For anyone who has had the pleasure of meeting Arizona native and drum and bass producer/DJ Arietta in the flesh, her no-nonsense approach to creativity and the music business underscore her calculated, yet wholehearted approach to music. Combined with her 15-year training as a multi-instrumentalist and composer in classical and jazz, her infrequent-yet-essential contributions to the American drum and bass zeitgeist have been substantial. After spending quality time in the studio and with family, Arietta is back with a new two-track EP titled Coded Dreams, Pt. 1, a project with darker societal themes.
“This is the first in a series focusing on digital conspiracies, and I always try to bring awareness to topics with my projects,” she says.
The first track, “Echelon and Tempest,” references the codenames of NATO-affiliated espionage operations dedicated to gathering intel through information systems, controversially including civilians in their target range.
“I’m releasing these two tracks together because I worked on them around the same time, and enlisted the help of the brilliant producer Left/Right in a few sessions. I met him about two years ago at a gig of his in Boston.”
Arietta kept in contact with Left/Right and enlisted his help in mixing her tracks.
“I ended up making a trip to his hometown of Dallas for a few days. I performed at the local weekly drum and bass night, Two:Tone, met some amazing locals, and learned more than I could have imagined from him.”
The second track, titled “Silk Road,” features the jazzy and soulful vocal stylings of Janel Blanco, lead vocalist of multi-genre jazz-fusion group The Maya Spectra. The digitized instrumental overtones of the synth-work blend melodically with Blanco’s gentle coos as the aggressive track skirts through its four-minute run. Inspired by The Silk Road, the now-defunct “dark web” black market for drugs and illicit resources, Arietta says the track was inspired by the unbridled freedom it represented.
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Even with her focus on studio time, Arietta has continued to play live shows and make weekly appearances on Sunday at DnBRadio.com. She was one of the headliners of the January 2019 Full Moon Festival, and she’s also played at Gold Rush, Decadence, and an opener spot for famed British duo Delta Heavy.
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“I’ve played all over the country and internationally a few times, so I’m really confident in my live performances. My radio show provides me a platform to consistently be mixing, as I always use all new music for my portion of the show,” says Arietta.
“I’m taking the year off of performing live shows starting in February to focus on producing and releasing more music, as well as family — my baby is due in July!”
Arietta’s Coded Dreams, Pt. 1 will be released on Friday, February 15, at soundcloud.com/ariettadnb.