FXL: Unlimited sound
by Halee Hastad
My boss said Trevor Weidenbacher is a nice guy. My boss did not lie. Not only in what he says, but in character too. Large and teddy bear-esque seem to be the first descriptive words that come to mind. His eyes squint as he smiles, talking about music as a vehicle to drive social change. Weidenbacher, known in the local electronic circuit as FXL, is quite friendly.
FXL, formerly of the Fear and Loathing duo, has now been part of Bellingham’s EDM flavors for more than three years, giving him experience that has been beneficial to his own style, he said.
And though three years has found him plenty of connections and associations, he seems to have begun a new journey – embarking on something of a solo expedition. Weidenbacher is, for the most part, a self-taught artist. He creates all his own sounds and sets, has learned sound technology from the ground, up, and is his own personal marketing director.
“Making music is a lot of work,” Weidenbacher said, with a nonchalance of someone who has accepted the challenges of a path they have chosen to walk.
FXL came up with the Bass Area Crew a couple of years ago and began the Lifted series, a now monthly EDM production with, on average, upwards of 300 attendees. He has, in the past, played 20-plus shows per month, helped maintain a group of like-minded artists with similar style and, with all of this, gleaned a certain wisdom; a wisdom that he is taking with him to new frontiers.
An internship with the Wild Buffalo led to a job there as a sound technician, which grew to a greater understanding of the music industry. Naturally, these experiences in his not so distant past have lent FXL the inspiration to step into the field as an individual. One man – unlimited sound combinations.
Leaving the Bass Area Crew last June was a move FXL said he felt, no matter how difficult, had to be taken. “Not because I felt any hard feelings about that community, but because I felt my own needs and inspirations changing,” he said. “I had to do what I had to do to get where I want to be, which is making music and connecting with people through my sound.”
Working at the Wild Buffalo helped him understand that he needed to be playing less shows and dedicating as much energy as possible into fewer performances that will have more of a lasting impact on the audience. His goal is to expand the experiences into something that will leave a lingering effect. And this, Weidenbacher said, takes a lot of time and devotion.
FXL’s sound is inspired by the like of Bassnectar and Zed’s Dead, artists who move him with both their unique sounds and remixes as well as overall messages. A large part of his ambitions are fueled by social change and the power music can have on the perspective of the listener.
“I want my music to be a form that influences people,” he said.
And it doesn’t seem like that should be much trouble. FXL is, after all, a nice guy, and, as far as I can tell, being nice goes the mile in this industry.
LIVE SHOW: Catch FXL at the Wild Buffalo for the Aaron Bornemann celebration on April 2 or follow him at facebook.com/fearandloathingmusic.