By now we've all heard ita dozen times
or so: DJs are the new rock stars, pop stars, and icons. Big-name DJs and producers like David Guetta and Avicii are taking their fame across genre lines into the world of pop and becoming more famous in the process.
In the near future, it will be interesting to see how things evolve with next generation of DJs and producers who have watched EDM and pop converge. Are we looking at a world where DJs come ready-made with club bangers and radio-ready pop hits?
One only has to look as far as Krewella to see is this already happening. Made up of sisters Yasmine and Jahan Yousaf and producer Kris Trindl, the group's debut EP hit No. 1 on Beatport with a sound that's equal parts Porter Robinson's club chaos and Ke$ha's party-pop.
Rocks Off caught up with co-vocalist and co-songwriter Yasmine Yousaf for a conversation that touched on crossing genres, singing live and coming home.
Rocks Off: Why form a group when you could have your own name on the marquee instead?
Yasmine Yousaf: It's a lot more fulfilling to be doing what you love with the closest people in your life. The fact that we could come together, create a group, and make the music we make makes it so much better for us. I don't think we could make the music that we make without one of the team; we all realize that we're each a vital part of the group.
We love being like a crew, basically. I know it sounds super-cheeseball, but that's honestly how it is.
RO: The EP hits a lot of different genres within EDM. Was that something that happened organically in the studio?
YY: People always ask us, "What was the thought process behind that?" but we just started making songs that we wanted to make and things that we liked to hear. They all sort of worked out to have a thread of consistency through them because they were all made by us so they all have some sort of similarity between them.
I think that you don't have to be held down by one genre.
RO: Which do you like more: the big club songs or the ones that are more pop-influenced?
YY: Personally I love being able to do it all. While you're writing you can't be, "That thing is going to be the one that sounds good on the radio and this is the one that's going to be more EDM." It's hard to choose between the two of them because our songs are like our babies. If they work on the radio that's beautiful; if they are better for a festival, that's beautiful too.
RO: Right now the live show involves all three of you behind the decks. Do you see a time down the line where you mix in some live vocals?
YY: It's definitely down the line. We are constantly in the studio and playing live shows and it's really hard to fit in time to rehearse a big live production. It's definitely something we're working towards.
And we also have to have the right sound checks before shows because obviously you can't just jump in to a show on a live mike and expect it to go smoothly. Once we start getting time to do and opportunities to do sound checks before shows then we're gonna be way more open to doing that too.
Who knows when it's going to happen? I don't want to say soon, but the ball is rolling.
RO: Is this the group's first Houston show?
YY: Yes; we've played in Texas before, but it wasn't a big show or anything. We know in general Texas rages really hard. We're so stoked.
RO: Right on.
YY: By the way -- we love Houston because me and Jahan were actually born there. So we're excited to come back to the homeland.
RO: So it's kind of like a homecoming show?
YY: We moved when we were babies, so Chicago is definitely our home, but we have family there. We definitely got roots there.
RO: More reason to party hard, then?
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YY: Hell yeah!
Krewella plays with Benny Benassi, Congorock and Pink Is Punk Friday at Stereo Live, 6400 Richmond, www.stereolivehouston.com. Show starts at 9 p.m.