Sub-Zero is Adelino Afonso. Adelino is yet another artist to return to our shores and represent the sound of Portuguese psytrance. The last time Adelino was here he played at Jungala Festival 2011 as Sub-Zero, his solo project, and a second set as Poizon – a ten-year-old project alongside Mário Rodrigues (Droidbeatz). Now he’ll return to smash our dance floor once again at this Saturday’s {psy.ology} label launch alongside SwiTcHcaCheUp-Psy-Down, Rubix Qube, Cybernetix, Headroom and Zezia (who will also be releasing his debut self-titled EP). We asked him about how he got involved in psytrance, his thoughts on the last time he visited, PsynOpticz, and what fans can expect for the future.

Psymedia: What’s up! To start off, where are you from and how did you become involved in psytrance?

Sub-Zero: Hey, what’s up! I’m from Portugal, a small country but with a big psytrance scene. It all started in 2000 when I started attending some techno parties, which was the moment I got interested in making electronic music. I started experimenting with some basic sequencers and soon learned the basics of electronic music making. Then one good friend of mine that already attended psytrance parties introduced me to psytrance and I got fascinated by it and this was when I became involved with it and started producing it first and later DJing at small local parties with friends.

Psymedia: This isn’t your first time in Cape Town. How was your experience at Jungala Festival 2011? You also played at Safiri Festival 2011. How did Cape Town and Johannesburg compare?

Sub-Zero: I loved playing at both festivals but on different levels.  Jungala Festival 2011 was an amazing event! I loved the place, the mood was really positive and the crowd had a great reaction to both Sub-Zero and Poizon performances. Safiri was also a great experience, great venue and perfect conditions but the only let down was that there were not as many people at the festival. So I think that Cape Town has a much bigger trance scene than Johannesburg.

Psymedia: You featured on {psy.ology}’s first compilation entitled PsynOpticz Collections: ONE. Tell me a about the track you worked on with SwiTcHcaChe. Did you work on that when you were down here previously, or via the internet?

Sub-Zero: It was great being part of {psy.ology}‘s first compilation. That track was made via internet. I started the track and then sent the files to Calvin (SwiTcHcaChe) to make his part and then we repeated the process and the track was done. I think it has turned out a great track that shows well both of our styles. We’ll keep making some collaborations for sure!

Psymedia: Tell me about the compilation Inverted Reality 2012 on Nakshatra Records. It featured your track ‘Alone’ alongside some familiar artists such as Tryambaka, Sinful Reactions and D_Maniac. It was one of your faster tracks at 150BPM. How would you describe your style?

Sub-Zero: Nakshatra Records is a Portuguese based label and made the compilation with only Portuguese artists and it was an honour for me to be part of it with the track ‘Alone‘.

I think that no artist likes to define his art style but I would say that my style is electric and takes influence from many music genres, from classical music to industrial rock and I’m also heavily influenced by other forms of art such as film and paintings. I like to use fat basslines, deep atmospheres and melodies and crazy sound effects. I’m normally labeled as twilight psytrance and this is fine for me.

Psymedia: You’ve worked alongside Mário Rodrigues in Poizon since 2002. You signed to psy heavyweights Timecode Records in 2009. Has that helped your project to grow? Can we expect any new material?

Sub-Zero: Yes, Mario and I have been working together for a while now! Without a doubt us signing to Timecode Records was great for the growth of our project. We always believed in what we were doing and just needed someone else to believe in our music and put it out and there was Timecode Records! Making the versus album with an artist like Artifakt was also great for us and we learned a lot in the process! There are some new Poizon tracks coming soon on compilations in various labels. At this point both Mário and I have been focusing more on our solo projects but we’ve got some plans for Poizon for the near future!

Psymedia: What’s it like playing a Sub-Zero and Poizon set at a party together? How does your Poizon project differ?

Sub-Zero: It happens very often that I play both sets at a party together, but normally I play Poizon with Mário and this time it’s just me so I’ll be doing both sets alone. It’s always great to play both my projects at the same party, in some way I feel that they complement each other. Both projects have some common points which are logical but I would say that Poizon is more aggressive and faster than Sub-Zero with more of a harshness feeling, while Sub-Zero is also corrosive at times but more melody driven and introspective.

Psymedia: I see you signed to PsynOpticz in 2010.  How is it being part of the PsynOpticz family and has this expanded your reach to the world of psy?

Sub-Zero: It’s great to be part of the PsynOpticz family. They’ve been doing a great job promoting not only Sub-Zero but all the PsynOpticz artists and it’s really an honor to work with someone that truly believes in what I do. This is the second time PsynOpticz brings me to South Africa in just a year and they’ll also be releasing many of my tracks on {psy.ology} (their new label together with Teknotribe), and this for sure is being crucial in the expansion of my project in the world of psy!

Psymedia: Can we expect any new Sub-Zero material soon?

Sub-Zero: Yes, there are some tracks coming soon in some compilations in labels like Replicant records, One Foot Groove and Biomechanix records. I’m also planning a Sub-Zero EP to be released on {psy.ology} later this year!

Psymedia: Can we expect Sub-Zero/Poizon at an outdoor in the summer season?

Sub-Zero: Who knows! I would love to come to South Africa for a bigger outdoor event and taste the African summer heat! PsynOpticz has been working on taking us to South Africa as often as possible so there’s always the possibility!

Psymedia: Thanks for the interview! Anything else you would like to say?

Sub-Zero: It was a pleasure! Looking forward to being back in Cape Town and I hope to see you all stomping the dance floor at the {psy.ology} label launch event next Saturday! See you there!


  • Sub-Zero on Facebook
  • Sub-Zero on Soundcloud
  • Poizon on Facebook
  • Poizon on Soundcloud