Search form

Scroll To Top

Joey LaBeija's Violator EP Will Bring Hedonism to Dead NYC Club Culture

Joey LaBeija's Violator EP Will Bring Hedonism to Dead NYC Club Culture

Joey Labeija

"I've seen boys giving blowjobs during my DJ sets, and that's the energy I always want to create with music."

"I remember growing up here in New York, going out and having the best nights of my life," recalls queer DJ/producer Joey LaBejia, who was born and raised in the Bronx. "The neighborhoods we would rave in have turned into suburbs, like Kent Avenue in Williamsburg. Going to places, like Death by Audio and Monkey Town, tripping on mushrooms when people were really experimenting with music--those days were, and still are, so important to me. But they're gone."

Labejia's new EP, Violator, addresses this cultural shift through five tracks created out of frustration with today's NYC club music and culture. Having watched these spaces evolve from "pure hedonism" to ones where clubgoers post about their fun, rather than truly experience it, LaBeija created his EP for the nightlife environment NYC no longer fosters. "I wanted to make music that would make people lose their minds," he said. "I've seen boys giving blowjobs during my DJ sets, and that's the energy I always want to create with music--no fucks given, absolute insanity."

The project's pounding lead single, "XXXCUSE ME," is certainly unabashed, with its searing synths and incessant beats--hardstyle-leaning with colorful West Indian understones. Violator's remaining tracks are equally ruthless, best described by one title in particular, "Mindscrambler." Much like an emergency defibrillator, LaBeija's new music is purposefully electric, preparing to revive NYC's club scene with its aggressive, ear-shattering production.

Sonically, Violator references all the early music that helped shape LaBeija into the DJ he's become today. His mother, who's Puerto Rican and from Harlem, helped inform these early discoveries, from latin house to disco, soul, salsa and merengue. LaBeija's sisters, who were "total '90s R&B girls," played a major role in developing his music taste, as well. All these sounds are referenced throughout Labeija's forthcoming project, tightly packed in one EP to reflect New York's incredible cultural collision.

"Being from the Bronx, it's in your nature to love hip-hop and rap," LaBeija says. "I went to a very small Catholic high school in New Rochelle, where I hung out with the very Italian girls, [who] introduced me to techno and house. When I was 14, I started hanging out in Union Square, which is when I was introduced to hardcore, metal, rock, electro-clash and hardstyle. Growing up in New York and having so many different types of friends really gave me this crazy encyclopedia of music. that I've stayed true to from day one."

Joey LaBeija's Violator EP, which comes out March 23, is now available for pre-order, here.

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

Justin Moran