In Conversation

In Conversation with Rich Vreeland Composer Rich Vreeland, more commonly known by his nom de plume Disasterpeace, has been making music at a furious pace for the past decade-plus, standing as an early model in the digital age for producing and releasing music under one's own terms and growing as an artist in the public eye with each release; the digital-era musician must constantly look forward and allow for organic changes in style and tastes, as seemingly every note occurs under the public eye. Vreeland seems to have utterly embraced this concept wholeheartedly, not only for the ever-shifting tone and style of his music, but his involvement with exploring new media as worlds for his music to inhabit. Ever since his first MIDI-based score to a cell phone game, Vreeland has been working to let his music not only inhabit the worlds in which they're placed, but to actually shape them as well, pushing understanding of not only what can be done with music in games, but how the player themselves can become an author of the experience through their in-game choices as they influence where Vreeland's work goes.

Perhaps the strongest indicator of his willingness to experiment with the medium is the great leap that Vreeland has taken into the world of film with his brilliant score for David Robert Mitchell's film It Follows, released early in 2015. Vreeland was just coming off the success of his highly interactive score to 2012's platform game Fez when Mitchell, a fan of the musical work done in the Seumas McNally Grand Prize-winning game, approached the composer to score his upcoming horror film. Though the experience of scoring a full-length film was quite different than he was used to — going from nearly a limitless musical grid to working with the construct of visual linearity and permanence proved jarring — the work on It Follows is nothing short of astounding. Vreeland admits that the number of horror films that he has seen in his life can be counted on one hand, but when you watch It Follows the score plays like that of an enthusiast completely in his element.

Jeff sat down to chat with Vreeland about the constraints that working in film offers as well as the more freeing elements, as well as his artistic upbringing that started as early as middle school as the graphic design go-to for his fantasy wrestling league and what's in store for the future of his music, whether it be in the world of film or not. Read the full conversation below and check out our episode on It Follows in a couple of days.