David Christopher, aka Deviant, is a resident DJ at Abbasso and a partner in Toes in the Sand Recordings. His HeadRush Music promotes dance events from Connecticut to Cleveland.
How do you describe your music?
We call it "journey music." It's a series of sounds and textures, mixed seamlessly. The tracks are arranged with a purpose: to build energy, to tell a story. Some DJs will play track after track of hits or vocals; we strive to paint landscapes with sound. HeadRush events usually cover a spectrum of house, techno, and breakbeat. The vibe can be aggressive or beautiful, funky or hypnotic, depending on the DJ.
What's changed since you got into electronic and dance music?
In the underground dance scene, music trends emerge and die very rapidly. The accessibility of tracks and mixes through websites, online retailers, and online radio have forced underground DJs to work harder at their game.
People have called electronic music the Next Big Thing for over 10 years. Is it?
The hook for me was not just the music, but also the culture that surrounds it: an emphasis on unity and encouraging people to find true happiness. It's a spiritual thing. Discovering it was like freeing myself from the Matrix.
What's the good and bad news about the Cleveland EDM scene?
The good news is that there are lots of talented local DJs who represent a variety of EDM genres. The bad news is that there aren't enough places for them to play. The good news is that those DJs have dope music in their boxes. The bad news is that most people may never hear it, because they gravitate too often to something familiar. The good news is that the underground fans here are the most dedicated I have ever seen. The bad news is that they are outnumbered by hip-hop, rock, and Top 40 fans willing to pay cover charges.
What's some good EDM for people who don't like EDM?
Generally, the key to liking dance music is to listen to it on a good sound system. Crappy speakers do not do justice to dance music.