“I think a very important aspect that I want to highlight here is how community-centric wave is and how, like, that’s how it started. That’s how it is, and that’s how it seems it’s going to continue to be… I didn’t know that before [this conversation], and I think that’s so fucking beautiful.”– Ambur (the author), in conversation with Just Connor, May 2021
Have you ever decided to check out something interesting “just for fun”, only to wake up some time later and realize that “just for fun” had seriously gotten out of hand?
I’m not talking “that time we all were consumed by Tiger King and weren’t quite sure why”.
I’m talking “made a sudden career change based on passion” and/or “woke up in a foreign country because your special interest led you there”.
No? That’s okay. Maybe I’m dramatic.
But maybe I’m not.
As you read Breaking Waves, you’ll find that this interest of mine–wave music–has this sort of effect on people. It’s unique, transcendent; it’s unlike anything else entirely.
And that’s because like a literal wave, wave music–and the community behind it–is a force.
It holds incredible power.
Truth be told, when I first dove into wave music a year ago, I had no idea what I was looking at. I had a list of names–terms–etc–that I was unfamiliar with. I had a Discord call set up with Just Connor and bottomless curiosity. It was my first interview, ever, with someone whose music I was a huge fan of, but I knew absolutely nothing about in a general sense. In retrospect, it was the perfect catalyst.
When I set up that call, I did not intend to become a wave journalist.
In fact, back in 2021, I thought this would be a fun little side project that would be one and done last summer or something. I had no real plan. Really, I just wanted to talk to Connor about his work. I certainly never thought that this one conversation would lead to me visiting London for a 2-day “beep boop music” concert (as defined by my sister for our parents’ sake) or any of the other things that happened between my first dive into wave music and now.
Back then, I certainly never thought I’d be working for a magazine and launching a wave column.
But here we are.
And I could never be happier.
Welcome to Breaking Waves, a column dedicated to wave music in its entirety. This is where we, the community–fans, media, artists, etc–will, together, define “what wave is”, because that’s something that we’ve always done, right?
Please think of this as a community board. I want to hear from all of you. Wave producer, someone that’s “tangentially wave”, fans, writers, curators–everyone involved, however you are involved. We are all a part of this big beautiful thing called wave, after all.
You all belong here.
A huge thanks to the “MendoMen”–Geordie, Bill, & Matt… to Larry at Lightwood & to Alex, for always believing in me.
This column is dedicated to Just Connor; thank you for being my catalyst.
To Alessio, Beryl & Devin, my fellow wave journalists, for inspiring me, and for giving me the warmest possible welcome in London last month.
And to the rest of the Wave Community–especially every person who responded to April’s initial “what is wave to you?” campaign.
I can’t wait for you to find yourselves among these pages.
– Ambur, author
8 May 2022