Varien

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Varien
Birth name Nick Pittsinger
Also known as Chrono Rabbit, Nick Kaelar, Halo Nova, Koinu, Varien
Born (1990-05-15) May 15, 1990 (age 27)
United States Tampa, Florida, United States
Genres
Occupation(s) Composer, Producer, DJ
Instruments
Labels
Associated acts
Website VarienOfficial.com

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.

History[edit]

Early life[edit]

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,[1] 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.[1]

2010 to 2013[edit]

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.[2]

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'.[3]

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.[4]

2014 to 2016[edit]

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.[5]

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[1]

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."[1]

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."[6]

Discography[edit]

Albums/EP's[edit]

Mirai Sekai (September 1, 2014, Monstercat)
No. Title Length
1. "Mirai Sekai Pt.1: Neo-Seoul" (With 7 Minutes Dead) 3:37
2. "Mirai Sekai Pt.2: Neo-Tokyo" (With 7 Minutes Dead) 4:16
3. "Mirai Sekai Pt.3: Aeon Metropolis" (With 7 Minutes Dead) 3:56
4. "Mirai Sekai Pt.4: Goodnight Sequence" (With 7 Minutes Dead) 2:32
5. "Mirai Sekai (Continuous Mix)" (With 7 Minutes Dead) 14:20
The Ancient & Arcane (August 5, 2015, Monstercat)
No. Title Length
1. "The Ancient and Arcane" 2:43
2. "Snowlight" 4:03
3. "Supercell" (Feat. Veela) 3:34
4. "transmissions from lemuria" 3:37
5. "Hypnotique" (Feat. Charlotte Haining) 4:21
6. "Firefly" (Intermission) 2:11
7. "kamisama" (Feat. Miyoki) 4:09
8. "Ghost Spores" (Feat. Laura Brehm) 5:10
My Prayers have Become Ghosts (October 31, 2016, Monstercat)
No. Title Length
1. "Lest We Resign to Oblivion" 1:36
2. "Dawn Will Bring Us Death" 3:30
3. "TEVA833" 4:19
4. "My Prayers Have Become Ghosts" 4:24
5. "The Pink Killing Floor" 6:40
6. "Hear, Smith of Heavens" 2:11
7. "The Pink Killing Floor" (Radio Edit) 5:16

Film/TV/Video Game[edit]

Kaelar also composes and licenses music for all forms of visual media. His music has appeared in the following:

Year Title
2016 The Sin of Man
2015 Furious 7
2015 Mars One
2015 The Walking Dead
2014 The Loft
2014 Bones
2014 Monsters: Dark Continent
2014 Face Off
2014 The Purge: Anarchy
2014 PlanetSide 2
2014 300: Rise of an Empire
2014 America's Next Top Model
2013 Runner Runner
2013 NASCAR Race Hub
2013 The Challenge: Rivals II
2013 The Tomorrow People
2013 Pain & Gain
2013 Breaking Amish: Los Angeles
2012 Intervention

References[edit]