A few months ago I had one of those moments as I was listening to the Aeroplane March 2012 mix. Specifically 9 minutes and 40 seconds into the mix was an unfamiliar track kicked in with a refreshingly funky beat that screamed "summer anthem" to me. As it progressed, built up and broke down into Whitney Houston samples at 12:37, I immediately stopped the mix, scanned the tracklist and realized this track was by Only Children.
Only Children are the DJ and producer duo from Chicago and described as: "Crate digging on house, funk, robofunk, tropical, and disco. Singles, remixes and edits mindful of the dancefloor." If you think that my love for this track is a little far-fetched, “Down Fever,” has also gotten the nod of approval from Dimitri From Paris, Zimmer and Chicago friend, Kid Color. Although their roots were originally based in the Indie rock show scene, their love of dance music shines through each track they create and release.
After the Jump (Interview & Exclusive Mix)
Their label, Nuclear Family, is an ongoing and exciting project for Only Children as they work to release other artists’ music along with their own this coming year. Their first release off their label from late June 2011, "Don't Stop," is a great housey-synthed out, dance floor track. The EP boasts remixes from Hey Champ, Crazy P, Bit Funk and Mighty Mouse.
Since then, I have been loving on this "Down Fever" track and was straight up giddy when U Street Music Hall and Blisspop announced Only Children would join The Magician and Plastic Plates. My excitement has exponentially grown (^4) as we draw closer to the show this Wednesday, June 20.
And if you haven't already, we suggest that you follow them on SoundCloud for their latest sounds, "like" them on Facebook because they are pretty cool dudes, or "tweet" the crap out of them on Twitter.
DPC: First, thank you so much for taking the time to answer some questions for us! We are extremely excited for your debut in Washington, DC this Wednesday. There are many readers who may not be familiar with Only Children, can you guys start by giving us a little background? How did you come up with the name and how did your musical careers begin?
OC: We've been reborn a few times since 2008 with various members participating in different incarnations, known and unknown at the time. We come from the 90s indie rock basement show scene and fell into dance music throughout the 2000s. We each have interesting abilities, some completely distinctive and others overlapping, and so while we create a lot on our own, it's a great experiment to combine talents on multiple levels under one moniker. It also may or may not be an apartment cult.
DPC: I was reading about the different genres you draw from; Disco, House, Funk, and Hypno - are there any that you gravitate towards or prefer to play?
OC: Our love for the disco/funk groove and its musicality is probably what got us interested in dance music in the beginning. A the same time, we've always been interested in the psychedelic quality of hypnotic, repetitious music whether it be electronic or not. We played guitars before making beats and we've noticed that we've always gravitated towards certain qualities when writing songs, creating a vibe.
DPC: Moving along from that question, since you guys have an influence from many different genres of music, who were the "key producers/DJs" that influenced Only Children to have the sound it does today?
OC: There may be too many artists, DJs and producers to narrow it down so it's easier for us to think in terms of labels. Roulé and DFA are definitely the foundation along with Instruments Of Rapture, Permanent Vacation, French Express, Disco Deviance, Hot Creations & Running Back to name a few pillars.
DPC: It was only a few months ago after hearing your track, "Down Fever", on Aeroplane's March 2012 mix that made me do a double-take on you guys. I love the track and think that the r&b samples producers have been utilizing in house/disco tracks is genius. How did that track come to fruition?
OC: The R&B vocal/disco/house thing has been going on for quite some time but this current incarnation is refreshing somehow. It's the nostalgia of the 90s R&B vocal with the current sounds of disco and house that are popular right now and there a couple of friends that are doing it really, really well. We drew some inspiration from that but tried to do our own thing.
DPC: You have a label, Nuclear Family, that you've been releasing singles off of? Can you tell us a little bit about it? Do you have any studio plans or artists you're collaborating with at the moment - if not, are there any artists that you'd love to collaborate with?
OC: This is perhaps where our 90s roots influence us the most but in terms of always wanting to start a record label but never getting around to it. We've tried getting our various bands signed to labels in years past but starting our own label that could release vinyl and digital at our own pace seemed like an inviting, ongoing project. We're actually in the middle of finishing up several tracks for a few other fantastic labels and artists but we'll continue to release our music and other artists via Nuclear Family. If Gino Soccio is reading this, we'd love to have you join us for a session in Studio A at Le Compound.
DPC: Chicago has a great music scene and I don't think that it's going to stop anytime soon (which is awesome!), what's it like playing in your hometown as opposed to traveling to some place like DC?
OC: Chicago has a very diverse dance music scene. The people we run with are super talented- Kid Color, Tim Zawada, Moon Boots, Rogue Vogue, Mister Wolf, Garrett David and we spin with them, bounce ideas off each other and go to similar places to catch shows. Chicago is big enough for plenty of different communities to thrive.
DPC: And we can't let you guys get away without asking what your favorite dance move is?
OC: The Don Draper.
And for the ticket giveaway, we invite you to channel your inner-DJ and creative side as we take a different approach for this one. Share the event on Facebook and simply comment on this blog post with what sample (does not have to be r&b) you would use if you were producing and creating a track. We’ll be announcing the winner tomorrow afternoon so stay tuned and be sure to check our Facebook page to see if you’ve won!