With a new sound and new name, RVA chiptune producer An0va discusses making music as ‘Fashion Zoo’

by | Aug 11, 2016 | MUSIC

Electronic music has reached unforeseen heights in the past five years. Perhaps to a nauseating level that has allowed saturation into the genre. Despite that, there is still a bevy of talented producers pushing the sound of electronic music to new heights.

Electronic music has reached unforeseen heights in the past five years. Perhaps to a nauseating level that has allowed saturation into the genre. Despite that, there is still a bevy of talented producers pushing the sound of electronic music to new heights.

Burgeoning electronic musician Fashion Zoo, real name Daniel Davis, is one of those artists. RVA Mag spoke to the producer about his musical background, the name change and his new single “Fly High”.

The artist, formerly known as An0va, received decent notoriety as a chiptune producer, but his musical background stretches back to his teen years.

“I was in a bunch of bands in high school, a bunch of shitty bands and stuff,” Zoo said. “I got fed up with trying to accommodate everyone’s schedule.”

That frustration led to an interest in digital sounds and eventually chiptune, a genre of music that infuses 8-bit Gameboy sounds into production. Under the name An0va, Davis producd the music for several video games, including Curse of the Crescent Isle for XBOX360, Rampage Rex and Vegan Vampire for Flash.

Influenced by the likes of Bit Shifter and Anamanaguchi, Zoo gained traction as a chiptune producer and played shows around the country, including festivals such as Mag Fest.

“The problem with that I was getting a lot of opportunities and everyone was trying to book it, but it was only like Nerd Night, playing con, playing 8-bit festivals,” Zoo said. “I’m making music on a gameboy, it’s such a niche thing, especially now because kids didn’t even grow up with the game.”

To avoid being placed in a box, Zoo created another musical identity to make and perform all types of music. “Fashion Zoo is the new alias I have for every style of music I want to do,” he said.

“I make juke/footwork beats, I started making house/techno sounds and I can’t release that as An0va because it’s not what people think of as 8-bit video game culture, they don’t get it anymore,” Zoo said.

Although he had a promising start as primarily a chiptune producer, Zoo valued his artistic freedom over the sure-thing niche he garnered a following for. Enter Fashion Zoo. With a new name and new artistic identity comes new music.

One of the first Fashion Zoo releases is the excellent “Fly High”. The electro-pop song also has traces of ambience, and a self-described “Chill-Trap”. “All of the chords are using soft synths, virtual plugins that I synthesized myself,” Zoo said.

“Inspiration for Fly High came from a lot of people I’ve been listening to lately,” Zoo said. “A lot of inspiration from a lot of these modern electronic musician guys that necessarily aren’t following the build drop format; Fly High has builds and drops, but that isn’t the meat of the song.”

With an atypical approach to electronic musician, Zoo wants to get even more experimental, deeming “Fly High” a test-flyer song mainly for himself. “It’s for me because it’s like a physical reminder to make more of this style, but get better with it,” Zoo said.

Zoo is making his debut under the new stage name at Low Level Festival.

“That’s what I love about Fashion Zoo, it’s a producer/DJ thing. I can do whatever I want,” Zoo said.

In the meantime he’ll continue to build the Fashion Zoo sound with a plan to release a bunch of free Soundcloud songs, shying away from collaborations and selling music until he has a firm grasp on the zoo.

“I feel like I’m starting completely from scratch again,” Zoo said. Cheers to more free music like “Fly High”.

Amy David

Amy David

Amy David was the Web Editor for RVAMag.com from May 2015 until September 2018. She covered craft beer, food, music, art and more. She's been a journalist since 2010 and attended Radford University. She enjoys dogs, beer, tacos, and Bob's Burgers references.




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