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Album Review - OULUVESSENSE by no6o9y

WMU Student Releases Debut Instrumental Album

No6o9y, also known as Michael Dabrowski, is a current sophomore at WMU studying Investments and Marketing. Originally from Farmington Hills, Michael has spent most of his time in Kalamazoo playing guitar, piano, and making music on the software program Ableton, which he started to learn in 2020. Prior to production, Michael enjoyed contributing to the editing community on Instagram. His first album OULUVESSENSE dropped on Black Friday, and we met with the artist to discuss his story.

What is the definition of OULUVESSENSE?

To me OULUVESSENSE is a place to escape, my place to escape. This is a word I made up, and my definition of it is: ‘The feeling of always being in a dreamy or dream-like state of mind’. I feel like other people would like to be in this ‘dreamy state’ of mind as well. I didn’t come up with the name OULUVESSENSE until late April of this year. I heard this song called Clairvoyant by MISOGI, and I thought ‘ooh, Clairvoyant, what a name, but it’s a real word in the dictionary, and I’m never gonna get something that sounds similar to that’ so I just came up with my own.

I love that. Going through the tracklist of the album, what’s your personal favorite?

Hmmm, that’s difficult. Nostalgia/009 means the most to me I’d say because it really felt like my dad was with me when I wrote it. He kinda guided me through it. That song just came out, it was easy, I made it an hour when usually I would spend four hours on a song. For You, I’d Give The World really hits, especially because it’s so short, like a short story. It means a lot. For what it is, it’s a lot. And then Emergency!. Emergency! is one of my favorites because I’ve never made a song where I couldn’t and didn’t want to add anything else to the melody. It was the first time I had the finished product. That was all I needed, besides a little drum beat that I added.

Moving on from that, which song took you the longest to make?

The single version of Spec!al definitely took the longest, and then In My Dreams, but those are on the album as instrumental versions. For the actual instrumental tracks, Fever Dream took me a long time to make. It didn’t at first because I only had the beginning section, but my friend ended up coming over a few weeks before I released the album and really helped me finish up everything. I spent the most time trying to get the ending perfect and wondering how to end a dreamy album.

Right, because you want to stay in that state. Aside from working with friends, where do you draw your inspiration from, as a child and now?

It’s weird because my mom always liked to listen to Drake and she really liked her RnB and hip-hop music. My dad liked electronic music, so he would listen to Skrillex and artists like that. I had the best of both worlds. Growing up, I really loved and I still love Drake, especially his old music, oh my god. That inspires me so much, along with Skrillex and deadmau5, all those artists from back in the day. When you mix both of those genres together you get cloud rap, which is a synthesizer, hip-hoppy, A$AP Rocky, back-in-the-day kind of vibe, and that’s exactly what I’m doing right now.

Now I’d say I have inspiration everywhere. There’s this new artist I found named DVRST, he makes funk music but dreamier. I still listen to Skrillex, I can resonate with a lot of his melodies. I also developed my own ear finding dubstep and electronic music on the YouTube channel Trap Nation. On there they post a lot of different artists, things like the Trendsetter remix by Lucian. You can hear that in my songs, I pull from everyone. They say when you try to make a song based off of anyone or anything else and you fail at it, it becomes your own music. That was my goal. I pulled everything I thought was creative and inspirational and made it mine.

That’s great. I would love to hear the process of how you came out with an album.

I knew I wanted to come out with an album in late December of 2021, but I didn’t know what I wanted the theme of it to be. In terms of the tracks, the earliest song I made was For You, I’d Give The World. I made that probably two years ago and it was just sitting inside my computer, but I thought it’d be the perfect interlude to bridge the first part with the second part of the album. The last song I made on the album was What Now. I made that a week before the album dropped (laughs).


In the summertime, I was working a landscaping job so I had a ton of time to think by myself. I could focus, listen to music or podcasts, and that was my time to decide what I wanted to do with this music thing. During that time I thought ‘hmm, might as well just make it about my life’. I feel like my life in the last year or so has been pretty interesting, I went through a lot of tough situations.

What’s the meaning behind it?

I decided to write the album about going through something extremely traumatic in your life that actually alters something in you. I wrote about that happening, going through the aftermath, and then making sure you’ll be better than you were before. The first part of the album has a lot of regret and self hatred for thinking that it was a good idea in the first place. The transition, that bridge, is coming to terms with the event. The second half is moving on and being the person who doesn’t get mad about things anymore. They accept what has happened, ‘it is what is’, ‘this is my life now’.

‘This event doesn’t define me, it just built my character more.’

I basically took a bunch of songs from my files that were begging to be released and tried to figure out the story that linked them. I don’t create music to fit into a certain message. Instead, I make a bunch of songs and then listen to all of them to figure out what the story is, because indirectly and subconsciously, I wrote those songs about something. I make music to let out my feelings. Without specific lyrics though, you get to decide what it says. I feel like I’m giving the listener the story, which makes it more fun that they can interpret it how they want. However, future projects are definitely going to have more lyrics. I just wanted to prove that I could make an instrumental album. I feel like a lot of artists nowadays don’t do that.

That’s a good point, to show you can make a story without the lyrics to guide you. Obviously this album is very personal to you.

Yeah definitely, not only is my first ever self released album, but yeah, it was my life. I had to get that stuff out and release it somewhere. I believe that therapy works for everybody differently, and my therapy is music. Music gets to tell me how I feel. It was so nice to get that weight off my shoulders. Gosh, preparing an album is so difficult but so fun at the same time, and it was so nice to leave the story up for grabs and see what it means to others. Eventually I would love for some of my favorite artists like A$AP Rocky, Drake, Wiz Khalifa, and Lil Wayne to jump on the tracks and do whatever they want to them, think whatever they want about it, making art out of art.

I see it! Speaking of art, tell us about your cover art a little bit.

When I made this album I thought, ‘how much information can I put into something without telling them?’. The cover of my first single, In My Dreams, is me as a child reaching up for the stars, my goals. I’m realizing how much I need to accomplish to get to where I want to be, not believing in failure. The goals are in my head, in that dreamy state of mind, but mentally it’s very real to me. My cover art for Spec!al is me on a cloud in a criss-cross position holding one of my most valuable goals. I’m observing how it looks and feels to have your goal.

I feel like at some point your dream world will merge with reality, and that’s going to be so cool.

Some of my dreams have definitely become reality, but I have so much road to travel. I write about my dreams, in my dreams, and the music sounds dreamy too. It’s a triple entendre. The OULUVESSENSE cover art is the zoomed out version, the rest of my dreams. It’s me looking out and realizing I have so much more to go and it’s overwhelmingly so, because there are so many stars in that sky. I hyperfixate on being successful, it’s all I can think about. I wanted to make my cover art a collage that expresses what I live every day, going after those individual stars.

Last question! We want to know, what’s coming next?

What’s coming next… Well, you know what’s coming next. You and I have a song releasing on December 7th, my birthday, titled ‘Isn’t Love Something’. I wrote the melody a year ago, it has the same vibe as Emergency! because they were written around the same time. The rest of it I wrote in one go, I pulled an all nighter. It’s about missing a person and how that brings up conflicting emotions. Following that, I want to take some time to rest and let people sit with OULUVESSENSE. I might drop on New Year’s Eve to set the pace of 2023. Hopefully there’ll be some shows in 2023. Who knows, Valentine’s Day might be looking promising.

We thanked Michael for his spoken interview and can’t wait to hear more released under no6o9y! In the meantime, stream OULUVESSENSE.


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