Via App, the Brooklyn-based DJ and electronic producer, is up for a challenge. That is, Dylan Scheer doesn't just make challenging music—but actively challenges the dilution of techno: Scheer leads a cadre of DJs renovating the underground electronic scene from a boys' club into something more welcoming. Her innovative vigor—as seen on 2016's Sixth Stitch on Break World— and legendarily experimental performances have opened up a playfully dissonant new sonic space whose warped energy is both infectious and invigorating. Ahead of Via App's performance at Brooklyn Bazaar on Saturday May 20, Scheer caught up with AdHoc to talk DIY geography, DJ technique, and future plans.
As an electronic musician, you’ve performed as both a DJ and a live musician. What’s the difference for you?
In doing both, I think about collaging different styles and attitudes into something narrative. I think these references are more traceable when I DJ. I have control over more variables when playing live, but I have a broader range to pull from when I'm DJing. My approach and experience are definitely more rooted in playing live, but also in constantly collecting and learning about electronic and experimental music.
You started the Via App project while in Boston, working in the DIY electronic scene there. How has living in New York changed your approach to creation, either in terms of material conditions or more stylistically?
There's more pressure for output. So that does change my relationship to the work—for better or for worse. There's a cool community of makers here. There are a lot of people who are really devoted to what they do, and who make work with unique voices. That is exciting to me and has probably influenced my sound quite a bit in writing to play as part of a night of varied sounds, and writing for New York venues. This isn't to say that those people weren't in Boston, but there were a lot of external factors like cop presence at DIY shows, conservative laws around clubs which made it hard to foster a growing dance music community. so I think my work moved at a different pace and mostly developed in my room.
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