The duo of Stewart Rowell and Louis Gaston have built up quite a reputation in a short time for their anything-goes DJ sets and mix CDs, smashing up such resolutely incompatible artists as the Human League, Justice, Leftfield and Jurassic 5, and reconstructing them into synapse-sizzling sequences of pure excitement. Old, new, underground, mainstream - it all goes in, as long as it possesses sufficient levels of da funk.
"Our motto is, there are no rules," Rowell revealed. "We'll go with anything if we like it." The garrulous half of the Streetlife two, Stewart christened them with their moniker due to their love of the gritty road rhythms coming out of the early '80s Big Apple.
"We came up with the name primarily because a lot of the music that Louis and I are influenced by grew out of the New York street vibe - old school hip-hop, old school electro. A lot of music we love comes from the street."
Coming from a more rap-fuelled direction himself, Rowell linked with old school rave nut Gaston and hatched a dastardly plan to take over dance music and make it their own.
Earning comparisons with 2ManyDJs, in reality Streetlife DJs take the eclectic spirit deeper and further out, and their tireless self-promotion on Myspace and homemade mix CDs, 'The Streetlife Sessions', have seen them drop most styles under the sun. As Led Zeppelin re-edits bleed into underground techno, you know this is something special: we're left dancing like rave gibbons, grinning from ear to ear.
Their regular podcast 'Hot Mix 100' has seen them pick up a massive fan-base by word of mouth (100,000 subscribers and counting) and they're about to reach critical mass.
"That was a brainchild of Louis's," revealed Stewart. "We'd been sending out mix CDs to promoters of our stuff, getting good reactions. And Louis thought we should make a podcast and put it out there for the public to hear it," Rowell explained. "It's gone ballistic and got us fans all over the world."
The next phase is production, and the Streetlife DJs are readying a monster EP.
"We're doing a four-track EP called 'Keep It Street,'" said Stewart. "The first track is a punky electro thing, it's an Adam & The Ants cover. There's a more downtempo hip-hop electro track with this rapper Miss Oddkid, then we've got something called 'Bassline Kicking', which is out and about at the moment on CD-R, an uptempo, noisy ravey record. Then we're doing another track called 'Eye Dub', which is full-on techno."
No release date is scheduled, but the pair are also hard at work on an album, with record labels a-sniffing, and loads more gigs in the offing.
"We've got Global Gathering, V Festivals, Get Loaded in the Park, a tour of Australia and a residency at Together, in Turnmills, coming up," added Stewart. "And we're supporting Groove Armada in South America." Get some street into your life.
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