SIP - SoundLAB Interview Project

TZ/X – Zoltan Tonka

TZ/X – Zoltan Tonka
Hungarian artist



Interview: 10 questions

1. When did you start making music, what is/was your motivation to do it?

The world of music always attracted me. I liked to analyse how do one my favorite songs work, how are they built.
Drums are the first I pay attention to so I started to observing and exercising rhythms. It was about 10 years ago, in my grammar school time. I didn’t learned it from a teacher, I wanted to discover this world alone.
Later by my friends I got acqainted with programs to make music.

2. Tell me something about your living environment and the musical education.
I live in Budapest, capital of Hungary (Eastern Europe). I make administrative works for a long while.
My first band was a hard rock project in 2005. Soon it ended, then I played for 2 years in a folkrock band called Esovaro and in a hardrock/punk group, Gitar Utca. In the spring of 2007 I got tired of this, I exited from my bands and decided to stop drumming.
I started to learn playing keyboards, and concentrated to my own project called TZ/X. I wanted to create darker, more depressing and rhythmically complex songs than played in bands.
In 2008 I returned to the drums, because it is a very important part of my life, needed in the pause too. I had a progressive rock band called Sunrise Morning, it has broken up recently, now I am the drummer of a martial/industrial project, Durch Heer Und Kraft (
TZ/X project exists parallel with drumming in bands.

3.Is making music your profession? What is the context in which you practice music nowadays?

Music is not my profession, it’s my hobby. I love music, to listen to, to play and to create. TZ/X music contains the most of my influences, elements of prog.rock, noise, industrial, metal, jazz or folk music are also used.
Strange but true, it’s to make music that I like to listen to. I use rhythms, melodies, sounds that are my favorites. TZ/X songs are trying to be the perfect mix of musical elements I like. “Perfect” doesn’t mean faultless, liked by all, it means music I really like to listen to.
I have a lot of tracks ready, enough for an album and now I am trying to find a label.

4. How do you compose or create music or sound? Have you certain principles, use certain styles etc?

When I have ideas, when I find out something I can extract to be a song, I make it.
In general these are not chirpy songs. I like a lot of music, but in making music I prefer the “dark side”. Not the style called “dark”, rather a weighty, depressing atmosphere, that comes from me when creating.
Sometimes I make songs less dark, but it’s very rare.

5. Tell me something about the instruments, technical equipment or tools you use?

I use the Fruity Loops softver. It’s mainly for disco music, but there is a lot of sound and instrument in this. Effects are also quite good, so there are many possibilities in it.
I have some drumsample recorded in a rehearsal room, played by me. I don’t use real instruments, all TZ/X song is made by this program.

6. What are the chances of New Media for the music production in general and you personally?

Music making and studio programs available give the chance to create what you want, you don’t need to have all the instruments, effect pedals, etc.
You don’t depend on rehearsal rooms, you can make music at your home, you can save time too.
The internet helps to make the music known by anyone in the world. More band bring out a new album to be downloadable.
In this manner the distance doesn’t matter, you can spread your music in all over the world.
For example on my Myspace profile I receive comments from the most different countries: Argentina, Poland or Japan!

7. How about producing and financing your musical productions?

There is the price of the program and the electricity bill so not the money but the time, that matters now.

8. Do you work individually as a musician/soundartist or in a group or collaborative? If you have experience in both, what is the difference, what do you prefer?

I like playing real drums too, making music with a softver can’t replace this pulsation, but TZ/X is my own project.
There isn’t battle with other members’ opinion, there isn’t the problem “somebody isn’t at leisure”.
I can create when and what I want. In every parts of songs I am, me alone.

9. Is there any group, composer, style or movement which has a lasting influence on making music?

There isn’t one group or one musician influencing me lasting. I like the most different music, from black metal to classical jazz. For example the prog.rock band King Crimson is one of my favorites but I adore the Indian jazz music of Trilok Gurtu too.
All these impressions are in me, sometimes one is stronger than others, but it always changes.
I rarely listen to 4-5 albums from one style in succession. I always seeking something new, something else, in music making too.

10. What are your future plans or dreams as a soundartist or musician?

I want to release the album with TZ/X, I hope I try a record label in this year.
With Durch Heer und Kraft we exercise the tracks of the album (made by Adam Bérces, also selected in SoundLAB VI list with his project Mork Skog) and will have concerts, then record new tracks.
Music is my hobby, my favorite activity, so I deal with it as something I like, not something I must do.