Producer DJ Carnage talks electronic dance trend in hip-hop

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In the past few years, electronic dance music (EDM), has found a home in hip hop and R&B.

From Chris Brown to Usher, artists who’ve pushed the boundaries using EDM for a more commercial sound, to Harlem rapper ASAP Rocky linking up with Scrillex for his hit ‘Wild For The Night,’ what once  was shunned is now embraced in mainstream  rap.

Sonically, southern rap has been combined with popular EDM for dramatic results that turn regular dance parties into all-out rage fests.

Trillectro is Washington D.C.’s premiere hip-hop and Electronic Music Festival. TheGrio sat down with headliner and Maryland native, DJ Carnage, to discuss a style of  EDM  called “Trap” and its place within music.

theGrio: What drew you to the EDM sound over hip-hop?

DJ Carnage: EDM intrigued me from a producer’s perspective, because you’re not dependent on an artist to back you for a great live performance. It’s a lot more creative.

Is it more challenging for you to work in the EDM Space?

I think it’s the allure of EDM because you don’t feel restricted to the sounds you use.

Are you surprised to see so many people of color at concerts where the fan base is predominantly European?

Not really. Black people want to try cool and weird sh*t (laughs). I think that people in general are drawn to the energy of an EDM concert.

Describe the difference in the energy between hip hop concerts compared to an EDM show.

It’s all about the rhythm and bass at the EDM show. It’s ‘bouncy.’ You have no choice but to feel the rhythm in the air.

As a DJ who comes from a hip-hop background and is now thriving in the EDM space, has your approach to making a hit changed?

I think I bring a very hip-hop mind state to EDM. It allows me to be competitive with the majority of European DJs in the field, but to also treat every single like its a mix tape. I pour every ounce into that and it shows in my work.