Sunday, September 28 2014
When the beat drops at a Nadastrom show, you better have your hands up. Dave Nada is known to stage dive while his DJ partner Matt Nordstrom squeezes the duo’s most riotous beats through the speakers. It’s a reminder Nadastrom aren’t just pushing 21st century dance music toward the edge – they’re jumping off it.
The D.C.-born, L.A.-based duo of DJ-producers come from different backgrounds, but share a ravenous appetite for extremes. As the prime architects of Moombahton – a sound Nada invented on the fly at a basement party by slowing Dutch house music down to the tempo of reggaeton – the duo have been praised in the pages of Spin and Rolling Stone, pumped on the airwaves ofBBC Radio 1 and NPR, and revered at nightclubs and festivals across the planet.
Nada was born in Maryland, a first generation Ecuadorian American surrounded by five brothers and the sounds of cumbia, Ecuadorian folk, salsa, merengue and reggaeton. As a teen, he gravitated toward Washington’s legendary hardcore punk scene, playing in bands while learning to DJ on college radio. A move to Baltimore landed Nada in the second surge of Baltimore club music, where he DJed alongside club icons K-Swift, Rod Lee and DJ Technics, while producing acclaimed club tracks of his own.
Nordstrom grew up in Virginia on the other side of the Washington beltway where skateboarding provided a contact point with punk, metal and hip-hop. In the late ‘90s, he swapped the skateboard for turntables and switched his college major from psychology to audio engineering. Soon, Nordstrom was the resident engineer for esteemed D.C. house heroes Deep Dish and piloting recording sessions with the likes of Stevie Nicks and P. Diddy, even scoring a Grammy nod along the way.
When Nada and Nordstrom came together in 2007, the chemistry was instant and the music was colossal. The group signed to Switch’s Dubsided label where their debut debut EP, “Pussy,” immediately topped the charts on Beatport. Since then, Nadastrom have produced tracks for a slew of artists, including Kid Sister, and have done remixes for Kid Cudi, Benny Benassi, Christina Aguilera, Waka Flocka Flame, the Death Set and Alex Clare.
In 2010, the duo relocated from Washington to Los Angeles and hit the road, performing at the biggest festivals in dance music, including Australia’s Creamfields festival with Deadmau5, the Disco Biscuits’ Camp Bisco festival, Bass Island with Bassnectar, the Mad Decent Block Party with Major Lazer and the HARD Festival in Los Angeles with Ducksauce, Chromeo, BoysNoize and Odd Future. This fall, Nadastrom joins Skrillex and 12th Planet for more than 50 nights on the hotly anticipated Mothership Tour.
Meantime, Moombahton has become a movement of its own, with Nadastrom serving as the genre’s leading ambassadors. Diplo’s Mad Decent label dropped the acclaimed compilation “Dave Nada presents Blow Your Head Vol. 2: Moombahton” in May and Scion released Nadastrom’s Moombahton EP “El Baile Diabluma” this fall.
“There are never any rules,” says Nada of the duo’s approach. “And Moombahton helped us realize that even more.”