By Amye Koziel
If you’re tapped into the musical workings of the modern deep dubstep community, Khonsu has surely caused a blip on your radar. Over recent years, the genre has blossomed to worlds beyond the UK basements it was born from, and Khonsu is among the imaginative young producers pushing the genre’s new wave.
In the past two years alone, the Colorado-based artist has released solo EP’s on renowned labels FatKidOnFire, Wheel & Deal, and Anti-Vision. As one of 2019’s new additions to the Sub.mission Resident DJ roster, Khonsu is also stepping up to the decks in a major way. As his personal sound continues its impressive evolution, so too does his growing presence as one of Denver dubstep’s favorite DJs.
Like many of the genre’s current torch-bearers, Khonsu looks to dubstep’s original tradition for inspiration for his tunes.
“A huge portion of my sound and style is directly influenced by artists like Vivek, Mala, Distance, and most of the OG’s. I was pretty much introduced to dubstep and bass music through these artists,” he says.
Since the start of his residency mere months ago, Khonsu has opened for Mala at The Black Box as part of the night’s resident tag set, and performed at the Sub.mission 12 Year Anniversary featuring the Croydub crew. This Saturday, he’s back on support for OldGold and Vivek at the official Shambhala Festival Pre-Party. Not too shabby, for an artist who still refers to himself as a “bedroom producer.”
“I honestly find it insane, being able to open for people like OldGold and Vivek. It may sound lame but I’m a pretty shy bedroom producer, so being able to play and open for the people I have looked up to is pretty unreal to me.”
Today, electronic music is often exemplified by god-status celebrity DJs, and many young aspirants DJ and produce in pursuit of fame. Humble and level headed, Khonsu is not one of these artists. The Sub.mission motto of “Moving people through sound, not hype” is an idea he takes to heart. Khonsu’s attachment to the underground sound is forged from genuine love.
Khonsu describes his status as a Sub.mission resident DJ as an honor: “To me, being a Sub.mission resident is about being part of a team. Being from Texas originally, I remember hearing about the Black Box and Sub.mission and being so inspired by how forward thinking everyone is, and how incredible it is that there are so many like-minded people all pushing the community forward.”
Khonsu spreads this authentic enthusiasm like a contagion through his sets. As a DJ, his approach is pure. Rather than his own ego, Khonsu enjoys playing to the dance floor.
“When it comes to my sets, I never really try to stick to one specific genre or sound. I definitely take into consideration who else is playing that night and what I can do to set a vibe. I usually start my sets off with some lower energy tunes so I can build me set up rather then trying to mix into a ‘Banger’ that the DJ before me finished with.”
This kind of mindful fluidity is also the trademark of Sub.mission resident tag sets. In these b2b’s, the resident DJs bring their own unique flavors to the dance. The bonus challenge lies in blending the individual styles into one seamless, coherent set.
Khonsu considers himself a producer before a DJ; to him, DJ’ing is a way to share the music he loves & makes with an audience hungry to hear it. But his skills on the decks, and his attitude towards the craft, set a shining example for any producer aiming to impress a crowd through their sets.
As to tips for up-and-coming artists, Khonsu’s advice is simple, but wise:
“It’s super cliche, but just be yourself. You never really know what will happen or how it will happen, but if you just have fun and enjoy every moment, I think that’s all you can do. Just be true to yourself and your vision.”
Don’t miss Khonsu performing alongside Vivek and OldGold this Saturday, June 15th, at The Black Box for Denver’s official Shambhala Pre-Party. Tickets are available online: http://bit.ly/shambhala-preparty-denver