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Interview: Duke Dumont

Words by Alex Milne.

Late last week we caught up with the infamous Duke Dumont – he was in his kitchen wearing a bird jumper. Here are his musings on remixes, the future of mainstream music and his upcoming show at Stereosonic.

Where are you and what are you wearing?
Well I’m just in my kitchen and it’s pretty cold right now in England so I’m wearing a jumper with birds on it, I’m really embodying the wild life of an international DJ. I’ve got my laptop in the other room and I’m working on my light show for a few shows I’ve got coming up in Europe and I’m just about to make a cuppa.

With your latest track, ‘Won’t Look Back,’ you’ve used a fairly unknown vocalist. How do you pick who you collaborate with, and who would be your ultimate dream collaboration?
For me it’s about working with the best artist, they don’t necessarily have to be the most famous. It’s as much about having heart and soul – I really like to work with soul – based singers. The artist has to be a reflection of my music.

Your remix of HAIM’s song ‘Falling’ is one of my favourite going out tracks. But I wouldn’t have expected that from a HAIM song. What was it about ‘Falling’ that made you think that it would work?
Well if you listen to the lyrics they’re really uplifting and motivational which is always around in dance music. I listen to the lyrics and the vocals and then do my own interpretation.

There are a lot of different remixes of all your songs on your Soundcloud. What’s your favourite?
I really appreciate the time and the effort that remixers go to when remixing my songs but my favourite is the Skream remix of ‘Need U 100%’

So you’re obviously very welcome to new remixes of your music and not too concerned about them damaging your artistic integrity or anything like that then?
I respect each remixer to do their remix with their vision. It’s certainly not something that would destroy my career or anything. I see it as an alternative way that people can warm to the song and I’m respectful of that.

In an interview with THUMP, about ‘Need U 100%’, you talked about there being a cultural chain reaction that paves the way for new music and that eventually establishes what becomes the mainstream. Now that electronic music has become the mainstream, where do you think the mainstream will head next, or do you believe that electronic music is the way of the future?
I think that EDM has been dominating for a while but I think that a more relaxed sound will come through and have a snowball effect. Myself and Disclosure have had a lot of success in the USA with our own music but there are alternatives emerging and house is getting a lot bigger and I think will be the next big thing.

You’ve got Stereosonic coming up in December, but last year you played at Listen out, a significantly smaller venue. When you tour, do you prefer big epic gigs or small intimate venues?
I think that as long as the crowd is having a good time I don’t really mind. Listen Out wasn’t really all that intimate; there were still around 10,000 people there. But it was great. I played alongside some really good artists like Disclosure, Aluna George and Azealia Banks. I’m looking forward to Stereosonic because I’m going to be playing alongside Disclosure again, Diplo and RL Grimes. Our stage will be very different to the main stage. It will be a step up and be more varied on our stage. I’m really looking forward to it.

Finally, if you weren’t a DJ, what would you be?
I think I would be unemployed. I can’t really do many things other than DJ. I did have a few office jobs when I was around 22 and 23 but I’ve put all my energy and time and effort into my music and so I haven’t gotten good at anything else.

If you want to catch Duke Dumont while in the country, you’d best grab yourself a ticket to Stereosonic asap. You can find all of that info right here


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Filed: Featured, Gigs, Interviews, Music News

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