Interview with Black Amex


Black Amex, the self-described “deviant disco duo” from Denver, CO has been making waves in the local music scene with their energetic, diverse sets of classic disco remixes and fresh nu-disco productions. Patrick Collins and Matthew Loui (of Denver’s Colfax Speed Queen) have spent much of 2012 playing alongside other local tastemakers such as Shannon Von Kelly and Magic Cyclops, as well as supporting big-name national acts like The Twelves.

Black Amex will play this Friday in Denver at Mile High Spirits for Bring it to the Borough: A Fundraiser for Breezy Point Disaster Relief Fund. If you’re in the Denver area on Friday night, this is the place to be! A night of live music, free drinks, food trucks and giveaways, Bring it to the Borough will also feature live performances by Holy Underground artists CC/NN, LUST and School Knights and RUMTUM. Tickets are $20 and can be purchased at the door or online here.

Ultra5280 caught up with Collins and Loui about their love for Roseanne Barr, disdain for dubstep, and plans for the rest of 2012 and beyond:

What's the story behind your name? 

We're actually a more radical faction of the Black Panther Party. Also, Black Amex just happens to be slang for the most baller credit card. It's actually made of metal.

So you guys are ballers? Did you consider any other monikers?

For about three weeks straight we shot texts back and forth. Unfortunately, for all of our adoring fans we don't have those texts to put into our biography, coming out later next year. Exclusively on Laserdisc.

How did you guys come together to start making music?

Well normally one of us somewhat hates everything that the other likes. Dance music, specifically disco and funky house, was the only thing we really agreed on, so we thought we should cultivate that love instead of our contempt for one another. 

You're among a lot of up-and-coming DJs in Denver, like Snubluck, RUMTUM and babyshoe, who are bringing disco and intelligent EDM into the scene. Who are some of your favorite locals to play with, and what kind of music scene are you cultivating together?

We particularly like Magic Cyclops, though since he's been on American Idol he won't return our calls. Shannon Von Kelly (DJ Softhands) and The Sprinkle Wizards (El Brian and Deftron) are our absolute favorites to play with. They both seem to just get what we're trying to do and encourage us with shots of tequila.

What makes you different from a lot of the electronic music coming out of Denver?

We're not trying to be different per se; we just think we're tuned into a different groove than a lot of Denver. We really get into classic disco and the funkier house tracks of the '80s and '90s, and have been ridiculed since birth because of it.

Where do you draw inspiration from when playing and producing your music?

Roseanne Barr mostly. But then she got into politics and we don't support that. She should've stuck to bossing John Goodman around.

What genre of EDM would you guys never produce?

Dubstep. Just stop it Denver.

Where are some of your favorite places to play in Denver?

We love house parties where we can really go off the deep end and play anything we want. Neon Knights at the Meadowlark is probably our favorite regular party in Denver. Night Drive at Beauty Bar, as well. And we have to say that Norad is our favorite sound system we've played on in the city.

You're playing with Cassian on December 7th. How stoked are you for that show? Last time Cassian stopped at Larimer Lounge over the summer with Drop the Lime, he killed it!

We're really excited. We've been trying to play with more national artists and it feels like we've finally gotten our foot in the door.

You played with The Twelves earlier this month at Marquis Theater. What are some of your favorite tracks from the electro-pop legends?

You know, last time we saw them, they played their own little recreation of Caribou's “Odessa” which slayed The Marquis. And basically anything off the Essential Mix they did in 2009 because that was incredible. 

What do you have coming up before the end of the year?

We have the aforementioned Cassian show where we're opening up. We’re playing that show with Hollagramz, which should be a total blast. We're also playing a NYE show with ManCub, Il Cattivo and Thee Dang Dangs at Larimer Lounge for a change of pace, and then we have a single release party at Beauty Bar on February 2nd of next year with Shannon Von Kelly and more TBA.