With new tune Mufasa doing the rounds and three tracks in the first 25 spots of the 2013 ARIA Top 50 Australian Club Tracks, Canberra duo Peking Duk are just hitting top gear. TOM KITSON chats to one half of the duo about mateship in the music industry in prelude to the Big Day Out on Sunday, February 2 at Claremont Showgrounds.
As the New Year holiday period ends and artists recover from weeks of relentless shows and travel, Adam Hyde of Peking Duk is already thinking about 2014, with a swag of new releases and big dates on the horizon.
“We’ve just done a collaboration on Mufasa with Laidback Luke, have two singles coming out soon and we’ve got about seven demos that we’ve been going back and forth on,” he says. “We’re trying to figure out which ones to put out first because they’re all very different styles.
“We’ve been really stoked with the reception of both I Love To Rap and Feels Like. The support from the public and radio alike has been a surreal experience because we never thought we’d get that or have our own proper fans, which is a really good feeling.”
Hyde and band mate Reuben Styles came together in Canberra, inspired by hard electro sounds and getting to work using affordable software programs.
“I was doing a bunch of hip hop stuff and Reuben was in an indie rock band (Rubicon) that was doing really well,” he says. “Guys like Fake Blood, Crookers and The Bloody Beetroots really intrigued us, so we decided to sit on our computers using Reason every day until we could get something sounding semi decent.”
Now based in Sydney the guys have joined the ranks of Australian electronic music’s elite and benefitted from the competition.
“We share a studio with artists like Yolanda Be Cool, Flight Facilities, Beni and Cassian, which makes it a really cool building,” he says. “We’ve met a lot of guys just through seeing them out at clubs and using other contacts. The electronic music community in Australia is really tight knit since everyone knows everyone, and everyone’s quick to offer a helping hand.”
Hinting at constructive criticism from their peers, Hyde is grateful for objective viewpoints while still maintaining an enthusiastic approach to coming up with ideas.
“We can definitely bounce a lot of stuff back and forth with these guys and get their vibe on it,” he says. “It’s really helpful when they don’t like it because they’ll tell you what to change up. Our process changes every time – I’ve been trying to figure out what the formula is so I can nail it… but it’s always different.
“I think the best thing to do is keep an open mind and have fun with it, because a lot of the time I’ll be working on an idea and I’ll get stuck with that idea and forget about the bigger picture, which can get frustrating.”
Building the suspense about their upcoming set at Big Day Out, Hyde says there’ll be new music and some other faces in the mix.
“I can’t say too much about our Big Day Out sets, but we will have a few guests on stage with us and a pretty cool set up,” he says. “We love both festivals and club tours, but festivals are just out of control.”
Peking Duk play Big Day Out on Sunday, February 2 at Claremont Showgrounds.
Get your tickets here.