Australia’s Peking Duk are an electronic production duo known for their dance-oriented, rock and pop-influenced sound and cheeky, party-ready attitude. Formed in 2010 in Canberra, Peking Duk feature Adam Hyde and Reuben Styles. Prior to working together, Hyde had played bass in various bands and Styles had been involved in hip-hop projects. They debuted in 2011 with the singles “Bingo Trippin” and “Welcome” featuring Stef K. However, it was their 2012 bootleg remix of Passion Pit’s “Take a Walk” that caught the public’s attention and helped elevate their profile. Several more well-received singles followed, including “High” featuring Nicole Millar and “Take Me Over” featuring SAFIA — both reached the Top Ten on the dance charts in Australia. “High” also won the duo an ARIA Award for Best Dance Release. In 2015, Peking Duk made their Coachella debut and delivered the Songs to Sweat To EP. Also that year, they released the single “Say My Name.” The following year, they collaborated with Swedish singer Elliphant on the hit track “Stranger,” which yielded two sets of remixes in 2017. Their follow-up single, “Wasted,” was released in early 2018.
Hey guys, what is the meaning behind your name?
So, we got the name, when we had a couple of songs ready to go and wanted to put them on iTunes. We had actually been partying before we had the name in mind. So, we got together and it became a saying between us “Ahh look at Dave, look at Brett, he is peaking duck right now”. And it meant someone was absolutely peaking off their tits to an extreme level in a corner of the room, with their eyes wide shut pulling a duck face. And when we had the first song ready to go on iTunes, we just thought screw it, let’s just put it up as Peking Duk. Its stuck ever since.
What would you recommend for people to first listen to out of your songs?
I would say our song ‘High’ is probably the best introduction to the Peking Duk sound as a whole. It’s slow, its big and banging and a lot of fun with a bit of emotion.
Who are your biggest musical inspirations?
I can speak on behalf of both Reuben and myself, there’s too many to name that’s for sure. But it’s a wide array from Led Zeppelin to Kanye West, Tame Impala, Mark Ronson to Diplo. People who cut new electronic moulds like Flume from Australia, Megadeath, Slayder. Honestly, there’s too many to name. We find inspiration in so many styles of music and so many different artists. It doesn’t even have to just be music, it can be visual art, food or an experience through travelling on tour. But the main ones are people like Kanye West, Damon Albarn, Julian Casablancas and The Strokes.
Do you have new artists that you are currently listening to now?
Totally, we’ve been listening lots to Repeat Repeat. This awesome band out of Nashville and we love them so much that we asked them to join us on tour. It’s been great hearing their set every single night, playing their amazing tunes. There’s a lot of great albums that have come out this year including Jack White’s earlier in the year, The War on Drugs by A Deeper Understanding. Just even a couple days ago the Gorillaz dropped a new album and it’s out of control. It’s a great year for music right now and can’t wait for the rest of the year to pan out.
What is it like to have over 180 million streams?
We didn’t even know it was that much! That’s an amazing feeling. Awesome to see when the feeling is reciprocated a bit when you’re banging your head to a song you’re creating in a little room somewhere. Then 180 million people are getting down to it as well, that’s a great feeling.
You already collaborated with Icona Pop, Elliphant and AlunaGeorge. What is the process behind these collaborations?
We first met Elliphant at DJ Snake’s Coachella pool party a couple years ago. She said to us that she wanted to make a song with us, which we didn’t believe at first. Then when she was en route to Australia later that year her manager hit us up and we all tee’d up a sesh in Sydney. From there we made a bunch of songs with her and even went to Stockholm to keep making songs with her. We decided the one to put out was “Stranger”. With Aluna [George] and Icona [Pop], it was all via the intrawebs, which rarely works out but those guys absolutely nailed our vision for those particular songs.
With which artist would you love to collaborate in the future (again) and why?
Francis and the Lights. Francis has a beautiful nostalgic feeling to all of his music that I can’t seem to find with anyone else right now. Amazingly talented individual that is destined for greatness no doubt.
Which musical style would you like to incorporate in your future releases (whether remixes or original releases)?
We are very keen to incorporate more punk rock and hip hop.
If we were to visit you on your tour: what can we expect from a Peking Duk concert?
A sweaty, fun, good time.
What do you have planned for the rest of 2018?
Playing more shows and making more music. Doing everything better, especially right now at this point in our lives, bringing our live show to the world. We’ve done it in Australia for the last 12 months, but we’re currently amidst our first ever live tour of the US. So, we hope to bring it to the other corners of the world, perfect it and make it as good as it possibly can be.