, he’s got plenty more in store you’re bound to love.

Happy to spend a few hours with me, we sat down to discuss his music, plans for this year, and everything in between. Here’s how it all went down.

Credit: Son-J

When did you first get into EDM and what attracted you to the genre?

I remember the first time I heard electronic music, it was on a school camp. In a room next door one of the new kids was blasting ‘Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites’, and I can remember myself thinking “why does it sound so angry.” After that I went and Googled Skrillex, found all these YouTube music channels and it pretty much went from there.

When did it all start for you? Break us down your journey into production.

Getting into EDM production was probably from DJ’ing. I was DJ’ing house parties, and when I Googled things about it EDM always came up the most, which is what tripped my desire for trap beats. I was writing music long before I started producing, but when I got into EDM, I started writing House, and looking into Deep House beats rather than getting straight into trap.

In your own words how would you describe the style of music you produce?

It’s definitely cinematic, and very soundscape orientated. The stuff I’m writing now, the whole discography on my computer, I genuinely can’t summarise it. Maybe an emotion, maybe very…….gritty. But I honestly can’t put a word on it because it’s everything from acoustic ballads right up to electronic bangers, then there’s everything in between. I can’t pin one name or label to it.

When I release music I’m making it a point to release whatever. Not everything is gonna be club, not everything is gonna be EDM, but it’s all Me. I make it a point to release anything and everything, and I’m not letting people tell me what I can and can’t release.

Are there any artists you can name who really inspire you.

Tyler the Creator. Kanye. Pharrell Williams. The Weeknd. Baauer. Cashmere Cat.

They all definitely inspire me to make music, but they’re not so much inspiration for my style of music. I definitely reference a bit of their stuff in my work, like using hip-hop artists for my drums and stuff like that. I like taking a bit of this and that, then putting my own twist on it.

Do you have anything specific that inspires you to make music, other than artists.

I wouldn’t even say that the artists I’m inspired by actually inspire me to write music, but they’re inspiration for the music I write.

What inspires me more to write music, is the urge that I can’t not write music.

No matter what, until the day I die I’ll always be doing it. Some people like to watch TV, some like to play video games. People have their things they like doing, and mines music, it’ll always be music.

How do you aim to make yourself stand out in the modern music industry?

I...don’t. I don’t really dive too much into the industry, I try not to look at other people and be like ok here’s what I’m going to do to stand out. The only person I compete with is myself. And the fun thing about that is when I’m competing with my past-self, I can be as harsh as I want.

Overall, I’m trying to be the idol that my past-self always wished for.

I kind of want Son-J to be wrapped up in more of an emotion, where people are like “he makes me feel this way.” Son-J is an individual who goes down heaps of different styles and creative mediums, but it all feels coherent.

What are your thoughts on the Australian EDM scene at the current stage?

The Perth scene is very cool. There’s a lot of people here the world hasn’t heard about, and they’re doing some very, very cool shit. People are gonna hear about them in a few years and be like where the fuck did they come from.

Australia is very forward-thinking, especially Perth. We’re so isolated that we aren’t influenced by anything, in a good way. There’s people here doing some innovative shit, and I respect that a lot.

But with the EDM scene, I’ve noticed that there’s a lot of people chasing the ‘hot sound’. You know who the true artists are – they’re the ones out here who aren’t just chasing that sound.

Anyone can write a cool song, but does that song change the way that people move or people dance, or change the way people think.

There’s a lot of great music out there, but not a lot of music that can change the scene.

There’s a lot of innovation coming out of Australia, but no matter where you go you see the same thing. When there’s one sound that’s hot, people want to hear more of it, and it ends up being copied and overdone.

What do you love and hate most about what you do?

The feeling of writing a song and listening back to it, and thinking wow I created that, that’s really amazing, that’s something I love. But it’s really hard to break down.

Producing music is kind of like my oxygen, and it’s hard to say what I love about it. Why do we love oxygen so much? We need it to live. I can’t go two days without doing it otherwise I freak out, it’s like I can’t breathe.

I love doing it so much, which, at the same time, is what I dislike about it as well. I can’t not do it.  

Being an artist can be a curse, and I can definitely see why there’s a big mental health problem in the artist community, especially because I understand the creative difficulties behind it.  

How was 2018 in terms of your career for you?

It was a very important year for writing and finding myself as an artist. It was around early 2018 I had this big breakthrough where I realised what I really wanted to do as a career. I said to myself I really needed to work on my music, and there’s so much to work on I really need to push myself. I wanted to get better at everything, so I started diving into more genres, and I started learning all these different crafts, trying to be the best I possibly could.

The music I write now feels a lot more personal and feels a lot more true, it feels more Me than it ever did before, and it was a very important year for finding myself.

What would you like to achieve over the course of 2019?

Releasing music. I want to share what I’ve been working on and I want the world to hear it. I want it set in stone that I’m not just a DJ, that there’s so much more to it than that.

Anything you want to say to people who read the article?

If you’re interested, check out my socials, my music. Make sure you follow because 2019 is gonna be a very fun year.

And to the people who support me, thank you. Thank you to everyone who’s listening to my music, wherever it be, it really means a lot to me.

Credit: Son-J

Well, there's a look into the mind of one of Perth's brightest talents. Remember the name, because Son-J will be all over the place before long.

Thank you all for reading, I hope you enjoyed. Take care, party safe, and I'll see you next time.