The story of how Pig&Dan came about is something of a romantic tale. They first met on a plane whilst flying to Spain in 1999, as they recognised each others vinyl record carry cases, had a brief talk and didn’t see each other for another 3 years. A mutual friend of both Pig and Dan put them in touch on the basis of a probable good working relation.
Stoney Roads had the pleasure of being able to speak to the duo before Dan Duncan (the English bloke) touches down on our shores for a few shows.
Hey guys, it’s been three years since you last spoke to Stoney Roads. You were down in 2015 for Earthcore festival (and being present in the crowd, I can report the set was well received). How was your experience last time and what do you look forward to ahead of your visit in July?
That event was really off the hook! We are a little worried because the previous DJ was playing a trance set and we thought that techno might not be so well received, but we were very wrong! Coming back to Australia is always something that we look forward to, we had some amazing parties there the last trip and I can’t wait to return and share some good vibes with the crowd.
What are some stereotypes that you hear about Australia/Australians overseas?
It seems that Australians who travel are a slightly different breed to those who live there. Like anyone who leaves home, people tend to let go more and experience a lot of new things in life, as well as getting trashed at a few parties! This isn’t just an Australian thing, this is pretty much applicable to the global population. Of course, people think Australia is all about a tin of blue etc, but really its one of the most modern bussing places on the planet.
Elevate seems to be as active as ever! In the past month, you’ve had a remix album released as well as a new EP from The Advent & M.I.T.A. which is notably harder than previous releases. How is running the label going for you guys personally and can we expect some more hard-hitting sounds in the future?
It’s amazing running a label like Elevate, because it really is a project that showcases all of the music we are passionate about and not what is going to sell the best. It’s no easy task running a label and it takes 24/7 devotion to do what we do, but that’s part of the path we chose. We just released our 100th release, which was an EP collaboration between ourselves and Mark Reeve. Coming out next we have some exciting new tracks from Kaiserdisco and Karotte.
Is there one golden tip with what not to do when running your own record label?
Don’t go for the money, go with your passion.
You guys say that Dan is the sound surgeon and Pig is the mad scientist in the studio. Is it a case of Dan reigning in the madness or are you both bonkers when you create music together?
To be truthful, we are both a bit bonkers! But we both create all the music together, however Dan is the more musically educated partner and Igor is the chaos. That’s why we work so well together, one of us orders the madness and the other disorders the perfectness.
When producing your stripped back sound, do you end up deleting sounds to make it stripped back or are you tracks built as minimal as possible?
Honestly both, we often make far too much in a track and remove bits, but sometimes it’s just one part that carries the whole track and we leave it that way.
Pig, you were working in a rock studio and Dan, you in a pop-based studio before you both found dance music. When did you both each first catch the electronic bug and do you have a specific track that opened this world for you?
There were many, but I think Joey Beltran’s Energy Flash and Slam’s Positive Education were milestones for us both.
What’s the Pig&Dan way of dealing with the plight that is ‘writer’s block’ when it strikes?
We are lucky, as there are two of us and we are a team. When one of us hits that wall, then the other is always there to inspire, and luckily in most of these situations we manage to overcome them quickly together.
You’ve been using the Play Differently Model 1 for your shows. What’s it been like to use compared to say a Xone 92 or DJM mixer?
It’s another level all together. The sound alone helps us stick out from the rest, but not only that. The way it’s designed enables us to work on two separate headphone lines so we are both always working on what’s coming next plus the incredible filter sections are so unique. It’s a million years ahead, we love it.
They say that people have an average of 7 careers in a lifetime. If music wasn’t a thing for you, what 7 jobs would you each choose?
Well, I started music at only 4 years old, so really it has only ever been music related in one way or another. However, I did actually think about learning to be a pilot or a vet at one point, but as you can see – that never materialised very far!
Igor was a champion go-cart racing driver when he was a teenager, so I would say he would perhaps have liked to try out for Formula One racing, or cooking – that was another passion of his for sure. Truth is, we were made for music, and we were lucky enough to find out passion, along with the support around us to make it happen.
You can catch the duo at a few shows across the country, check out the flyer and tell us if you’ll be heading along!