From the mid '90s to the mid noughties, there were few electronic dance music acts as big as Deep Dish. The Washington D.C. power duo of Ali "Dubfire" Shirazinia and Sharam Tayebi helped lift house music from the underground to the mainstream via glossy pop production value and infectious vocal hooks.
But the pair split up in 2006. And while Sharam continued a pop approach to dance music, Dubfire's new solo career gave him the freedom he'd always sought to explore cutting-edge electronic sounds and technologies. He has since reinvented himself as one of the most innovative artists and tastemakers on the international techno scene.
This Sunday, Dubfire will be joining a hefty lineup of international star DJs at Treehouse for LINK and Miami Rebels' Coccon Heroes party. Crossfade caught up with the sensation himself to chat about the possibility of a Deep Dish reunion, his thoughts on the future of EDM, and what's been going on with this SCI+TEC label.
Crossfade: You and Sharam took very different stylistic directions as solo producers. How much of those individual styles were at play when you produced together as Deep Dish? Was it an advantage as far as the sound you wanted to have collaboratively, or did it ultimately cause creative differences?
Dubfire: Those stylistic differences that we had existed well before Sharam and I ever met. And they most certainly created the unique dynamic that we had as DJs and producers, which led to our specific sound. My tenure in that partnership was extremely exciting, free and full of experimentation. But it came equally with bouts of frustration, in-fighting and disagreements about our collective vision for Deep Dish.
But that difficult dynamic, as I've always said, was the source of the Deep Dish sound and aesthetic. And towards the end, I think that both of us grew tired of the fighting and compromises we had to make at every turn. I am very proud of the overall scope of work we did. But there comes a time to turn the page.
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Do you think there may ever be another collaboration between Sharam and yourself as Deep Dish?
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Collaboration? I don't know. That remains to be seen. Because we've both since moved onto successful solo careers and, musically, don't really speak the same language anymore. But what I CAN tell you is that we're presently dusting off all the old DAT tapes in our vault in preparation for an exhaustive retrospective boxset which will be a lengthy process to put together. Perhaps that will be the catalyst to a renewed creative alliance between us.
What's been going on with your label SCI+TEC this year? And what can fans expect next? Any new releases or artist signings to look forward to?