As DJs and producers, MTLEY CRE drummer Tommy Lee and DJ Aero create a sound that is dirty, filthy, nasty electro-house. The pair has teamed with deadmau5's mau5trap label to debut their new singles "Static" and "LFO Tool" via mau5trap's "Meowingtons Hax" compilation on sale now via Beatport. "Static"'s corresponding video, which features Lee and Aero along with mau5trap label head deadmau5, artist SOFI and other friends, is available below.
To support their new music, Tommy Lee & DJ Aero will join deadmau5 on his "Meowingtons Hax" tour this week starting with four shows at the Hollywood Palladium (three of which are sold out) in Los Angeles as well as dates in Denver, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Austin, Houston, Dallas, Boston, Detroit, Chicago, San Diego and San Francisco throughout the fall. They'll also appear at Electric Zoo at Randall's Island in New York City on September 3 and the Labor of Love Festival at The Guvernment in Toronto on September 4.
What can fans expect from the pair who has toured together since 2005? Check out this question-and-answer session below.
Q: Congratulations on the upcoming release of your debut single, "Static", on mau5trap. How did you get hooked up with deadmau5?
Tommy Lee: Thank You!! I'm really looking forward to switching musical gears coming off the MTLEY CRE tour and getting our new music out on the mau5trap label and compilation. I've known Joel (Zimmerman, deadmau5) for a while; a mutual friend, Steve Duda (producer for NINE INCH NAILS and deadmau5), introduced us.
DJ Aero: We met Joel in 2005 through our mutual friend Steve Duda. We actually had him on stage with us at a festival we played in a cornfield in Canada. We have old video of him rocking out with us onstage. Obviously, this was pre-mau5head. We also brought him to open for us on a bunch of Canadian dates. I'm pretty sure the show at the The Guvernment was the first time he brought his own equipment and had a live singer with him. We have recorded an EP under the name of WTF? The members are Tommy Lee, Aero, Steve Duda and deadmau5.
Q: What's your process in working together in the studio? How did "Static" come about?
Tommy Lee: That's always a fun process. Aero and I just set up shop in my studio and just start pressin' buttons, tweakin' out like little kids on a bunch of sugar and electronic toys. Once something sounds awesome it sticks and we build on it. "Static", for instance, like any good track, came very quickly.
DJ Aero: "Static" came about with Tommy and I playing with the custom Eurorack system I have built. We started patching the synth and came up with the bassline. Once we had that we just started layering the sounds to come up with melody. The lead line is a custom preset from Native Instruments Massive VSt. We found the old sample and it all just fell into place.
Q: The Meowingtons Hax tour is one of the hottest tickets right now. What is your set going to be like? What do you do behind the table?
Tommy Lee: Our goal is to bring some life performance to our sets. I'm going to be triggering video and audio by playing drums on electronic pads. We'll also be adding a live camera so that people can see what's going on back there. Our set up is amazing. To break it down for you a bit, Aero does all the mixing and I do all the video mixing and audio effects and drumming. A lot of what we do is live because I believe that watching a couple guys stand there and play CDs just isn't that cool, so we try to bring a performance element to our live sets.
DJ Aero: Our set is going to be a mixture of our tracks and edits from all our favorite DJs. We are going to rock electro, drumstep and I'm sure some other surprise musical elements. I use 2 Pioneer CDJ-2000 turntables and a 900 Nexus Dj Mixer. My Apple Macbook Pro is running Traktor Scratch Pro with an X1 controller to fire cue points and samples.
Q: Tell us about the "Static" video. Who's the guy in the mesh?
Tommy Lee: Hahaha!! He's our buddy. Funny thing is that's really how he is. He dances all the time with his shirt off, whether on the stage or standing on the bar. You can always find him getting jiggy somewhere and I thought we have to film this guy. He's hilarious, perfect for "Static".
DJ Aero: His name is Robert Dyer. He is Skrillex's tour manager and one the best dudes I ever met. He loves to dance and make videos and we all thought he would be perfect fit for the video.