Exclusive Interview: Deep Tribe

This week we bring you Deep Tribe as our Artist Spotlight. Deep Tribe is a Tech House & Techno Dj/producer duo from Los Angeles. Though they’ve both had success in the dance music industry under various pseudonyms, as Deep Tribe, Andrew Knopf and Dimitry Rozental have found their niche, fusing their unique influences to craft a solid catalogue of tunes that covers the world of house and techno. Read the interview we did with them below.

How did you first begin DJing/Producing?
Dimitry: My parents gave me a tape recorder when I was around 12. Every day, I would walk around our summer house back in Odessa, Ukrain blasting music for my entire family. I remember loving the way it felt – watching everyone groove to the music I played. From that point, I tried to play music for anyone who would let me; I DeeJeyed everywhere in school, college, community organizations, then once in America I was going to all the house/techno parties in Chicago I could find. DeeJaying became a part of my life. Music production is fairly new to me, I released my first tracks about 5 years ago under the name “Polbeeta”

Andrew: I spent a large portion of my life playing guitar and being involved in live music/live band type of projects.  At a certain point, that began to feel very limiting to me creatively speaking.  The idea of being able to create full tracks from the bottom up using a computer, was extremely exciting to me. Aside from developing a deep love of house and techno music, the endless amount of creative freedom was a huge part of my decision to start producing.  Learning to DJ just kind of went hand in hand with creating electronic music.

Who is your biggest influence(s)?
Dimitry: One of my biggest influences is my mother and her insatiable love of music from around the world. She had so many records in so many different styles and genres. I used to spent hours sitting by the record player, switching-out vinyl all day. Another influence too would be the city of Chicago. There’s such a great vibe in that area – an awesome progression socially, musically, ethnically…. the city has a great mix of old and new and I find that’s really important to have when you’re creating music.

Andrew:  I always find inspiration in Four Tet. I would say he’s definitely one of my biggest influences.  Also, Martyn was a huge influence for me when I first began producing electronic music.

What’s your favorite record of all time?
Dimitry: I’ve got a few, but off the top of my head Play by Moby, Nevermind by Nirvana, and No Need to Argue by the Cranberries.

Andrew: It kind of depends on what mood I’m in, or what I’m doing.  There’s so much amazing music in the world, it’s impossible to have just one favorite.

What was your favorite party of all time that you have played?
Dimitry: Without question, in 2012 (March 3rd) when I played the opening set for the  “grandfather of techno” Juan Atkins at Chicago’s Legendary Smart Bar.

Andrew: Some of my most memorable and enjoyable times behind the decks have been while at Primary Nightclub.  The space is the perfect size, the sound is amazing, and the crowd is always nothing short of amazing.

Who do you want to collaborate with in the future?
Dimitry: I’d love to collaborate with Pleasurekraft, Tube & Berger, Kolombo, Huxley, Trentemøller, Dusty Kid, and any live musicians – basically, I want to bring as much live music to our productions as possible.

Andrew:  We had the pleasure of meeting the Golf Clap guys while playing at Primary the last time, which was pretty cool.  We are fans of their work, and their DJ sets are always awesome.  It would be great to collab with them one day.

What’s the most embarrassing thing thats happened to you at a show?
Dimitry: The CDJ stopped working in the middle of a set I was playing. Which wasn’t too embarrassing except that right after everything was fixed, a friend of mine came into the DJ booth and spilled drinks all over the top of my cds right after. Everything was soaking wet, I had to wipe down every CD first before trying to play it.

Andrew:  I’d have to say worst, most embarrassing thing that has happened at a show was when we were setting up our equipment to prepare for a live PA set.  There was a DJ already playing and we were about to go on next, but we still had to set up everything necessary to perform with live bass guitar.  Well, the one and only power strip that we had available to us had a faulty on/off switch.  As soon as I plugged in the preamp for the bass, the power to the DJ booth completely switched off.  CDJ’s, mixer, everything…OFF.  It was pretty much unavoidable because of the condition of that power strip, even the slightest touch would have cut the current, but still extremely embarrassing nonetheless.

What do you like to do when you’re not working on music/DJing?
Dimitry: I love to be outside with nature – just being around living things as much as I can. My dream is to have a garden with everything in it, tomatoes, corn, herbs, you name it.

Andrew:  SLEEP.  I can never get enough.  It’s definitely one of my favorite things to do.

What is your opinion on the current EDM scene?
Andrew:  I feel like the “EDM Scene” and the underground dance music scene are two completely different things. I’m not really sure at all what’s even happening in the EDM scene, as we aren’t really technically involved in that. The commercialization of musical genres as a strictly monetary commodity has always existed, and there’s nothing wrong with that.  In fact, the popularity of “EDM” probably has the ability to act as a conduit, to help people discover what’s happening in the underground. Maybe they got into electronic music because of EDC or Skrillex or something, and I think that’s great, but I think that EDM is just not really our scene.  That being said, the underground electronic music scene right now is extremely exciting. More and more artists are popping up that are pushing boundaries and more and more listeners are beginning to appreciate the integrity of what the underground has to offer.  It’s a really awesome and exciting time for electronic music in general.

Dimitry: It’s nice to see electronic music making a way onto pop radio – especially in America, “EDM” is the energy they want, and I’m glad there’s finally a wide-acceptance of the genre. But I’m not rushing to make music that entertains that majority.

What do you think will be the next big thing in EDM?
Dimitry: Deep Tribe haha

Andrew:  Pretty sure things will start getting a lot more techy very soon.

What do you think about all these “frauds” in the EDM scene using ghost producers, buying likes and purchasing their own tracks on Beatport?
Andrew:  I can understand why ghost producing happens.  People want to further their DJ careers, but maybe don’t have the time or the confidence to learn how to produce.  However, I think it’s a shame.  Music is an art form, and if you compare it to other art forms, it becomes clear exactly why this ghost producing thing is bad.  If I thought I was buying a painting by a particular artist that I really loved, but then found out the painting was not actually painted by that person…and even worse, that the “artist” whose work I loved, didn’t even know how to paint…well, I would feel ripped off. Cheated.  As far as people buying their own tracks, it’s not a surprise.  It’s been happening for decades.  Didn’t the Beatles do that??  Purchasing likes, while not the most authentic thing to do, is very minor to me.  I don’t have much of an opinion on that one.

Dimitry: I don’t like to lie and I can’t imagine making music that I did not have any input in, so I don’t really understand what purpose all that serves – charts aren’t everything, but good music is.

Is there any upcoming releases/shows we should keep an eye out for?
Dimitry: Our track “Ghost Dance” is still pumpin’ and “Two Soft Tacos” is out now. Up next, we have “Do Your Thing” EP being released on Wulfpack with an awesome remix pack. We also have a show with house music veteran, Jesse Saunders in Los Angeles at Los Globos on June 7th.

Andrew: We have Two Soft Tacos about to be released on May 11.  After that we have 2 more releases scheduled in the next month and a half.  All 3 of the releases we are very excited about, and we plan on putting out an accompanying video for each track.  Definitely keep an eye out for them!

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