DJ-Producer Duo Nadastrom On Their Punk-Rap Beginnings, The Evolution Of Dance Music, Touring With Skrillex and Working With Scion A/V

Categories: interview
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Nadastrom: Dave Nada and Matt Nordstrom

While Redbull and Converse have worked tirelessly over the last couple years to support new independent music, Scion has proved committed to supporting ultra-niche artists from subgenres like grindcore, dubstep and moombahton by taking on a label-like role, providing their artists with record releases, videos and tour support.

"The media featured on ScionAV.com truly embodies the spirit of an independent lifestyle," says Jeri Yoshizu, Scion sales promotion manager. "ScionAV.com is providing bold, unique and daring entertainment content through music, video, streaming radio and more to targeted audiences across an adaptable digital platform."

We spoke to one of our favorite Scion-backed groups, D.C.-born, L.A.-based DJ-producer duo Nadastrom, who will perform at the Yost Theater tonight.


O.C. Weekly (Lainna Fader): What's your earliest musical memory?
Matt Nordstrom: I remember walking across the street to my neighbor's house with Thriller under my arm. I was like, "Yo, you gotta hear this album!" Except I probably didn't say "Yo" because I was really young. Another early one is I remember being in school and I traded actual mixtapes with this girl who was a couple grades above me and she introduced me to the Beat Street soundtrack. I think I was in kindergarten at the time. I remember everyone actually picking on her at one point--she was kind of a nerd--and everyone was hounding on her. But she introduced me to Beat Street and I will forever be grateful.
Dave Nada: My older brother Brian--he's about four years older than me--he was the one that was always into music and I remember him blaring hip-hop and rap music really loud when I was super super young. Like old, pre-Run DMC, old Grand Master Flash, stuff like that. And he'd blare it so hard and got it stuck in my head. That, and basement parties with my mom and my aunt and uncle would throw. They'd play a lot of Latin music--cumbia and old folk stuff--and they'd pull out the guitar and get wasted. As I got older, in grade school, I had an allowance, and the first tape I actually bought was NWA. No, it was Eazy-E. Eazy-E's Eazy-Duz-It--my first musical purchase with my own money. It was all downhill from there!

When was the first time you ever snuck into a club underage to see a DJ spin?
Matt Nordstrom: You know what? I never did. I was kind of a square like that. But I remember when I turned 18 going to Tracks in D.C. That was my first taste of the nightlife as a kid.
Dave Nada: Oh man, I can't really recall. Probably my fault because my brain is a mess by now. I can't remember the first DJ night or rave I ever went to but I started going to punk rock shows when I was thirteen or fourteen with my older cousin Jason, who was a skater punk dude that was into all kinds of music. He was basically my path to get into anywhere at the time. I remember some of the early raves I went to were these huge rave parties at Nation. That's where I got my first taste of drum & bass, house breaks songs all under one roof with a thousand kids rolling their faces off. That was my first exposure to DJ culture and underground electronic music.
Matt Nordstrom: Actually, the reason why I ended up at Tracks that night was because of my buddy Will, and he had a fake I.D., but he couldn't get in!

You guys used to have your own DJ night--why did that get shut down? What happened?
Dave Nada: Good question! We don't know. We did this party at this spot--which we won't say the name of--and a friend of ours was bartending there and she got offered a Wednesday night party and she asked me if I wanted to do it. I thought it'd be so much fun to do it with Matt because at the time, we were just starting to become friends and we shared a lot of the same taste in music. We were like, 'Yeah, let's do this weird, left-field party," and we did it every Wednesday and it started to grow and snowballed into something cool. But for some reason, the club owner ended up pulling the plug. I guess maybe they weren't making as much money as they hoped to. But who knows. Either way, it led to us making records, so we can't be too mad.

How did the end of your party lead into Nadastrom?
Matt Nordstrom: We were gonna look for a new spot but we couldn't think of any that had a decent sound system that could handle the kind of music we wanted to play--or would be cool enough that would let us play what we wanted to play. Both of us were sort of stuck a little musically, so we started trading stuff back and worth, showing each other what we'd been working on. Next thing you know, we finished our first EP, and sent the tracks to Dave Switch who had heard one of them and was interested in them. He called us up and asked us if he could put out an EP of our stuff and of course we said yes. We're such huge fans of his. It was kind of like, "Well, looks like this is going well--better than our night was!" So it just went on from there.

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