We had an absolute blast at Baltimore’s Moonrise Festival. For our second official post-moonrise write up, we spent some time with a shooting star in the Bass world, Peekaboo. His tracks have been dominating the festival scene for over a year, with artists from all over the EDM-genre-spectrum thoroughly rinsing his masterpieces like “Babatunde“, “Wrecking Ball“, and “Maniac“.
Not only did Peekaboo absolutely destroy Moonrise Festival’s Solar Tent, but we also got some amazing candids of him beforehand. Look at these stunning shots of the dashing gentleman hitmaker (that may or may not be posing on a portapotty). Check out our conversation below, we’ve also placed some of our favorite pictures of his Moonrise set throughout the interview!
H: Ari from HIHF here with Peekaboo and his team.
P: Yo! What’s going on?
Just got back from the solar tent and Matt (Peekaboo) tore it down and you know, left ”em in shambles.
That was definitely the best crowd I think I’ve ever had, it was so fucking sick. Amazing crowd.
Typical interview question but still very important. What is the origin of the Peekaboo name?
My buddy Sully, I live with him, met him my first day of school. We all dj’d college parties, frat parties–
Western Michigan University, that’s how we all met each other. So my buddy Sully, one day it was in the summer, I used to go by the name “Inner Circle”. Honestly was just a phase, some chill BS, it was fun. But, basically, I found out that, my mom’s best friend’s cousin is a successful music lawyer, and he actually managed the band Inner Circle in the eighties. He was like “yeah… probably don’t do it anymore, not a great idea”. I was really down about it, was actually about to quit, deleting all these files. So I’m talking to Sully and he’s like “No you can’t quit, lemme help you with the name” and the first thing he said was Peekaboo and I’m like “Oh, Okay” and I just instantly pictured the skull with the hands covering the eyes.
The logo! Your amazing logo!
I paid 200 bucks for that logo.
Well worth it, extremely recognizable and amazing logo.
Thank you. So Peekaboo really started up when RL Grime picked up a track I made “Aftermath” for New Years, then I did a song with Bassnectar, and it really picked up from there.
So, you are going on the Beyond The Senses Tour alongside Rezz, one of the biggest names in Bass music.
Oh yeah, oooh yeahhh. (in excitement)
Just like you, she very much exploded onto the scene. We are big fans of hers and BlackGummy, who’s also on the tour.
Yup BlackGummy is SUPER tight, shoutout BlackGummy. Love his fuckin’ music he’s so good.
So what can you tell us about this tour kind of coming together?
We kind of just connected and just came to that agreement and were like “Damn, yeah, that would be sick” It’s gonna be super fun — we are doing Rezz Rocks! I’m doing twelve dates I think, twelve or thirteen. It kinda just happened. I think it’s perfect though, I’m really excited about it and honored she even wanted me as support. Rezz is super dope, she’s really good friends with my friend Tessa Paisan, who is Twitter famous and also has the worst account on Twitter. They both get along really well so I think we are going to as well. — They only speak Techno.
Well, that tour will definitely be exciting! Next question, can you give us some insight on the process on which EP comes out through which label? We know you’ve released through both Deadbeats and Wakaan, two booming hubs for experimental Bass music.
So, Maniac was my second EP with Wakaan, they both did super well. I wanted to branch out, I love Wakaan and they’re my homies. But I wanna release everywhere, I wanna go everywhere. I wanna do everything, release anywhere I can. I actually just released a track with Wakaan, my collab with Dirt Monkey. That’s what I like about Wakaan and Deadbeats it’s not like you sign it’s more like your part of the family. “Oh, you did a song with us? You’re in, go do whatever you want”. That’s how I want it to be, how it should be.
That’s really important.
Yeah, as an artist it gives me the creative freedom to be like “Oh I don’t have to just make this one genre”. I love them both though they help me so much.
Personally, I feel you have some of the best merch out there. Second Gen was fire, it sold out right away. In like five minutes, it’s absurd, you should be really proud of that. Tell us about the Peekaboo Gear, where your head was at after the first drop and then the second drop.
Thanks so much, so it’s all Electric Family and Top Drawer. Shoutout Robbie from Top Drawer, he’s the man. We all work together on the designs, me, my manager, Top Drawer, and we all have a vision for each line. Gen 1 was more Fall and Gen 2 is more Festival stuff like fans and snapbacks, and we keep it limited cuz we don’t want it to just feel like you can get it whatever, we want it to be important.
Yeah like if they got it in that five minutes, THEY GOT IT.
Yeah, like they fucking got it so it makes it like a collectible. Like it’s a lot of money, I want it to be worth their while.
They’re so hyped to get it too. The sweatshirts, the tye dyes, snapbacks.
Yeah, they go all out. I came out with the generations because like, I see in these merch groups. Bassnectar for example, you go on the page and someones like “Oh, I got this shirt back in 2003” but then there’s really no way to know or record that. So if I’m making merch for the rest of my life I want to stamp it with like Gen 1 Gen 2–
Same with the pins, you want them to be collectibles, 1/90 or whatever, just makes it more limited and meaningful. You own that shit. Not anyone else can get it. But this all sells so fast and we’re really proud of that. I saw kids with the Gen 2 tees and baseball jerseys, LOL I just walked right by them.
I saw people at Lollapalooza in Peekaboo gear. People are wearing it all over the country, probably the world! That’s a good transition. Let’s talk about the Boo Crew, your facebook group. Very active. Very funny. They’ve been pretty meme-happy recently. What can you tell us about the Boo Crew? They’re great, we made that group to further–we keep it very–I’m on every day. I like keeping it fun and engaging, I’ll delete spam and shit that probably shouldn’t be there. But our buddy Tyler he started this meme where–so people were asking for Peekaboo wallpapers and he just posted this picture of me and it blew up from there.
Just means people love you.
I love the Boo Crew. I also love memes haha. We’re almost at 14,000 people. What’s nice is that I can communicate with fans and like I’ll see people talking in the comments and just answer questions. That’s how our merch guy does it too. If people have problems he reaches out there.
What about if you see negativity in there? Do you ever have to shut it down?
Yeah, there is definitely some times where people who are very passionate about other artists. I don’t tolerate it. First of all, no one cares. You are entitled to your opinion but it has nothing to do with the page. I definitely see it but I’ll give people warnings. I’ll say “Hey man you can’t do that” but eventually I’ll just mute them. I don’t want it to be a dictatorship but like eventually there has to be some sort of like — cuz it’s the internet man people get offended by so many things.
And also people are offensive, and they like to piss people off.
They’re looking for a reaction.
I’m on every day though, but we have moderators too who look through. I see what people say so like, but to be honest it’s pretty positive for the most part. Not too much negativity in the Boo Crew.
The alternate headline for this interview is gonna be “Peekaboo Interacts positively with his Facebook Group every single day”, so when you see that on Twitter it’s me.
A year ago today, you were starting to hit the festival scene and put out more music, people are noticing tracks like “Motion” or “Maniac” and eventually, “Babatunde“, with G-Rex is the song of the summer. What was last summer-like compared to this summer?
Well, last summer I was rolling around I wasn’t doing as many festivals like I did a mini-tour thing. It was just me growing as a DJ, I noticed myself playing bigger and bigger rooms. It was just progressing. Now to that, playing the solar stage, it’s wild. I spent all of this January and February writing a fuck ton of music that I’ve been sitting on a bunch, just the difference is crazy. I have a much busier schedule but I’m I don’t care cuz I love it. I literally going to Australia on Wednesday. ’m so tired but I don’t care. We’re about to go off on a two-week Australian mini-tour. Doing Brisbane, Sydney, Auckland, and Perth.
I’m sure you have a lot of these moments but it traveling to Australia for work one where it’s like “Wow I Made It’.
What’s crazy about it is that I’m actually meeting my brother there cuz he lives in Japan and he’s just like “I’m gonna fly to Brisbane”. He’s never seen me play, the first time he’s gonna see me play is in Brisbane. I would have never imagined we’d even be in Australia together. We’re gonna have a sweet time.
Let’s talk collabs for a bit. You’ve collabed with Bassnectar twice now (“Illusion” and “Disrupt The System”). He just closed Bisco with “Illusion”. That song’s huge. What was working with Lorin like?
It’s always a lot of fun! What’s great about “Illusion” to me– well “Disrupt The System” was fun because it was like the first time I had ever worked with a big Dubstep artist. I was actually in the middle of moving from Michigan to LA and literally working on it in Hotels and emailing back and forth.
Then, for “Illusion“, that was sick because — the thing about that song is I had this idea for the song to start with this guy just going “I gotta I gotta I gotta’, I thought it was super hype. The vocals were a bit of a challenge cuz we would go back and forth and be like “I like it this way, I like it that way” then like after a while it just clicked. It’s definitely become one of my favorite songs to play.
You opened with it today.
I did, I don’t normally do that but it’s kind of like a special thing. Had to with this crowd. But working with Lorin is great, we are super proud of how well it’s been received. It’s grown on us a lot, we both love playing it.
You also have an upcoming collab with Zeds Dead.
That track isn’t really finished at all, we haven’t worked on it a lot, but once we get to it. We were just talking about it actually, we’ve both been so busy. We definitely wanna give it like a throwback vibe, almost like “In the Beginning” sort of shit.
The so-called super bowl of Dubstep. Lost Lands Music Festival. What can you tell us about your upcoming set there?
Well, Main Stage. It’s gonna be slapping. Hopefully, I have an EP out by then, I think I will. It’s just gonna be aggressive as shit. If you were at my Sound Camps set last year, it’s gonna be like that just way bigger. I’m super excited. This ones gonna be special.
What about the inaugural Wakaan festival? What about that one? I just played Mulberry Mountain where Wakaan Fest is and it’s awesome. Literally on top of a mountain, on the way there the drive there is beautiful. Love that place.
This one isn’t music-related, cuz we like to think there’s more going on in your life, but not too much more. (Group laughs) TV Shows! What are you watching?
Euphoria was INCREDIBLE, loved it. The soundtrack is my favorite. The song selection, I’m like Shazaming every song. It’s just so well done. Uhhh yeah. Euphoria I’ve been watching — I love South Park. I’m a huge South Park guy. Mr. Robot is coming back so I need to catch up on that. Love that one. Mind fuck the whole way through.
Well, Matt, thanks so much for sitting down with us and taking us into your world. Last question, super wholesome one. Any messages you’d want to share with your fans?
I love you guys. Keep making memes of me.
In that spirit, here’s our last exclusive photo.
Be sure to support Peekaboo on socials and keep an eye out for more music from him by the end of the year.