Israeli born and raised DJ duo RIOT, Tom Davidson and Daniel Magid, recently relocated to Los Angeles, CA to bring their mix of progressive melodies and heavy bass-lines to the music capital of the world! Their style mixes two extremes of electronic music which energizes their fanbase to make an immediate impression and memory that can last a lifetime. RIOT has released multiple chart topping originals on Monstercat, Dim Mak, and Insomniac records which includes collaborations with Kayzo, Slander and Dirty Phonics. Along with trend setting originals RIOT has massive remixes for heavy hitters Infected Mushroom, Knife Party and Pegboard Nerds! Their collaboration ‘Wake Up’ with Kayzo has 20+ million streams on Spotify and currently lives as one of the most played dubstep tracks on Spotify! Their collaboration with Slander ‘You Don’t Even Know Me’ which is featured on Slander’s EP ‘Headbangers Ball’ has over 3+ million streams on Spotify and hit top 10 on iTunes Dance Charts. In 2019 RIOT will be releasing their debut EP on Monstercat and doing their first headlining world tour! Catch RIOT at a city near you, and get ready to join THE MOB!
Discovery Project Winner Interview (2016)
Currently Living: Los Angeles
Origin of Name: We didn’t give it much thought. We looked for something that would suit our music and energy onstage, and “Riot” was a perfect match.
Weapon of Choice: Sidechain compression
Source of Power: “Free Bird” by Lynyrd Skynyrd—I give it a listen every time I get a creative block.
What advice would you offer someone who’s thinking about entering the Discovery Project competition?
The best advice we can give is to think out of the box—production-wise, and also while working on the DJ set. A lot of producers/DJs nowadays tend to copy trends—we do, too, sometimes [laughs]; a little bit here and there is fine—but it’s important to be true to that little voice inside of you. That voice is the reason we all got into this in the first place, right?
Tom & Daniel. 26 years old. Originally from Israel and freshly relocated to L.A. as of two months ago.
Daniel Magid: Our journey began four years ago, when my cousin sent some of my early dubstep demos to his best friend [Tom], who was already a pretty big DJ back in Israel.
Tom Davidson: As a kid, I was always drawn to music. I would get my computer from home and throw parties at school between classes, and when I was 13 years old, I took all the checks I got for my bar mitzvah and bought my first DJ gear. I taught myself how to mix, and I got a job as a cleaner at a local club, just to listen and take notes from other DJs.
Daniel: Before electronic music, music was always a huge part of my life. I played in a lot of bands as a drummer—mainly metal and hardcore stuff—and it was really rare to see me without headphones wherever I went. I always knew that music is what I wanted to do with my life, and when I discovered electronic music, I was hooked.
Was there one particular moment in the recording or mixing process for your Discovery Project entry that made you feel like you were creating something pretty damn special?
Working on “Lock the Block” was certainly very fun. We had a vision, and we went for it and actually finished it really quickly. It took us three days, and we couldn’t be happier with the result. It came together super fast; often the best tracks do, at least for us!
Tell us about your most memorable night out—as an artist, or as a fan.
Starting out, once we had what we believed was our own sound back then, we tried reaching out to a lot of our favorite artists; we still do, to this day. Infected Mushroom were always a huge inspiration for us, as artists and as people who made it out of our small country with nothing but amazing music. One day, we decided to hit them up on their Facebook page with some of our music, and surprise, surprise—we got a response! We were stoked. They gave us honest feedback.
Looking back, we sent them some awful tracks, and they were still nice enough to give us advice and help us out as much as they could. That lit a fire inside us. After a few months, they had a remix contest for “Kipod,” so we decided to give it a shot. It took us a whole month to finish our remix, and on the last day, we submitted it. When we realized we’d won, we went out to grab some McDonald’s and celebrate. It’s been two years now, and they still play it in almost every set. Definitely a day we won’t forget.
What should everyone just shut the fuck up about?
Ghost producing—because bitching about it won’t really make a difference. Also, sample packs are there for a reason. Young producers should be encouraged to find their own sound, and sample packs help a lot.
How would you describe your sound to a deaf person?
[They’re] better off deaf—probably.
What’s the hardest professional lesson you’ve learned thus far? How did it make your life easier—or more difficult?
Creating electronic music is a craft that is very hard to master. Like a musical instrument, it takes time, dedication, and a lot of practice to see results and progress. One of the things that held us back while we were starting out was the mixdown and overall sound of our tracks. We simply weren’t happy with it, and we spent hours upon hours trying to mix that snare better or find a better bass drum, because our tracks didn’t sound like any of the professional tracks we were listening to back then.
Our advice: Don’t get stuck on these kinds of things. Finish the track as best you can, and move forward to the next one. You’ll always look back on a track and say to yourself, “It could’ve been better,” no matter how many hours you put into it. When you enter a healthy loop of finishing tracks, you’ll see progress much faster!