Interview: Ljubov Dzuzhynska
Marcus L is a South Korean DJ, producer, FAUST club and Ameniia Records label owner.
What have you learned about yourself through your projects both on a professional and a personal level?
There seems to be a lot gained through personal experience through the project. Words cannot express and list everything. If only one of them is to be chosen, I think it would be a “friend.” It is true that it is as powerful as being with someone who can share a musical or vision.
What is your first music-related memory?
When I was young, my parents seemed to want me to experience as much as possible. Most things were related to art and physical education. My mother’s piano was at home and I started tapping it naturally. My mother seems to have watched my interest naturally, without forcing or suggesting to learn. I was between 5-7 years old.
What path did you consider taking before devoting yourself to music?
I majored in Applied linguistics in England. Then I spent quite a lot of time on the education side, and after that, I was a naval interpreter (officer). I also thought I would do something related to language and education for a long time.
What does music mean to you?
Well my answer would be quite similar as the answer of others. Music can be my emotion and my weapon in life.
How are you trying to be a better human being and how do you seek the best within yourself?
Who can define who is better and decide on what criteria? I have never lived with the thought of becoming a better person. All I can do is just listen to other people’s worries, empathize, and help with all my heart when necessary.
What are you most proud of?
Still, I am not satisfied or proud of what I have done in the scene. Because I still think there are many things to be refined and areas to be developed in the Korean scene.
What are some of the important things you’ve learned throughout your childhood that you still use to this day?
From childhood, I am an empiricist.
The difference between experienced and non-experienced is very large. I do not enjoy discussing what I will never experience myself. However, I listen to other people’s experiences and try to experience them whenever I have the opportunity. I still have a lot to experience.
What factors form your identity the most?
If someone asks me what kind of person I am, I can speak with confidence. I’m the one who sticks to my words and I don’t regret making the decision. Steady, persevering, and initiative are my keywords.
What topics outside of music fascinate you right now?
At this time of the pandamic, it seems to be essential to think about health and family. Of course, working on a few tracks and an EP as well as my label ‘Ameniia’ but it feels like passing through a tunnel with no end.
Is your national identity important to you in what you create? (How?/Why?)
Yes & No.
YES: I can be one of person that gives a good influence towards the scene.
NO: No one’s nationality and location does matter at all. Does it?
Do you think it’s possible to judge music objectively?
I don’t think so. As everyone has their own standards, I think it really depends on personal preference. I don’t think there is a guideline of “Good / Bad” music from anyone yet.
Do you think that everything that could be invented in music was already invented and now it’s just a mixture of things? Or is there room for innovation?
The musical innovation and development in the standard I can think of has already been reached. The question question that remains is how one applies it.
What was your mindset when working on your upcoming release?
When it comes to making music overall, and not just my upcoming release, I try to put harmony first (tracks in between and sound in between). But the most important thing is the feeling of inspiration and the willingness to do it. On you have the will to do it – it makes a huge difference.
What’s the most bizarre and unexpected thing about running Ameniia?
Our record label has not yet been exposed to many people. It is true that there was a time gap in the middle of its history and the musical color of it changed. The most amazing thing is when known artists play our label’s music when we didn’t even send a promo. Who would have thought one of Ameniia’ tracks would be featured in a GTA game?
What’s the most bizarre and unexpected thing about running Faust club? Could you share some awkward or bizarre stories?
Faust is located on 3rd floor of a building, sometimes I hear people gossiping that the FAUST floor may fall due to crazy dancing people.
As a DJ, label owner and club owner from South Korea, is there something that disappoints you in the local underground scene? What are the pros and cons? What solutions do you think could improve the state of things?
I always think this culture belongs to no specific people or group and this should not be judged in any way. What disappoints me is that the majority of people follow fame and are driven not by true interests and heart. But I take this as a crucial breakthrough point through which we can introduce this culture easily and for a wider audience.
I don’t think there is anything as important as being widely known, as it is impossible to discern between good and bad before someone hears and experiences it. Judgment is made after that.
What was the last exciting thing you’ve done or felt?
When we opened FAUST this APRIL and thought we are done with COVID-19 but ended up closing again.
But it was surely an amazing feeling to be back in the booth. Surely this will happen again soon!
What are you trying to achieve as artist? What goals do you want to reach?
As an artist, rather than any goal, I hope this culture, which is not well known in Korea, will become a widely known and recognized culture. I do not enjoy using the word “underground”. I strongly believe our culture will be stand out in Korea one day!
What was the wisest thing you’ve ever heard?
Blessed is the man who doesn’t walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers.
For someone who has never been to Seoul – what should you not do and where should you not go?
Seoul is very dynamic city where you can enrich your various cultural experience so I can say there is NONE you should not visit or do. Enjoy as much as you can with manner.
What question would you like to be asked in an interview and what would you answer?
Which food do you like to eat right now? “ Answer = Tteokbokki (Google it and watch some videos about it if you wish to know).