Climbers: "We are all one"

Words by: Marcus Barnes
Posted: 18/10/12 7:51

Interview with Jay Blakk and Kiko Deal AKA ClimbersOn Richy Ahmed's I Voice podcast last year there was a track (among many great ones) that really captured my imagination. A month or so down the line I managed to interview Richy and found out the track was Go With The Flow by the Climbers.

From then onwards I did my best to seek them out, find more of their music and get in touch with them. In the months since I've seen their popularity rocket and deservedly so, Kiko and Jay are so humble and, creatively they're always on point producing some great music. They spent a couple of months in London recently and I caught them just after their time here, during a mini-tour of South America, here's what they had to say...

How's it all going at the moment, you've just played Colombia right? How was that? Where are you going next?
Jay: It was sick. It was our first time there and then we're off to Ecuador for a gig there, then back home. We're going to spend two weeks there with family and friends, then we have three months of touring around South America and Europe.

You guys are so busy at the moment, it's crazy.
Jay: Yeah it's been really crazy to just see all the things you wished you could see and once it hits you you're overwhelmed by everything you know?

Yeah, it's mad. I was just going through our old mails and we first made contact in December last year. It's been 10 months since then and you guys have done so much...
Kiko: Thanks bro.

Do you feel like you've changed much as people since then?
Kiko: I guess you'd have to ask our friends and family... but speaking for ourselves I'd say we've changed in a spiritual way, we feel really grateful for everything that's happening.

Jay: I also think that once you start living your dream you learn to start being more humble and are grateful for all the experiences, good or bad because at least you're not working in an office. You're trying to just spread love and be happy about your life, and be happy that you can share all these feelings with other people.

I remember when we were speaking on Facebook earlier this year and I told you, “London is excited to have you” - how was your experience here?

Jay: London was so great. At first when we realised we were going there I had a bad nervous breakdown here in Mexico because I didn't know what to expect because you hear all these stories that London is the Mecca of electronic music... but once we got there all the people that we met, all the musicians and especially all the crowds we had the pleasure to play for... for us it was like, it was even bigger than I thought.

And London was a life changing experience for me and I think I speak for both of us when I say London is one of the best places in the world if you want to really succeed.

So have you had the time to work on some new stuff?
Jay: Actually, while we were in Europe we finished two tracks with two great friends of ours, Nelsky and Silky. Also we finished three new tracks with Betoko and one remix for Betoko and we just finished a remix for M A N I K.

So right now we're excited to have all the stuff coming out and we just signed another EP with Get Physical. I mean, even though we're so happy with everything we want do more and explore new ideas with friends so it's been really really good.

I heard Betoko's got a sick studio.
Kiko: It's amazing.

Jay: Yeah, you have to go it's so sick.

How does it compare with the studio you guys work at?
[They both laugh]
Jay: It's like comparing the first version of the Beatle to a Lamborghini! You have to see it.

Where's your studio then?
Jay: It's at Kiko's new place, upstairs from the kitchen.

So it's quite a simple set-up?
Jay: We have a M25 midi keyboard, two rocket 5-inch monitors, a Numark audio card, a laptop and a stand for the laptop.

Oh yeah?
Jay: That's the most important thing.

For sure, you don't need millions and millions of pounds to make good music and you guys prove that.
Jay: It has to be the creativity. One of the things that we always try to do is, especially Kiko, before we hit the studio, we try not to listen to electronic music at all because we want to give the best of ourselves. We think if you hear a lot of electronic music you get so many ideas from other artists rather than trying to explore yourself and your own sound.

The one thing that we always felt comfortable talking about was the universe & that we are all one. Each track we make comes with that idea, positive ideas & that no matter goes on, something good will happen. That's the whole idea behind Climbers music...That must be difficult for you because you DJ as well?
Jay: Yeah it's difficult, but for me everytime I hear a track I try to take a step back and take a day where I don't hear any beats or tracks. Then once we get together, we try to incorporate our ideas into something new and fresh.

How have you found Colombia for inspiration?
Kiko: It's pretty good man, it's really different to our town in Mexico mainly because we have such hot weather in Mexicali. Here it's pretty fresh and cloudy and that helps because in Mexico it's really really hot. We just landed for the summer and we left straight away to come here.

Have you been to South America before?
Jay: No, actually this gig in Colombia was our first South American one. So each city and place we go is brand new for us.

It must be so great to visit so many places and meet so many new people.
Kiko: Yeah man, it's really good - when I think about the whole tour and the people I've met, it's a great feeling.

Do you miss home much when you're away?
Kiko: I guess sometimes. When we were in London at the end of the tour we felt pretty homesick.

What do your families think of what you're doing, they must be proud.
Jay: I remember our parents thought we were pretty crazy for wanting to do what we're doing but now they're really proud of us for not giving up and really working hard in terms of building a strong foundation around us and working to get our gigs. We're really happy that our families are proud because at the end of the day families are really important.

ClimbersYou guys seem to have a real spiritual outlook, where does that come from?
Jay: Since Kiko and I met we've always spoken about the law of attraction and the power of the universe. He had a different set up, playing in bands, while I was making electronic music but the one thing that we always felt comfortable talking about was the universe and that we are all one. Each track we make comes with that idea, positive ideas and that no matter goes on, something good will happen. That's the whole idea behind Climbers music.

Yeah I really felt that when I saw you guys play at Hoxton Docks, I felt like the whole room was united as one.
Jay: Yeah Hoxton Docks was such an incredible vibe. The atmosphere, the whole crew and meeting you and all the great people dancing and being one, that was one of the main highlights of the tour. And Basing House... all the parties in London were so great.

Looking to the future, have you guys thought about possibly doing an album?
Kiko: We're thinking about it but it's not the time yet. We don't want to rush it... we want to finish some more EPs and next year we have the idea to do a live act.

Oh wow, cool.
Kiko: So we'd prefer to finish that first then we can start thinking about the album.

Yeah, and Kiko you have experience in bands right?
Kiko: I played in bands when I was a teenager, totally different background to what I do now. I don't know how I could incorporate that into a live act, but we're working on it and it'll be ready next year.

So, when are you back in London?
Jay: We'll be back in mid-November and we're really excited to be back in Europe.

And, after the tour will you be in Mexicali for an extended period?
Jay: That's what we're talking about right now because we're really really thinking about moving to Barcelona. For now we're just working through the logistics... we've heard it's pretty cheap and has nice beaches, beautiful people and good weather as well. You can have a really cool place for cheap rent and for us, to have inspiration it really depends a lot on the weather, people and... life.

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