[INTERVIEW] Infected Mushroom Shares Plans For 2013
January 5th, 2013
Before playing an energetic show to hundreds of entranced fans at the House of Blues in Boston this past Friday as part of their ‘Fungus Among Us’ tour, Electric Shepherdess and MASS EDMC had the chance to sit down with Israeli electronic music icons Infected Mushroom, who consists of Erez Eisen and Amit Duvdevani, or ‘Duvdev’. The duo has been creating mind-bending electronic music since 1997. Initially known for their psytrance sound, their musical style has evolved over the years to include a wide variety of genres while remaining on the heavier side of music. The pair was incredibly nice and let us pick their brain about their favorite places to play, their thoughts on EDM, what they have in store for 2013, and of course, hummus versus baba ganoush (oh and they will definitely be playing Coachella this year).
Find out more about Infected Mushroom’s tour, FungusAmongUS, FungusAmongUS here. See select photos from Infected Mushroom’s show at the House of Blues Boston on January 11th, 2013.
So, this is the second night of your tour. How was last night?
Duvdev: Last night was great actually. Portland, start of the tour, cold…State Theater, second time over there. Much bigger crowd yesterday and it was a good show, pumping and we enjoyed it. Good start to the tour.
How did the crowd receive the new tour set up?
Duvdev: Until now everybody receives it really well because it when you see this..its kind of BIG. Everybody’s accepting it really well. It’s different from the regular live show with the drums and the guitars and everything. People are digging it, so its cool.
How did you come up with the idea of two giant balls?
Duvdev: Because I have two giant balls, it wasn’t that hard to do. But no, you know when we saw the Amon Tobin show and you know follow all the other guys, Deadmau5 and everything, they all have cubes and stuff so we wanted to be a little bit different so we went with the spheres.
You guys have been around for a long time and you’ve been doing music and festivals for a really long time; what is your favorite place to play, that you always try to go back to?
Duvdev: Okay, well [our favorite] festival would definitely be Burning Man.
“[Burning Man is] a different kind of a festival; it’s an occasion every time we do it and we love it over there. [Our favorite] venue in America [is] Red Rocks; it’s an amazing place to play. [We also like] festivals in the US [like] Coachella, EDC.”
Outside [of the US] there is many in Brazil, Japan, Israel, our favorite shows are from over there because we’re from over there you know and LA because it’s so close to home.
You guys have been in LA for a while now right? Why’d you decide to settle in LA?
Duvdev: Weather, shit loads of Israelis. good food. And it’s the place to be if you want to be a musician.
Speaking of food, hummus or baba ganoush?
Duvdev: Hummus definitely. Baba ganoush is only a dip. Hummus is a culture. It is…there’s a war in Israel about hummus in every city territories and stuff. I grew up in the north and for me, Akko Hummus is the best. Same for my partner.
Given all these favorite places of yours, what made you want to start in the northeast?
Duvdev: Well this is how the tour goes, because we’re doing Coachella this year, we can’t play Cali until April so we had to start [here] and then route it. We’re happy, we love Boston. Each time we come here the crowd treats us really well so it’s a good place. First weekend here, it’s great.
Has the crowd changed as electronic music has grown more popular in the United States?
Duvdev: The crowd always changes you know, more young people, more diverse people because EDM is so mainstream now…as Infected Mushroom, we’re kinda heavy in the every department so the people who come here [are] fans. And fans [are] always easy to play with because they like the music, you know. Every people who are here today, besides some people who have never heard it and want to hear it for the first time, the majority of the people [here] are fans so it’s fun to play for them and [these are] the people we do the shows for so it’s pretty easy.
Would you say your own growth as Infected Mushroom in terms of like your fan group, you say its mostly fans out here obviously coming out to see you. Would you say that’s kind of separate from the whole rapid expansion of EDM as a culture or a brand?
Duvdev: I don’t know if EDM is a culture today. I call it a huge mainstream movement. Everybody wants a piece of it, everybody wants their share but not a lot of people know electronic music that well to be able to differ between…dubstep or cheesy house, trance, psytrance and what we’ve been doing for so many years; we know the subgenres very well.
“Some people here tonight came because it’s EDM, some people came because they want to see what the fuck is Infected Mushroom, and some people are fans. This is what combines a show, and I hope I will convert the people that are here and just want to be here, and I hope tomorrow they’re going to say hey, I dig it [and] check out more about [us].”
Why did you decide to tour with the M Machine?
Duvdev: The M Machine, Shreddie Mercury and Randy [are] our support for this tour. I kind of like The M Machine [because] they’re a bit different than the rest. It was either bringing in one of the dubstep guys (and I have many friends in the dubstep crew…we [will] do some shows later on this year with Datsik who is a good friend of mine and stuff like that) but The M Machine [has] a new kind of sound and a different approach and they fit this kind of show so we’re happy to have them.
Are they one of your favorite contemporary producers?
Duvdev: There [are] many. There is them. There’s Opiuo which is one of my favorites; he did a tour lately here that is why he’s not on the tour because…he’s actually my favorite artist at the moment. There’s so many, [like] Koan Sound. Some people are busy, some people are doing their own thing at the moment. The M Machine is one of the guys we like; they were happy to do the tour and we were happy to have them.
Datsik is one of those guys too, I know you collaborated with him.
Duvdev: He’s a massive dubstep favorite of me and Erez, we collaborated with him and we’re going to do a few more collaborations in the future. He’s a friend. He’s doing a January small tour in Canada and we’ll be doing some dates together later on this year.
Who are your idols? Who got you started?
Duvdev: If it’s electronic idols, Depeche Mode, Prodigy, Shpongle…these are the kind of names that when they started doing electronic music, I looked up to them and wanted to be in that kind of department. And then came many. Pendulum came aboard (but [they] are more friends than idols; they’ve done a great job). Today I don’t have idols, I respect more the young kids that come and do new kinds of stuff and take the sound to a new direction. We follow Zedd, Porter Robinson, Opiuo, Koan Sound, Savant, the M Machine, Skrillex of course (you know, when he started); [there are] many many people who take the music to a different direction.
What was your take on the Prodigy re-release recently?
Duvdev: It was pretty good, I didn’t like all of them. Everyone was super happy with the Noisia remix, which was okay, but I don’t think any remix…topped the originals. The Noisia [remix] was good, the Glitch Mob remix was good, but nothing topped the original.
Duvdev: Exactly. It’s super hard to do, but hey it’s good to [expose the music] to people who don’t know the Prodigy so it’s a great release.
Why didn’t you do it?
Duvdev: Well, we usually don’t do remixes for other bands, we do covers and stuff. At that time, we probably didn’t get approached and we probably would have tried to do one but again I don’t know if we would succeeded…I really like the [original tracks] how they are. When we covered the Foo Fighters, [that] track is different so…its easy to cover but the Prodigy is a drum 7 bass electronic band. If you were to bring me a remix by…Metallica, to that, we’ll say, “okay, that’s interesting”, or a remix by someone who doesn’t do electronic music, then I get it. You know what, I’d rather play the original to this day. But the Noisia remix…stood up out there. I would play that any day.
What do you have planned for 2013?
Duvdev: Shows [and] new EPs every three months. The first one is coming out now the 22nd of January, Friends on Mushrooms. Everyone is going to take mushrooms this year I don’t know how they will end the year.
Erez: Say no to drugs.
Duvdev: Yeah, say no to drugs. And when I’m saying mushrooms, I’m talking about shiitake and pizza mushrooms of course. The delicious ones. It’s the year of the mushroom this year for us. A lot of shows, a lot of music and staying healthy.