Amine Edge & DANCE are a French duo that have spent recent years shaking up the dance music scene. As champions of ‘Gangsta house’, their own-crafted style blends influences from across soul, hip-hop and house. We caught up with them at We Are FSTVL the day after their main stage set to talk inspirations, production and future plans.
Their latest single ‘Real Girls Fall, Fake Girls Talk’ feat DJ Sneak is part of their upcoming free album ‘Past Before Future’ due in August, check it out here!
When you were both kids, did you ever imagine music would become your full-time career?
Amine Edge: It was always my dream to be a successful DJ and I didn’t want to do anything else. I always believed in my music; it was my passion. I started producing myself when I was 13, but then we met when we were around 16 or 17 years old.
DANCE: I was doing hip-hop music, rather than house music. But at the time it wasn’t my dream to be famous or have a career in the music business, I never imagined this would happen.
How did you end up meeting?
D: We had a friend in common so we ended up meeting each other. It was mainly because he was funny, and I was funny; that we got on the first time. We were both into our music and in Marseille at the time there were not a lot of people around who were into their music. So that’s all we talked about and it all went from there.
AE: Now almost everybody is a DJ, but back then it was just me and my music, so when I met him, I was like “oh damn, someone who likes music too!”
Do you think it’s good that producing is now easier than ever?
D: You can now go and download the software; go onto YouTube and within one hour you’re a producer. Within a year, you’ll be good. It’s a good thing because there is space for everybody and given I love music; I like it that everyone can be involved.
AE: In the past, making music was quite a struggle. You had to send music to labels, they had to sign it and you also had to send a physical copy. But now that’s all so much easier. However, because of that there’s a lot more to consider. It’s now about more than the music, you have to look good, do so much promo and talk to all the right people.
How would you describe the key elements of your sound to someone who hadn’t heard it before?
AE: It’s very eclectic.
D: I would say it’s unpredictable house music; we have such a range and choice in what we produce.
Do you both have different influences?
D: We like different music but we both like good music. So it means that when we share, we really appreciate each other’s taste.
AE: We’ve always both been curious about music and particularly when I was a kid I was constantly searching for everything. We are now hungry to create a new sound.
Can you tell us about the Mind Control Remix?
D: It was actually very quick to make, maybe in one hour. I had the drums in a different track that wasn’t good so we used them for this remix. I sent it to Amine and he finished it. It’s a real techy banger.
AE: We didn’t want to do too much with the track; we kept it pretty simple with the bass line and vocals.
What’s the production process like between the two of you?
AE: It can completely depend. In terms of timing, it can take one hour or it can take a month; but most of the time after about 15 minutes I can tell if it’s a good track or not.
D: Sometimes I can make something one night and think it’s great and then listen to it the next morning and think it’s shit. It doesn’t happen so much to me now though. Also, sometimes he’ll send a track to me and I’ll finish it, and other times I might change something or ask him to change the track. Or the other way round; there are no rules!
You’ve got a lot of live experience now, what are some of the best venues you’ve played?
D: There’s a few; Hideout last year was amazing with lots of our friends so it was great. Particularly MK, he’s like a dad to me! EDC in Las Vegas in front of maybe 50,000 people was also fucking crazy! The sound system was unbelievable.
How much does the crowd change depending on where you play?
D: The crowd is different in every city. In Ibiza, they are all on drugs so they don’t scream or jump and they’re like zombies. But they do love the music. Whereas in a place like Brazil, they’re very expressive; they don’t like the music quite as much as English people but they express themselves so much. They’re all good crowds as we like changing up our sound for every city.
AE: We’re very lucky to be able to play across the world, and we know we can face every crowd.
So what’s the plan for the rest of the year?
AE: We have some gigs at Amnesia in Ibiza, we’re doing Shambhala in Canada, which will be crazy as well as a tour of the US and Brazil again. We’re also excited for Park Life.
Is this your biggest ever summer?
AE: No. We had a residency in Ibiza last year which meant 5 gigs a week for the whole summer, which in some ways was complete hell! We do have lives that we want to live!
D: We need time to chill and also to make music!
Do you keep each other motivated?
D: Of course, being a duo is great and definitely helps with the motivation.
What’s the plan with the CUFF label?
D: In 2016, we’re going to release all the tracks we’ve signed; in 2017 we’re going to calm down and be more strategic. We’re going to do more merch and the website is almost done. We’re also going to do more vinyl and some more tracks next year.