Classixx: Part of the family now
Last month, Sydney label Future Classic announced the latest addition to their roster: L.A. duo Classixx. Of course, Classixx aren’t new to the scene. Michael David and Tyler Blake have been producing for years – previously, it was under the moniker Young Americans but for the past few years, the output’s all been as Classixx. The Future Classic signing came at an opportune time: the same day FC announced they were welcoming David and Blake to the family, they also added to them to the bill of their Sydney Festival date with Lindstrom. Then there was the news that Classixx have just polished off their debut album Hanging Gardens after a good two years of being hard at work on it. So if you’re yet to get acquainted with the pair, now would be a good time.
So you guys are about to play at Sydney Festival. How are you approaching your DJ sets at the moment?
Right now we’ve been trying to work some more of our own music into our DJ sets because we finished a full length album, so that could be a cool way to introduce people to some of the new music.
I was going to ask – in a typical set, how much of what you play is your own stuff and how much is other peoples?
Usually in the past, depending on the type of show, we’ll play a couple of our remixes and one of our singles. But this time I think we’re going to be playing a lot more than that.
You mentioned your remixes before and you’ve obviously got a lot of well-known ones in your back catalogue. Is remixing still exciting for you?
Yeah, totally. It depends on the song and everything, but we’ve been lucky enough to build and remix some songs that have great vocal melodies or great elements, and it was easy to complement those things. We’ve sort of been taking a break at the moment from doing that just because we’re really slow and our album has taken us a long time to make, but we’ll probably get back into it in this new year a little bit.
How is the album sounding?
It’s sort of all over the place. There’s something for everyone, hopefully. There’s some dance songs on there that are just mainly for dance clubs and then there’s some more songs with a verse and chorus, and then there’s even some slow stuff.
I read that the album was whittled down from hundreds of sessions down to twelve tracks…
Yeah. Well over the past couple of years we’ve done a bunch of stuff, but a lot of it just turns into nothing or turns into something that, after a little while, we’re not really feeling anymore. So mainly we’ve just gotten it to a point where we feel we’ll like all these songs, hopefully, by the time they come out and even afterwards.
Did you record it in short bursts or was it long concentrated stints in the studio?
It’s been a long time. Some of the songs that are coming out, we’ve been kicking around for up to two years really. And then some of the other ones are really new, some of them we just started a couple of months ago and now they’re all done.
So is there one unifying theme of the album, or is it more just a collection of stuff you’ve made over the past couple of years?
Kind of. I think it all…it feels good together. At the end, only recently have we been able to listen to it all together. We just had it mastered and we kind of waited til it was all done to see how it really sounded together. It’s not like it’s a concept album or anything but I think it’s pretty cohesive.
So you’ve just signed with Future Classic here, how did that come about?
It was pretty natural really, because they’re the first people that brought us to Australia and showed a lot of interest in what we were doing. I think it’s something that we were always planning on doing and now the time’s come so we were just like okay, let’s do it.
As an American who’s being making dance music for a while now, what’s it like to watch EDM – as it’s been dubbed – explode in the States now?
It’s hard to say because it’s always seemed really natural to us. In some ways it’s really cool and then in other ways it’s weird, because a lot of mainstream R&B, or Top 40 music is really infused with dance music. I think it’s cool that people are more comfortable with hearing dance music now and that they’re not turned off by it, but it’s not always positive.
In a previous interview with us you said that you guys feel you’re better received outside of America than in it, is that still the case?
No, I think we do pretty well at home, especially in LA, in our city. When we first started we kind of had to win over people from our own city, but I think we have a lot of hometown love there now. And I think we have a lot of friends and people that are into the kind of music we make here, so we’ve always really liked Australia too.