We caught up with Sydney-based producer trio DEL to chat about everything PurpleIn-house production and the true champion of Super Smash Bros.
We are just a few days away from the release of DEL’s latest single purple (everything will be fine), and the Sydney group are already eager to talk about their upcoming EP. It’s the kind of urgency that pulses through the producing trio’s work Purple It serves as the culmination of DEL’s masterful blend of electro-pop and surprisingly deft lyricism.
This single, released earlier this month, sees bandmate and siblings Timm, Nick and Joe de la Hoyde throw unrequited romance into a dance party, with Nick’s breezy vocals assuring that “everything will be fine” before the spacey production gives way to bouncing trap and hi-hats. A smaller group of producers might drop lyrics and vocals to emphasize such a danceable rhythm, but Purple proves that the DEL can have their cake and eat it too.
Purple complements DEL’s already extensive sound palette from the house-heavy grunge of 2022 daisy to the trap-ridden ballad of i’m too emotional EP opener tear me apart In the meantime to 2021 Yokothe trio dips their toes in the kind of anthemic vocals reminiscent of a joji number, complete with distorted synths and atmospheric harmonies.
DEL’s solid discography is a sign of the producers’ commitment to exploring the reaches of electronic music, and provides them with an outstanding setlist worthy of their future plans.on world stageS.” Fresh off the release of their single and with a follow-up EP in the works, we caught up with DEL to talk about it PurpleJuggling side hustles and their affinity with Super Smash Bros.
HAPPY: What are you doing today?
DEL: Nick – Today was a happy day. I spent the morning with the camera trying to get inspiration for some of our upcoming releases. Writing the music for us is the fun part, but when it comes to the content, our brains are always fried. So we want to make sure we stay on top of things.
HAPPY: Tell us about your suburb, what do you love/don’t love about where you live?
DEL: Nick – We love our suburbs! It’s quiet and a good place to think. Tim and I live about 40 minutes from town in a semi-rural spot – it’s quite a hike if we need to do sessions in town or if an artist comes our way, but it’s also nice to get away from it all.
HAPPY: Describe your average working day.
DEL: Nick – An average working day is always different. We’re either in a session working on our own tunes, collaborating with a new upcoming act, or working with our label Gatcombe on our releases and the admin side of things. We all have our own side hustles too, so I guess the average workday is a juggling between keeping everything moving and making sure we’re all on top of things.
HAPPY: What about your ultimate day?
DEL: Nick – The ultimate day I would say when I come out of the studio and know we wrote a smash haha. Being able to listen to the day’s work again in the car on the way home is a super satisfying feeling.
HAPPY: Tell us about your creative community.
DEL: Nick – Our creative community is based around our family record label, Gatcombe Music. Working with your brothers means that every day feels like a meeting place and also gives us the opportunity to get things done quickly, share responsibilities and work out ideas on the fly. Since we branched out as producers/songwriters our community has expanded – we’ve had the opportunity to write for major labels and independent artists across Australia and the world and have met some great people in the process. community is everything.
HAPPY: What did you read or watch growing up that fueled your passion for music?
DEL: Tim – Watching anime and reading manga has definitely fueled my passion for music. It felt so different and unique compared to what many other kids were seeing and gave me the drive to pursue art forms and sounds that were more of a challenge than the norm. I still listen to a lot of the soundtracks of my favorite series (berserk, Your lie in April, dragon ball) in everyday life and draw a lot from it in the production of our own tracks.
HAPPY: What was the last thing you read or saw that opened your eyes and mind to a new perspective?
DEL: Nick – It definitely wasn’t the last thing I opened or saw, it was the movie Interstellar is one of my absolute favorite movies and I think it’s Tim’s too. This movie sent my brain into a frenzy haha. With films like this you really think about everything and the possible. Joe watches The last of usand he loves it.
HAPPY: Can you give some insights into the recording of Purple (be alright)?
DEL: joe- Purple and the bulk of our forthcoming EP was written while we were working at our good friend Ryan’s studio in Surry Hills. Ryan’s room is this crazy space filled with beautiful vintage keyboards and pianos, awesome sounding microphones, outboard gear and antique furniture. We do sessions there regularly but stayed there for a month while he was away working on new music.
Purple started out as a relaxed beat based on a simple guitar arpeggio. We experimented with sounds, grooves and vocals and ended up on that super cute middle ground between organic and electronic sounding elements. Nick’s vocals are super chilled and soulful, as are the lyrics – the main focus in the drop sections is his vocals.
HAPPY: Can you share a bit about your creative process, from coming up with song ideas to recording and producing your music?
DEL: Tim – So the creative process for a song usually starts in one of the following ways. EWhen Joe or I come up with a beat that we think has legs and fits the overall soundscape we want to push for DEL, we send it to Nick to do the vocals. Nick finds a beat, either an old one from our library or a random soundbite online, which he writes before sharing with Joe and I to work on.
All three of us go into a room together and bang out a demo! If it’s worth working on, we’ll spend another day rounding it out. Everything is done internally. So once we have a really solid demo, we dive right into the final production and vocals and get it done in no time. All production, vocal recording and mixing is done by us.
HAPPY: Do you have a dream studio you’d like to work with, or are you more interested in creating the ultimate home studio? And if so, what does that look like?
DEL: Joe – We’re definitely more interested in building our own ultimate studio and keeping things mobile. We love the idea that we can rent a space and set up anywhere that inspires us and writes/produces music. We recently booked a week in this epic mountain home to write an EP – it was like a converted church and had a Steinway piano in the living room – crazy. Our own studio is super moody – lots of natural light – we hate the idea that studios have to feel clinical. I feel like you have to be connected to the world around you to be inspired by it.
HAPPY: Can you talk about a particularly memorable performance or moment in your music career that stands out for you?
DEL: Tim – If I had to say one thing it would be when we get our song out run away. I was new to production and the track was one of the first beats I made. I just remember how good it felt to have friends message me and say how good it was, random people tagged us in stories while listening to the song and got streams on it. It definitely gave me the confidence to keep working on my craft.
HAPPY: How has your music evolved over time and what do you think are the main themes and ideas that run through your work?
DEL: Tim – I think our music evolved with our tastes in certain genres. My core goal at the DEL was to always push boundaries. I wanted people to question whether certain sounds or sections were the right choice and should be included, so I tried to keep that core goal across all the different genres we explored.
DEL started out more RnB and future bass when I was in my Brockhampton and Flume heaps at the time, but we went through hyperpop, garage, pop and now house. While I can be stoic at times, I try to ensure that each track leans towards a more emotional side, with a heavy emphasis on a really tight and creative production.
HAPPY: In the current music industry landscape, where streaming and social media play a huge role in how music is distributed and consumed, how do you navigate the business side of things while staying true to your artistic vision?
DEL: Tim – It’s really difficult to navigate as an independent musician, especially someone who isn’t very good at using social media to promote themselves haha. I think it comes down to one of two things to create long-term success. How many times can you release music (can you release more songs and keep great quality)?
Does your music push the envelope enough? Can you find a niche market where you are one of the only ones making that particular type of music? Now we do everything in-house, I think we have an advantage in our ability to consistently put out quality tracks. For us it’s about keeping our creativity and inspiration and setting ourselves up to put out enough to end up with the right songs.
HAPPY: Looking ahead, what are your plans for the future, both in terms of new music and your career as a whole?
DEL: Joe – We want to be on the stages of the world, play our tunes, write and produce music for the best out there and have a good life with our families. We want to expand our family label Gatcombe into an empire and explore the creative world with it. It sounds cliche, but living a balanced life is very important to us, and we believe that you need to be creative all the time to fill up the tank everywhere in your life.
HAPPY: what makes you happy
DEL: Joe – Be creative. All of us love music, love art and any free time we have away from music we spend creating other things – it keeps us fresh and inspired and feels like we can take a guilt-free break. That being said, we love to chat while playing Super Smash Bros. – Tim thinks he’s the champion, but everyone knows Joe is better.
https://happymag.tv/d-e-l-interview-purple/ DEL talk about the single “Purple” and push the boundaries of electro-pop