The lad from Leeds who once upon a time could be found mesmerized by the superstar spinners at Hard Times and The Hacienda is now one of the hottest producer properties on the planet. His unmistakable underground sound has seen him take the king of Ibiza crown with numerous major club residencies.…Now with his DO NOT SLEEP party, Sundays at Space will never be the same again. Dan Prince checks in…
Darius a massive DMCWORLD congratulations on the last 12 months dude, you must be chuffed?
Yes, and thank you, its been fantastic. But I’m a workaholic and what I do is what I love so it’s not work, it’s just nice to see what you are doing being enjoyed by so many people. Also finally having a brand I’m part of in DO NOT SLEEP rather than working for other peoples parties which is what I have always done in the past.
So where on planet earth are you right now?
I have just come back home after 7 gigs in 10 days on the road in locations that have included Italy, Denmark, Switzerland, The Netherlands and some UK shows too. But now I’m in the studio putting together Episode 2 of my DO NOT SLEEP RADIO show, I have just interviewed the lovely Anja Schneider. Basically it’s all non stop at the moment but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Really exciting news for the White Island this summer with the announcement that DO NOT SLEEP will be moving to Space Ibiza this summer! What can you tell us about the music and are we going to be hearing lots of back to backs?
We will be keeping the back2back format for a handful of shows only, we are not going to over do it. The three way back2back2back thing was at risk of becoming a gimmick – it’s good for one offs but not every week. This year we have more room to bring in other DJs which we couldn’t last year – and there is a core group of artists that musically fit exactly what DO NOT SLEEP is about. I can’t say who yet, but I can’t wait to spin with these guys. Watch this space! We are gonna mix it up and I’m super excited, I can’t wait for us to release the full line ups.
What do you enjoy more though – playing solo or back2back. And who has been your favourite DJs to do a back2back set with?
Well I won’t lie, there is nothing better than telling your OWN story and playing your own set, but sometimes it’s good for a change to do back2back – and sometimes it’s good for the sake of the party. For example, last summer when myself, Sidney and Sante had all left Sankeys at the same time it made sense to spin back2back2back. My friend of many years Neil who started DO NOT SLEEP along with Bones asked me to come on board and my management at the time suggested all 3 of us do it together since we were all available…and I loved the idea. I had first booked Sidney to play Sankeys Manchester two years earlier and the first time he played there we did 5 hours back2back! After that I brought him into into my previous residencies and had been a huge fan of Sante for years too, so it was a obvious answer to say yes!
It was really was amazing doing the 3 way back2back thing last summer, the lads were really fantastic. But deep down we were all aware that if we carried it on anymore we risked the 3way back2back2back thing looking too much like a gimmick! We are all DJs, not a boy band hahaha!
We bumped into Tiga in Amsterdam airport and were all on the way to Ibiza towards the end of last season and he asked where we were playing? We told him playing back2back2back and he replied “you guys not worried about being seen as new Swedish House Mafia or something?” Hahaha, he was just joking but if I’m honest I was already thinking that in the back of my head. What we did was amazing, it really was. But I think it’s best to leave it for last summer and now concentrate on what we are individually as artists and tell our own stories.
Don’t get me wrong though, I recently did a back2back with Nick Curly in London and it was amazing, his music has so much depth and I’ll defo be doing a couple more with him. As I said, there will be a few back2backs still, but not a weekly thing. The party and the music are the most important things and far more important than the spectacle of a group of DJs on stage jamming together.
So Sidney and Sante are moving on right? Does this mean there is more room for guests ? Can you spill the beans on who you have coming in?
Well when Space offered the residency to Sidney and Sante and their management turned it down, it meant there was loads more space for guests. Last summer there was no room for any guests really apart from one as all the time was taken up with the b2b2b thing, but it’s looking tasty! Haha wish I could spill the beans but the announcement is coming out any day now.
Re the lads moving on, I spoke with Sidney on Skype and he said they said they wanted to guest around for various different parties rather than be a resident, I know they will be playing for VIVa Warriors, but it’s natural when you smash it one season the next year loads of offers come flooding in.
See it like this, a team comes out of nowhere and gets promoted to the premiership, then all the other already established teams come with offers for some of the players. It’s only natural, the lads have a a bigger profile now after what we did last summer and now they can go on and do some great things.
But yeah we do have more room for guests and it’s a mixture of regular guests who fit the DNS sound perfectly and one off guests too! I keep looking at the artwork and I see all the names and it gets me super psyched for the parties ahead.
This will be your 5th season as a weekly resident DJ for one party in Ibiza, do you prefer being a resident over doing guest spots?
Well it is a lot less glamorous being the resident and the limelight is less on you and more on the guest DJs that night, but I prefer being a resident for a number of reasons. When I first got decks most of the best nights and parties were built on great residents and having guests was much less common. The residents know the party, they know the crowd, they can build on it every week and make it a really family vibe with the regulars and it’s a lot more rewarding in that aspect. If you are guesting it’s more a case of doing one off shows for several different parties, and the money is better too but that’s not my main goal for me, It couldn’t be further from it actually. As you say Dan, I have done four seasons already now as a weekly resident in Ibiza – I did two summers for VIVa Warriors and then one for Tribal Sessions and again one summer for Do Not Sleep. Each time it has been great seeing the night grow, you recognise the regulars at the front and you know exactly what music is going to work. It’s a lot more rewarding personally for me doing it this way, rather than say playing for several different parties as a guest. But that’s just me, everyone is different. I guess I have a more old skool mentality when it comes to parties and DJing.
Sunday parties at Space Ibiza are legendary in clubbing folklore. How are the nerves?
Haha absolutey fine! I’ve had decks for 22 years and the bigger the occasion the more I revel in it. I just love the music so much I will never get bored of it and I relish every gig…the bigger the better! It’s an honour to be asked by Space to resident this year in the final year of Space, I don’t think it has sunk in yet.
I saw a pic on Josh Butler’s Instagram where you are handing over some Tribal Sessions headbands to him and wishing him all the best this summer with his new residency. Can you tell us a bit about that?
Of course, Josh is a great friend of mine, I’ve taken him under my wing a bit, helped him get signed to a proper DJ Agency and it’s been great to see his career grow. When he told me that he has been asked to be the new Tribal Sessions resident I said go for it and grab the opportunity with both hands. It reminded me that this time last year I had made some Tribal Sessions headbands to hand out, of course with all that nonsense that happened they became useless so I put them in my garage. Then I thought I may as well give them to Josh to use this summer during his residency! Personally I don’t hold grudges, it’s time to move on. I have an amazing Space Residency, my own DO NOT SLEEP party now and deep down I still love Sankeys. I never wanted to leave and I still get some people telling me they are boycotting the place, but I don’t wish bad on the club. I want people to go and support Josh Butler on his new residency and I even told him, if I have a night off on a Saturday, I may even go down there and see him spin and have a boogie. Life is too short to bear grudges, I don’t wish any bad on Sankeys and Josh is my bro, so I want the best for him.
The best piece of new music you have heard today?
I downloaded a fantastic new promo on 20:20 vision by Sven Tasnadi that Ralph Lawson sent to my email just before the gig earlier, thanks Ralph.
Whispers have reached us that there is a new mix compilation coming out on Balance in June with your name all over it? What can you tell us about it?
Yes! When you see the calibre of DJs that have already done a Balance Series mix it’s an absolute honour to be asked to do one. Artists like Magda, Kolsch, Stacey Pullen, Fur Coat, Joris Voorn, Nic Fanciulli, Deetron have all done a Balance Series mix, so I’m super happy to join that list of great acts.
I hear you are the A&R for the new Do Not Sleep record label, what can we expect from you this year…
Yes I’m running the label alongside Neil Evans and Bones, we are releasing both established artists and upcoming talent too. The main thing is the quality of the music, not just gathering a whole list of well known names, that’s missing the point…it’s about the music. Cuartero is on fire right now and has done something for us, so has Nathan Narato. We also have some stuff coming from ne work legend Harry Romero, Mar T & Luca Donzelli and our good friend from Italy Leon who does Music On who I go way back with will be doing something for us too. And of course there is some stuff coming from myself too. We press vinyl too for those that still love to DJing using wax like myself.
Tell us about some of gigs you’ve just got back from…
Well I have just did four sold out gigs in 3 days. Loop in Newcastle was unreal, then I played for Mixology down in the Midlands and went straight to the DGTL festival in Amsterdam. Such an amazing festival and atmosphere. I then spent two hours dancing before getting on a flight from Amsterdam to fly to Basel for another gig the same night in Switzerland, it’s been non stop at the moment but I love it…the music keeps me going. Here is some footage from the DGTL festival in Amsterdam…
And some of the big summer dates nestling in your diary you cannot wait for?
Oh man! So many, it’s a big summer. Where do I start? First of course I am excited about the 19 shows for Space Ibiza, I do 16 with DO NOT SLEEP, Space Opening, Space Birthday and also the Space Closing which will be the last ever show at Space in that place as it is closing. It’s such an honour to be part of this legendary club as a resident in its final year. Then of course there is We Are FSTVL, the EASTERN ELECTRICS festival, DO NOT SLEEP vs el row on May 28th at Circus Liverpool, the Secret Solstice Festival in Iceland, Sonar Off party for DNS, two shows in Argentina in May – a place I love playing. Basically I look forward to it all, starting with Berlin which is my next show this weekend…
Tell us about the new radio show…
Well we just had Episode 001 of DNS RADIO, it’s available on Itunes as well as my Soundcloud and also syndicated to 30 different countries on their FM radio stations. I have a guest on the phone every month, a guest mix and there’s loads of music from myself like Weekend Weapons, Basement Bombs, Back in the Box, Unsigned Talent and DNS Damagers where I play some upcoming unreleased DO NOT SLEEP releases.
You can catch all episode’s of the new DO NOT SLEEP RADIO show here…
An up and coming producer to watch out for this summer…
Mirko Di Florio, Bwana, Luca Donzelli, Ronnie Spiteri, Jamie Roy, Jacky…there are lots. Mikro Di Florio plays for us with DNS, the others play for other parties but I still support them. It’s not a competition, we are all in this for the love of the music! I wanted to bring a few more into our parties but they are already taken by another rival Sunday party who wouldn’t let them play for us, but it’s ok. We all love music and I’ll support good music by anybody out there making it, regardless of them being able to play for us or not.
What other big Darius Syrossian news can you tell us about?
I have been asked to do another Essential Mix later in the year, that will be my second one and I’m super thrilled about it. There is talk of an Australia tour after the summer too, but my focus right now is this summer and the DO NOT SLEEP residency at Space Ibiza.
And finally, what is coming out next from you studio wise?
Well I have just had released my track ‘Mischief Brew’ which people were constantly asking me the release date for, it’s gone straight in to the top 30 on Beatport after one day which is fantastic. It’s also available on vinyl for those that spin using wax.
After this in a few weeks I have my tracks ‘Beetham Tower’ and ‘My Expression’ coming out on Anja Schneider’s Mobilee sister label called Lenna Music. Then after that I have a track on Yousef’s Circus Recordings that is released alongside tracks from Yousef himself, Patrick Topping, Richy Ahmed as well. Then after that there is a collab with myself and Doorly which is coming out on MAR T’s WoW! Recordings label. Then there are 2 or 3 tacks I have made exclusively for my Balance Mix that will come out as singles after the album has been launched.
Thank you squire. See you on the rock!
It’s a pleasure Dan. Thanks for the interview, see you at Space and also for a bbq at my villa at some point over the summer if you like!