Daniel Avery on Techno: "The Unknown Should Be Embraced"
A disc-jockeying virtuoso, a veritable scholar of the selector's craft, Daniel Avery doesn't subscribe much to dance-floor formulas as a producer.
"I grew up listening to guitar music," Avery tells Crossfade. "I loved anything with a psychedelic edge, whether that was My Bloody Valentine, Black Sabbath, Mogwai, Neu!, Death In Vegas.
"From there, I discovered things like Aphex Twin, the Chemical Brothers and Four Tet, who even though they were electronic, sounded like they came from a similar musical world. They all offered something of an escape for me."
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Avery's Krautrock, shoegaze, and IDM influences certainly help account for the expansive, psychedelic, yet minimal and repetitive qualities of his production sound. His critically acclaimed 2013 debut long player, Drone Logic, in particular, is a slice of heady, hypnotic, tripped-out techno designed for mind expansion and not just body jacking.
Nevertheless, the album in its entirety is a listening experience that could have only been designed by a seasoned DJ with a keen understanding of altered states on the dance floor.
"I wanted [Drone Logic] to feel and flow like a DJ set," Avery explains. "I still consider myself to be a DJ first and foremost, so that idea was important to me. The record mainly consists of club tracks but they had to work together -- it had to feel like a collective piece of work."
Of course, it helps that Avery got to try out the work in progress at one of the global dance music underground's top clubs, London's Fabric, where he's presided as resident DJ since the impressively young age of 22.
"Fabric is a London institution, and whilst it's a huge building, there is an energy and a level of intimacy with the crowd that is unique," Avery explains. "Most of the record was road-tested in those rooms throughout the course of the year I spent making it. I really feel as if it's my home."
But it's one thing to read about Daniel Avery's sound and it's another to experience it via a proper sound system, inside a darkened room, and surrounded by sweaty bodies. So do not miss the selector when he makes his 305 debut at the Electric Pickle with Safe this weekend.
"I've been looking forward to playing in Miami for a while," Avery admits. "You can never tell how a night is going to progress musically, but that's the beauty of it. The unknown should be embraced."
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Daniel Avery. With Diego and Tomas of Aquabooty. Presented by Safe. Friday, May 16. Electric Pickle, 2826 N. Miami Ave., Miami. The show starts at 10 p.m. and tickets cost $15 plus fees via residentadvisor.net. Call 305-456-5613 or visit electricpicklemiami.com.