Press photos of Vibe Emissions

Vibe Emissions: Finding Independence & Creativity during COVID-19 [Interview]

This issue was originally written in September of 2020.

While some artists have been feeling the rage of cabin fever through quarantine, others use the time indoors to take a break from the norm, get much-needed rest and focus on future music and projects. Bryce Herlong, a.k.a. Vibe Emissions, is one of them. 

By weekday, Herlong is a health tech in Tennessee who’s been working from home during the pandemic Monday through Friday, ten hours per day. The weekends, however, are all his. This is when he can truly transform into Vibe Emissions and work on his music; deep dubstep tracks and bootleg singles that mix heavy bass with nostalgic hip-hop to provide a wompy, unique, laid back vibe.   

“Bootlegs are some of my favorites to do because I grew up with a lot of 90’s and early 2000’s rap,” Herlong said. “I think a lot of us really resonate with that music.” His most recent bootleg, “Gettin’ Some,” is a fun, slow-mo mix of the 2005 hit single by rapper Shawnna. Think of it as a southern-style chopped and screwed mix, with more than a pinch of bass-heavy drops. 

Herlong played the track at his latest performance at the Lunar Landing Drive-In in Huntsville, AL, alongside artists like Manic Focus and Mersiv, and he rocked it. “It was a blast and the [CDC] rules were enforced really well. If that’s how the new normal is going to be for the next while, it’s actually really dope.”

MP3DU caught up with Herlong prior to his appearances at Colorado’s the Black Box and the inaugural MP3DU livestream on Sept. 30, which featured artists like Bagsss, NotLö, MAD Pritch and Smoakland, who also attended Lunar Landing. 

“They’re awesome,” Herlong said of Smoakland. “It was good to finally meet. We hugged and conversed for a while. I really hope to see more of them within the next few years.”

Get ready to see more from Vibe Emissions, as well. Herlong recently released his Intelligent Beings EP, but is already working to grace fans with more after finding a new appreciation in creating from home and releasing music on his own. 

“You can put more details, just more of your intention into your music. For example, I was so happy to get Infinite Steez on the artwork because the presentation is just so much better,” Herlong said about the Intelligent Beings EP.  “I think it really matches the vibe. He crushed it so hard.”

It’s clear that Herlong is excited for his new-found independence and the future of Vibe Emissions, but regardless of success, ego and noise from the music industry, his southern charm shines through. It seems that with Herlong it’s not just about making music, but connecting with the people he makes music for.