This guy must be an imposter. The laidback gentleman posing for the camera during his DJ Mag USA photo shoot in New York City can’t possibly be Borgore. His concern for what to do with his “Jew-fro” and borderline reserved nature about certain costume ideas (a pink terry cloth bathrobe and silk pajama pants quickly get the thumbs down) don’t match the persona of the Israeli badass whose boisterous bass-fueled tunes have been flying out of Dim Mak Records in LA and soundtracking festivals across the States, causing the hormone-crazed youth of today to go collectively ape shit on a regular basis.
But it’s him. Asaf Borgore is simply a chilled dude. Sure, he drops words like “fuck” and doesn’t give a “shit” about what people think. Still, the 26-year-old is polite, takes direction and is, most importantly, whip smart at shaking things up via his musical outputs and his notorious Twitter feed, which should come with a “Parental Advisory” warning.
Borgore’s debut LP, #NewGoreOrder, out this month on Buygore Records/Dim Mak Records, may sound like electric hammer drills, but upon deeper inspection, there are serious topics, which he intends to drill home for many years to come.
What message are you trying convey to the world with your album #NewGoreOrder?
Borgore: “The serious [message] or not serious?”
“My message to the world is 'no more fuzzy boots.' If I should be serious, it’s that I think we need to clean up our politics, our government, but that’s a long story.”
The story seems to start with actor Malcolm McDowell’s spoken intro to the LP. He says a lot of things, both serious and tongue in cheek. From fake producers to the never-ending search for knowledge, what topic do you feel strongly about?
“My mom always raised me to not focus on other people, but to focus on myself and try to be honest to myself. I have no fake producers and I’m not just a button-pushing DJ. What other people do, I’m happy for them for being successful. Do whatever the fuck you want.”
So the “fake producers” don’t bother you?
“Why should I be bothered with what other people are doing? I think it’s bad for them honestly. All the songs kinda sound the same and also all the DJs aren’t trying to have unique personalities on Twitter. Everyone’s trying to be very clean cut, it just becomes like Chevrolet and GMC, and it’s the same fucking car with a different logo on the front.”
What is your sound?
“My sound isn’t perfect, but at least it’s unique right?”
Can art ever be perfect?
“Mozart was perfect. Mozart never deleted anything. When he wrote parts to all the instruments you would never see him deleting anything.”
Do you delete?
“I delete a lot, some of the songs took me two years. Fifteen different versions to finish and I still feel like it’s not perfect. Mozart never made a mistake, so I guess there’s perfect. He’s not my favorite composer, but whatever.”
The sound of this album is almost like a sci-fi thriller score. It’s almost like controlled chaos...
“Picasso had the weirdest paintings ever, but no one would take him seriously if he couldn’t do a normal portrait. He has a background, he proved himself in classical painting, and then he could go out and start painting people with their noses where their eyes are. So yeah I can write normal music, I just decide not to.”
Do you think this album is accessible to anyone?
“This album is not really accessible - a lot of the songs, the sounds are very rough. I’m not trying to make accessible music. If I tried to be doing accessible music, I’d be ghost producing for Britney Spears. Even the festival music that I’m making is not the right way to write festival music.”
Then where are you going to play this album?
“I play main stage festivals and I play this album and it seems to work. A lot of the songs that I write, I’m the only one who can actually play them and get away with them. I did a song with Waka [Flocka Flame] called 'Wild Out' and there was one deep house remix that was sick that Boots and Pants did, my favorite remix out of all of them.”
You worked with Waka on your “Wild Out'” EP, but now you have an album with hip-hop on it and it’s you rapping. Why’d you choose to do it yourself and not go the star-studded cameo route?
“My biggest songs are with me rapping. I feel like when I’m rapping I’m saying stuff that no one says, and some kids want to hear what’s on Borgore’s mind. EDM and hip-hop and all that shit, every song, every artist in that genre is on that one song and it's only because it can sell more. I’m not playing the game that everyone plays. I’m playing my game. This album is my first album and I wanted it to be mine so I’m rapping on it.”
You served in the Israeli army, does that affect your musical outlook?
“It’s really difficult to grow up in a place where you see kids getting bombed. It’s not like I want to go to war, the last thing I want to do is leave my comfortable bed, put on my uniform and start shooting at people. I had a Palestinian flag next to an Israeli flag at my EDC set. That was a really strong moment for me. I see a lot of this in music... Croatia and Serbia, Russia and Ukraine, all these countries that hate each other are in peace in your show.
“This is exactly why I’m not ready to go politics yet. I am going to go to politics one day. Not yet, but 100 percent in five to six years I’ll be in politics. #NewGoreOrder, my new album or even my song, “Illuminati,” it’s me hinting on what's my thoughts are. I don’t want to touch politics yet, but #NewGoreOrder is exactly it. It’s me saying 'boobs, boobs, boobs, ass, ass, ass,' and that’s how people know I am here. I just think my listeners aren't ready for me to be fully political.”
If you really went into politics would you still make music?
“I think that I’m making a lot of people happy with my music and I think I could make a lot of other people happy if I were in politics. It's going to have the same effect. I just think that I could help the world better if I were a politician. It’s just not the time yet, because I'm not ready. I follow everything that’s going on all the time, every night before I go to sleep, and every morning when I wake up I read it. It’s the basic thing you can do living in the world. If you don’t want to do anything, at least know what's happening.”
It’s clear by your music and Twitter that you have an obsession with female booties...
“I love ass.”
Is this love of ass you trying to be provocative at all or is it a genuine fetish of yours?
“If you look at my Twitter you think I’m obsessed. Honestly, I think it’s just fun, it's not like I sit there all day and night and I’m like, 'booties, booties, booties.' It’s just a nice thing to have on Twitter. I'd rather look at booties than look at one of the ugly ass pictures of one of my friends taking a selfie.”
What about brains?
“You can't see brains from only looking at a chick on the street. What you do is you take the booty, and if the booty is good you start a conversation, and if she’s really stupid... well it depends on who you are.”
So what do you have to say to people who find your booty obsession offensive or misogynistic?
“The last thing I am is misogynistic and people really get it in the wrong way. A lot of girls get offended if I don't re-tweet their booty. All this misogynistic shit is stupid. My whole life, all the people working around me are females. I grew up in a mother-controlled house. People are getting the complete opposite of who I am. I honestly have no gender preference. If you look into my “Illuminati” video it’s not me hating females, I don’t hate anything. We have transgender, gay and lesbian chicks in our videos. Cher and I did a video and we got a lot of support from the gay community in Israel. In my #NewGoreOrder world everyone just lives in peace, and everyone just wants to have a good life. The way I see it, don’t try to ruin other people’s lives, just live and let be.”
You have a collaboration with Miley Cyrus, who has taken heaps of flack for turning from Hannah Montana into a sex symbol...
“That’s the greatest thing that ever happened. If you're a feminist and if you're here to criticize Miley Cyrus, you're just a bitter old lady because Miley Cyrus wasn’t happy being Hannah Montana. Hannah Montana was something corporate. Miley Cyrus is an individual and decided that’s not what she wants to do. I want to be a 21 year old, and 21 year olds smoke weed and take naked pictures on Instagram.”
What if you have a daughter and she posts pictures of her ass all over Instagram?
“If my daughter decided to put pictures of her ass on her Instagram, it’s her decision and I didn’t give her the right education. If she decides to do it, she should do it. It’s her life. I couldn’t control her life. I would tell my daughter not to post her ass on Instagram because people will take you more seriously if you don’t.”
Do you think people would take you, Asaf Borgore, seriously if you laid off the ass topic?
“I don’t want to be taken seriously.”
What about sonically?
“One of the biggest songs in America is a song by YG that repeats the 'N' word eight times. Listen to the chorus. It’s very simple. To actually make this song a big hit you have to be smart, but there’s a lot of stupid people. A lot of people like booty and sex and use foul language, but not a lot of them become successful. In order for you to become successful, you need to be smart. When I go into politics, people have to understand that not being serious doesn’t mean dumb. The people who write Family Guy aren’t dumb, playing Borat doesn’t mean you're dumb - Sacha Baron Cohen isn’t a dumb person, he’s a genius. It’s amazing - every time people compare me to Borat or Ali G - bring it. I don’t give a fuck.”
You happily proclaim you’re the man that ruined dubstep, and of course that’s debatable because UK dubstep and American dubstep are extremely different.
“Yeah, but I grew up on UK dubstep and people got butt-hurt. There were a bunch of artists like Loefah and Digital Mystikz, and that really mellow stuff that I actually really love, but I came and made something different. And then all the people who really like Digital Mystikz or Loefah felt like I ruined it for them, which is completely wrong because I brought a lot of people into dubstep, which gave them more of a crowd. So I was like, 'Yo motherfuckers, if you think I ruined dubstep, I'm gonna claim it. If you think I ruined dubstep, yeah I did!' And that pissed them off even more. But then again, it's part of Borgore, I guess. Borgore doesn’t give a fuck.”
Does Asaf give a fuck? You seem to give a fuck about something… your “curly Jew fro,” which you Tweet about a lot.
“I do, I do give a fuck about it.”
What are u gonna do to it? Get a treatment or straighten it, shave it or get cornrows maybe?
“I don't know… maybe shave it. I just don’t take life seriously.”
Photos: Richard Agudelo