Meet Matt Ryder – a 16 year old producer from Birmingham who is making all of his music from his bedroom studio. As well as music, he also designs and produces his own visuals. If that wasn’t impressive enough, he will be releasing his music on his own label, EC30. Speaking about his very first release Breakdown, Matt explains:

The songs main musical features hark back to a time described as more simple and ‘the good old days’ but the lyrics address what feels like more relevant issue/message to teenagers today, but the truth is that it’s always happening, and what feels terrible now will one day become our “good old days”, be grateful for the “pain” we experience now because it will, one day, feel like the best days of our lives.

How has it been making music during this pandemic? What will you be doing when it’s finally over?

Being creative through such a suppressive time can be super difficult, for me at the start of the lockdown I was finding myself stuck, going in circles. I think so many people have found that emotions come in waves, and for me, it’s been similar with my creativity. Most of my music is inspired by experiences I have, all of them tend to be experiences with other people, normally travel, party’s or connecting with a person. Over time though I’ve found myself bouncing back. I’m now reaching into my own imagination to find creativity, this has resulted in some crazy stuff and overall it’s definitely changed the way I write music. I’ve also had more time to indulge in film and art to really take inspiration from all sorts of creative bodies of work.

When this is all over I’ll probably go see my family and friends, Carry on developing as a musician and really indulge in what I took for granted before the pandemic.

Do you remember the moment you decided to be a musician?

To be completely honest no. I’ve been involved in performance and music for the majority of my life, learning piano at age 7 and guitar a year later. I enjoyed playing but I never really felt connected to the music without the ability to record and create music. I would say the first time I really realised I felt a real desire to make music was when I started using DAWs, I first opened Ableton at age 9 and had literally no idea what I was doing, this probably went on for like 2 years until I got Logic and started to get the hang of music production. I’ve been producing music for 5 years now, using Logic. I can’t really recall a time where I thought I wanted to be a musician, I think it was more like a gradual realisation.

You write and produce all your own music. What came first?

Production. I always loved to experiment with weird sounds and just creating emotion without using words, but this was when I was quite young, probably around 12-13. I was always super nervous to include my own vocals and lyrics because I felt it was a much more personal experience, and definitely made me feel exposed. Over time I went from fearing this to indulging in that. I think everything came at such a good time, I taught myself production techniques and all of a sudden I discovered my voice, new emotions and new experiences. All these things fused together and I found a way to express myself and vent my emotions but also convey lyrics that people could interpret themselves and relate to.

What’s your process to make a song?

My process changes all the time, it really depends on what situation I’m in. Normally I’ll just sit down on a random night of the week and accidentally stumble into an idea, whether that’s an interesting sound on the synth or a cool chord progression I played, an hour later I’ll have the framework of a full-length track. When I find something I work quite quickly so a song could be finished within 3 hours. Lyrically, if I’m at home, I’ll just sing into the microphone over a 4 bar loop until I find something I like. All of my lyrics tend to mean something to me but I never like to get too specific because then I feel as if I’m telling the listener what to think. I think it’s so cool for a listener to create their own personal connections with the lyrics.

What can people expect from you in the future?

I’m so excited about the future, I’ve got a new EP coming up soon and a few singles before the EP release. It’s a real step up from my current music and is definitely a new chapter in my development as an artist. It’s been so cool to work with people and also explore further within myself, bringing together more interesting aesthetics, music and inspiration to elevate the record as a whole.

Keep up with Matt Ryder on Instagram, Twitter, and his website.