NIGHTOWLS Talks Tours and UK Bass During Their Latest Tour


Even if you haven’t heard the name NIGHTOWLS before, there is a strong chance you’ve heard their music. The LA based duo show no signs of slowing down as they bring a unique twist of a classic genre to the masses. Scotty and Andrew’s sound comes straight from the underground UK Bass genre that has dominated the European scene for decades. A classic sound boasts bas lines that are as groovy as they are grizzled, and as gnarly as the clubs that the sound found its home. But what sets these two guys apart is a new level of energy, much more aggressive synths, and a bloodhound ambition to raise the bar just ever so higher with every release.

We had a chance to catch up with these guys on their sixth stop of 33 Tour as it swung through Austin, Texas. Hosted by Austin’s premier nightlife collective, DEAF, the night went off and NIGHTOWLS had everything they needed to throw the wildest party in Austin. We sat down twenty minutes before their set to talk about latest your updates, their evolving sound, and the odd twists of fate that brought these two guys together.

How is your tour going? Now that you are over six stops into your tour, you have any good stories from the road?

It’s been crazy man. We’ve been playing two shows every weekend which started around March and we’re basically booked all the way until August. We just started taking shows so this is super exciting to us. We wouldn’t even necessarily call it a tour. To us, a tour is something where you’re on the road and don’t come home for three months. The best thing about what we are doing is that we are home in LA every week.

Definitely, I’m sure it helps with morale being able to be home every week. So what kind of tunes have you had a chance to play out during the tour?

Honestly, it’s been mostly just our friends and our tunes. Listening to our set, you’ll probably notice that most of the stuff we are playing is unreleased or stuff you may not have ever had a chance to hear. Maybe you won’t notice, cause you won’t know any of the shit. Most of these tunes probably aren’t ever going to be released at all, either through our own choice or labels issues or maybe there’s just no place to put that song out through.

So following up with that, have you two had a chance to play or work on any tracks that are way out of your comfort zone in terms of productions? Or had any tracks you’ve been working on that turned out to be way more successful in your sets than you originally planned?

We definitely got really successful with this bass house scene coming up. We are trying to expand the horizons of that sound a lot, anything from experimenting with different tempos, different styles of drumsor whatever we can mess with. Our new release, ’33’, has been going off really well at all our shows. We’ve got major support from guys we look up to, like Borgore and Dyro and what not. It’s way different than our other stuff; ’33’ is essentially our first solo original we ever put out. We definitely tried to blend some genres, and bring what we love from the UK Bass House scene to a wider audience.

There are underground producers out in LA who have been doing this older school UK bass house stuff for years. It’s just now coming to a mass audience, recently a lot of these producers who have been underground for so long are now rising to the top: guys like Aaron Jackson. We have the utmost respect for the roots of this genre, those guys killing it and who have been killing it in the UK for decades. We just think that some of these guys we roll with in LA have really taken that sound and brought it to a level that is much easier for the masses to consume.

So how did you two link up originally? One of you guys is from LA while the other one is from Florida correct?

We both came from a blog background to be honest. We were both doing work with Trapstyle, writing articles and doing a bit of social media work from them which is how we found each other. At those early stages, we both decided to work on music together. Funny enough, we both independently were working on solo projects that we both wanted to call The NightOwl. One of us was doing more Progressive house where the other was doing more underground bass kind of stuff. Once we both committed to doing that UK bass sound, things really came together. It was a brand new genre, and it felt new.

How was the project when it first started out? And how has your sound evolved?

We had a plan setting out to come up with a back catalogue of music, and then when we launched NIGHTOWLS, we would release a song ever two or three weeks. After we had six songs lined up with a release schedule, it took so much pressure off so we could focus on promoting that music instead of struggling to make more an more content. A good rule of thumb for any upcoming producer is to be sitting on at least ten unreleased tracks at any one time.

We’ve always tried to put as much energy into our music as possible. A lot of people try to compare us to other underground house DJ’s, but watch one of our sets and you’ll see that our energy is just on another level. You can see that energy even when we are DJ’ing. We never plan anything out, we essentially just go back to back to back all night. Andrew will play one song and then I’ll see what the crowd needs and play from there. We hardly ever even know what is on each other’s USB sticks.

So tell us about the remix of Destructo and Ty Dolla Sign? How did that come together, and how did everything go down with SoundCloud?

SoundCloud’s algorithm for copywriting is pretty unbiased, it will hit anyone without too much thought. The project came up randomly. We opened up and started messing with an old project we were collaborating on with ODEA, which we kinda just bootlegged with the Destructo tune. Sent it over to his team, ended up having some differences, it’s how this game works. It’s all about moving forward and not letting speed bumps like this bring you down.

So how do you think you should handle these situations moving forward?

We are definitely fans of free music. Labels are also great, as they can help you reach new or bigger audiences or help with promotion and stuff, but they can also hold you back. We are really into the idea of releasing music for free, since there are a lot less rules. We can release EPs, singles, or bootlegs however we want. See guys like NGHTMRE or Slander who got to where they are at releasing music for free, and it’s really cool to see how these guys do it and build a career off of it. Really the name of the game with all these fan gates and stuff now is building a fan base releasing free music. At the end of the day you will make way more money touring than selling music, and the best way to raise your DJ fee is to have a bigger fan base.

So with so much doom and gloom in the dance music scene, everything from the bubble bursting to everything sounding the same, what are you two most excited about moving forward?

We are really looking forward to how acts incorporate live performance and music back into their sets. Even seeing acts that incorporate just one or two live instruments really makes those sets stand out like nothing else. That is the future of dance music, even we have a few tracks coming out like that. We are working on a track with Sullivan King, and we recorded some guitars and drums and essentially used those recordings as a sample pack.

Shortly after this interview, these guys went on to throw one crazy set before having to hop on a plane and fly back home to LA. But they have plenty more gigs throughout the remained of the summer months, so make sure to keep up to date with all there events through their Facebook page. Already with a handful of new releases either in the works or ready for releases, it is safe to say that any of their upcoming tour stops are going to be some great parties.