Destructo: Business and pleasure
Fri 5th Oct, 2012 Features 954 viewsin
This summer, Gary Richards is coming to Stereosonic with two roles to play. Firstly, he’s on-board in his DJ guise as Destructo, slinging house, techno and electro into the mix. Secondly, he’ll be presiding over the HARD Arena, an offshoot of the parties the L.A. native has been throwing in his hometown since 2007. Richards created HARD Events with the idea of doing things differently, and in 2012 he’s at the helm of an accelerating ship. There’s HARD Summer, an L.A. festival that this year assembled its most diverse and forward-thinking line-up to date, the Bahamas cruise with the feverish following Holy Ship!, the upcoming Boys Noize live U.S. tour and HARD Day Of The Dead in downtown L.A.
Richards has assembled a formidable cast in the HARD Arena at Stereosonic, including Gesaffelstein, Mr Oizo, Brodinski and Zedd. According to the main man, it’s going to be a riot. We caught him on the phone to hear all about it.
So we’ve caught you after a busy work day. What’s on the immediate horizon for HARD Events?
We’ve got the Day Of The Dead in Los Angeles, and then the Hard Arena at Stereosonic. Then there’s the Boys Noize tour around North America, then Holy Ship!. I always knew Holy Ship! was something special, but to see it all happen the way I envisaged it was pretty exciting. I DJed Friday night in Boston and I had these kids come from Vermont, from D.C., from New York, with the Holy Ship! flag, banners and t-shirts.
I wanted to ask you about that set. How often do you get a chance to play that long?
That was the first time ever. A normal set for me is like an hour, and I’ve been pushing it out to play 90 minutes in the last couple of months. When I get to the two-hour mark, often the clubs over here in America are ready to close, but I’m ready to keep going. This club booked me for an after-hours that runs from 1am to 6am, and they told me I could start at one and end whenever I want.
About 4am, I started checking my watch like, “OK, this final hour better come quickly!” But it was awesome, kind of a milestone. Now I know I can do it. Normally in an hour set, it’s a rollercoaster. On a late night, I could play everything and take some chances. I played more mellow stuff and some of my remixes. Plus it’s an after-hours, too, so it’s a totally different vibe.
How did the HARD Arena at Stereosonic come about, then?
We’ve never really done that before. I’ve been asked a lot of times, but we figured we could just do it on our own. Playing Stereosonic last year and meeting all those guys, I feel like we all hit it off. The arena I played in was a mixture of electro and dubstep and it didn’t necessarily have continuity to it; it kinda worked. Last year, I was playing AC/DC’s Dirty Deeds into crazy techno, and the guy before me was playing dubstep.
This time, I’ve curated it with them to make something cohesive. In Australia, our brand is growing. It’ll be for people looking for something different at the festival. I noticed people wanted to get to that main arena for Avicii or LMFAO, but out of 70,000 people, there’s a couple of thousand who want something different. We have that for them in our zone.