Glassio talks new single “Magazines,” working with Dave Rubin of American Authors, and more

By Leah Black

 Photo: Rachel Cabitt 

Indie dream pop meets electronic artist Glassio has made a career for himself with his catchy genre-bending releases. His latest single “Magazines” is no exception, highlighting quirky beats under colorful layered vocals which are all wrapped up for a triumphant and textured sound. The song was used as a catalyst to help the artist get out of a bed, after a personal loss and a time of hardships. We talk to Glassio about his creative process, musical influences and what he would bring to a desert island! 

You just dropped a new single and video for “Magazines,” which is about having self-confidence in a society that is overwhelmed with the idea of perfectionism. Tell me a little bit more about the inspiration behind the song, the writing process, and what you hope your listeners will take away from its meaning?

The song came about after a morning of working on new synth sounds last Summer (2020). I had woken up from a fairytale-like dream one morning (I think there were gnomes in the dream working on building a home), and I remember singing a melody to myself in bed that felt very fitting for the dream I had just had –It was the whistling section of “Magazines.” I had that melody marinating in my head while I was working on a new sequencer pattern on my synthesizer later that morning, and the two just married really well. It was a super quick experience. Lyrically, I was definitely tapping into this feeling of being distanced from a life of perfection, and being constantly exposed to people showcasing facades of perfection on social media. That was the initial inspiration behind it all. I hope it gives my listeners a sense of joy – something that I was consciously trying to instil in both myself and any potential fans of the song whilst I was making it. 

You worked with Dave Rubin of American Authors on the track. What role did each of you have in the song’s creation? Have you worked together before?

Yes! Working with Dave was an absolute pleasure. We had grown to be friends in 2019, and had discussed working on music together once it felt safer to do so COVID-wise. We began meeting at his – I had just finished an album’s worth of new songs. I played him “Magazines” in the original format and it really stuck out to him. So we ended up stemming out all the stems from my original session and essentially beefing each part up in his studio, as well as re-working some of the lyrics. We recorded new vocals, added in harmonies and took the song from it’s 75% mark all the way to 100. I sometimes really prefer working on the final push (75 to 100) with another producer. 

Describe your sound using three adjectives.

Shiny, quirky, melodic. 

What’s your biggest inspiration when it comes to making music? Is there a particular time and place where you feel most creative?

Something that has definitely inspired me is making music to try and stir others’ creativity. I think I strive to produce music and put it out in the world to have conversations with not just my listeners who aren’t involved in music, but other musicians. My goal is to make music that inspires the next wave of songwriters and producers.  I’m also very much influenced by others’ stories. Lately, I’ve been channeling other people’s struggles that I know about (and with their consent) into some of my new music; behaving almost like a documentarian of the world around me. 

What practices do you put in place to have a healthy relationship with social media?

Social media can become a toxic place for me if I’m on there for too long. I try to keep my content truthful, and to not just post for the sake of posting. Sometimes planning that content in advance is helpful for me, and allows me to foster the space I need from the platform, but at the same time, create content that is meaningful to the people who follow me because they like my music. I want to continue to entertain others through social media in a way that isn’t detrimental to my mental health. 

You’ve been asked to play a show with your two favorite musicians of all time. Who are they?

Pet Shop Boys and The Magnetic Fields (acoustic set for the latter). 

Will you be touring in the near future?

I would really love to. It all really depends on how things progress with COVID. I, like many others, have lost loved ones to this virus, and I think that has slowed down my zest for getting back up on stage and seeing hundreds of people together. Ethically, I don’t want to be the reason a bunch of people with fake vaccine cards got together and spread something that they eventually bring home to their loved ones. I would absolutely hate that. So I’m taking things a bit more slowly than my peers admittedly. I do have bittersweet and apprehensive feelings about how the live industry has opened up so quickly, knowing what the worst of this virus can do to someone. 

You’re going to a deserted island for 2 months and you can only bring three items. What would they be?

  1. My Roland juno 60
  2. The Blue Nile album Hats 

3. The 1992 film Toys with Robin Williams