|Birth name||Nick Pittsinger|
|Also known as||Chrono Rabbit, Nick Kaelar, Halo Nova, Koinu, Varien|
May 15, 1990 |
Tampa, Florida, United States
|Occupation(s)||Composer, Producer, DJ|
Nick Pittsinger (born May 15, 1990), better known by his current stage name Varien, is an American composer and producer. While primarily an electronic music producer, Varien has incorporated or experimented with styles of Epic Music, metal, orchestral, Neofolk, and ambient music. He is known for his unconventional approach to electronic music, focusing on immersion and storytelling and including many live instruments not normally found on electronic tracks.
Kaelar was born on May 15, 1990 in Tampa, Florida. He claims to have had a connection to music from a very young age, and his family supported his passions. At the age of 11, Varien began playing the guitar and attempting songwriting, and joined a number of bands experimenting with genres of rock and jazz, but grew weary with both. He then decided to focus on composition and began producing in 2009, with music in video games serving as his most longtime influence to date.
2010 to 2013
In August 2010, Kaelar achieved internet virality with his slowed-down remix of Justin Bieber's "U Smile", titled "Justin Bieber 800% Slowed Down". He was interviewed by Entertainment Weekly, MTV, and had articles written about the track from all over the world.
In July 2011, Kaelar released his first Monstercat single "The Force" under the alias Halo Nova. He subsequently released two more singles under the alias before abandoning it and continuing to make music under the alias 'Varien', with one of the first releases as Varien being a remix of Ephixa's song 'Division'.
On February 26, 2013, Kaelar released Pick Your Poison Vol. 1, a compilation album of trailer cues that he had done strictly for the purpose of film, television, and video game licensing. Pick Your Poison Vol. 2 released a year later.
2014 to 2016
In 2014, Kaelar teamed up with Two Steps from Hell on a private trailer cue compilation entitled Open Conspiracy. 2014 saw an abundance of licenses for Varien. His music was used in trailers and promotional media for 300: Rise of an Empire, Bones, The Purge: Anarchy, Face Off, America's Next Top Model, PlanetSide 2, and Monsters: Dark Continent. Los Angeles-based singer Roniit's song "Runaway", produced by Varien, was used in multiple trailers and TV spots for the film The Loft.
During his time with Monstercat, Varien reached new levels of success with all his tracks nearing or surpassing a million views on YouTube and topping worldwide charts. His track "Gunmetal Black" was made in a record six hours
On August 5, 2015, Kaelar released his first LP, titled The Ancient & Arcane, on Monstercat. Prior to this, he released two tracks, "Beyond the Surface" and "Aether and Light". In an interview with UKF, he elaborated on his songwriting process for the album, saying: "I make so many other types of music so I thought I’d sit down and write – no theme, no story. It’s a very Zen experience. Very spiritual. Wake up. Do yoga. Make music. No regard for the club. No regard for where it will be played or comparisons to my past music or anything else that’s going on. I’ve never gone to any of these places I’m exploring right now. I want people to listen to it and think ‘is this Varien?’ Psychedelic, worldly, ethnic, trippy… People have never seen me go there. Yet."
The Ancient & Arcane was acclaimed upon release, with EDM website Dancing Astronaut calling it a "cinematic masterpiece", giving particular praise to "Ghost Spores" as "reinvigorat[ing] the soul with its harp-tinged melody and orchestral instruments that once again highlight Varien’s idiosyncratic musicianship."
|Mirai Sekai (September 1, 2014, Monstercat)|
|The Ancient & Arcane (August 5, 2015, Monstercat)|
|My Prayers have Become Ghosts (October 31, 2016, Monstercat)|
Kaelar also composes and licenses music for all forms of visual media. His music has appeared in the following:
|2016||The Sin of Man|
|2015||The Walking Dead|
|2014||Monsters: Dark Continent|
|2014||The Purge: Anarchy|
|2014||300: Rise of an Empire|
|2014||America's Next Top Model|
|2013||NASCAR Race Hub|
|2013||The Challenge: Rivals II|
|2013||The Tomorrow People|
|2013||Pain & Gain|
|2013||Breaking Amish: Los Angeles|
- "Entertainment Weekly interview with Nick Pittsinger".
- "LISTEN: Varien's (formerly Halo Nova) remix of Ephixa's "Division" - Suburban Apologist". Suburban Apologist. 2011-10-26. Retrieved 2017-02-27.
- "Varien Releases "Pick Your Poison Vol. 02"". 2014-01-27. Retrieved 2017-02-27.
- "Two Steps From Hell: Open Conspiracy « Trailer Music News". trailermusicnews.com. Retrieved 2017-02-27.