eoin dj has burst into the spotlight the last year, but this ascent has come with a quiet yet steady history that predates their newfound success. Hailing from the vibrant west coast town of Galway, it’s here where foundations were set, throwing parties, learning on the fly with a series of early residencies and seizing the opportunity to curate lineups for a club’s room 2, – a formative period that laid the groundwork for their DJing prowess and event curation skills for wherever they went next. Now based in London, they’ve found a further fresh wellspring of inspiration and community in the eclectic music scene here since their relocation. Eoin’s music and approach to DJing has followed a similar ethos, with their dynamic and adaptable versatility of high-energy techno, indulgent hard house, rolling progressive cuts and big room trance numbers, continuing to ignite dancefloors and give crowds a proper dance-workout.
Along for most of their journey since their Galway days has been Byron Yeates, a fellow DJ and producer, and founder of party and label Radiant Records. It’s here where Eoin looks to has thus far found a regular home for their productions, with two of their early tracks emerging on the Radiant Records IWD compilations, and a full EP on the label titled ‘Total Body’ released last month. We caught up with Eoin to chat about their early Galway days, moving to London, happy production accidents, their new danceloor-heavy EP, and becoming a resident at hot queer London rave Club Are. Going in with an hour of full-blast trance, rolling house and old school epics, Eoin DJ’s Truancy Volume will have you out your seat barely a minute in.
Hey Eoin, thanks for taking out the time to answer some questions and doing this mix for us! So just to start, how have you been, and if you were to summarize the last 12 months in a small paragraph what would you say? Any particular highlights? “Hi hi thanks for having me, been following truants for years it’s a real pleasure. Been enjoying London slowly shift into spring and the regeneration that comes with it. It’s finally feeling like a new year is kicking in. The last 12 months have been the most transformative of my life I think. I moved from Glasgow at the end of 2022 with the intention of focusing on music and since then my life has changed very quickly. I’ve been incredibly lucky to meet lots of amazing and inspiring people and friends in a city that might feel unsustainable and overwhelming without them.
It’s hard for me to think of things in terms of highlights given the horrific state of humanity at the moment but I’m incredibly grateful to have shared many special and deep moments on and off the dancefloor this past year. I’ve never felt so inspired about music and I’ve learned a lot about myself. It’s been a privilege to see my friends play amazing gigs to crowds that deserve to hear them. It’s been nice to get some records out and I feel grateful to have played at some amazing parties too. There haven’t been any that I haven’t enjoyed, so I’m very thankful to everyone that’s asked me to play so far.”
So you’re originally from the west of Ireland but are now currently based in London, can you tell us a bit about the timeline on that, and what spurred the move? Were you partying much in Ireland prior to the move? “Yes I’m from Galway on the west coast, a small town that’s always punched above it’s weight with nightlife and parties, despite the venues having to shut at 1 or 2am. There’s a great heritage with lots of different pockets of music. When I was 18 or 19 I started DJing and got really into all of it. I was really lucky to get some residencies quite quickly, I basically didn’t know how to play and was learning on the fly- total fluke. Around this time I got into running some parties with friends and working at a club in Galway which is about to reopen called Electric. They had a smaller room called Factory and gave me pretty much full control to promoters to book whoever they wanted. A really interesting time in Facebook-Event era clubland in the west of Ireland, it really felt like something really important was happening (she’s old now lol). Young people in Ireland really suffer at the hands of the government. Insane rents and draconian licensing laws don’t leave much space for creativity or to have your mind opened by new experiences. There’s a very-long standing cycle of great minds leaving Ireland to grow and get the recognition they deserve.”
What were your early London experiences like, and what sort of parties were you going to? “Most of my early trips to London were to party and hang out with besties so they were great, always a bit scary and exciting. I always left inspired, experiences at Chapter 10, Dalston Superstore and various afterparties felt like a world away from Ireland.”
So can you tell us a little about meeting Byron Yeates and releasing your first track ‘2 The Dawn (Dub) on that Radiant Records IWD Comp Vol 2 compilation. “Byron and I met in Galway through music and we’ve been very close since then so I couldn’t think of a better person to put music out with. I’d always been sending Byron music and the time was right. ‘2 The Dawn’ was the first production that I felt confident enough to play out. The next two tracks I was happy with were Total Body and Ultrasoft. After finishing them with some voicenote vox from Sensx, Byron did a remix and we asked Angel D’Lite to do one. I couldn’t be happier with the final release, so many special people involved. Fast-forward two years and it’s out <3”
The relationship with Radiant seems to have really blossomed the last couple years, and with you releasing your ‘Total Body’ EP with them last month it just seems like a very natural fit to your tracks and the sound in your mixes. Road testing some of these tracks must have felt amazing as they’re so tailored made for the club. What’s your process in producing these sorts of tracks at the moment? Have you streamlined how you make tunes yet? “Wow thanks I’m glad you think so! I usually start with a kick and a bassline and just go from there. It’s always a big series of happy accidents and tweaks, lots and lots of sounds that I’ll mess up and play around with until I find a groove I like. Then I just pile up the elements until it’s a really big chaotic loop that sort of works together when it’s all playing at once. From there I know I have lots I can work with and have the bones of a track. I arrange it in loop mode so it’s a really quick process jamming out the different parts and pushing an arrangement out. Once there’s an arrangement down it’s just a matter of copy and pasting, cutting bits out, putting bits in etc until I think it’s club ready. I’m usually mixing as I go, making sure everything has breathing room and is there for a reason, giving priority to the bass and drums. It’s a constant process of decluttering. I’ll usually play them out and see how it goes down and then come back if there’s any changes. It always feels a bit cringe playing them out to be honest, it can feel very vulnerable playing something you’ve only heard in your bedroom to strangers in a nightclub but it’s an affirming experience for sure. I prefer to hear other people play them.”
So tell us a little bit about your style when it comes to DJing? Do you have a particular set where you felt like everything was working perfectly? “It changes all the time. I go through phases where I get realllllly into one thing and I guess those different tracks and genres lend themselves to different styles of DJing, as do playing for different crowds at varying times of the night or day. It’s never the same and being open to that is what makes it fun and interesting to me, putting my ego aside and feeling it out. The constant in all of it is over prepping a bit obsessively on Rekordbox and being ready and open to go in different directions. I really like when the vinyl set up is good too, I’m shy about mixing records and I need to really be feeling the vibe to play them. I sold most of my record collection before leaving Glasgow and since moving to London have been rebuilding it with stuff that I really love and will play out in sets.
There are so many amazing spots to dig here which I’m lucky to have been shown but yeah, buying more and being more ruthless with the duds. It’s pretty rare for me to spend more than £10 on a record, they’re usually bargain bin numbers. In terms of a set where everything is working perfectly both of my sets in Georgia in November. Left Bank is an amazing club with such a cute crew behind it I felt really at ease. The following night I played at Reflector Club in Kutaisi which is kind of like a miniature Panorama Bar, the dancefloor is like 80 capacity and the sound ridiculously good. I got to play really freaky stuff here which I don’t usually feel confident enough to play. Closing the Radiant Records party at Everybody Trance in Lyon was really amazing too, I felt like I had total freedom.”
Can you tell us a little about how you organize your music for your sets? I was listening to your almost three hour Left Blank recording and it’s quite relentless in energy levels. Do you have a way you like to build your energy over longer sets? “I usually just get lots and lots of tracks together that might fit a vibe I have in my head and then practice with that and weed out the one’s I probably won’t play. I try my best to limit it to 100 and some records but it’s usually more. I organise by vibe/ genre (eg hot loopy, modern pumping, spacey/ u4ia) and then split the tracks into the ones with vocals and the ones without. Then I’ll have a big starting playlist and a finishing playlist, and a big curveball playlist and go from there. It was such a privilege to be asked to play at Left Bank for a second time. I knew what the sound system was like so I’d been preparing for months. Also had some special requests I had to include ;)”
What can you tell us about the Club Are party and becoming their first resident DJ? “Club Are is so sick. Such a refreshing party for London. The crowd is such a cute and sexy cross-pollination of scenes who really get what it’s about. Mika Kailes and Abdulla Jama asked me to play at the first one after seeing me play at Riposte and I was really blown away by their vision so I was super keen to get involved. It’s a hot queer rave with a gorgeous art/ visual element .The most recent party in January was one of the best I’ve been to in London, quite surreal to think it was only the second edition. I feel like the sound and the vibe will evolve as the party does so I feel it’s important to be a conduit for that as a resident which is exciting.”
Could you describe the process of creating this mix? Was there a specific message or feeling you wanted to convey? “I was really overwhelmed with ideas and recorded several different drafts. The finished one is nothing like any of the other ones, I decided the tracklist in one night after listening to a bunch of stuff I’d been sent and rooting through my own productions to listen for tracks that would work. I wanted to do a mix of newer stuff I was into along with some personal classics.”
Can you tell us about three albums/mixes that a) define you getting into electronic music in general, b) maybe a midway album when you were fully invested in DJing and and c) a recent album that you’ve especially enjoyed?
a) Mylo- Destroy Rock & Roll
b) John Talabot’s Fact Mix
c) Baraka- Baraka
What sort of other hobbies or interests do you have outside of electronic music? Are there any books, films, shows or other things you’ve seen or been reading/watching that you might want to share? Yeah I’ve been reading a lot which is great. My favourites from the past year have been 100 years of solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende and The Third Policeman by Flann O’Brien who I’ve been really obsessed with since. I’m enjoying The Curse and I thought Zone of Interest was one of the best films I’ve seen in years. Special mentions to Nowhere, But I’m A Cheerleader and Beau Is Afraid too. Also recommend Ionsaí Ibiza– peak y2k party travel doc following a group of Galway ravers on a trip to Ibiza, tá sé as gaeilge freisin ;p and can’t not share my favourite comfort watch, Trade, The All Night Bender, rip Tony De Vit.
Last, usual question from us, what was the last thing to put a big smile on your face and when was the last time you had a proper dance? “The last time I had a proper dance was at Adonis on Saturday night! One of the best ones yet, it’s so cool to see the party grow and evolve, it’s my favourite in London. I caught Michelle Manetti, Peach and a closing to end all closings by Hannah Holland. It was really popping off all night. Smiling thinking about that for sure.”