From the track of WMC to the most-booked DJ, its been a wild year for the Starkillers. The track "Diskoteka" definitely made the "beat go boom" and launched Nick Terranova and Austin Leeds into the stratosphere. Massive remixes of Paul Oakenfold, Iio, and John Creamer & Stephane K filled out the year that was punctuated by the followup smash "Scream." You've got to love Nick & Austin, if only for the simple fact that they are the first people I've interviewed to thank their parents for their support.
DJ Ron Slomowicz: Last year at Winter Music Conference, your song "Diskoteka"
was played at every event – you couldn't escape hearing the song. This
year, you're spinning every event everywhere. So how has the year in
Nick Terranova: It's been really goofy. We've had a lot of success - Austin has been a part of a lot of it. It's just amazing, because last year I came and barely anybody knew me but they knew my song. Now this year, we have thirteen gigs, playing all the clubs and headlining. So it's definitely been an awesome year.
RS: One of your big successes this year was the remix of
Oakenfold's "Sex and Money." What was that like?
Nick Terranova: I actually have a story about that. Seven years ago I met Oakenfold in Las Vegas when I was opening for him at this club called CTK. I said that I want to learn how to produce and be like you and asked what does it take to be a producer. A couple of months ago when he was at Jet in Las Vegas, after I did the remix, he didn't really know it was me. I went up to him and I said hey remember when I talked to you, seven years ago when I opened for you at CTK's? He said 'yes, yes, yes.' I said that 'I'm the guy that did your remix.' He was like 'wow, oh my God, that's so amazing.'
RS: Was he one of your inspirations?
Nick Terranova: Yes. He's been around for a long time. Everybody has heard his name and he's the pioneer of the whole trance thing. All the big guys are my inspiration.
RS: You've done several remixes this year, but rather than go
for the big pop stars, you've kept it really credible – like your mix
of Iio. How did you approach that mix – with Nadia's unique vocal
Nick Terranova: Basically, I didn't give a crap about what they wanted, I did what I thought was cool. It was a hard BPM to work with, taking the song from 100 BPM to 128 because there was a lot of vibrato and its ends up sounding like a chipmunk. I did my own thing and at first they didn't want it. Marcus Moser of iio/Made asked where was the vocal mix. How many vocal mixes do you want, you already have four? Let this go and see what happens. The mix went number one and everybody loved it.
RS: Then there was the Serge Devant record with Kyven. Is it
hard to work with a male vocal?
Nick Terranova: No, he has a good voice. The guy was definitely inspiring the track and Sergio is a good producer who writes very well. It was a very good vocal to work with. I like it when people present you with a credible vocal or something good where you can really compliment the original one.
RS: Turning to your original prouductions. With Scream, is
there a story behind that song?
Nick Terranova: Yes, there was a big story behind that song.
Austin Leeds: I don't think there's a story, it was just about listening to a vibe.
Nick Terranova: It probably comes from me and you arguing about it.
Austin Leeds: That's the end product, but the birth was about really feeling Miami. After the "Diskoteka" single, which has a really sexy sultry vocal. The first part I kind of just came up with and then we came up with the second part which is a bit dirtier. It just kind of came together really.
Nick Terranova: Austin didn't want that "would your girlfriend call me a whore" party – he hated it. All the girls loved that part so I kind of smack him around about it.
Austin Leeds: I maybe wanted to be a bit more subtle or a bit more mysterious but that's what naturally happened with the vocal and everything.