By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Abel Folgar
By Kat Bein
By Jacob Katel
By Karli Evans
By Jose D. Duran
By Pablo Chacon Alvarez
There's a loud, all-up-in-your-face sound coming out of Miami that's making waves in clubs across America. It's got a hip-hop lean and a tropical vibe. It's dirty, sexy, and full of hype. And it's coming from a converted dorm across the street from Miami Dade College in Kendall.
"Our whole thing has always been just doing whatever we think is cool. It could be house music, could be trap music, could be moombahton, could be polka," Mejia says. "Just good music."
Ironically, though, the guys behind raunchy bangers "Booty Bounce" and "Shake Dem" aren't big partiers. Before GTA's first major release, Toth says, he'd played only mall-college events in bars and hookah lounges. Now he and Mejia are flying out to Los Angeles to play HARD parties and going on nationwide tours.
But all of that traveling hasn't changed their partying habits.
"I personally don't enjoy going out to clubs all the time," Toth says. "The music has evolved into being something like a status kind of thing."
And because these dudes aren't driven by "the life" or "the scene," they have more time to spend in Toth's bedroom turned studio, working on entirely fresh, epic experiments.
The GTA home base, though, is not a glamorous place. It's just a room with a couch, a table, a desk, a computer, and an Akai MPK49 MIDI controller keyboard. Of course, there's also the obligatory pair of turntables.
They "padded the walls" with a couple of strips of foam, but they've still had cops knock on their door, asking them to turn it down. Apparently, not everyone understands that the kids on the third floor are trying to take over EDM.
Day and night, Toth and Mejia make music because they love it. Instead of using prepackaged synths, they build their own. Instead of pigeonholing themselves into a certain trend or genre, they mix and match whatever sounds come out of their heads that day. The main goal is making music for themselves and knocking entire crowds on their asses. It's that simple.
"We want people to understand that our sound goes everywhere. We want people to expect that but also be really clueless as to what we're going to do next. We keep people guessing and keep it exciting for them, just as we keep it exciting for us," Mejia says.
"We really just want to make people go crazy over it, whether it be something that's popular now or even if it's next-level.
"Like, this is the future, and people aren't really feeling it now. But next week, it'll be like, 'Damn, fuck, what song is that? I love GTA. I'm gonna buy all their music now.' "