Järveküla, Estonia

Below the Horizon


Behind the Music

I come from a country where music has literally helped to liberate a whole nation. I have seen firsthand and deeply understand the power music has to create change. When combined with this kind of journalism — in-depth investigative reporting that reveals an intricate web of issues that happen at sea — it has the power to raise awareness and make people want to act. 

The stories Ian recounts in his book, such as in the chapter “Armed and Dangerous,” are so evocative and immersive that you can almost experience second hand the kind of adrenaline he did in those moments. Thus, I wanted to focus on capturing feelings of fear and hopelessness in my songs, using audio clips such as gunshots to express that. Similar to music, the sounds of gunshots are almost a universal language — it represents intense danger and occasionally, even death.. I want it to feel like the listener is with Ian out in the open sea, waiting with baited breath to see what happens next.

About Phasebase

Phasebase started out in 2002 as a Brooklyn bedroom house music project. Now, Phasebase has moved back to his homeland of Estonia but keeps on producing and releasing music, which comes deep from the soul.

The Journalism behind the Music

All music in this project is based on The Outlaw Ocean, a New York Times Best-Selling book by Ian Urbina that chronicles lawlessness at sea around the world. This reporting touches on a diversity of abuses ranging from illegal and overfishing, arms trafficking at sea, human slavery, gun running, intentional dumping, murder of stowaways, thievery of ships and other topics.

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