Dylan Griffin: AU Underground, DJing & Why Melbourne is Better

by J-Slyde

In the lead-up to our August edition of Prognosis, J-Slyde sat down with Dylan Griffin for a quick Q&A to grill the man on everything from the reasons behind his recent move to Melbourne through to future plans for his hugely successful podcast series, AU Underground. Read on for more!

Dylan Griffin

You’ve just recently moved from Sydney to Melbourne. What spurred on the move? It wasn’t just because Prognosis is Melbourne based, was it?

18 months in Melbourne town has flown by and it now feels like home, my other love besides music is wine, and the wine scene and the electronic music scene is more vibrant here and more to my taste and I wanted the change.

There’s big rivalry between Syd and Melb, have you noticed much difference as far as the electronic music scene goes? Melbourne’s is way more vibrant, right?

Haha, putting words in my mouth. Im going to try and be the diplomat here… they are different scenes both with their pitfalls and highlights, for example the dance floors can be slightly more energetic in Sydney than Melbourne, but in Melbourne the people are refreshingly less concerned about the hype and the look than the more image conscious Sydneysiders. And lets just say I connect a lot better with the music coming out of Melbourne and have made some very dear friends that made me feel like I was finally home.

In the decade since you’ve been DJing at a professional level you’ve manage to rack up a huge list of support slots for a bevvy of globally respected artists such as Max Cooper, Gabriel Ananda, Boris Brejcha and Kosmas Epsilon, to name but a few. Who were some of your favourites to support?

I’ve been very fortunate with some of those support bookings. Mostly for the sentimental value, the highlight would be my first role supporting a big international and that was warming up for Kosmas Epsilon (when he was at the height of his popularity) many many years ago that Subsonic had booked me for. I was super excited and with a packed room right at peak time trying my best to show some restraint in a heaving club.

Many will be familiar with your AU Underground Podcast series which has now been going for just over 2 years. Can you explain the premise behind the series and why you started it?

After working closely with record labels for many years I had made some great connections and relationships with producers… I also felt like I had gotten to know the Australian dance music scene intimately across the 3 major states NSW, VIC and QLD. I wanted to do something with that and coupled with the desire of having something of my own whilst still being a big proponent of Australian electronica. At the time there was also no podcast series firmly focused on exclusively Australian producers and DJs and I wanted to fill that void.

You’ve featured some hugely talented local acts and artists since AU Underground’s inception. Without picking favourites, can you pinpoint a few recent highlights? or a good place for a new listener to start?

Ignoring what I see as my then droll and nervous presentation I think 002 Trinity is a great place to start and still one of my favourites, other recent highlights include YokoO, Robbie Lowe and Christian Vance.

What’s planned for future editions? Can you let us in on who you’ll be featuring next?

Dean Benson from well known Melbourne crew Stable Music is up next. And AU Underground is going to take a focus on festivals and event crews over the summer too.

Do you think AU Underground has helped progress and open doors for your DJing career, or do you look at them as totally separate entities?

That wasn’t the purpose but it would be silly not to see that AUU has helped raise my DJ profile, no doubt, and the two go hand in hand. I listen to loads of music and do test and feature local producers in a lot of my sets.

Your DJ career has seen you not only traveling interstate, but also playing internationally in places like India and Thailand. What has been your favourite international gig so far?

Kolour in Bangkok has to be one of my favourite events, amazingly professional, sold out shows in unique and incredible venues, whether it be surfing wave machines at the show or playing a gig 20 stories high on a rooftop to a thousand people, these guys know how to throw a party !

Dylan Griffin Live @ Eclipse

What were some of the main differences when playing to overseas crowds?

Male to Female ratios on the dance floor can be a big one, especially so in India where it is so male dominant. And of course the taste in music can vary quite a bit.

Which leads me to my next question… Popular genres and “in” sounds can differ vastly from country to country, do you find yourself adapting your sound when you play overseas? or, on an even smaller scale, interstate gigs?

I’ll definitely take a little bit more cheese to some parts of Asia as back up in-case some of the more underground sounds aren’t as easily digestible, haha. Melbourne certainly has a different palate. I also notice Queensland, particularly Cairns, do go for the more progressive and up tempo style sounds than the other states, I think due to the big influence the Open Records imprint has up there. I really like the variety and change between countries and states to be honest, it can give me a chance to play something I wouldn’t normally play and in some cases take more risks.

What can we expect from your feature set at Prognosis on Aug 23rd?

Im gonna dig up a few old classics I think and put them into a fresher context with some new stuff I’m really digging at the moment as well some unreleased Subsonic Music tracks that I haven’t tested yet!

And last but not least – top five tunes that have influenced your DJing the most?

That is an almost impossible question, hahaha… shit! So here is 6 instead, of mostly all old tracks that inspired me and helped shape the way I wanted to move people at different times over the years..

Trentemoller – Moan (Trentemoller Remix)

Joris Voorn – Deep side of the moog

Layo & Bushwacka! – The big dream (Martin Buttrich Remix)

Stephan Bodzin & Marc Romboy – Ferdinand

Extrawelt – Soopertrack

Stimming – Melodica

For more on Dylan be sure to check out his Soundcloud and AU Underground.
You can catch him playing at Prognosis on August 23rd @ Loop