Fresh Face Fridays | Slander, the Innovators of “Heaven Trap”
Derek Andersen and Scott Land, otherwise known as Slander, have been friends since college where they met while attending the University of California- Irvine. Sharing an interest in dance music and a passion for production, these close friends joined forces to form one of the most innovative trap duos to date. With the inception of the brand new, forward-thinking genre they created and coined as “heaven trap,” the release of a highly successful heaven trap remix for Above & Beyond’s trance classic “Love Is Not Enough” and a series of debut performances in the works for 2014, these guys have a lot going for them right now.
Only The Beat was fortunate enough to score an opportunity to interview these busy Los Angeles-based prodigies first! Read on to learn more about Slander, heaven trap and how they plan on bringing the essence of emotion back to EDM.
Banger Alert! – Above & Beyond – Love Is Not Enough (Slander Heaven Trap Edit)
OTB: What is your creative process like? Is it impulsive or well thought out before hitting the studio?
Slander: It depends with each session. For our latest Heaven Trap release, we had thought about the edit for about a month before actually creating it. On the flip, our Showtek edit was an “instant inspiration to studio” track. We heard the original then immediately began creating.
OTB: You coined your Above & Beyond “Love Is Not Enough” remix as heaven trap, where did the idea for this genre come from?
Slander: Heaven trap came from the feeling we were trying to express in the song. With that track, we weren’t trying to make people rage. We were trying to let our fans feel something other than the emotion of “let’s party.” Everyone in trap is making “ratchet” music and we wanted to go in the complete opposite direction. We wanted to show people that you can go to a trap show and cry tears of joy while singing along with your friends. It’s definitely not something everyone is doing but that’s exactly why this new genre is going to define our sound for the time to come. We want people to feel the pure euphoria that you can get out of a trance show, but in trap form.
OTB: How has your music evolved over the years? What does each of you bring to the table that is different from the other?
Slander: When we started out as DJs back in 2010, we used to play 5 hour trance sets in the back room of our local club. As time passed, we moved to house music and then we finally found our true home, EDM trap.
OTB: What is your most memorable night out as fans?
Slander: TATW 350. We didn’t realize it until way later, but that one night changed our DNA, and remembering that night gave us the inspiration to create heaven trap.
OTB: Which of your upcoming endeavors are you most excited about?
Slander: Our debut at Control inside Avalon
OTB: What is the most gratifying part of your job?
Slander: The single greatest source of gratification for us is the roar of the crowd when they start to realize we are mixing in one of our own songs. NOTHING compares to making music and getting a great live reaction.
“Our goal is to bring light into the darkness, to play shows other artists turn down, to bring joy into the lives of people who don’t have it.”
OTB: In terms of your career, what would you say is your biggest accomplishment thus far?
Slander: Getting support from Diplo on BBC Radio 1 was definitely the craziest moment so far. A close second was getting to headline the main room at Space in Miami; that was a dream come true.
OTB: What is your ultimate career goal?
Slander: To bring joy into as many people’s lives as possible. No award could ever amount to that.
OTB: If you could pick anyone in the world, who would you love to collaborate with next and why? What kind of track would you make?
Slander: TNGHT, hands down. Especially now since they are no more. It would be an apocalyptic trap tune.
OTB: Where do you see the future of dance music going and where do you envision yourselves in the mix? How would you contribute to the future of the culture?
Slander: Emotion is going to come back and we are going to be a part of that process. We are going to put our emotions into the culture and let the world feel the true joy that we have experienced in the past.
OTB: What separates Slander from all the other artists in the industry?
Slander: We are the light bearers. Our goal is to bring light into the darkness, to play shows other artists turn down, to bring joy into the lives of people who don’t have it. Also, by steadily pursuing and developing heaven trap, we will have a sound no other artist can claim.
OTB: Are there any particular ideals you live by? What message(s) do you share with people through your music?
Slander: Live in the moment. Do not hold onto your past. Do not be anxious for the future. Be content in every single small moment and you will achieve true bliss.
There was definitely was true bliss at the Santa Ana Observatory on Saturday, March 8 when Slander performed alongside trap powerhouse DJ Snake. I got the chance to attend this hip-hop/EDM/trance fusion in support of my favorite up-and-comers and it was an incredible experience.
Slander put on an outstanding show, proving that euphoria and emotions can, and DO live inside trap music. Their live heaven trap rendition of “Love Is Not Enough” had the room swooning, melting, crying and raging with a whirlwind of overwhelming emotions in the sweetest way. Watch Slander’s video below to get a glimpse of their impeccably emotive performance.
Following their show at The Observatory, Derek and Scott hit the decks yet again at Control at Avalon in Hollywood, CA on Friday, March 14. The pair was able to fulfill a longtime goal by playing the opening set for trap music heavyweights Bare, Kennedy Jones, Calvertron and Sam Hiller in front of their hometown crowd.
For more information about Slander, visit their Facebook page.
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