On Going Solo
Meet Trevor Dahl

Trevor rose to fame through Cheat Codes, a trio of EDM DJs globally known for their hit 2017 single with Demi Lovato, “No Promises”. We chatted with him about his solo debut and what's in store for him in the next couple of months.

At 12 years old, Trevor Dahl was sitting in his bedroom, writing and creating his own songs. His outlet was his MySpace page where he sought out listeners of the pop-punk, acoustic genre, hoping someone out there was liking what he made. Not much has changed since. Trevor is still creating music in the confines of his bedroom, only this time, it’s being released globally.

Cheat Codes was formed in 2014 and during those years, Trevor stayed loyal to the group, focusing on the music that they were creating. “It’s a very big collaborative effort,” he reflects on the experience thus far. “I love getting into the studio with my homies and making music that we love, bouncing ideas off of each other.”

He continues on to say, “I haven’t really done any of my solo music for the last four years, but it’s always been in the back of my mind. Recently, I’ve found a sound and made music that I feel I want to share with people, finally. I want to get to back it and see what happens. Why not, you know?”

His latest single called “Think About Us” has a twangy pop sound, the lyrics reminiscent of a past relationship and what happens when the opposite party wants to cut all ties. Trevor confides on the relationship, evident in his language that he’s still trying to understand where it went wrong.

“It was one of those things where I got out of a relationship six months ago and I had broken up with this girl. I figured we could at least stay friends. After I had broken up with her, she kind of blocked me on everything and made it so there is no contact at all. I broke her heart and I understand people react differently to certain things. I haven’t spoken to her at all, and I was just feeling a certain way and I wanted to just write it all down.”

Not only did Trevor write the lyrics, but the song is entirely done by him. “With the solo stuff, there is nobody else involved,” he says. “I don’t want anyone to touch this stuff besides me. I’m writing it, I’m producing it, I’m mixing it, I’m engineering everything. It felt very personal, it felt very intimate. It’s a way for me to be creative. It’s kind of my comfort zone when I want to chill with myself. I liked making something from start to finish without anyone else’s opinions.”

His process, similar to what he used to do at 12 years old during his MySpace days, stayed with him. He says, “It’s something that I’m very used to. I go to the studio sometimes to record, but honestly, being in a studio isn’t as comfortable for me as being in my house. I don’t feel pressure at all, I’m able to just do my thing without people’s takes. Everything that I need and everything that I love is all right there. Feels homey, feels comfortable, so I love just being able to do it right there and take breaks whenever I feel like it.”

Trevor’s continuing to work on more of his solo music with expectations to release an EP in the coming months. His main goal is to drop music as he writes it, excited to put his words and thoughts out there.

“I’m able to write about things that are more personal. If I’m feeling a certain way, I can write about it. I can release it whenever I want. It’s a creative outlet that I’ve been kind of missing for a while. I’m excited to talk about things that we haven’t been able to talk about in Cheat Codes, like personal things – my views, my relationship with my friends/family/girls, or what I think about. Even religious and political views. I just want to be more expressive and stand for what I actually write about.”

Words by Naureen Nashid / Photography by Jori Teplitzky

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