In the summer of 2014, we first introduced the forward-looking duo deadstare. Since their debut last year, they have been presenting the most experimental, forward looking tracks that combine global bass rhythms like moombahton, 3ball and cumbia with breakcore, industrial and techno. Their style is always energetic, gritty and bordering on the crazy. This weekend they released a throat-grippingly intense tune that comes with a tragic story which the close friends of the artists may be familiar with but most people in the scene probably aren’t. Gergö, one half of Deadstare and only 19 years old, has a brain tumor and is struggling to get adequate treatment in his home country Hungary, where good medical care isn’t equally accessible to everyone.
In the midst of this struggle, he makes music.
The track hit me like an ice cold shower. The progressively unpacking chain explosion of conflicting extreme emotions such as despair, anger, fear and determination feels like a glacial, metallic liquid injected into your back spine, slowly spreading into all cappilaries and fibers of your existence. It was a very confronting experience to not just talk about the situation in words but really live the intensity of it by means of sound. Like literature, music too always has something of an encounter with another person’s inner world and the context of emotions and struggles can transform a track from an undeterminate, lonely phenomenon into one of the most powerful experiences of compassion and mind-sharing.
I reached out to Gergö and his sidekick Edgar (Dj Broken Record) to hear what they themselves have to say about the track.
G: The long intro makes me feel like something bad is in progress, and then, suddenly, there are the baby sounds.
E: The baby is a metaphor for innocence, honesty. The baby expresses himself without reservation because he/she doesnt know anything else. Thats why it always made sense to me. The baby playing in the water is like us expressing ourselves honestly and directly as if we didnt care about anything else, like babies do.
G: And thats it, thats why. So heres the drop. Which shows that the bad thing is real. Its like walking on a dark, empty factory, preparing myself for a long and stressful fight. Second drop: Fight. Sometimes its too hard, sad, but not impossible. And the outro is like… I won. Or at least I am standing firm.
GB: How would you describe your situation as it has been lately? What were your weeks like when you were making this track?
G: Weird. A lot of depressed and stressful days, but now Im really happy that we finished this one after a year.
Last November I got the news, that I have a tumor in my brain. Alongside with the other health issues: asthma, hypertension, osteoporosis, food allergies, etc. but lets get back to the main one.
I thought I’d finally get good news from the doctor, because the medication I get against my tumor aren’t working, which by now is 100% sure. But I’ve only been getting the exact same news over and over again: “we need to wait longer, because that is the statutory procedure.” I dont know how it works in other countries but after a whole year of testing which only showed time and again that the treatment I receive hasn’t made the tumor shrink, they still want to wait longer. Perhaps indeed the rules are like this but I just lost my mind.
When my mom got home from the doctor with the news (I wasn’t there, cause now I’m not really emotionally stable enough to bear this shit all the time), I just went to my empty room with no expressions or emotions and didn’t want to get out. We also went to do some blood-tests, but not cause of the tumor. Unfortunatley that’s another story. I always hope that I’ll wake up from this nightmare once! I can’t live. Literally.
But thats enough. You know what I want right? Inspire people. To fight. To never give up and to believe in good things. I dont want people’s sorry. You can win any kind of fight if you really want.
“I always hope that I’ll wake up from this nightmare once”
GB: So far you never addressed your health situation in your music EXPLICITLY.. What was the reason to speak up about it now?
G: To be honest, the title was Edgar’s idea. But I got it, and loved it. The first version was not so dark, but we changed a lot of things and switched it into expressive industrial madness.
E: In recent months things have been really heavy with Gergö’s health. He doesn’t like to talk about it much, and as far as I can tell, he doesn’t like to think about it much. I mean, there’s nothing he can do except wait for the next doctor’s appointment. So I try to back off, give him space, and wait for him to update me. He also doesn’t like to accept a lot of help. But the one thing he isn’t allowed to do is limit Dead Stare’s expression. For me, this track is me having someone to talk to (the listener) about the intense emotions surrounding Gergö’s health problems. Obviously, he shouldn’t have to be the one to give me support for that if he doesn’t want to or is not able to. But he did let me title the track, which I’m grateful for. And this goes without saying, but for those who don’t know, music is pretty much saving Gergö’s life at this point.
This is why we made Dead Stare in the first place. If it works in DJ sets, fine. But if it doesn’t, that’s fine too. All that matters is that the things we feel are put into a song so that they have somewhere to escape to, and they’re not just bouncing around in our minds.
G: We’re trying to convert our emotions into a track. When I’m working on a track, I dont feel my problems so I can manage my emotions.
Thats why we dont stick to any genre limits. If I feel sad, I’m going to make something sad, dark and raw. If I’m thinking back about my childhood, I’m going to make some fast techno since I grew up on techno/freestyle/gabber music. If I’m happy, then im going to try to make something like “To Be Free” (which will soon be out on Worldwide MX channel), which I made when everything went well and I wanted to make a comfortable track but still with the deadstare vibe. We even made a disco track. Trust me, you can’t imagine what the future holds.
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GB: How are the two of you keeping in tune together at this distance, especially with you going through such a difficult time? Do you guys manage to mentally support and comfort each other as well?
G: First, I cant wait to see him ASAP. Once, he sent me money cause at that time, we was in a trouble. Embrassing to say that but it was a lack of food, cause we spent a lot of money for medication and consultations, etc. I didn’t want to accept it, because it feels so deeply sad. But hes a really cool guy.
The timezone difference is also a cool thing. It saved me so many times when I was late uploading our weekly tracks haha. We mainly talk about music, but he showed me a lot of great cultures, taught me things about 3ball, cumbia and freestyle. But sometimes we’re talking about everything: health, politics, etc. Working together goes really well. It often takes a lot of time to finish a track though, because we both want to do our best.
Let me say that he’s like my “Mexican Brother”.
E: The only good thing about living thousands of miles apart is that the time difference makes it possible to always have someone to talk to in the middle of the night when you can’t sleep. But for real. We talk every single day. If we don’t talk for one day, we’re like “sup dude? Everything good?”
GB: Can we, as a music scene, do anything to help you such as paying for exclusive tracks
G: Good question. I always want to improve. Getting our shit out is the best payment ever! If you succeed, you’ll have some nice/insane trip.
And again, as I said, I can’t wait to see Edgar and you (Victor). I really need to see you guys in my life, but the travelling cost is extremly huge, unfortunatley. Thats why I want to work as hard as I can, improve, and maybe go to gigs, sell something. I know its really hard to blow up and promote music if you are focused on the expression of many different intense emotions, but I believe we can do it.
But you guys are a part of my family which is a huge gift. I will never forget when Victor sent me a letter with the nicest words, it made me cry. For now, these types of things are the best payments for me. I’d also like to say thanks to my friends, artists like dj Orión, Munchi, Hataah, Billion Dollars, DjSuperStereo, and labels/blogs like Recorder.hu, CassetteBlog, Generation Bass, URL Future and Worldwide MX for helping us out. Also big ups to Aftershock, for giving me a few producion lessions. And of course, huge respect to my actual family for helping me in this fight. I have the best supporters and friends ever. I’m grateful that I can say that.
E: I will let Gergö decide on this one. I would love to see the scene financially help him, but for one, I rarely see these types of things work very well, and two, the amount of money he needs is huge. But I encourage him to accept any help he can get, and I hope he does decide to let us do something.
If it was up to me, I would ask for a way to make it possible for him to visit me here so we can get in the studio and do an LP. And take a selfie.
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