Hold on to your hats! The 89th edition of our central podcast is in and it’s a heater… Stepping up in the mix are none other than Eli & Fur. The London-based duo, founders of the NYX Music imprint, have been a dominant force in the underground over the last two years, since breaking out in 2014 with an array of stellar cuts on the likes of Kitsune, Defected and Anjunadeep. They have gone on to play some of the biggest events around the world including the likes of Coachella and Ultra Music as well as Ibiza favourite Ants. Now guiding their own label NYX Music, the pair have their sights firmly set on a big finish to 2017. In addition to recording an exclusive set for occasion of WWD089, they took the time to chat, touching on their history in songwriting, learning the label game and lots more…
WWD: Thanks for joining us guys! What’s been on your to-do list this week?
The last few months of the year, as well as the first two are a great time to finish as much music as possible. Being on the road most of the year the weekdays in between are spent making music. We also do a lot of rough ideas on planes and in hotels that sit around for quite a while. Now things have quietened down a bit we can delve into all these so that’s been amazing. We have two new records this week that have re surfaced so we are finishing these. Other than that we have a new track out this Friday so doing anything to spread the word about this is important. Making video content, doing interview questions and recording the mix for you guys!
WWD: The development of your own NYX Music imprint continues this November with the release of ‘Around You’. Is there a story to share behind the making of the track?
This was one of the tracks we made at our residency at Red Bull London at the Beginning of the year, it was an amazing opportunity to be there and a great place for us to focus and jam out ideas together. The idea started out quite laid back, slower, we didn’t originally consider it as a club track, all the melodic elements you hear in the track now were there at the start but we saw it as more of a song based record. We wanted to do something different vocally and we hit up Hollis P Monroe who right now is in a band called The Black 80s, Frank the singer of the band wrote all these beautiful melodies over what we sent him it was hard to choose the best parts. The song really came together after that, the vocal is so uplifting that we had to take it in another direction and it became what it is now, something that packs a punch on the dance floor with the emotion of the vocal, we love how it’s worked out.
WWD: You both have a history in songwriting. Has that influence affected the way in which you approach making what is more broadly seen as club-oriented electronic music?
100%! We started out in the industry as pop songwriters so it was all about melodic vocal hooks, this is something we always strive to achieve on all our tracks. The formula is slightly different but in the end we want to be able to create something that you can play in a club but it connects on another level emotionally. We love to play instrumental tracks in our sets too but when it comes to our own music we want to always feature our own vocals, even if very subtle. Both being singers that’s important for us.
WWD: What did you find most challenging about starting your own label?
We actually started our own label to be able to release the music we wanted when we wanted and so in that aspect it was actually more of a useful tool when we started out. To keep it relevant and thriving is where the challenge lies but it’s still in its early stages. So far the only other artist that’s been involved with the label are Oc & Verde who did the remix for us. We are always looking for new music to sign but at this point it’s just been an outlet for our original tracks.
WWD: For artists in the modern era, what do you think are the most appealing aspect to operating your own imprint?
The flexiblity to do what you want and carve your own path. Other labels have their own vision and plans so you can be restricted. The longer Eli & Fur exists the more we know what we want and learn about what works. We really feel that development and journey is something that should exist without restriction and having our own imprint allows us to do just that. It’s always amazing when bigger labels want to sign your tunes and that’s a perfect way to expand your audience but when it comes to wanting to release on a regular basis and to take control of things artistically then your own imprint is the perfect way to do this. In an ideal world it would be a combination of releasing on other labels as well as our own.
WWD: As we head towards the tail end of 2017, what would make the ideal finish to the year?
This is a great time to be setting up things for next year, aiming to have music ready to release throughout the year. It’s always good to be ahead of ourselves but also to make sure the music is more a case of quality that quantity. Focusing on new ideas and ways we can push things forward in new ways. Feeling ready for the challenge.
WWD: No.1 favourite thing about the winter season?
WWD: Can you share one habit you’ve started or quit recently?
We have both recently started adding tabasco to everything, it’s addictive.
WWD: Travelling is of course an essential part of the DJ life. Does it impact on trying balance the other aspects of your lives?
One of the reasons we love what we do is the traveling aspect of it but yes it means that’s the job is all encompassing, it sometimes feels more like a lifestyle than a job and although it’s amazing it’s important to take time out if you can. We recently had a week off from traveling and it’s nice to get into a routine and makes it easier to be creative. Most of our work revolves around the weekends so it’s often the opposite of people close to us so in that way it can be a challenge. That said we both love doing what we do because it’s different, fast paced and exciting.
WWD: If you could go back in time or into the future to DJ in any place in any era for one night only. Where would it be?
As djing is relatively new in terms of history it would probably be more exciting to go forward in time, maybe 100 years forward in Ibiza, that would be mad, I would hope in a positive way.
WWD: What can we expect from NYX in 2018?
We have been working on a larger body of work we hope to turn into a EP or album which we are excited about. More touring, more music, we are excited for the new year!!
WWD: We’re delighted to have you mix the latest edition of our central podcast. What will one find in there?
It was actually a lot of fun doing this one. We took a break from making music and we recorded it late in the studio, just going back to back playing tracks we really love at the moment. We love to do this when we have a bit of time especially in the summer when it’s a hot day we set up everything outside and just test out new music or old favourites. Hopefully this vibe come across in the mix, we suggest listening to it on a cool, dark night, maybe behind the wheel or just at home when you don’t feel like sleeping.
Eli & Fur ‘Around You’ (OC & Verde Remix) is out November 17th. Pre-order here.
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