But before her talents made her a global draw, she worked her way up the DJ ranks, honing her craft and mastering the CDJs. Eventually, she became a fan favorite with her deft selections, bubbly personality and undeniable energy. Plus, it didn’t hurt to have a production catalog filled with anthems like “Bass Drum Dealer (B.D.D),” “Stomper,” “Radioactive,” “Godzilla,” “Blaze of Glory” and her most recent dancefloor weapon, “Badass” with Born Dirty.
This past Labor Day weekend at New York’s Electric Zoo festival, Lunoe – as a part of her HYPERHOUSE brand takeover with AC Slater’s Night Bass – closed out the Sunday School Grove Tent to an enthusiastic crowd.
Serving up a tasty blend of electronic flavors with a sprinkle of hip-hop tunes, the flawlessly transitioned, 90-minute B2B performance set the tone for what was to come in a more intimate environment.
Later that evening, she made her way to Analog, a gritty Brooklyn venue, for another back-to-back set, this time with U.K. talent, Redlight. In the industrial, neon-lit club, the duo dropped hard-hitting house into the wee hours for a crowd that didn’t want the party to ever end. Quite a day.
Of course, DJ Times was there for all the festivities and squeezed out a few on-the-record moments with the ever-busy Aussie to discuss her past, present and future.
DJ Times: HYPERHOUSE has come quite a long way since its inception. How does it feel to throw down a proper 90-minute set at your own festival stage at Electric Zoo?
Anna Lunoe: It’s funny how things happen. It’s been such a week-by-week growth for me… There was some discussion about whether we wanted to close the stage and be up against the other headliners, and I was just ready for it. I had my “put me in the ring, pop!” moment where I just knew I was up to it, and it was honestly so enjoyable and fun. I was ready for it, and it felt great.
DJ Times: How did you first combine with AC Slater? When did you two realize that your two brands fit together?
Lunoe: We have been friends for 10 years. We have outlived a million fads and trends. We both know what we are and what we are best at – and HYPERHOUSE and Night Bass fit together and complement each other well, so it’s a natural fit. He has played my events and I have played his – and we all love each other, so it’s a no-brainer, really. When it comes down to it, all we have ever wanted to do is party with our friends.
DJ Times: You’ve played at a number of biggest festivals and clubs across the globe. Are you more of a festival gal or do you prefer playing for intimate crowds?
Lunoe: Both! Always! Need the balance. It’s like saying sweet or salty, you know? Balance is key.
DJ Times: Being in the electronic-dance-music game as long as you have, what are some changes you’ve noticed over the years?
Lunoe: Oh, wow, how long do you have? The changes are infinite. The world and everything about the music industry has changed in 10 years. An easier question is what is still the same because it’s barely the same sport. What I know now is that staying true to yourself is key, and that slow and steady is a great way to play. It’s been a nice steady rise for me and, as I mentioned, I have felt ready for each step… for the most part.
DJ Times: You’ve gone from FBi Radio in Australia to Beats 1 on Apple Music. With great power comes great responsibility and being a bonafide tastemaker is no easy task. Is there a certain pressure when you have your own radio show compared to your traditional DJ sets?
Lunoe: Yes, with radio, I feel pressure to represent a wider proportion of artists, touch on more scenes, represent people doing what they do well… whereas in my DJ sets I think, “Is this song me? Does it resonate with me?” Selfish, huh?
DJ Times: What DAW are you using these days when it comes to production?
Lunoe: I’m currently using Ableton Live 10.
DJ Times: Walk us through a studio session with Anna Lunoe.
Lunoe: I light all the candles and burn the pine wood, listen to two or three songs I have been vibing that week. Then I dive in and try to fearlessly make whatever comes out for about one or two hours before I question anything. After that I think, “Do I like this? What even is this song about?”
DJ Times: You’re always open to receiving demos from producers both big and small. What is it that catches your ear when sorting through your inbox?
Lunoe: That is a million-dollar question. It’s a feeling… a feeling of boldness and freedom… fearlessness to step away from what is safe. You know it when you hear it.
DJ Times: Your recent collaboration with Born Dirty, “Badass,” turned into quite the summer anthem. How did that track come together?
Lunoe: We just sat in a room and tried things for like four days before we clicked into that idea. Once the vocal was laid out, we knew we had something. I started playing Born Dirty on [my Beats1 radio show] HYPERHOUSE around early 2016, and he’s always made some of the most interesting house music. I invited him over one day we instantly hit it off. We actually started a few demos when I was pregnant, but it was too hard writing for me then, so we waited and re-approached it this year. It was a total team effort, and I love how cheeky the track turned out.
DJ Times: You’ve never been one to shy away from using your vocals on a track. As a producer, it’s got to be convenient to know you’ll be able to deliver a proper topline yourself.
Lunoe: It’s the basis of me as an artist. I start with a vocal and a vibe, and then I build around it. If the vocal is right, the rest will slowly find its groove. Sometimes I wish I wasn’t like that and just churned out crazy bangers with no vocals, but that’s not my strength. The vocals give me the message and the world the song lives in, and I go from there.
DJ Times: What’s next for you?
Lunoe: Sleep! [Fall] is about catching up and remembering who I am and what I want to say and finally getting my washing done and hugging my baby girl [Willa] all day before she is too big to hug me back.