Two years ago, a group of local DJs and music-lovers from Northeastern, Matt Rohr (Fens), Andre Lira (Doctor Jeep), Zani Doumbia (Elkid), and Travis Reichling (Mzungu) came together to found their own label – one with an idea for releasing their music that we like very much:
“Banana Peel was born as a necessity, really, for ourselves with the changing state of the music industry,” Rohr told the Dig.
“I really just wanted to throw tradition to the wind and try to get good momentum behind a label where the music, and everything, would be totally free – where it would simply be about making connections through music, and through club nights.”
What started as a label focused on house and techno also transitioned with the changing state of electronic musical affairs. Their third release, J-Hilla’s River Runs Red EP, offers a hypnotic serving of UK dubstep – his clean and exotic beats annihilating the pervasive stereotype that dubstep is “dirty,” “filthy,” and, well, bad. Here’s his latest podcast:
Or the assumption, based on festivals like Identity, that younger generations appreciate raging their faces off more than the art of meticulous DJing and electronic music production. All of the artists with releases on BPR (Doctor Jeep, Elkid, Fens, Mzungu, J-Hilla) are under 25.
“Banana Peel represents well-curated electronic music, as a simple definition,” Rohr explains. “We can be picky about who we work with sometimes, but we’re open to everyone. We like to work with people who don’t swing a big ego around, and hopefully will be able to DJ really well, too.”
Tomorrow night at a soon-to-be-released location in Allston, Banana Peel are teaming up with Green Villain to do what they do best: throw a giant dance party. Fens, J-Hilla, and Mzungu of Banana Peel will be DJing, along with special guest REWROTE of another DIY collective of young producers, M|O|D, followed by sets by the Green Villain crew, Cloy Pi and Emet.
Needless to say, Fens is pumped.
“Either be there, or don’t. Either way, it’s definitely gonna be happening. Two years of pounding the pavement is gonna aggregate immensely.”
“I don’t think people who will be coming are truly gonna be ready.”
BANANA PEEL 2-YEAR ANNIVERSARY
WITH FENS, J-HILLA, MZUNGU (BPR)
CLOY PI, EMET (GREEN VILLAIN)