Dro Carey is a producer from Sydney, Australia, who's released on a bunch of small but perfectly formed record labels over the years: Ikonika's Hum + Buzz, The Trilogy Tapes, and Ramp Recordings. As that reputable list might suggest, Carey's got a knack for tough and grainy club missives—tunes that loom so large you can feel their seams. With a new EP in the works for Berlin/London's Greco-Roman, it was high time Carey took us on a trip round his neck of the woods. This FADER Mix, which features plenty of his original productions alongside tunes from Joy Orbison, Bok Bok, and Slava, is not for the fainthearted. These are angles, edges, and textures designed for your body to interpret in some dark corner of the dancefloor, yet there's a strange sort of meditation to be gleaned from a daytime dive in. See for yourself below, and scroll down to find out what it is about Sydney that shapes Carey's sound.
Where are you right now? Describe your surroundings. I'm in my bedroom / "studio." Compact MIDI keyboard to my left. A pile of comics to my right. The topmost comic on the pile is an issue of Love and Rockets. Then there's records, more comics, monitors, decks, bed. Stacks of books. Some nice afternoon sun trickling in.
What vibe were you going for on your mix and what's on it? I wanted to negotiate a vibe somewhere between home listening and the energy of a typical Dro club set. So some of these tracks, like the "Beat Dat Tool" by Slick Shoota, have been staples of my DJ sets for a little bit. But I worked in artists like Call Super and Congi to have some calm interludes. I hope it still flows in a logical way. I also included, of course, a handful of my own stuff, as well as a beat from the group I'm in with Napolian, Tairiq, Garfield and Dezo, The Renaissance.
How does living in Sydney shape your music? I think one of the big parts of an artist's location and the resulting musical influence—that I don't see too many people talk about—is the influence of record stores. Revolve Records in Erskineville has been a source of a huge range of genres for about 8 years for me. They've always had quite a range of jazz and prog, a lot of hip-hop, some house. Then there's The Record Store in Darlinghurst, which has been a huge boon to me for electronic music both past and present. These are just a couple of the stores that have had a long term effect for me that's quite different to the quick skim through a download blog—you get to talk to people about what you're getting, get a sense of its context in a really pure way, and even just understand what it is that people want because you get to see what sells over time, what the managers order, etc.
What's coming up for you? This Saturday in Sydney I've got performance number four of a five-month collaboration with dancer and choreographer Patric Kuo. Each month we've been working in this gallery space, creating performances that relate or respond to that month's exhibition. I've been writing the music and for some of the performances I've also contributed conceptually to the movement as well. There's multiple works within each performance, and they range from Pat's solos to ensembles of as many as 16 dancers.
I just did a video clip for this duo, GL, from Melbourne, and I have a couple of other videos I've made for some other artists that are going to be released soon. I'm working on the score for a short film here in Sydney, it's called Branded and it's been really great to work on—they've done extremely well, the cinematography is beautiful. I'm looking forward to seeing that come together.
What's the last book you read that had a big impact on you? Watt by Samuel Beckett. I still hold Murphy up as the best novel of Beckett's that I've read, but the impact of this one was pretty immense, it really wears away at you as you read it—it's a bit of an endurance test (and deliberately so). It causes you to question society's most fundamental behaviors and motivations, and is overall just this staggering penetration into the relationships between language and authority—with the fairly devastating conclusion that there is no particular conspiracy surrounding the main character, no specific powers working against him. Instead there's this overwhelming culture of rationality, just oppressively pedantic behavior in the employment relationship, which ultimately turns the simple task of tending to someone's home and property into a maddening experience.
What's your favorite dish to cook and how do you make it? I can't lie, I am severely lacking in this territory. It's on my list of things to tick off to become a complete adult. I guess presently I'm trying to perfect the BLT.
Call Super - Coney Storm Drain
Clap! Clap! - Ashiko (Lurka Obeah Remix)
DJ Spoko - Chitahuri Dance
Bok Bok & Tom Trago - Hole Driller 3
Benton - The Callin'
Mickey Pearce - Dirt
Joy O & Boddika - More Maim
Dro Carey - Club Injury Handbook
Dro Carey - Monomiles (Instrumental)
Dro Carey - Mammal Tank
Sinden & Thefft - It's On You
Deadboy - Life Code
Congi - Attenuation
Helix - Whoosh (Inkke Bootleg)
Slick Shoota - Beat Dat Tool
Slava - Clique
Asa & Sorrow - Shook
Plastician - The Search (Kahn & Neek Remix)
Dro Carey - Deepwell
Dro Carey - Trafficker Tome
Tre Mission - Gas
The Renaissance - Wow Man