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Interview

Italian duo Nari & Milani repaint the electro-house skyline

By Dan Carter
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Emerging from the humble ranks of Italy’s club land, powerhouse duo Maurizio Nari and Ronnie Milani (aka Nari & Milani) crafted a new cutting-edge agenda for modern electro house with tracks like “Atom” and “Kendo” serving as unapologetic feathers in the cap of their high-end of their musical playbook.

Having already lent their hands to a compilation for Cr2 Records alongside R3HAB and MYNC, as well as the collaborative single “#Miamibackagain” for 2013, the duo caught up with Beatport News to talk industry ascent, bomb-worthy beats, and their forthcoming spree of releases.

You guys have been musical associates for more than 17 years. Talk us through the origins of Nari & Milani.

Maurizio Nari: We first met in 1996 and alongside a mutual friend we created our first track. From here, the passion that we both shared for music quickly became our day job. Around this time the project was named Dubwork, with the initial plan of making house music and empowering music for the dancefloor. In 1999, we had the honor of being awarded first place in the Billboard charts with “Sunshine and Happiness” by Darryl Pandy, and from here momentum really picked up.

A lot of your national peers have held mixed opinions on the state of Italian dance music. Where do you guys sit on that argument?

Ronnie Milani: We are proud to share our Italian music, but there is no denying that Italy as a nation is very far behind. There are a lot of new and experimental sounds, which, while great, have been hard to sell to the crowds of Italy. We remain adamant in trying to contribute to the electronic music revolution in Italy, though.

This year we saw you unite with Cr2 Records for a compilation and single alongside MYNC and R3HAB. How did you feel about the outcome of this landmark project?

RM: As always, we are honored to create tracks with artists in the world of EDM, especially these guys. It is exciting to combine a handful of creative minds for new sounds and journeys into the music. Mixing our different backgrounds together was a truly epic experience for us.

It is fair to say that “Atom” has gone down as one of the most sought-after anthems of 2012. How did it feel to see the track explode in such a way?

MN: For us, “Atom” was a statement to say that raw grooves can make huge impact. We wanted that track to sound like the end of the world and it now seems to be a favorite amongst DJs across the globe. We treated this one like it was the soundtrack of a Tarantino film and are very proud of the reaction. We felt like “Kendo” set the precedent back in 2011 and given the strength of “Atom” it is great to still sound relevant for the label.

There has already been a lot of hype surrounding your new single, “Vago,” for Spinnin Records. Tell us about this next installment.

RM: “Vago” is an underground track with a crazy sound. We really developed the groove, and the final product comes at you straight from the fist. This is what we continue to aim for with our music and this track is no exception. I think it is our effective simplicity that has set us apart from the crowd, and that is something we want to keep building on.

Has the balance of your professional careers become more challenging in the face of your now global reputation?

RM: At the end of the day, making music is art. It must speak to everyone and it’s not always easy to do this. We are fortunate to have great communication with our staff and a team that makes all the difference to our efforts!

After such a huge start to 2013, what can we expect from you guys for the remainder of the year?

MN: 2013 is going to be the year of our new track “Patriot.” We always close with this track and between the development in sound from “Kendo” to “Atom” and “Patriot,” we feel like that harmony has been successfully forged. Outside of this, we just want to lead in the electronic revolution.