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Interview series ‘From LA to Berlin’: Raíz

From LA to Berlin will feature a series of artists and their gigging habits all the way from LA to Berlin and throughout Europe and America.

Our last LA stop with Raíz, two brothers, Vidal and Vangelis Vargas, sexy techno DJs and producers on Droid Behavior whose gigs in a few European clubs including Beghain rocked the old continent last year. We hope they come back soon.

Some facts: in their early 30s, from LA, been making music for 11 years.

Number of gigs: 300+

Number of tracks produced: 10 EPs and 14 remixes

Next release: LP in 2012

Newer and older artists who influence your work: Cosmin TRG, Levon Vincent, Ostgut artists, Jeff Mills, Steve Reich, Surgeon and Coil.

LSD: How do you order your tracks for a live show?

With a bit of “mining”: tracking down obscure and long forgotten tracks to include in our sets. Using our ears and digital equipment to then work them into current music as well as original work. The perfect marriage of old versus new.

LSD: Is there much space for wishes from the audience? 

Our sets are often dictated by the vibe and atmosphere of our audience and venue. Many times, audience members make requests but only those who are educated enough about the music we play are considered. If somebody asks for hip-hop, dubstep, Deadmau5 or Tiesto for example when we are performing at a techno or house related night, the request is disregarded.

LSD: You know many bands/DJs who play the same set on every gig of a tour?

There are some bands and DJs who play the same set on all their tours, but we can’t relate to this much, because playing the same order of songs every time would get too boring for the audience and us.

LSD: Is there a special tune you always start or finish your gig with?

We don’t usually stick to routines, but we have a few “anthems” we have found effective over the years…. older Rachmad, Rockliffe, Ian Pooley, etc. During the summer season of 2011 we did perform a live rendition of the synth intro from our Keep Secrets EP to start off many sets.

LSD: How do you get yourself ready before a gig?

A bit of last minute rehearsing and rendering new material. Clean clothes, clean face.

LSD: What is special when playing in other countries, when you prepare for the journey, the flights, etc.?

For the actual stay of our final destination, plenty of clothes. During the flight, something to read, watch or listen to on the laptop and headphones.

LSD: Your list of last gigs from LA to Berlin:

Los Angeles, MPLS, New York, Mexicali, Guadalajara, Las Vegas, Cozumel, Austin, San Francisco, Dominican Republic, Essen, Brussels and Berlin.

Check out their tracks on soundcloud:

Raíz The Music Box LA:

Author Bio:

Nadia Says likes to say it like it is. An eye for trends and broad tastes in music, art, fashion, cinema and TV all the way from France, the UK, Germany or the USA to Japan and back. She edits for Local Suicide, does PR/marketing consulting and organises cultural & music events for Berlin-based agency Your Mom's.

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