Locals: LIAN VEX Interview

Who are you? How old are you?

My DJ sets traverse the realms of Dark wave, EBM & Techno. Been active locally within various promo organisations such as ‘Sick of ants’, ‘Monoculture’, ‘Dark Wave Malta’ and more recently ‘HarshMellow’, OBSKURUS, and I’m 36 y o.

How many months/ years have you been Djing / producing?

Started DJing 18 years ago, completed my DJ tuition with JD Frank at Genetix, on turntables back in the day. Been experimenting with music production all the years since then. Started off performing electronics (keys,drum machine,sampler) with a metal band, I also had a few live PA projects across different aliases over the years. Also, in 2008 I cranked my passion up a notch and read for a BA in sound engineering & music production at point blank studios. 

Mention an artist that inspired you to become a DJ/producer?

It’s impossible to put my finger down on just one particular artist here, the best I can do is mention 5 pivotal ones, as follows; Aphex Twin, Nine Inch Nails, Type O Negative, Nitzer Ebb, Kraftwerk.

Is there a local artist that you look up to and love to see play at events?

In my books, the OGs of Malta are most definitely Brian James and Owen Jay, absolute wizards on turntables. Massive respect for Duo Blank too, pioneering live PA’s on the island. I also enjoy listening to Llimbs, Parasite, Sunta, LN, heartsbeatingintime, Joon, Black Velvet, Volatil and Andrea Giordani.

What skills do you think DJs need to be successful?

A sound understanding of the frequency spectrum to mix tracks in together seamlessly.. A good ear for classic and contemporary releases – especially in your respective genre.. lastly is to find your tribe, know how to interact with them, grow your reach and expose yourself to a wider audience – all whilst staying true to your artistic vision and sound. 

How do you stay up to date with the latest music trends?

Personally, I don’t feel the need to follow any trends. However I do stay up to date with new music releases on my favorite labels, artist’s bandcamp pages and through promos recieved from distributors.

What would you say is the most rewarding part of being a DJ?

Visiting new places, experiencing different cultures and making new connections for the sake of a shared musical passion is something I hold very dear to me.. then of course there’s that endorphin enducing vibe you get when feeding off the energy from a connected dance floor, it’s priceless.