qman Talks All Things Analo9ue
qman, aka 9.10000, reveals the nostalgic influences and surprising facts behind his new album!
For those who have never heard your music before, how would you describe it to them? How would you finish the sentence “qman is ___” or “qman’s music is ___”?
qman's music is retro!
Why did you decide to go by the name “qman” / “9.10000,” and did you consider any other stage names first?
I [turned] my real name, Kim Kyuman, into “qman,” which [is] also my nickname since forever. Most of my friends call me that, rather than my real name, so I thought it'd attract the same kind of attention.
What three words best summarize Analo9ue?
Retro, tasty, and impulsive.
Please share some information about each song on Analo9ue.
“Supercar”: I drive a '99 Kia Pride. I'd always dreamed of driving a supercar, but succeeding in life was harder than I thought. Still, my Pride felt just like a supercar when I first purchased it and still feels like one. “Supercar” is a song about working ambitiously until the day I get to wear fancy Rolexes and drive expensive cars.
“Sweetheart”: Fighting and arguing is inevitable when it comes to love. Even though it's stressful, I feel like two people can actually form a stronger bond through making up. When two individuals meet and fall in love, their worlds have to fold to understand each other. So why don't we think of the process as a road to a better relationship? As a side note, I wrote this song starting with the main synth riff, played on a Roland Mini Log.
“Murphy & Sally”: I wanted to write something dry and low-key, putting a lot of time and effort into the lyrics especially. Everything I say turns out the opposite way, which is kind of sad but funny at the same time. I hope you know what I'm talking about!
“Impulse”: I love traveling. One autumn night in Jeju, I was gazing at the beautiful Jeju sea. The moonlight reflected on the sea was sparkling like someone's eyes. At that moment, an impulse to reach out and touch the water came over me. The song is dedicated to the twinkling of the sea that night.
“WWAVE”: This song is all about me, filled with my life experiences. Our dreams tend to change over time as we grow up. I've dreamed of so many things as well. Even after choosing to become a singer-songwriter, more and more choices and goals are springing up. They're what make my life so wavy. The W’s in the title are intended to look like ocean waves. I'm riding my life like I'd ride the waves!
How do the songs on Analo9ue differ from your previous releases?
I used to release soft retro tunes, but this time I tried going up-tempo. If my previous releases were best for calm nights, Analo9ue is fit to listen to anytime, anywhere. Traveling, cleaning the house, going on a drive, you name it. Synth sounds are the main focus as well, giving a more retro touch to the songs' compositions and arrangements.
If you had to make a remix for one of the songs on Analo9ue or had to turn it into a collaboration, which song would you change, and why?
I'd like to collaborate on “Murphy & Sally” with the funk band Vulfpeck. They're always on my playlist, and I even modeled the track after their music. I'm really curious as to how “Murphy & Sally” would sound if Vulfpeck actually played it. I'd give anything to perform with them!
You have released a wide variety of YouTube content! Are there any specific videos on your channel that you are the most proud of?
The roller-skating live clips. Performing live while roller-skating was unlike anything I've ever done musically. Also, episodes one and two of my vlog series, “9.10000's Point of View.” You can see how happy I was to go fishing.
The “Supercar” music video is very retro! Did you find inspiration in any specific commercials or movies? Where did you come up with the ideas for the video?
The video is largely inspired by random vintage advertisements and Americana artifacts. Since I can only have second-hand experiences of those times, I took some notes from the Netflix series WandaVision, which features a lot of TV-culture- and sitcom-inspired elements from back in the day. Also, our music video director is a big fan of all things retro. He came up with a lot of vivid ideas for the video.
Can you share a “TMI” fact about the making of the “Supercar” music video?
The black Kia Pride in the music video is actually my own car!
What is next for you? Do you have any specific goals for the rest of 2022?
I've got a concert scheduled for December. My end-of-year goal is [to have] a sold-out show!
What are your longer-term career goals?
The best thing about making music is that you instinctively get better through trying out new things and listening to new music. The process itself is so much fun, and I'd say my biggest goal is continuing that process and continuing to grow. Someday I'd like to make it to an international festival, too.
Lastly, is there anything else you want to say about your music?
I'm trying my best to develop my own style of retro [music]. All I want is for my listeners to melt into my music and feel happy. I love you all.
Check out Analo9ue here!
Answers have been lightly edited and condensed for clarity. Photos courtesy of MPMG Music.