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The Insomniax: Exclusive Mix

The duo tell us about their fave love songs plus a jam-filled mix featuring Aaliyah, Jessie Ware and Frank Ocean

Focused around poetic lyricism and soulful beats, the brotherly duo Kai and DSV aka The Insomniax hailing from South London provide a wholly modern take on dub and hip hop influences with their electronic productions. As they release their true story-inspired debut EP, 'Love She Wants', on Earnest Endeavours, they chat to us about their tag team efforts alongside an exclusive mix for us filled with mega-jams from ASAP Rocky and Aaliyah, to Q-Tip...

Dazed Digital: Why do you work so well as a duo?
Often when you’re working on your own, you can get stuck in your mind, whereas when you’re working together it’s easier to bounce ideas around. We’re very honest with each other about what works and what doesn’t work, so we can get through to the better ideas quicker.
Kai Gama: We’ve got lots of shared experiences to draw on, but we may have slightly different vantage points of those experiences. It gives us a kind of three-dimensional approach to music and poetry.

DD: What's the best and worst thing about collaborating with the other?
Kai Gama:
Obviously the best thing is, he’s a very talented individual, and musically I am fan of what he creates in the studio. The worst thing, is the fact that he is everywhere in my life. Family functions, reunions… Even if he’s not there, I’m going to get people asking for him.
DSV: Yeah, I can’t really escape his movement, it’s properly integrated. But the best thing is, we can be very honest with each other.

DD: Tell us a bit about your mix for us?
Kai Gama:
The INX Maintenance Mix is a selection of tunes to keep you tuned up and in tip top condition for when Friday Comes.
DSV: … And Friday does come, thankfully once every 7 days. Let’s celebrate that.

DD: Was Love She Wants based on a real person and story?
Kai Gama:
I can confirm that Love She Wants is inspired by real events, but there has been some creative license used and names have largely been changed to protect the innocent.
DSV: They say life imitates art. But also art imitates life. I think both sayings hold true with this EP.

DD: What is the greatest love song ever written?
Kai Gama:
Hmm. Good Question. I’ve got a few favourites on my shortlist, but I’d go soulful on this one, Etta James – At Last.
DSV: For me, the first song that sprang to mind for me is Laura Nyro – Crazy Love. It’s just an amazing song.

DD: What are you most excited about next?
Kai Gama:
Taking this record on the road. I just can’t wait to share the experience with more of the people of the world who are tuned to the same frequencies as us.
Definitely more shows, and also getting back in the studio, and conjuring up more magic for our next project.

The Insomniax 'Maintenance' Mix by Dazed Digital on Mixcloud

Photos by Teddy Fitzhugh