hundredmillionthousand is the moniker of genre-defying electronic artist, Noel Jon. HMT is of Persian-Filipino descent and based from Edmonton, Canada. His music spans film composition, sound installation, contemporary dance score, while delving into a variety of styles of electronic composition.
Can you talk to us about the inspiration for your latest single?
With this particular track, I didn’t approach it with any particular intention. It kind of came out like a musical self portrait. Looking back, I can definitely hear some Halo 2 Theme song and USSR Ministry of Culture Chamber Choir influence haha.
How has your community contributed to your success?
I think every individual can attribute their success to the help of the people around them. If there’s one person I’d want to mention it’s Mustafa Rafiq, a prominent force the Edmonton music scene. They do so much for the alternative music scene in this city and don’t nearly enough credit, whether it’s putting you in a room with the right people or booking you shows profusely. Mustafa also performs under the moniker ‘Family Injera’ and makes probably the most interesting eastern-influenced music in this city. When I’m hanging out with Mustafa I literally can’t walk 2 blocks without someone coming up and thanking him for booking their show. It’s heart-warming.
What advice would you give other musicians?
Hold your music at the same precedent as you do for your musical idols. When creating music, don’t settle for anything less than what you would typically listen to as a fan. Your favorite artist is your peer; not someone above you. Once you adopt that mentality and higher standards for yourself and your craft, you’ll become more motivated and apt to learn.
Describe to our audience your music-making process.
Every piece is different. For this single, I composed for cello, double bass, and voice. Then I took those recordings and ran them through a number of effects I created. This process creating this single was much more simple than it was for other tracks on this upcoming album. For other tracks, I made a craigslist ad for couples who met on online dating platforms (like tinder, bumble, etc). The ads were basically asking these couples to to record the audio of them having sex and send it to me in exchange for a modest honorarium. I’d take that audio then run it through a number of effects until they sounded inhuman and robotic. Not the most conventional way of making music, but the point was to take highly intimate human moments that were facilitated by online dating and then digitally process them until they were undecipherable.
How did it feel when you released your debut single?
I was tired and wanted to catch up on sleep. I guess I was a bit stoked too since I got to show people my new sound and how I’ve grown since the last record.
If you could collaborate with any musician/band, who would it be? And why?
Marilyn Manson. I don’t know his music very well but he’s smart as fuck and crazy and I like that.
What first got you interested into music?
I can’t say anything really spiked my interest. It’s always been part of my life since taking piano and drum lessons as a kid. Well, actually, I quit piano lessons when I was 12 and didn’t touch the instrument for a year. However, I developed a crush on some girl at school when I was 13 and knew she played the piano so I started jamming on the piano in hopes to impress her. That crush ended after a week but I kept playing the piano by just improvising, developing my ear, and emulating stuff on the radio. I guess that period of my life gave me the foundation I have now. Thank you junior high crush haha.