We spoke to Pop Art Live ahead of their Halloween 2015 performances in Pretoria and Johannesburg. This duo has been blowing up the festival scene with their incredible Future House and dynamic performances.
DJ 3Lau once tweeted: “Bottom line, most people see the partying, the booze, the booty. No one sees the grind, the self-pressure and the fear of failure.” What’s your opinion on this statement?
Martin: Why would you want to see the latter? Life is difficult for everyone. Everybody works and what we love is to share the good times with the people that appreciate what we do. We’re all about taking the good with the bad. At the end of the day dance music is about dance.
Pop Art Live burst onto the scene and has gained a lot of ground. Was there a specific moment in time when you realized that you were gaining success; a moment where you thought, “Wow, this is really going somewhere and people are listening”, or was rising to prominence a subtle experience for you?
Martin: It never really felt like we “burst onto the scene”, for us success is a never-ending process. It’s important to know that we haven’t made it yet. But we do notice that people are listening, we see it at our shows and from the participation of party patrons. Nothing about dance music is subtle. The amount of shows that we are playing has sky rocketed over the past year or so particularly when we arrived back from our English trip and that has been the most evident part that something is happening.
Riccardo: I agree I don’t feel like we have really broken though but I do feel like our impact is being made we have done a lot of ground work and played some pretty dodgy parties to get here but that’s what is going to make us always relevant and keep us grounded.
Who would you like to work with in terms of band collaborations? Name one South African act and one international one.
Martin: Nomadic Orchestra locally. I love the brass sound and their big band feel. Any band that I can mosh to is a band I’d love to work with. I think the collaboration with what they do and the bass heaviness of the kind of dance music we make is a match made in heaven. Internationally I could go on. But I’d have to say Banks. She’s captured a generation of sound and encapsulated a mood that we are trying very hard to get down. It is so inspiring to see a vocalist definitively characterise a sound so elegantly.
Riccardo: For me locally it’s Bye Beneco I really enjoy their stuff and internationally I’d love to work with Jamie xx.
How has this year been for you? We noted your incredible Oppikoppi 2015 performance. What other plans do you have for the year?
Martin: This year is going to be insane. Lentadag, Daisies, a debut at Origin in Durbs, Rage, Popping over to Mozambique again and finishing a collection of music we think is going to blow minds.
Riccardo: Yeah, the gigs are insane but to release our new material I think is going to take us to new heights for sure.
What can we expect from your Halloween 2015 performance?
Martin: Filth, stage diving, tequila, shout outs, bass, more bass, lots of bass, drunk girls and boys, 128bpm, new music and old favourites. Forget what you’re expecting and come see it for yourself!
Riccardo: Martin doing all of the above.
Will you give us any hints on what you’re dressing up as?
Martin: I’m thinking A Clockwork Orange meets Hunter S Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.
Riccardo: Batman. I love batman.
Photo by Charlemagne Olivier