South London sibling duo and In Dust We Trust label curators Chaos In The CBD are next up for the Phonica Mix Series!
Louis and Ben Helliker-Hales, otherwise known as Chaos In The CBD, are the New Zealand born, musical sibling duo that have been gathering the attention and respect of many key tastemakers and DJs the world over in recent years. Best known for their delicious mixture of warm, jazzy, deep-house, the duo have unleashed their creations on such labels as Rhythm Section International, ClekClekBoom and Mule Musiq to name a few, as well as their own imprint In Dust We Trust.
Despite their busy schedule and fast approaching tour, we managed to catch up with the duo to find out what they’ve been up to, the ideas behind the mix, their influences and future plans. Check out the interview and the mix below. Enjoy!
Hey Ben, Hey Louis. How are you guys doing lately? It looks like you’ve been very busy with the new label. What spurred the creation of In Dust We Trust?
We’re great thanks. Doing our best to tie up any loose ends before we leave on tour tomorrow. The label has been going really well. We’re about to release Zona Del Silencio, which will be the third EP from us this year. I guess IDWT had been a long time coming. Sable, Beans and I had been discussing the idea, it was just a matter of actually putting the wheels in motion. Once we got serious about it, everything fell into place pretty quick.
With so many iconic and up and coming labels globally at the moment. What are your influences for the label and what is the plan for the future of In Dust We Trust?
We started the label because the timing just felt right. We wanted a platform for ourselves and Jon Sable to put out our music, at a pace which suits us and with total control of the final product. Currently it’s just ours and Sable’s music we’re releasing but we’ve been discussing releasing stuff from close friends too.
Is there any particular theme to the music being released on In Dust We Trust that we should be looking out for ?
Again, I guess we don’t really put that much thought into the thematics. The stuff we’ve been releasing has definitely been a lot deeper, more stripped back than what people may have come to expect from us, but that’s just the music we’re making at the moment. There are no restrictions or guidelines for the label. It’s nice to be able to produce and release music without feeling like you need to fit someone else’s criteria or expectations.
The first release came from yourselves back in February, what’s next on the release schedule for the label?
Accidental Meetings came out in February, followed by a split with Jon Sable. Zona Del Silencio is next. A two track EP we are all very pleased with.
You have released music on a diverse range of labels, from France’s ClekClekBoom to Japan’s Mule Musiq and, of course, several London imprints. Your output has evolved a lot throughout the years, can you name some key influences that guided this journey?
When we started out, the stuff we were really passionate about was UK Funky, UK Bass, French House etc. Over the last decade our tastes have matured. With our relocation to London and Beans working at YAM Records in Peckham, we found ourselves collecting much more vinyl. In recent years, I think our main influences would have to be people like Larry Heard, Ron Trent, Joe Claussell, Chez Damier etc. The classics really.
I take it you guys are travelling around over the next couple of months, with the gigs in America, Canada and Australia. What are looking forward to most about these places?
I think we’re most looking forward to getting home to New Zealand to see our family. We only get to do that once a year and it can be pretty tough sometimes. We’re also thrilled to be playing a couple shows in Japan on this run. It’s definitely been at the top of our list for a while now. I guess the same things we always look forward to, meeting new people, seeing new things, eating new things, record shopping, partying. We’re down for everything.
With all this travelling around do you still find time to visit record shops whilst touring (if so, is there anywhere in particular)?
We always do our best to find time. Diskunion in Tokyo, Superior Elevation in New York, Skydiver in Melbourne, Real Groovy in New Zealand and whatever else we can manage along the way. We’re taking an empty record bag with us, which we hope to fill by the end of the tour.
Can you tell us a bit about the mix itself – perhaps where and how it was recorded and if there are any particular themes throughout?
We recorded this together at home in one take the day it was due. We basically set aside a bunch of records we had purchased in the last couple months and just went from there. We already had a pretty good idea where we wanted to go with the mix.
What’s the next step for Chaos in the CBD over the next few months?
Aside from the touring, we’ve finished a few remixes recently and have our third EP on Mule Musiq coming out later this year. We’re also beginning to plan the next releases on IDWT. Much more to come.