A few years removed from being exciting young hot-shots ready to take the wobbly dubstep world by storm, Zeds Dead seem to be settling into a groove of sorts. That is, they've seemed to inhabit their relatively newfound fame (post-'Eyes on Fire' and post-'Cowboy' especially) by taking the artistic risks expected and demanded of veteran artists.

Displaying a knack for memorable pop hooks infused with serious bass-weight and distortion, their new EP Somewhere Else (Mad Decent) revels in its own competency, celebrating a tight supersaw here, some nasty Massive knob-twisting there. We chatted with them briefly via email ahead of the EP's release, and they dished out thoughts on the EDM bubble, Mad Decent's stylistic approach, and keeping their music fresh.


Talk a little about your Somewhere Else EP. What kind of steps forward are you trying to take with it?

The concept stemmed from literally being somewhere else in the world every day as well as our minds often being in other places daydreaming. The EP is very diverse and each song functions as its own island or planet, like each song is somewhere else, but they all exist within the same universe.

You guys are known for having incredible chemistry - Zeds Dead, to me, shows that two heads can really be better than one. Why do you think you work so well together?

It's all about our music tastes really. We basically discovered that we we're really like minded in music, so coming from a similar background of influences we generally agree on how to get a song to where it needs to be.

You've come a long way ever since those early UKF uploads launched you into the limelight. What kind of relationship do you have with similar YouTube promotion channels nowadays?

We've been doing a video series called Coffee Break with Vice's Thump channel these days where we drink coffee in different places around the world, sometimes with other artists. We also did the video for 'Demons' with Vice.

Do you ever get stuck in a creative rut? I know a lot of producers have come out against some of the poppy house, dubstep, and hip-hop you guys are so good at as stifling because of how formulaic it can be. How do you make sure your sound is at the cutting edge?

That's a good question. I find as an artist you really have to just create what makes you happy and just hope other people like it. That's the only way to really express yourself at that moment. If you're trying to do what's expected or make something that's not inspiring you at that time it won't be any good and down the road you'll probably regret making it.

Now that electronic music has broken through in the US in a way it never really did before, where will the scene go from here?

The bubble will burst, but who knows when. Right now its just cropping up in pop music, but after a while of electronic stuff people will yearn for acoustic and there will be a resurgence of some other scene. It's cyclical. The ones who will be left after the burst are the ones that made real timeless music and have devout fans who like them and not just EDM in general.

I've heard guys like Djemba Djemba talk about the whole Mad Decent system as something where a bunch of artists from the label produce both for themselves and other artists who want to do what they do - rap, sing, whatever - over the producer's signature style. What opportunities has this kind of freedom given you? That is, has it let you explore stuff you're not sure you'd want to put out strictly under the Zeds Dead name?

I think we've thrown so many curveballs that people don't really expect just one sound from us anymore so there's not much I would worry about putting out as Zeds Dead. Mad Decent embraces the weird and crazy side of things and so do we so it's a good fit.

What do you prefer playing to: massive festivals or packed clubs?

I prefer a packed club. It's close though. Festivals are amazing and some festivals we play have so many fans it's almost like a packed club. Also there's people discovering you for the first time which is amazing because you get to take them on a real journey they have no pretence for. And there's those festivals that are in beautiful natural locations or block parties, those are great vibes! In the end though, there's nothing like feeling the excitement of a place packed full of fans that know and love your tunes so I think packed club/theatre wins by a hair.

What are some names we should be looking out for in the future?

Hunter Siegel and Memorecks.

Anything else you'd like to add?

Z's UP!!!


Zeds Dead's Somewhere Else EP is out now. Stream it below.