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Interview: Datsik Brings It Down To Earth @ EDC Vegas

What gave you that initial push into producing Dubstep instead of other genres of music?

Well um it was Funtcase entirely. (laughs) I'm chillin with my boy Funtcase here.

Funtcase: Hi dawg!

We're about to launch this next tour it should be fun.

Funtcase: Yeahhh!

Yeah it was totally Funtcase. Actually wait, no, really it was the hip-hop swag mixed with the heavy bass lines that got me into it.

What did you initially want to be when you grew up? When you were a kid.

Honestly I was going to school for audio production and my brother worked at a video game company and I actually planned on leaving college and going to work for him as a sound designer like making weird noises and shit, like doing alien stuff, and um, (laughs) I ended up getting booked before I got out of college so that's kind of how everything went. It was weird, it was a weird transition but I don’t regret it any way, so…

Did you ever listen to the dub that originated in Reggae? 

Dude, 100% man. Yo, I've been into it since like 2006 and like that was my favorite era for step like 2006 and 2009. That shit was so inspiring - I was just hearing stuff that like I could not make and that stuff inspired me so much… like old school Benga, Skream, all those guys, Hatcha, Coki - they're the originators man, I used to tune into all their shit and like follow it religiously and that’s where all the inspiration came from. Now it’s just exploded, it’s all over the U.S. And it's crazy… It’s crazy.

At least in Arizona you're one of the first big step artists that I was hearing come through the speakers at house parties and desert raves, that must be kind of crazy for you cause you’re so young and the scene has been going on for some time before you, you know? And you’re even bigger now than you were before… that was years ago.

It's been a fun ride, yeah. Honestly I'm just very fortunate that I’m able to do what I love for a living.

Who do you think is throwing the best parties right now? As far as production.

Uhh, FuntCase. (laughs)

Funtcase: Circus and Firepower records (laughs)

So would you say that FuntCase is your biggest influence at the moment then?

He's my biggest homie at the moment. (laughs) No no no. The old school shit: WuTang, Method Man, all that kind of shit. 


Yeah, Pendulum. Bassnectar is also a huge influence as well.

Thoughts on spinning Vinyl vs. CDJ vs. Laptop?

Well, lemme give you the rundown. Back in the day I used to own one turntable and I bought it just to learn how to scratch and it was a vinyl turntable. From there, I ended up getting a second turntable to mix and bought 12-13 records. Most of them were like Pendulum records, DJ Fresh - The Immortal, and like, the old shit - Fasten Your Seatbelt, and Slam, and fucking uhh Tarantula and all those jocks. So I ended up getting those 12 records and I would just literally sit there all day spinning drum & bass. And that's how I learned how to DJ. So from there I went to Serato, from that I went to CD Serato, and I’ve switched to Ableton. But I carry gigsik at all times because like whenever there's any opportunity to do a tag set with any of my homies (like 12th planet and I do a lot of tag sets and I always jump on it) or any kind of weird situation, I'll jump on CDs just to fucking stay sharp.

So what was the first event that you played?

Ok so the first event that I played was outside my hometown, the "Real Event." They brought me in, it was a city called Penticton, which was run by Hells Angels, and um they brought me in and I was playing Dubstep. The guy told me to play some shit that a bitch can shake her ass to kind of thing, or, his bitch… whatever. And I ended up, (laughs) I ended up just playing what I wanted and I got kicked out of the club, but the thing is the club was completely packed and every single person in the club was there to see me play and hear my set, so everyone ended up leaving the club and there was literally just like a table left in the club. So I was pretty gutted about that but you know when you start from the bottom there's only one way you can actually go, right? 

What would say has been the best event that you've played/put on then?

Well, EDC Vegas this year has been pretty fucking insane, you know? My favorite event in the entire world though is Shambhala.

First record you fell in love with or owned?

Ummm I think FuntCase - GorillaFlex. (laughs)

No, um for real though the first record that I owned and then fell in love with was Voodoo People by Pendulum. 

When all the partying is over how do you get to chilling?

Well… I usually spend my time chilling on airplanes and literally I'm flying all the time. I mean, as soon as I get a break I’m constantly flying. And when I’m not playing music I'm making it and that’s what I do for fun. 

How is the Dubstep scene doing right now?

You know what, I think it's interesting, its going through transition and I'm excited. It's like finally the minimal element is being brought back into Dubstep and you know its funny the UK started with minimal and went to heavy, noisy stuff; America started with the noisy stuff and now its like because of Trap, Trap is being introduced to the EDM world - now finally minimal music is being accepted into a dubstep set and its changing the dynamic of everything so I'm really happy with the way that it's going right now.

What are your thoughts on "Ravers vs. Ragers" - how do they affect the scene in your opinion?

It's all for the love of the music I don't give a fuck what you wear.

Haha, right on!

What's it like being Canadian?

There's no better feeling (laughs).

Where can we expect to see you in 10 years?

Speeding in a Lamborghini (laughs).

Haha so not on an airplane?

No. (laughs) Honestly, I’ve started doing work on commercials and doing original stuff with working with them. I've been working with Rockstar a lot and I'm having a lot of fun scoring and making original tracks for these Rockstar commercials and I think in like 10 years I really have fun working with movies and doing sound design. So in 10 years if like I’m not going full on with music still I would really like to get into sound design on like Transformers 9, that would be pretty cool. 

What kind of advice would you give someone who is trying to get into the music scene?

Always be original, do it for love of music. Listen to FuntCase.

By Shayne Fabian

Photos by Brooke Allan for EDM Lounge

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