Exclusive: Andrew Rayel speaks about his upcoming album


Andrew Rayel is one of the biggest discoveries in electronic music in the past 5 years. Having been called the modern day Mozart, the Moldovan DJ and Producer broke through the DJ Mag Top 100 DJ’s as the highest climber and has since received multiple nominations for prestigious awards such as the International Dance Music Awards. The year of 2014 welcomed his first album ‘Find Your Harmony’, which also featured his collaboration with the man who discovered him – Armin van Buuren. Only two years later, his second artist album is already in the works and is soon to be released before the end of the year.

Just after his performance at Ultra and ahead of his set at the Armada Croatia Festival, we managed to sit down and have a chat with the high-flyer. In turn, finding out more about his shenanigans around Croatia, the situation in his home country of Moldova, Find Your Harmony Episode 50, as well as the album.

Having arrived one day early for his next gig, Andrew took to the tourist side of things by renting a scooter:

“We got here yesterday and we had an absolutely amazing time! I’ve been here a couple of times, but never had the time to enjoy the island. We went all over the place. We event went to the other side of the island and there is like a park with the oldest olive trees, thousands of years old. It was a one hour ride with the scooter with these absolutely beautiful views. On one side was the sea, on the other were the mountains. Beautiful!”

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The sometimes unforgiving mother nature left thousands of fans of Ultra Europe stuck on its first day, as unfavorable weather conditions led to the cancellation of Day 1. Whilst many believed this will be a complete failure of a weekend, Rayel did not really agree.

“Ultra was very fun this year. I played the Arcadia stage. There was a lot of people, energetic, a lot of fans, as always it’s a big pleasure to be at Ultra Europe and hopefully I’m going to be there next year. [Because of the cancellation ] it was even better the next day. I heard a lot of people were allowed to access the day 2 because of cancellation of day 1. And I think there were more people because of that. Everything was absolutely packed. All the stages! I’ve been several times to Ultra and I’ve never seen all the stages packed!”

Andrew Rayel was born and raised in a small Eastern European country called Moldova. Whilst many may not be familiar with it, including myself, although I was born there, it seems that the dance music scene is far from non-existent:

“[The scene] was growing really fast in a period of 5-10 years. I think in the past 2 years it went a bit down because of the crisis. We have an economic and political crisis right now and people spend money on something else, trying to survive. But me, myself, and a company I am working with are trying to push more and each year we are bringing more and more artists. I am doing a bunch of shows there, so I think we will bring it back.

I am working on the album now and I am definitely going to be doing an exclusive show in my country, which is going to be maybe this year, maybe the beginning of next year, or something like this. Every time I do something with the company I am working on, we always have the support of Orange, the cell phone company. So we are trying to make something more impressive bigger and bigger every time.”

The Moldovan is certain that Eastern European acts are soon to show from behind the shadow of the Westerners.

“I know a bunch of successful artists from my country or around the place. From Romania, from Ukraine. I have a lot of friends back in Russia. And I think they are making their way up there. It just takes a bit of time.”

Andrew Rayel has been teasing about his upcoming album for quite some time. Expectations are set high past the massive success of his debut album Find Your Harmony, which included collaboration’s with Armin van Buuren, Jwaydan, Jano, Bobina and Jonathan Mendelson, to name a few.

“I already have a date for the release, but not sharing it it’s a preventive measure for now. It’s time for me to be in the studio to actually finish it. I have ideas for all of the tracks, I have a couple of demos already finished, maybe almost half of them. Then I have the whole month of September off, I will not be touring except for Electric Zoo in New York. So I will take the whole month to finish the album.”

Unlike others, Rayel took his time to kick-start a new radio-show, which despite the fact it only recent just got over 50 episodes, received a celebration of the milestone that was nowhere near the size of small.

“Find Your Harmony episode 50! It’s going to be live streamed on Armada’s page. I will probably do one on mine as well. It’s going to be very unique and very special because they have this intimate club, it’s going to be just a few fans and a lot of industry people, but other fans can enjoy it online. We also did the regular episode 50 with visuals and everything and it was live on facebook as well. I was very happy because there was a lot of interaction, a lot of congratulations, I got a lot of congrats from other artists too, so that was nice.”

Will these celebration’s will become a tradition in the future, though, it still remains unclear.

“I think everyone is doing that now. You can see FSOE or Electric for Life from Gareth, everyone is trying to do that. I am still thinking. I don’t know if I want to do the same thing all over again, follow the path everyone is. So far is just a normal radio show. Maybe will do one celebration, like one celebration for episode 100 somewhere in a venue or in a club.”

Which venue might that be though? Perhaps one of Andrew’s fav’s?

“I have a bunch of favorite clubs. Starting from New City Gas in Montreal, Marquee in Las Vegas where I have my residency, Ruby Skye in San Francisco. There is Zouk in Singapore and Malaysia as well. There is a bunch of clubs in Australia that I love, as well as back in my country. So many of them”

Whilst many can easily choose between club or a festival, the Moldovan can’t make his mind up.

“It depends on my mood. It depends if I am a bit more energetic or I have new material, I will always go for a festival. If I want to connect more to the people and see them, or do like longer sets, it’s a club.”

Coming from a pure instrumental background (the Mozart reference doesn’t come out of nowhere, after all), his vision on music has slightly changed throughout the years.

“Also depends on the mood {laughs}. Used to be more into instrumental, but I am getting more and more on the vocals. So I think most of my album will be with vocals now {laughs}. But I still have a bunch of instrumentals there!”

As we await on further news about his forthcoming album, one thing to mark up in our calendars is the upcoming album release party, which is still due to the announced.

“There is going to be a proper show for the album. I already have the concept of it, we created a unique stage and everything. So I am going to be touring the first half of next year especially in promotion to the album.”