Making Music and Finding an Audience on the Internet

David Warner


DeathFileRed live at The Lost Well, September 2022. Photo by David Warner

AUSTIN – With the rise of a new alternative and independent music scene in Austin focusing on independent artists, there have been many discussions on how to effectively publish and distribute your music and build a community.

As complicated as being a musician is, technology has helped ease some of the growing pains that many artists of decades past were forced with overcoming. With music streaming services as an industry breaking 25 billion dollars in revenue in 2021 per BusinessofApps, more and more people are using the internet to find new artists, and in combination with social media as an ever-present marketing tool, independent artists have the best opportunity they’ve ever had to reach an audience.

Roy Khau is a Houston-based producer turned Metalcore recording artist who over the past 6 years has built an impressive catalog, and has been able to utilize the internet as an effective tool to promote his music, as well as network with other artists and collaborate.

“Technology and distribution make it so easy to get music out there. With the ease of things, anyone can write, record, and post it.” Khau said. “DIY shows are no longer a secret thing, and are becoming increasingly popular. People are tired of simple, safe music, that doesn’t appeal to anyone. I think we’re going to see a continuing rise in independent musicians.” 

Khau also discussed using the internet and social media as valuable tools to learn how to produce music, from learning an instrument to gathering presets and plug-ins for digital workspaces.

“If I didn’t know how to do something, I would just look up how to do it,” Khau said. “If I didn’t have someone to send me guitars, I would learn how to record my own, or use my DAW to make them digitally.”

Vincent Lozano is a Death Metal vocalist for the Elgen-based band “DeathFileRed”. Over the past two years, over the past two years, he and his band have risen to regional prominence, having played venues and events throughout the I-35 corridor, opening for acts such as Gruesome, Immolation, and Black Horse of Famine. 

Vince Lozano performing with DeathFileRed, May 2022. Photo by David Warner.

Lozano discussed how the origins of the band in its current state go back to him posting on Facebook looking for people in the Austin area to collaborate with.

“I put out this Facebook ad back when I first moved to Austin back in April of last year,” Lozano said. “I was like ‘Hey, does anyone need a Grindcore vocalist?’ because that was what I was into at the time, and my other guitarist was like ‘Hey, I’m forming a Death Metal band’ off of Facebook, and that’s how that started.”

However, Lozano also did admit that there are some things better suited for in-person connection.

“Our networking was all done through playing shows,” Lozano said. “Our first show was pretty good, we opened up for some death metal bands that were prominent in the area, but after that, it was a steep downhill, and a slow incline back up when we started playing more shows.”  

Alyx Schafer, the lead vocalist for Austin-based Goth Metal band Unconsecrated, shared their unique perspective on getting started using free recording software to publish guitar demos online at the age of 15.

Alyx Schafer outside of an abandoned school, September 2022. Photo by David Warner

“It was just me making songs in my bedroom on Audacity,” Shafer said.“ Those weren’t really released anywhere, I put a few of them on SoundCloud, but I was essentially working on my own album between the ages of 15 to 17.”

Through this, Schafer was able to work on not only their solo projects but build out their band LokomØtiv (now Unconsecrated) to the point where they even appeared at South by Southwest earlier this year.

“Unconsecrated, is the most successful thing that I’ve ever done,” Schafer said. “This is the thing that I’m working toward the most in my life, this is what I look the most forward to, I believe we’re going to be very successful, and we’re gonna scare the hell out of a lot of people.”

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