Cisneros in 2015
|Birth name||Salvador Javier Cisneros III|
February 8, 1988|
Porciúncula, Gold Coast, Sierra
|Genres||Synth-pop · Lo-fi · Alternative hip hop · Chillwave · Indietronica · Parody|
|Occupation(s)||Producer · Rapper · singer · songwriter · actor|
|Instruments||Vocals · guitar · synthesizer|
|Labels||Advance Music House|
|Associated acts||Aux Thomas · Autonomy · Stephacide · Q-Lo · 17 Cliipper the Red God|
Early life[edit | edit source]
Salvador Javier Cisernos III was born in El Sereno, Porciúncula, Gold Coast, the son of first-generation Mexican immigrants, Ricardo Julian Cisernos and Lorena Marie Cisernos (née Sanchez). Cisernos was named after Spanish surrealist painter Salvador Dalí and was given the ordinal, "III" by his father as a humorous in-joke purporting that the Cisernos descending from a long lineage of Spaniard nobles. Both his parents is of Mexican descent, who immigrated from the Mexican state of Chihuahua. His father worked as a welder while his mother ran a family-owned horchateria with Cisernos' aunts and cousins. As a child, he spent his weekends and summers helping the family business as a cook and a busboy.
Although he grew up surrounded in a predominantly Hispanic community and Spanish-speaking household, Cisernos admitted, "I spent most of my childhood speaking broken Spanish but perfect English", and did not made a serious commitment to learning the language until much later in high school due to federally mandated heritage courses. He recalled his family would spend of their time involved in the family business, but would close shop on Sundays to attend church and spend time at the park for a picnic after Mass service.
The family had financial troubles during Cisernos' childhood and adolescence, which limited Cisernos' options for entertainment and leisure due to the restricted budget. Regarding his childhood living in poverty, Cisernos remarked, "We couldn't spend that much on anything. All the games and anime I got came from the discount bin at Winchester. For my 13th birthday gift, we finally got basic cable, which didn't work half the time because of blackouts." Due to these circumstances, he spent much of his time listening to music on the radio. Cisernos was exposed to music at an early age and developed an interest in starting a music career. His uncle, Frankie, played for a local garage band, and would perform for family gatherings and parties, which Cisernos later claimed inspired him to become a musician himself. When Cisernos was 14, his sister gave him a guitar that she bought from a garage sale. Cisernos began teaching himself how to play the guitar and practiced during his free time.
He attended and graduated with a high school diploma from Henry Stanley Gage High School. During his time as a high school student, Cisernos began experimenting with music editing and remixing using computer programs. He begun recording songs and released tracks online. He uploaded an extended play titled, Emo Kid in the Ghetto EP in 2005 on a music online forum, which attracted a small following. Cisernos claims that this small group motivated him to continue making music and encouraged him to branch out from his musical style.
In 2010, he started uploading his music on SoundCloud and YouTube under the handle, "LoWavCee", which he had used on other online communities. Within two years, he gained over 20,000 subscribers and 300,000 accumulated views on his YouTube channel, where he frequently uploaded songs and short videos. In 2014, Cisernos uploaded his first tutorial video, which describes how to make vaporwave music. His style of humor for the video became an instant hit, and the video became his most watched and popular video on his channel. The video marked the rise of his online recognition and prominence as a noteworthy internet personality and music producer. The success of the video led him to produce an entire series adopting the same format, offering a tutorial to users on how to produce a variety of music styles and beats. In addition, he started uploading daily vlogs, which documented his personal life and cooking exploits.
Cisernos' popularity allowed him to connect with other prominent YouTuber personalities including Thomas Winslow (CooperellaTV) and Jermaine Williams (Jermey J.), who he collaborated with frequently and appeared in their videos as a recurring guest. His music production also became more professional and sophisticated, which garnered interest and attention from a number of record labels, including Advance Music House, which was actively scoping out the online community scene for emerging musical artists and producers.
He studied psychology at Sierra National University, Grands Ballons for three years before he dropped out of class due to low grades and lack of interest. He was able to pay off his student loans through the revenue he earned from his music videos.
Career[edit | edit source]
Low Tide, Vol 0 (2015)[edit | edit source]
In 2015, Cisernos released his first official mixtape, Low Tide, Vol 0, with 22 tracks on his channel under the indie record label, Advanced Music House, for free on YouTube and streaming on Spotify. Half of the tracks featured were songs he had previously created under his tutorial series, while the other half were new, original tracks he created specifically for the mixtape in mind. The opening track, "You Get Me So 64", charted on the Sunset 40, debuting at the number 27 spot, before steadily rising to its peak at eleventh place, which boosted his popularity and proved the commercial success of his musical formula. The mixtape was named 22 on the Top 50 Albums of the Year by The Unionist and received critical acclaim by professionals and fans alike for the music production, sound quality, and vocals.
Following the release of his mixtape, Cisernos released a single, "Never That Easy", on June 3, 2015, through Advanced Music House. The song premiered on RBS Radio 2's Viral Hits, and was introduced by radio host Chalupa. The music video, directed by Cisernos himself, was released on his main channel a week after and garnered over 5 million views. The song rose to the number one position on the Sunset 40 Electronic Music chart and number twenty on the Sunset 40 main chart. Thereafter, Cisernos announced his first music tour, the "Wave is Here" and performed at a number of locations throughout Anglo-America and Europe.
Reflecting on the success and release of his mixtape, Cisernos said, "I was honestly surprised that it received the success it did. I had, and still have this imposter complex that caused me a lot of self-doubt. After I saw my songs appear on the charts, I was shocked. It felt unbelievable that there were people out there who looked forward to my projects and counted on me to produce what I enjoyed doing." He commented on the lack of monetization on his mixtape outside advertisement revenue from his YouTube and Spotify platforms, stating, "I didn't feel the work I put was intended for money. I feel more motivated to do what I like, to do music I would want to hear myself, than to have someone tell me they would pay for it. I enjoy the creative liberties that go into producing something for free. It just didn't feel right to just slap a price on it."
Low Tide, Vol 0.11 and Low Tide, Vol 0.21 (2016)[edit | edit source]
In 2016, Cisernos released two mixtapes, titled Low Tide, Vol 0.11 and Low Tide, Vol 0.21 on April 20 and October 21 respectively. The artist originally did not intend to release the mixtapes within the same year, as he expressed reservations on the quality of few of the songs on both mixtapes. Under the recommendation of his personal friends however, Cisernos decided to release the mixtapes with only a few cosmetic changes to a number of singles he released prior to the mixtapes, including "Never That Easy" and "How Aesthetic Can You Be?".
In between the releases of Low Tide, Vol 0.11 and Low Tide, Vol 0.21, Cisernos held another music tour to promote the projects. He also spent time recording for High Tide, Vol 1.01, which he intended to release as his first commercial studio album with Advanced House Music. Cisernos appeared on his first Hollywood appearance as a cameo character on an episode of Cold Ones. He also made his first appearance on a talk show when he performed the songs "You Get Me So 64" and "Never That Easy" on The Crazy Late Show with Ryan Del Mar. He sat down talk show Ryan Del Mar to discuss upcoming projects, which included updates of the progress working towards Cisernos' first studio album, Low Tide, Vol 1.01. On April 24, 2016, he received the "Best New Artist" award from the Sunset Awards and on June 2, 2016, Cisernos received recognition from the Ministry of Culture as an "ambassador for Sierran music".
Low Tide, Vol 1.01 (2017)[edit | edit source]
On April 20, 2017, Cisernos released Low Tide, Vol 1.01, his first full-production studio album under the label Advanced House Music. The album was a major commercial success and was the highest-selling album during its debut week, with over 500,000 sold by Week 2 on iTunes and other sites. The album featured a number of collaboration projects with other artists including Q-Lo, KitKat, Fren-Z, and Stephacide, whose concepts of shared beats, production, and vocals would inspire Cisernos' creation and involvement with the hip hop collective, Autonomy.
The album received critical acclaim and was hailed as Cisernos' best work yet, and several singles from the album including "The Golden Ratio" charted on the Sunset 40. It became a certified gold and platinum album on May 5, 2017 and June 22, 2017 respectively, one of the fastest times for a Sierran album. Cisernos received a number of accolades and awards in recognition of his work on Low Tide, Vol 1.01, including "Best Alternative Artist of 2017" at the 2018 Percy Awards.
High Tide, Vol 2 (2018)[edit | edit source]
Decent Hell (2020–21)[edit | edit source]
Artistry[edit | edit source]
Sound[edit | edit source]
Although Cisernos has featured various songs utilizing a broad range of music genres and influences ranging from standard trap music to Eurobeat, Ciserno's personal style music, identified in his later works, is distinct for its heavy use of the synthesizer, low frequency bass guitars, off-kilter beats, and dragged out vocals. Cisernos had stated he has often tried to apply the golden ratio and views music as a "fluctuating waves and vibrations" that is a callback to his personal philosophy in life and stage name. He has stated he is not confined to any style, and instead pursues music for the "sake of music" and is comfortable with using sounds or samples from any genre as long it makes his music "create a reaction" out of the listener. He has emphasized it does not matter if viewers enjoy or dislike his music, or listen to it carefully or casually, stating, "as long as my music is able to find some company with you, I'm content with it". He initially began as an artist by sampling popular music and converting them into chiptune in order to give the songs an "8-bit sound".
Influences[edit | edit source]
Side projects[edit | edit source]
Autonomy[edit | edit source]
Nihilism is Meaningless (2018)[edit | edit source]
The first major album and release from Autonomy was the 2018 co-op album titled Nihilism is Meaningless. The mixtape contains twelve songs in total with Cisernos, Macaron, Kitkat, and Fren-Z each writing three songs individually, though Cisernos was the lead singer for most of the songs. The title of the mixtape was coined by Cisernos and in a 2018 interview said that the title was inspired by a phase he went though when he was in high school where he had rejected the moral and religious beliefs of his family household and adhered to the philosophy of nihilism throughout 2005 when he was seventeen only abandoning it three months before he graduated in 2006. In the interview he called his past self "a broken, spiritually deficient, and depressed husk" during that time and said that he believed that turning his past struggles into art would not only help him fully move on, but also potentially help others going through a similar phase. In the interview he said that nihilism was ironically meaningless calling it "the edgy wannabe cool kids' philosophy that brings nothing but misery and aimlessness towards those that take it seriously". On the cover of the album is Cisernos in the middle of a picture of high school students in 2005 when he was seventeen where he had a bleak expression in contrast to his other peers. When asked why he used the picture, he said that it was relevant to the theme of the mixtape and that he "had to use it for something useful. Figured this would be that time".
The mixtape was released on April 21st, 2018 and would go one to sell over 3 million copies two weeks after its release. The album has since been critically acclaimed with all who worked on it saying that they were pleasantly surprised by how well the album performed. In May, Cisernos Tweeted how happy he was about the success of the tape saying "the fact that my struggles have been able to help others cope with similar situations, lead others out of a dark path and just entertain others is a blessing I thank all of you for. I promise there's more to come from me and Autonomy so stay tuned". In December, Autonomy was contacted by a freelance musical artist Nostalgic Mic who met with the group on December 12th to discuss the possibility of making a music video of one of the songs. By the end of the month, they reached an agreement and on January 18th, 2019 the official twitter account of Autonomy announced that a music video of the song Aimless Peer was being made. The video was uploaded onto Youtube on April 21st, 2019 a year after the tape was released and became a trending video within hours. As of June 2019 the video has over 14 million views and is the most popular video on the Autonomy Youtube Channel and the second most popular on Mic's channel.
Other ventures[edit | edit source]
Personal life[edit | edit source]
Cisernos currently resides in Grands Ballons, where he cohabitates with his partner, Marianne Merah. In a 2016 interview, he stated he was raised Catholic but is currently a lapsed member. Politically, he is officially not registered with any political party, and has tended to refrain from "interjecting political overtures" into his music. Despite this, he has made a number of tongue-in-cheek references towards capitalism, often satirically and critically, namely as a rejection of consumerism. Cisernos indicated in 2019 that he supports the platform of Social Democrats MP Susan Kwon and he has also been inspired by Senator Malcolm Siegel, Hawaiian MAP Alice Nishikata, and MP Nazareth Ontoria-Diaz. Aside from music, he enjoys vlogging and cooking, which he features prominently on one of his secondary YouTube channels. He credits his experience working in the family-owned horchateria and love for food to cooking. He made a guest appearance on Wendall Yamada's How to Cook It Right in 2017.
Cisernos declared himself an "avid weed user" and has incorporated references to the drug in some of his work. He has also done vaping, which he has stated he enjoys "half-ironically". He is also an amateur collector of alcoholic drinks, and stated his favorite drink was the Mayarí, which is the subject of one of his singles, titled after the drink.
Cisernos has talked greatly about his experience with the COVID-19 pandemic and how it has effected his life including his mental health and how it's interfered with his work. In an interview in December 2020 with RBS, Cisernos admitted that he wanted to "salvage such a hellish year" and it inspired him and the rest of Autonomy to make a new album later known as Stubbron as a Rock along with an untitled second album still in production. After the release of his 2021 single Decent Hell, he was interviewed again and stated that his negative time in quarantine and isolation inspired its making along with its somber melancholic tone. When asked if the rest of the group shared his vision he said "they sure do now".
Discography[edit | edit source]
Albums[edit | edit source]
|2017||Low Tide, Vol 1.01|
|2018||High Tide, Vol 2|
Extended plays[edit | edit source]
|2005||Emo Kid in the Ghetto EP|
|2015||Working Class Trap|
Mixtapes[edit | edit source]
|2015||Low Tide, Vol 0|
|2016||Low Tide, Vol 0.11|
|2016||Low Tide, Vol 0.21|
|2018||Mid Tide, B-Sides (2012-2015)|
Compilation albums[edit | edit source]
|2018||Nihilism is Meaningless||Autonomy|
|2020||Stubborn as a Rock||Autonomy|
Singles[edit | edit source]
|"Are You Feeling It?"|
|"Don't Care What They Say"|
|"Trapped in This Trap Beat"|
|2014||"out of body experience"|
|2015||"Never That Easy"|
|"How Aesthetic Can You Be?"|
|2016||"Don't Be Jeb"|
|"Crazy For You Baby"|
|2018||"Like a Brother to Me"|