Get To Know: Dense & Pika

We are very happy to have Dense & Pika lined up for this Q&A. They've seen a rapid rise in popularity over the last two years with a couple of stunning boiler room sets and some impressive releases. Having been clearly marked aside as budding stalwarts by Hotflush record boss Scuba, various releases on his label have helped pave their rise to critical acclaim. You will know them for tracks such as 'Colt' and their hypnotic remix of Paul Woolfords epic Techno masterpiece 'Erotic Discourse', but their are plenty of other stunning credits to their name.

We caught up with Dense & Pika to find out what makes them tick, how their live performances work and what we can expect to hear in the future...



A Growing force within the international techno scene at the moment with releases on a plethora of highly regarded labels, where and how did this partnership start developing?


We met in a record shop in Soho in 2005 and have been mates ever since.  Soon after that we started working in the studio together.



Here at yo, we've always been very interested how partnerships work in the studio. do you both have defined and specific roles in the engineering and creative process?


One of us generally starts an idea and if we are both into it we bounce it between our studios for about a month and then spend a few days on it together. 



Pretty much all of your tracks are stamped onto wax, is this something that the labels you release with insist on or something engrained in your personal production ethos?


We insist of pressing wax on our own Kneaded Pains label but its not something we insist on with other labels.  In some cases its just not viable and it can stagnate a release as there are long waits at pressing plants these days.




We thoroughly enjoyed your boiler room last year. already in under one year it's had more views than your one from back in 2013 showing just how far you've come on since then. we noticed you have a live set up we've not seen before. can you talk us through what it consists of software and hardware wise, and how how you came up with it?


We generally use two laptops, Roland 909, Tetra and various midi controllers and delay pedals depending on how much space we have to set up and how far away the gig is.  It’s taken us a while to get to this set up and it is still constantly evolving to keep things interesting for us.





We played with Nina Kravitz last week and it was the first time we have heard her.  She played brilliantly and we where really into her track selection.   We also always enjoy Surgeon, Derrick May & Jeff Mills.



Did you predict the success that emerged around one of our favourite releases from 2013: 'Colt'? Can we expect any more melody driven techno from you in the near future?


Yes we are always surprised when things we write go down well.  The 'Colt' ep was a lot more accessible to the masses than some of our other releases.



Do you ever find the hectic lifestyle encompassed by touring puts pressure on your partnerships?


Yes definitely, it’s not easy being away from home all the time especially when you have kids.  We have 3 kids between us so our manager has to do a lot of juggling; we have to take a lot of red eye flights.



What is it like to work with scuba on hotflush?


Great, he’s a lovely guy and Hotlfush is one of our fave labels.




What is your strangest club appearance & experience?


Getting picked up for a gig in Russia by a very strange driver in full camouflage clothing who proceeded to eat a raw potato on the way to the hotel.



Favourite city to perform in the world?


We love playing at Awakenings in Amsterdam.



Have you guys got a planned release strategy over the coming year or are you free styling it? if so what can you tell us about what's coming up?


Next year we have lots of new material coming out on Hotflush & Kneaded Pains, some melodic and some less so.  We have also been doing a lot of remix's recently of 'Rudimental, Leftfield, Honne & Maya Jane Coles's Nocturnal Sunshine project.