A sit Down With DJ Terravita

14:06 Feb/21/2018


Terravita, though having roots and record label signings dating back to 2006, reached massive popularity in November of 2010 when they released “Up In the Club” on Beta Recordings. This particular track reached the number four spot on the Dubstep charts and was also featured numerous times on the Beatport Top 100. “Up In the Club” is argued to be a pivotal track in creating and refining the genre of drumstep.

 

 "We tend gravitate toward stuff with a lot of musical progressions within the songs and we switch tempos too."



 

What does it say abut you guys personally?

We make fun of each other a lot and try not to take ourselves too seriously and just enjoy life. That’s what’s infused in the EP about us. Even if there is a message like in ‘This time It’s Personal’, you can still just rock out to the tune if you want.

Behind every DJ artist is a motive or reason as to what drew them to that genre. What made you so entranced by this musical avenue and more specifically bass music?

When I first heard drum n bass back in like 1998 it was so raw but it had this dark backroom vibe because that was literally the only place you could hear it. For me it also had a lot to do with the people involved with the music. It was a place for outcasts. Everyone was accepted as a person and there was no judgement back then. I fell in love with the whole package it was magical.

I know that you guys have some VERY strong D&B credentials, ranging from experience with Bassline Smith, Beta, Bad Taste… what did you learn and adapt from this experience?

D&B taught us to have a strong work ethic. At the time we were making it, things were still predominantly vinyl based. The dubplate culture was still in effect and we got to witness its transformation into digital. We always acquainted the production level of D&B compared to many other styles of electronic music in the same way as training as a fighter with bears. If you train fighting with a bear and survive, then when you fight a person it’s a lot easier. One of the other big things we learned from D&B was to never have a bad elitist attitude. Not only does it ruin you as a person and artist, but it eventually starts to eat away at your entire music genre’s infrastructure.

Do you find that the hip-hop style lends itself better to dubstep than drum and bass?

The funny thing is I find it lends itself best to 110 bpm tracks, like moombahton. Some people are doing some really interesting stuff with it right now. I don’t know what to call it, but that’s my favourite bpm. I like going back and forth from 174 to 140. It gives people something fun to listen to, and it’s fun for me because it’s not monotonous, it’s not one cadence, it’s not one speed. You can double time it, you can slow it down, you can do some very simple but effective things with crowd hype and call and response stuff. Switching between three, maybe four bpms in a set is equally fun for me to do.

What's your opinion on current EDM music; the fact that its literally blowing up across the world and becoming popular and mainstream?

I think it's great that it's getting the exposure it is. I'm just like everyone else; I have things I like and things I dislike but I support anyone out there doing it with passion and drive. It's always fun to see things you love be loved by others.

On the subject of the ep, can you pick one more tune from it and tell us about it?

The funniest one was probably metROIDs. Matt was sitting outside of a hospice care center all day in Boca Raton, Florida visiting a sick relative. He was at this plastic picnic table and found a working power outlet so he decided to write a tune real quick. For some reason it struck him to just cover the opening theme of Metroid (which was a childhood favorite for us). We played the show in Miami and afterwards headed up to Datsik’s hotel to hang out with a bunch of friends. As with most of these types of get-togethers, someone inevitably starts playing tunes. Troy heard metROIDs and was like ‘What is this?! This is heavy as Fuck! I want this for your EP as well!’ and that’s how it ended up on there.

It’s amazing how bass music has exploded even in middle America.

We played Cincinatti, we played Kentucky, we played Tallahasee, all these places you wouldn’t think. Even like Missouri. There are places that have traditionally not been too forward-thinking about electronic music, but now everybody everywhere loves it. It’s been an amazing thing to watch.

What does your daily routine look like? Are you producing everyday? Take some time and walk us through your creative process.

On the road it's not as easy to stay productive in the studio. Fortunately there's 3 of us; someone is always doing something. Matt isn't on the tour so it gives him a chance to really sit in the studio and focus on what needs to get done musically. Chris and I can then add what we need to add. As for daily routine, it's pretty much wake up, get as much work done as you can, soundcheck, play show, back on the bus, rinse repeat.

What are your musical influences when putting together your tracks?

We all have different tastes so we try to put a little bit of everything in there. Our stuff ranges. I suppose it really just depends on an idea.

Do you usually work with people in studios or do you go back and forth over the internet?

Very rarely do I work in studios together with people just because everybody has such an arduous schedule. I have worked with J. Rabbit a lot in the studio, but only because he’s a really good friend of mine. Other guys we’re working with, we just send things back and forth, but that’s the nature of the beast. We did get in the studio with Vaski for a little bit recently, which was really nice to do. We don’t get the opportunity to do that as much as we want to. Most people do collabs over the internet now, not just because of the convenience factor but it’s just sometimes impossible when you’re on tour to sit down with someone.

https://soundcloud.com/terravita/terravita-x-kompany-dungeon-master-1



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