Tri­tonal re­turns home for show at Emo’s East

Austin American-Statesman - - AUSTIN360 DAILY - By Michael Barnes mbarnes@states­ CONTRIBUTED Con­tact Michael Barnes at 445-3970 or mbarnes@ states­ Twit­ter: @ outandabout

Tri­tonal is a trance D J duo com­posed of Chad Cis­neros, 32, and Dave Reed, 24. The pair, who made the Top 100 list of in­ter­na­tional D Js (No. 65) in a re­cent is­sue of DJ Mag, re­turns home to Austin, play­ing Emo’s East on Satur­day night. The show is pre­sented by Disco Don­nie and Night­cul­ture and in­cludes other global D Js. (www., 8004628)

Tell us how Austin and Texas played a role in your elec­tronic dance mu­sic.

Cis­neros: Grow­ing up in Texas, elec­tronic dance mu­sic was such an un­der­ground genre. ... When I first heard it, I fell in love. I was in­tro­duced to the mu­sic at var­i­ous par­ties in Austin, Hous­ton and Dal­las in col­lege. I was study­ing busi­ness and eco­nom­ics at the Univer­sity of Texas and started tak­ing au­dio en­gi­neer­ing, mu­sic the­ory, sound de­sign and syn­the­sis cour­ses to learn more about mu­sic and how to pro­duce tracks pro­fes­sion­ally.

It wasn’t too long af­ter col­lege that I met Dave on a sound fo­rum on­line and we re­al­ized we had sim­i­lar tastes in mu­sic, pro­duc­tion styles and ca­reer goals and we started the Tri­tonal col­lab­o­ra­tion. We’re just ap­proach­ing our fifth year of the project and have reached some amaz­ing mile­stones.

Reed: I ac­tu­ally grew up in the Washington, D.C., area, which is where I fell in love with dance mu­sic. I was al­ways the odd­ball out around my friends. ... But I would lis­ten to it con­stantly — so much that the very first tracks I’ve ever heard stick with me to this day.

Through­out my years of high school up into col­lege and on­ward, I had be­come heav­ily in­volved in pro­duc­ing and writ­ing

When Dave and I started Tri­tonal, we went af­ter the in­dus­try on two fronts. The first front was the pro­duc­tion front. We pro­duced like ma­ni­acs, li­cens­ing tracks with la­bels around the world. The sec­ond front was the DJ front, which lo­cally is al­ways a po­lit­i­cal one. We knew that the key was mak­ing hit records, but that didn’t stop us from hit­ting the streets at night to help lo­cal pro­mot­ers pass out fliers and pro­mote events. ...

Reed: Af­ter I had moved down to Austin from D.C., I never had dance mu­sic; al­ways read­ing books on pro­duc­ing, pro­gram­ming, sound de­sign and syn­the­sizer use.

At first, it was just a hobby and for­tu­nately now has turned into such a bless­ing. When Chad and I met on­line, we were al­ways yap­ping each other’s ears off on what we were work­ing on and de­sign­ing. ...

What were your first ex­pe­ri­ences with Austin night life?

Cis­neros: I was a col­lege stu­dent and my first ex­pe­ri­ences, like so many kids, were down on Sixth Street. The whole main­stream, Top 40 mu­sic did noth­ing for me, so un­like so many of my peers, I didn’t opt in to the soror­ity or frat cul­ture. ... I spent time work­ing on D J mixes, ... try­ing to fig­ure out how to make my sound full and unique. ... ex­pe­ri­enced the night life be­fore. It was so cool to D J live at th­ese small events with Chad. Even though there were very few peo­ple, the ex­pe­ri­ence was life-chang­ing in such a won­der­ful way.

Along the way, we met many big acts, such as Markus Schulz, Ar­min van Bu­uren and Ferry Corsten. It really wasn’t un­til one of our gigs in Austin, when we opened for Corsten, that we started turn­ing heads. We opened with a pretty hard set, met Ferry and slipped him one of our tracks, “Essence of Kea,” and he signed it to his la­bel that week!

When you started the show, did you ever imag­ine you’d be as suc­cess­ful as you’ve been?

Cis­neros: The first tracks that we saw really make an im­pact glob­ally were “Pierc­ing Quiet,” “Essence of Kea” and “Let Soli­tude.” It was pretty much overnight that book­ings from places like Moscow, Aus­tralia, Hawaii and Asia started rolling in af­ter th­ese records hit. We started “Air Up There” as a monthly show ini­tially, to give us an out­let to show­case the tracks ... We never imag­ined it would grow into what it is to­day and are so thank­ful to our Tri­to­ni­ans around the globe who have made this pos­si­ble.

Tri­tonal, (Austin na­tives Dave Reed and Chad Cis­neros), will be home for a show, which in­cludes other global DJs, on Satur­day.


Coun­try Win­ston and Ben Lovett of Mum­ford and Sons.

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