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in the house with dj manik

Nov 08, 2014

DSTLD: How did you get into the DJ scene?

DJM: I just started making some tracks back in 2009 in my small Astoria, Queens apartment. Eventually I felt comfortable enough to send it out to Ovum and they signed it and then released it in early 2010. This got me some heat and that’s that. I released music that year with Culprit LA as well. But I started to listen to electronic music with groups like Prodigy and Portishead. Even some Ronie Size. Being from Queens, I love old hip hop as well.

Men’s Japanese Raw Denim x Kurabo Mills in Cigarette

Men’s Japanese Raw Denim x Kurabo Mills in Cigarette

DSTLD: What is your music style?

DJM: I would say I make deep house and classic sounding house and techno, but I have also been known to make more disco sounding cuts at times with my Culture Fires name. I like a lot of music and make a lot of stuff. I even have a band with my buddy “Shadow Lanes” which is more indie sounding stuff, so I think I am a bit of everything.

DSTLD: You’re based in LA but from NYC - what’s the difference between the LA and NYC music scene?

DJM: Well LA is pretty cool music wise - I feel its got as good of an indie band scene. Brooklyn and LA are very similar in that regard. As for club stuff and house music, I think NY is still at the top for the US, but there have been some great things happening here in LA for the last 2-3 years for sure. LA is thriving creatively right now.

DJM: I think my favorite is still PBar in Berlin but I am about to play in Tokyo at Womb for New Years so I have a feeling that may trump it [smiles].

DSTLD: What was the inspiration for your name?

DJM: It’s just my last name. Nothing too clever. But my other names and aliases have been random thoughts after drinking too much beer.

DSTLD: What other musicians / artists inspire you?

DJM: I love Toro Y Moi, Les Sins, Matthew Dear, Com Truise, Tycho, Chromeo, anything that is unique.

DSTLD: What’s been your favorite venue you’ve played in or gig you’ve performed at?

DSTLD: What can you share with us about your current projects?

Men’s Japanese Raw Denim x Kurabo Mills in Cigarette

DJM: I have some new EPs coming up.  "Far Away,“ which features vocals from Eli & Fur, is out on Anjunadeep December 15th. Above and Beyond just debuted it on their show Group Therapy show last week. I also have a real classic house record coming out on Ovum with 3 tracks. My next Culprit LA record is coming January 2015 too. Besides that, I am working with my buddy Beckwith on a jam for summer 2015 and also have a record I am working on with this amazing vocalist friend. New Shadow Lanes stuff is coming soon and I intend on starting  a new album in January.

DSTLD: When you’re not DJ’ing, what are you doing?

DJM: I like to watch Netflix, draw, read, and eat way too many tacos and burgers.

DSTLD: What are some must-listen to tracks:

DJM: Beckwith feat. Natalie Conway - Take Me Home;  Les Sins - Bother;  Shadow Lanes - Sea And Back

-Hannah Laverty

Men’s Japanese Raw Denim x Kurabo Mills in Cigarette