What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of
Arizona? Maybe it's the recent news concerning SB-1070 and our heavily
criticized governor and/or Sheriff. It might be John McCain's failed
run as a GOP nominee for the Presidential election in 2008. Phoenix is
quite a strange city and I feel like most people that have spent a
good amount of time here can agree with that statement. Is it the
heat? Is it in the water? Whatever it may be, I doubt the words 'dance
music' spill out of your mouth when you think of our suburban sprawl
At Dawn We Rage is an electronic/dubstep label and duo currently
based in Phoenix, Arizona. In additions to composing their own, they
have been producing quality remixes of Felix Cartel, Dada Life, and
Deadmau5 just to name a few. They have plenty of things on their minds
and up their sleeves including releases on the way that will not
disappoint. I had the opportunity to sit down with Stormy and Travis
of ADWR over gyros inside of a very mysteriously empty Mediterranean
restaurant. In my few years of following the scenes of the Southwest
United States, I have never found myself more excited to see what the
future holds for some local musicians.
SL – Stormy Logan
TS – Travis Seekrits
SC – Steven A. Cosand
SC – First off, What is At Dawn We Rage?
SL – Well, I kind of came up with the name while I was doing
LightsOverLA stuff. I'm kind of stuck with the more indie stuff with
LightsoverLA and I wanted to write dubstep really bad. In the past two
or three months we started working on tracks together and we did a
couple remixes and within the last two months got almost 100,000
TS – We weren't even really going to go dubstep until those tracks hit.
SL – I've also been wanting to start a label for a long time. It just
never really came around to anything serious until we decided we
wanted to release our originals. I had been doing a lot of remixes,
but really I just wanted to focus on writing originals. We had like
EPs written for other projects, but we were like “dude! Let's just
TS – I think the biggest thing is that we had so many other projects
individually before we were even working together at all. We had at
least 3 or 4 projects a piece that we put our time into & we needed a
place to get it out. It's not like we were going to take every single
different genre of music that we make to every different label or
whatever. It's just too much.
SL – So we're basically like a powerhouse of like everything. We have
the production we do under the ADWR name, the live shows we're doing,
the label now, and the apparel with shirts and a bunch of stuff with
all that. That's really where we're taking this.
SC – In regards to the label – Do you have intentions to release music
from other people?
SL – Yeah we've actually already started talking to people. We have
split EPs planned out with other people. We're talking to two other
projects right now.
SC – Locally?
SL – One is out of LA & the other is out of San Francisco. We've been
talking about doing remixes with them and really building stuff up
with them. They're just starting out which is a lot like us. We're not
trying to find big people, but they're on the same level as us.
SC – So, (Stormy) you're from Phoenix? Originally?
SL – Yeah I grew up in Tucson, but Ive been in AZ my whole life. Now
I'm kind of going back and forth from LA. We're trying to get out
there full time, but right now its working for us to save money out
TS – Phoenix is like home base for us, but I'm from Colorado originally.
SC – When did you move here?
TS – It's been about 10 years, so when I was 14.
SC – How did you two meet?
SL – It's actually kind of weird. We met through kind of a mutual
friend. We ended up at the same house one day and we were talking
about programs. Everyone was using garage band and I was using
Ableton. Everybody was making fun of me for using Ableton.
TS – I was using pro tools. That was the other thing.
SL – He was like “Yo, you're using Ableton” because he didn't like
garage band either. When he was leaving he was complaining about
driving far from the house and I asked him where he lived and it
turned out we lived only like a mile or two away from each other.
SC – How long ago was that?
TS – Probably around a year and a half ago. Like they say location is
everything. If he wouldn't of lived that close we probably wouldn't
have done nearly as much. We were both broke & didn't have jobs so it
worked out. We were like let's make music.
SL – We spent a good couple months working on tracks and sharing programs.
SC – So how did you guys get involved with this music? Stormy, you
started in metal?
SL – Yeah. I've been playing guitar since I could pick it up. I've
toured with a bunch of metal bands. I started touring right out of
high school & I ended up working for some bigger metal bands and
friends with mine. I just got into electronic music randomly. Travis
has always been more of a reggae guy.
TS – When I grew up my parents were really into music. My grandpa
plays bass. I grew up on sort of a blues / rock background. Always had
instruments around. It wasn't really until I was in high school and I
was on the drum line that I started taking it a bit more seriously.
Then I got a lot of support. When you're part of a drum line you get a
lot of support with your music. I was the only Freshman on a varsity
drum line and it felt like I could actually do something musically. I
got in a real band after drum line. I got into reggae. I really love
reggae for some reason. Afterwards I sort of realized the band scene
SL – It's hard to find 5 like minded people that want to be in a band.
When I was in the metal scene It was a lot harder. It was so half
TS – I got screwed over so many times to where I was like I want to do
this all by myself.
ST – I had tours booked that got canceled because people left the
band. Finally I was thinking I'm going to get into production and
learn as much as possible so I don't have to worry about anybody else.
I'm able to do tracks by myself so it's less stressful.
TR – We're more self sufficient.
SL – You can't go out and play live with just one guitar if you're
playing metal. With this I can go set up my computer and I don't need
a full live band. We can do it on our own if we have to. The stress of
being in a band sucks. When you get involved with money & depend on 5
other people to make money... It just gets bad.
TS – There's a culmination of things. The whole level of creativity
and being creative. The whole thing that comes with being in a band.
When it comes to being a self relying producer, I do not have to worry
about those things. What time is practice? I hop in the studio at 6 in
the morning sometimes. It feels good. There's a quick pace of 2011.
It's a new day and age and I can be on top of things.
SC – I know you two talked about difference between producing music
between the two of you & being in a band. What is the difference
between the sort of scene you guys are performing in & the scene you
were in with bands?
SL – When you play in a club setting people go to a bar to get fucked
up. People don't necessarily care about what the dude on the stage is
doing. To them he's just playing music that's there. When you're in a
band people want to see you perform. We're trying to bring that into
the club/rave scene. We're doing more than just being DJs.
TS – We'd like to see some loyalty. The band scene has loyalty which
we would like to see.
SL – Bands have fans as to when you go into a club you could ask 95%
of the people who the DJ is and they'd have absolutely no idea.
TS – The DJ is playing a song that's on the radio on top of that. So
they're already going to know the songs they're mixing.
SL – We want to get to the point where we're not even playing other
people's song in our set. We re-edit every song play live. Re-cut it
and whatever. We want to make it to the point where we're doing sets
of just our own remixes. Bloody Beetroots, they have a full live set
up. Guitars, drums, synths, screaming, all sorts of crazy shit. They
do all their stuff live instead of just being DJs. It just seem now
you kind of have to be doing more than being a DJ to stand out. We're
trying to get to that next step to where we're producing and playing
our own stuff live. The biggest difference is people care less in the
club scene because it's more about getting fucked up. That's whatever,
but I guess what I'm trying do is really bring my punk and hardcore
ideas into the club scene. It's all I really know how to do. I don't
know how to be a top 40 DJ. People are now coming to see us instead of
just getting fucked up.
TS – We embrace the partying, but we're trying to get to the next
level. We love to interact with people that are there because they
want to interact with us. We jump off of tables and shit. Just as much
fun as you would have at a hardcore show.
SL – I've heard that some Skrillex shows are almost like straight up
mosh pits. Almost like a metal show.
TS – I guess the difference between what electronic music used to be
and what it is today is sort of closing in. It's very narrow.
SL – You go to a lot of shows now and see a bunch of different people.
When I saw Bloody Beetroots there were ravers, club people, and just
regular people. Everyone wants to classify people, but there are also
just musicians there experiencing a live set. You're seeing it slowly
close in together. So much exciting stuff going on. This specific
period of time and looking back on history of music is really
SC – Do you ever feel like the kind of music you guys work with is
bogged down with so many other people making it?
SL – You have to dig through some shit to find the good stuff.
Technology brings people with ideas the ability to get it out without
being a great musician. I'm broke and don't know a whole lot about
music. I got the programs, and the ability to get whats in my head out
TS – There is a healthy balance of both, I guess. There is an over
saturation. We were saying we initially didn't get into dubstep
because there are so many tracks coming out everyday. So many people.
It's kind of settled now as producers that are sticking around and are
here to stay are still working the scene.
SC – Well you know, I was discussing this the other night with my
friends. If you go on youtube and search the name of any song followed
by dubstep you will find a remix guaranteed.
SL – Oh god. Youtube is destroying music. Bringing just the shit to
the worst level possible. I fucking hate people on Youtube. Sometimes
I'll just get so angry. I had this one guy when I did a dubstep remix
of Deadmau5 for LightsOverLA. It did really well and this dude was
tearing it to shit. The same guy left a comment on the ADWR remix of
Deadmau5 saying it was the best track he'd ever heard. Like, he
couldn't do his research to figure out it was the same guy? Every
stupid idiot of this world on one place. Millions of people on there
every day & for some of those people it's the only place they ever
SC – Can you guys just tell me what's in store for ADWR?
SL – I guess for the next couple months we have releases between our
two projects. We're going to start bringing in other people and
touring as much as we can. As far as the merch we're getting new
designs from some guys who have done some metal designs. We have a few
other ideas. We have this thing called At Dawn We Blaze. It's a weekly
thing like what's your favorite track to chill out to and blaze to.
TS – As hard as this music is, no harder music scene has ever got in
touch with the soft side of the individual.
SL – People really liked that name as well. So we might do some more
smoker friendly stuff under that name done. We have some companies we
might end up working with doing prints and shit so that's another
thing in the back of our head. We'll get to it when we get to it.
TS – It'll be extremely interactive. That's the main thing. We're
doing that thing with At Dawn We Rage & our music, but at least with
At Dawn We Blaze it'll be sort of interactive with more blogs, people,
sponsors, whatever. Almost as a collective or an extreme collective.
SL – There's a lot of people that smoke weed. As things are getting
more and more acceptable we might as well get some more stoner related
stuff going on. Another scene that is very much into electronic music,
cross over scenes, and get our hands dirty. If it doesn't work out it
doesn't work out.
TS – We're definitely embracing other genres. Our future releases
include some liquid drum and bass. We have some guys out from Denver
that play reggae. They want some releases and I love reggae so I'll
support it. I'm all about that. There's other ambient dubstep stuff.
All over everything & that's the best thing.
SL – At Dawn We Rage is sort of an umbrella for everything we want to do.
Check them out on youtube:
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