The Venus in Scorpio’s single “Blissed” reveals the exhilarating sensation of finally triumphing over the struggles in finding self-love. Maxim Faster, a self-taught vocalist and producer of The Venus in Scorpio, is currently based in Berlin. His third EP “This Place Is Killing Me” will come out on Sept. 11 during his birthday, and he is currently recording his first full-length album “American Dog.”
Faster’s profound passion for music began when he received his first CDs as a child: “Tragic Kingdom” by No Doubt, “Dookie” by Green Day and “Jagged Little Pill” by Alanis Morissette.
He starts his songwriting process with either a beat or a synth sound that he likes and builds a demo around that — bass lines, melodies, et cetera.
“I tend to work pretty linearly in terms of structure. If an idea for a song isn’t ready, I just listen to the demo and freestyle until it sounds right,” Faster said. “For a while, that can sound like a bunch of gibberish. Once the lyrics come out, the song just sort of comes to life on its own.”
The idea of his single “Blissed” emerged in the heat of a fresh relationship. Everything was new, and he said it felt like he was experiencing the world in technicolor. Things eventually went south, and he struggled with a breakup.
“The meaning of the song shifted. It became about my need to love myself in place of someone else. That eventually evolved into a greater love for mankind that I started to feel was really needed. Since then it’s remained sort of a love song for the collective humankind,” Faster said.
The artist mentioned that he was emotionally affected by the music after hearing the final version of it. He said that the track finally started to sound like a real song after his co-producer Louie Diller mixed it.
“I probably got chills a few times and maybe teared up a bit. This song is really a release of emotions and always has been. When it was finally done, it just felt like a breakthrough,” he said.
Most of the track contained within it feels like a regular love song. At the time he wrote the intro, the world was undergoing some major despair, and Faster was doing whatever he could in his personal life to help and lift up those around him who were struggling.
“At the end of the day it just feels like love is the only true solution we have. There’s just too much hatred in the world, and it’s so unnecessary because we all have every right to be here,” the singer mentioned.
When Faster was writing “Blissed,” he thought about young love, road trips and his travels across the northern and western parts of the United States.
“I thought about all the scenery and lush landscapes, paired with this curious and mysterious presence of Eros energy that we all feel when a crush has taken off and we’ve hit the road,” Faster said.
He continued, “Whenever I’ve driven through California, Nevada or Colorado, I also can’t help but imagine what it was like in the ’60s with all the revolutions and rock ’n’ roll that were taking place. I was kind of inspired by that.”
“Blissed” has been a long process of cultivating Faster’s identity, and he evidently relied creatively on channeling different parts of himself that are more imagined. He revealed that it was difficult to keep track of all the personas he had taken on over the years.
“It’s a testimony to my own personal evolution and reinvention, but I’ve always had this chameleon-like shapeshifter energy. I’ve spent the last few decades morphing from one aesthetic to another, shedding different layers of myself in response to what my life was looking like at the time and the culture around it,” Faster said.
The artist confessed that he is finally starting to feel a stronger sense of his own style and personality and a greater connection to the world around him on a human scale.
“‘Blissed’ has somehow become its own part of the cultural lexicon. I see hashtags and uses of it from time to time. To me, it’s a state of euphoric love and wholeness that is experienced when you’ve learned to love yourself and others so deeply that you not only experience bliss, but it’s the thing that gets you high,” Faster expressed.
The artist reminisced about his first gig at the Troubadour in West Hollywood, which he claimed to be cosmic. There’s so much iconic history to that joint, and he was really proud to have landed his first gig there.
He said, “One of my favorite shows at the Troubadour was when I went on a date to see this band HOLYCHILD. A few years later I ended up making friends with them, and they came to my show at the Troubadour. That was a really cool full-circle moment for me!”
Faster advises aspiring singers to sing no matter who is listening. He encourages them to perform if it is truly their passion and to stop because society has told them that they don’t fit into a “mold” of singers.
Faster concluded, “Use your voice to express the experiences you’ve been through. Use singing to get through heartache, to inspire others and to put positive and creative energy out into the world.”
Contact Ron Rocky Coloma at rcoloma ‘at’ stanford.edu.