We caught up with the UK duo for a quick chat prior to their gig at Pulse at the Omar Khayam boat earlier this month.
One of dance music's quickest artists to emerge and breakthrough, Leftwing and Kody are well known across the scene and around the globe for their infectious tech house sounds. Appearing on the bill of some of the world's hottest clubs and festivals, the duo also releases music on some of the underground's hottest labels like Off Recordings, Suara, Hot and Creations, amongst many others, all whilst abiding by one single important factor: originality. Nominated for DJ Mag's Breakthrough DJ of the Year award only one year after their debut, they are very well considered by many as the duo of the moment. We catch up with the London twosome ahead of their set at Pulse for a quick chat.
From left to right, Leftwing and Kody @ Pulse, Omar Khayam boat.
So, guys, who is Leftwing and who is Kody? Are these your real names?
Kody: Our real names are Johnny and Chris.
How do you guys find the party scene in Egypt? First time?
Kody: First time, yes.
Leftwing: Actually I’ve been to Sharm El Sheikh before.
You played there?
Leftwing: No, I just went for holiday, but I went to Pacha a long time ago, so I mean the scene changed a lot, but first time here in Cairo.
Okay, so Kody, how good a wingman exactly is Leftwing?
Kody: Exceptional, he drags me out of some "situations" just like a good wingman should.
You guys released music on Off Recordings, Exploited, Suara, Hot Creations, the list goes on. You’ve managed to break through in a very short time, lighting up festivals and dance floors across the world. Tell us, how did you manage to do so in a very short time?
Kody: I think it was the music that we made originally. When we started the Leftwing and Kody project, it was different than anything being released at the time. When we came up with the idea, we figured if we're going to start this project we need to go out on a super hot label, which at the time was OFF Recordings. They really backed us; Andre Crom, the label owner, helped us a lot. With that kind of support, and also from labels like Exploited as well, when you're releasing on those kind of top tier labels, it really helps, and that is what helped us break through.What did you guys start out listening to before starting to produce electronic music?
Kody: Being from the UK, being from London, on the airwaves was jungle, drum and bass, garage, hip hop as well.
Leftwing: UK garage was the first kind of music that we played as DJs, and that’s where we took our influences from when we started the Leftwing and Kody project as well. It was a style of music that we both understood and both grew up with, and we kind of put our spin on it, with like a house twist, and again that is what set us apart from the beginning. It sounded different, and it’s an important thing to sound different because so many people are doing this kind of music. House music is huge and you have to set yourself apart from everyone else.
So where were you guys before Cairo?
Kody: We did a ferry cruise in Amsterdam, we did a show in London.
Leftwing: We recently did a tour of Australia and Argentina, which was again an amazing experience.
Any cool destinations coming up that you are excited about?
Kody: Coming up we’ve got London, and another gig in the UK on New Year's Eve, which is great. After that the first international we have is in Amsterdam again, which we find like our second home – we play there a lot.
Tracks you’ve been playing a lot recently?
Kody: Lots of exclusive Leftwing and Kody stuff, unreleased material that is being prepped for next year. Jackie an artist from the UK, we’ve been playing lots of Jackie’s stuff. Vibe Killers, Wayde, and Pirate Copy are also always in out set, lots of UK artists.
You’ve released on lots of labels, tell us about some that you are still looking forward to releasing on.
Kody: We’re probably going to aim for another True Soul EP.
Leftwing: 8-Bit, Nick Curly’s label. Relief Records, where we’re looking to do something with Green Velvet.
Kody: We also have something coming up with Wow! That's in February.
If you could play with one artist, dead or alive, who would you pick?
Kody: I would actually like to play with The Martinez Brothers; they look like they are always having a good time, and are always playing good music.
Leftwing: Groove Armada; they are my heroes, so yeah maybe them for me.
Photography by @MO4Network's #MO4Productions.
Photographed by Kalamoda.