TELYKast is the culmination of the musical talents of Kyle Tonoli, Linus AK, and Trevor Klaiman: a trio that lives and breathes music. Each hailing from different states, they bonded over their love for high energy pop and are now on a mission to rid the world of the stereotype that EDM lacks substance. Since their formation, the group has transformed their bedrooms to professional studios to perfect their craft and it’s obvious their hard work has paid off. The band has sold out every live show they’ve performed and continue to impress fans around the world.
Most recently, the band partnered up with vocalist Aly Ryan to create “Better”, a song full of upbeat music instrumentals and meaningful lyrics. I sat down with TELYKast to learn about their love for EDM and their most recent track, “Better”.
Ariel Zedric: Tell me about the inspiration behind “Better”?
TELYKast: When we wrote “Better” we were all talking about our relationships and noticed that we all had something in common – we all had that relationship where we knew it wasn’t right but for some reason, we kept going back. We wanted to share that through the lyrics which were based off real experiences we had. We felt like it was a very relatable message.
What was it like working with Aly Ryan?
Aly Ryan is very talented. When we sat down in our home studio in Sherman Oaks, we could tell the energy was right on point. Trevor started playing acoustic guitar and melodies, then the lyrics just started flowing out. What you hear on the recording was all written and recorded in one day. Adlibs, backgrounds, lead vocal, she nailed all the takes.
Walk me through your music creating process, about how long does it take? As a trio, do you have different roles, or is everything shared?
Typically Linus and Trevor are the ones on the computer or playing the instruments, Kyle has a great ear for dance music and is great at keeping everything cohesive and in line. Trevor is also singing on the track. Between the 3 of us musically there isn’t much we can’t do. It’s not uncommon for us to finish production on a song in one day. Although with “Better” we really wanted it to be perfect so we actually ended up remaking it many times. The final one that you hear was probably our 7th or 8th go at the production. We’ve really started to perfect our workflow and feel that we’ve gotten in a great groove and can’t wait for everyone to hear all the new music we’ve been making!
How was that process changed when working with Aly?
With Aly, it was really all about the song. Once we had all the vocals processed, we really focused on centering the production around that – making a custom beat that really fit the vocals.
What is it about EDM that excites you? What makes EDM different from other genres of music?
EDM is just so high energy. When you go to show and experience what it’s like to be in a crowd with the lights, visuals, and feeling that you get, it’s really undeniable. There is nothing like it.
Has music ever come between or put a strain on your friendship? How do you balance both?
The TELYKast boys have been living and working together for a long time now. Over time we’ve been through so much together, the bond is just so strong. The key thing that we always stress is good communication and being honest with each other. If one of us is slacking or we someone feels like something is out of place we voice it and figure out how to solve the issue.
What’s your favorite part about playing live shows?
Playing live shows is just so natural for us. Kyle comes from a DJ background and Linus and Trevor come from being in bands since they were teenagers. When we get on stage we really come alive and just love interacting with the crowd and showing them our musicianship, whether it be shredding on the guitar over a dance banger or singing one of our original songs while one of us hits the drum pads. When we hit that point where we know we’ve won over the crowd, it’s game over and the energy just feels great. There’s nothing like being on stage and feeling the energy of crowd.
Tell me about a moment in your career that has left you all extremely proud.
I think recently when we played at Exchange LA for over a thousand people and rocked the house, we felt super proud and ready for the next chapter of our career. We only had a week to prepare for that show but we spent every day making sure the music and live performance was dialed in exactly how we wanted it. It was super rewarding to see the crowd reacting in such a positive way. That’s what keeps us going – making other people happy with our music and performances.
Explain the personal and professional struggles you’ve encountered in the music industry thus far. How have they molded you?
Man the music industry is full of ups and downs. Since there are only 3 of us, for a long time we were doing everything ourselves – negotiating, accounting, contracts, mixing, mastering, recording, distribution, promotion, you name it. You learn a lot about how the industry works and you meet a lot of great and not so great people along the way. A lot of times something that you thought might be great isn’t quite what you thought it would be or something you thought was small and meaningless ends up being your biggest success. Every failure and success we’ve had has led us to our next point and molded us into who we are today.
Have you ever doubted pursuing music? What inspired you to keep going?
I don’t think any of us have ever doubted it. There is nothing else we really see our selves doing. During those down periods, it’s always the fans that keep us going. Even something as small as a fan DMing us saying “love the music it got me through my day”.
What’s one artist you would love to work with that you haven’t got the opportunity to yet?
There are so many great artists out there that we would love to collaborate with. Right now we are really into Alison Wonderland and Billie Eilish. We also love Odezsa and The Chainsmokers.
If you could give young aspiring artists one piece of advice, what would it be?
Probably the best piece of advice is to stay humble and don’t be afraid to expand your horizons and most importantly your team, try to surround yourself with people who have similar goals that can mentor you or that can grow together with you. Don’t be afraid to reach out to people who may seem to be unreachable, you’d be surprised at the responses you might get. Also, a good lawyer is important who knows the industry and can help you navigate the rough waters of the music industry. Finally, work hard and try not to get down on yourself. Everything takes time.
Any last thoughts?
Can’t wait for everyone to hear this new music we have in the works and see our live show! Thank you so much to everyone who supports us and believes in us.
Feature image courtesy of TELYKast