Philly DJ/Producer Dirty South Joe’s been grinding for years (and was once a PW contributor). He spun his first show at Washington, D.C.’s 9:30 Club (between sets by U.K. shoegaze bands Ride and Lush) in 1990, and has balled in Philly for about 10 years. He played some of the legendary Hollertronix parties at the Ukie back in the day, is currently a Mad Decent Mondays regular and is opening for Diplo at Union Transfer this Thursday. We met DSJ last week in Northern Liberties to talk about the show; the Cool Records label he’s launching; and Luvstep, his collaborative project with Philly’s Flufftronix, which releases its next album on Valentine’s Day.
What’s your set gonna be like at UT?
Everything from trap rap to U.K. funky sounds, dubstep and moombahton. A lot of stuff by my crew, Brick Bandits, and some Baltimore, Jersey and Philly club jams. New sounds from the global bass world. I’m gonna hold back a couple bangers just for Diplo. [Laughs] I play small venues all the time, so when I get on a big stage like this, I just wanna throw the fuck down.
When’s the first Cool Records release dropping?
In January. It’s an EP by Brick Bandits member Tim Dolla. Two tracks are remixed by these kids from Monterrey, Mexico, named Sheequo Beat and DJ Otto. Initiating collaborative projects between young artists across the globe is a big deal to me right now. A new kind of electronic dance music artist is emerging from the younger crowd, which is very versatile and has very diverse influences. All these strange sounds are meshing together. Over the last few years, I’ve heard sounds I don’t recall ever hearing before. With the new label, we’re gonna keep it as youth-oriented as possible and close to the streets, even if those streets are everywhere.
How does Luvstep compare with dubstep and the aggro/brostep stuff made by dudes like Skrillex?
Dubstep’s a major part of Luvstep, but it’s not dubstep. And, you can be out brostepping all day long, but eventually you gotta go home to see your girlfriend or your wife. Luvstep’s futuristic make-out music—it’s what’s for dinner after a hard day of brostepping. But the brostep thing is cool because kids are always gonna love loud and noisy music. It’s filling up arenas all over the country, which never would’ve happened 10 years ago. It’s awesome.
Luvstep’s more romantic?
Definitely. People were having sex during our last rave in Minneapolis. I didn’t see it, but the promoter told us a couple was just going at it. I heard they let them finish. A couple in Buffalo told me they fucked all the time while listening to us. That’s amazing. It’s a sign Luvstep’s working.
Dirty South Joe performs Thurs., Dec. 29, 9pm. $20. With Diplo + Xaphoon Jones. Union Transfer, 1026 Spring Garden St. 215.232.2100. utphilly.com
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PW's Music Issue 2014