The road to Sonic Bloom has started and we are well on our way to gathering in the Unified Field this summer. Happening from June 15th to the 18th at the beautiful Hummingbird Ranch in the Spanish Peaks of Huerfano County, Colorado, Sonic Bloom is looking towards their 16th annual festival and one of the biggest years yet! We are only on the first phase of the lineup but it is absolutely magical and with the juicy-ness from the epic lineup comes some really insanely talented artists! We wanted to shed some light on some names that we think embody the true vibe of The Unified Field and will be ones that are a set that we can’t miss.
The first artist on our edition of the Road To Sonic Bloom’ series is one that has been annihilating the underground bass music scene by keeping true to Sub.Mission’s motto: “Moving people through sound, not hype.” Ternion Sound, composed of three artists, Apparition, Johnny Foreplay, and Nostalgia, are set to headline Sub.Missions stage takeover of the Meadow Stage on Saturday Night of the festival. We were fortunate enough to be able to get an interview with the three amigos and dive a little deeper into their realm. Check out our exclusive interview below and make sure to get tickets to Sonic Bloom if you haven’t yet!
Q: Ternion Sound, your inaugural set together was a b2b2b at Infrasound Music Festival 2016. It was said that you began recording together in-studio not long after, now regularly releasing and live-streaming for labels such as Sub.Mission, Deep Dark & Dangerous, and Silent Motion to name a few. How well do you remember that first set? What was it like that very first time being on the decks together? And tell us, what initially drew you three into this joint project?
Jack: I remember it pretty clearly. It happened really spontaneously because someone else had missed their flight, I was asked if I wanted to fill in and I asked Andrew and Aric to join. We’d all been part of b2bs around town in the years leading up to that and we all knew we had similar taste so it just flowed well. What made us start the project ultimately was just realizing how good the set there was.
Aric: The first set together was unforgettable for me. I was very excited at the opportunity to play some tracks alongside Jack and Andrew. I was a big fan of both of their solo projects, so it was an honor to have been asked to join them for the set. We had so much fun playing that set together that it sparked our idea of making a new project.
Q: To put a number on it, how many festivals have you all attended together? Not simply as an artist on a lineup, although those times can definitely be included, but rather how many festival excursions have you enjoyed as a trio? And was there one that was prolific to each of you? One that stands out?
Jack: For the most part we’ve only attended festivals as fans probably prior to Ternion. We were at pretty much all of the Infrasounds, Minneapolis has a really solid community and we’ve always been a part of that. Since Ternion though, we’ve probably played several dozen festivals by now. Most prolific is definitely Outlook 2019 for me, getting out and seeing so much UK/euro bass music was really a treat.
Aric: Infrasound will always be my favorite since it’s essentially our home festival, but I really enjoyed Outlook 2019 and Shambhala 2022.
Andrew: I wasn’t able to attend Shambhala but Outlook 2019 was for sure a game-changer when it came to listening to sound systems. I’ve been enjoying the smaller but still mighty fests that pop up here and there.
Q: Sonic Bloom feels like a different kind of festival (I know every festival may claim the same), but there’s a unique atmosphere at Sonic Bloom. One that emphasizes each person’s connection to nature, inner peace, being one with the world we live in, and sharing a kinship through music with not only the people around you but the state of being called the human experience. How do you, through your music, hope the Sonic Bloom crowd will connect with your set this year? Will you be bringing something wildly different to the table? Or solidify the 140 sound we’ve come to love from Ternion Sound?
Jack: A big core of our music is highlighting the community aspect of music, through interactions between the crowd and the artist, and through interactions within the crowd itself. We always come loaded with a large set of possible music to play, and make decisions within that larger set based on the mood of the moment.
Aric: We have always preferred playing music in more intimate settings because of the greater connection we can have with the audience. We have never played the same set twice, and always try to come ready with new music to every show to keep things refreshing for ourselves and the crowd. I’m hoping at Bloom we can help showcase some of the different styles within 140bpm music.
Q: There’s an emotional undertone to every set. Some artists invigorate the crowd, looking to insight euphoria. Others might take the crowd on a journey of solemn introspection. Others still attempt to supercharge the crowd through hype and energy. If you had to narrow it down to three, which emotions or sensations do you imagine listeners mull over as they listen to your music?
Jack: Hard to pin down specific words, but for me the main theme for me is just the raw feeling and experience of living in an era of massive corruption, decay, and looming catastrophe. A lot of it is malaise, frustration, and revolutionary vigor. I’m very anti-escapist and believe in looking even harder at the uncomfortable to try and find solutions to it and ultimately something good.
Andrew: DJing for me has always been about sharing great music and working out a lot of the stress/frustrations that build up over the week. Ternion often explores darker themes as a way of reflecting the world around us.
Q: Music is constantly changing and shifting. Artists are expanding their production skills and flow while forever searching for the next ear-catching sound. Constantly creating variations in their newest tracks. How does Ternion Sound stay at the top of their game? What supplements your drive for creation? Is it routine? Is it the curiosity of trying something new? Or is it something else altogether?
Jack: For me it’s been a years-long process of always finding new music, and lately more digging through the history of electronic music and finding gems. I think there’s a lot of things that have been overlooked or lost even just in the last 30 years of electronic music that are worth recontextualizing and turning into new ideas. Trying to capture the futuristic optimism of the 90s is also huge for me, as well as keeping up with new advances in music creation technology.
Aric: My drive comes from listening to music from our peers, and discovering music from the past that I’ve never heard before. I’m constantly inspired by my friends and it pushes me to create better music. And as far as our live performance, the 3 of us are always trying to surprise one-another with new music. We prepare our sets individually, and that allows us to find/write music that the other members haven’t heard yet. It’s one of the most enjoyable parts of our whole music project.
Q: Ternion Sound is made up of three members. The artists known as Nostalgia, Johnny Foreplay, and Apparition. What specialities do each one of you as individuals bring to the project? I understand there is probably more than a bit of overlap in all areas, but who prides themselves in which area when putting together a track and in turn a full set?
Jack: We each have roles that we’ve fallen into even though we all share most of the work. Personally I focus heavily on Sound Design and digging up novel or hidden content for us to draw inspiration from. We call me the “Research and Development Department” of Ternion Sound. I’m not the best at finishing music, my focuses are more on idea generation and then also DJing and engaging in the sociopolitical aspects of it all.
Aric: I run the “Ternion Selects” radio show, so a lot of my responsibilities involve keeping up with our network of peers and their releases. Andrew definitely writes the most music as Jack and myself handle the majority of the touring and travel.
Andrew: I love playing shows and putting mixes together, but I also love being a dog-dad and writing bangers. It’s a give and take.
Q: Recently you’ve been touring with Yheti, Peekaboo, Toadface, Honeybee, kLL sMTH, Chef Boyarebeatz, and Potions to name a few of the most recent. Some of which have been to Sonic Bloom themselves. Who, out of those you’ve played a show with in the past, have absolutely blown you away? And what have you taken away from that experience?
Jack: Always gotta give a shoutout to the people I think are greatest at performing and DJing, friends of ours like Joe Nice, Chef Boyarbeatz, Sicaria, Nikki Nair, Anna Morgan, and many others are really inspiring to me, not just for their productions but for how they play and perform music.
Aric: The Widdler is my favorite stateside Dubstep producer/DJ so i gotta show him lots of love. He’s just always constantly blowing my mind with his patience as a DJ, and his productions are always of the utmost quality. Honorable mention to Distinct Motive, Bukez Finezt, Kursa, and the whole Bristol UK crew!
Andrew: Shouts to Notlo’s set at Kosmic Kingdom 2022, Khiva’s set at DEF 2022, Zen Selekta’s set at UNTZ 2022. I don’t go to as many shows so I don’t get to see as many DJs as I used to! That being said, Keep Hush UK, DEF, and CRUCAST on YouTube have fantastic live set recordings to listen to.
Q: Being in the music scene takes you to new places, gives you the opportunity to try new things and puts you in positions you never imagined you’d be in. Individually, what is the most surprising thing you’ve done since beginning your journey as an electronic music artist? What is an unexpected situation you may have never encountered if you had chosen a different path?
Jack: I’m maybe the least surprised person at any given moment so this question is tough for me haha, a lot of what we’ve done is work that I’ve set out to do for a long time, and it feels good to accomplish it. The one thing that does surprise me often is the wide interest we’ve gotten from all kinds of different people. I felt like our music and sound was quite niche but a lot of people seem to really appreciate it. The part of this I’d never have encountered otherwise is definitely all of the travel, especially touring in Europe, I was quite pleasantly surprised to have my preconceived notions about Europe to be broken.
Aric: I think I’m the most surprised at how far from home we’ve been able to travel because of the Ternion project. For example: We just got to play in Tokyo at the end of last year on our second international tour.
Andrew: Music and the arts have created loads of opportunities for me to gain perspective and I maintain I’d probably be a terrible person without that. When I got into electronic music my favorite place for music to come from in the world was Bristol UK. We got to play there on tour and that was a life-goal accomplished for me.
Q: Is there anything you’ve got “in the bag” at the moment? Any new releases we should be looking forward to? Any new livestreams coming up? Or any concert/festival announcements we can expect after Sonic Bloom 2023?
Jack: We’re currently working on our first album! Been playing a lot of tracks from it during sets and will definitely be playing some at Sonic Bloom.
Aric: We’re also working on a very special tour this fall with a dear friend of ours. We’re really diving into the curation ourselves more than we ever have before and I think it’s gonna be the best tour we’ve been on so far!
Andrew: Always have things in the bag, especially for the live show 😎
Q: Now, is there anything you would like to say to the growing number of devoted fans and faithful listeners to get them hyped up for not only your highly anticipated FIRST EVER set at Sonic Bloom, but also for everything you’ve got in store for the rest of 2023 and beyond?
Aric: I just wanna say thank you so much to everyone who has supported our music through these years. We’re really excited about how our sound is developing and being able to create new music experiences in the near future that we’ve been thinking about for years.
Andrew: Prepare to hear brand-new tunes from ourselves and homies and probably a rewind or two 😉
Don’t miss out and secure your tickets to Sonic Bloom now! We have a playlist composed of all the artists you can check out on SoundCloud, check it out below as well! Feel like going to the Unified Field before getting to the Hummingbird Ranch? Check out Sonic Bloom’s Pre-Party at Cervantes, taking over both sides of the venue for a night of BLOOMIN’ VIBES!