Two Friends, the EDM duo of Matt Halper and Eli Sones, are childhood best friends who have made a name for themselves in the music industry with their infectious remixes and catchy originals.
With just shy of one million monthly listeners on Spotify, it would be silly to say that this pair is still considered “up-and-coming.” They had breakout success of remixes of nostalgic songs from their childhood, have regular hour-long “Big Bootie Mixes,” and have recently released an EP of new music Out of Love which features Cosmos & Creature and MAX.
Their most recent remix out is one of their biggest official undertakings yet, ‘Break Up Every Night’ by The Chainsmokers, which came to fruition after The Chainsmokers named Two Friends one of the most underrated dance artists right now. You can listen to the remix here:
Currently on tour, they had the chance to speak with us a little bit about what makes Two Friends, well, two friends:
Can you tell us a little bit about what the process was like for your Out of Love EP?
The Out Of Love EP was something we were (and are still) very proud of, and we’ve been humbled by all the feedback and love so far. Some of the songs were started way back in the day—I think we found a voice memo of us singing one of the lyric ideas from over three years ago—and it was really exciting to finally be able to share them with everyone. The songs on that EP span the map, but all go back to that Two Friends spark.
Working with MAX and with Cosmos & Creature and with Rush was such a pleasure. They have such genuine talent, and their passion for music really is contagious.
What was the inspiration behind it?
I’d say the inspiration for the EP came from starting a few songs that we realized fit together very nicely as a larger project, both in a musical/sonic sense and in a conceptual/thematic sense—and also overall in the sense that they did a great job of showing what Two Friends is all about, which is how we wanted to come out of the gates to start this past year.
You gained a lot of notoriety and fans through your remixes. What’s it been like transitioning to more original creations? Do you prefer one over the other?
We love it all, but there is something extra special about people screaming along to original lyrics that you yourselves wrote that makes the originals a little more satisfying. Starting from a totally blank canvas is, of course, a challenge, but it’s one that we embrace and that excites us. Often times, Matt will mess around with guitar chords or melodies, or maybe we’ll have a really cool phrase that we know we can develop into a cool lyrical concept, or maybe we’ll actually start with an interesting idea for a drop, but in general we’ll try to be as open-minded as possible.
We’re super excited about a ton of new originals we’ve been writing and producing, and of course, we’re excited about the batches of remixes that we’ll continue to put out here and there.
How do you chose which songs you want to remix?
I think it basically comes down to songs where we love the original, and of course love the vocals, but we think we can reimagine it in a cool way and put a fun Two Friends spin on it. And again, we try to be open-minded—sometimes we’ll remix more traditional “dance/EDM” songs, other times it’ll be more on the pop side. And of course we love doing some throwback remixes of songs that make us nostalgic because they remind us of some great memories growing up.
You’re starting to incorporate live elements in your performances, like a saxophonist. Do you think you’ll ever make the transition to an entirely live performance?
We’ll see! It’s definitely been fun to bring out our saxophonist when we can, as well as bring out some of the featured vocalists from recent songs—like at recent L.A. and San Francisco shows where we brought out Cosmos & Creature from Out Of Love to perform live (and they absolutely kill it).
I think adding more of the live elements is something that will gradually and sort of naturally evolve as our music evolves. It would definitely be fun to eventually include some live guitar and drums and more. But no matter what type of show, we’ll always try our best to keep the energy at 11 out of 10 and hopefully make it a special memory for anyone attending.
You’re on tour right now. How’s it going?
It’s going great. We love traveling to new cities to perform and meet new people. These recent couple months have been amazing. Like we mentioned earlier, it’s a really special feeling seeing so many people sing along to our songs and connect with the music so strongly.
Don’t get me wrong, we do love locking ourselves in our basement studio and working all day on music, but when you’re able to go from hearing the new music you’re working on so many thousands of times in the studio and focusing on every little detail, to finally playing it to crowds for the first time, it can be surreal.
You went to middle school and high school together. Got any good embarrassing stories on each other?
We met when we were twelve years old in seventh grade, and pretty much immediately became best friends ever since. We have too many embarrassing stories about each other to count. Not sure how many we can share publicly though [laughs].
Maybe the time in high school when Eli was in a free-throw shooting contest against a bunch of people, including an older girl. She tried to get in his head and distract him by saying if he misses the next shot she’d make out with him. He missed. They did not make out.
Can you give us a look on what your day to day is like in L.A.? Do you live together?
We don’t live together, but we’re only about ten minutes apart. We’re typically at home in L.A. working on new music in our studio on weekdays, and then on weekends (or sometimes Wednesdays or Thursdays) we’ll head out for a couple shows, and then come back to L.A. to do it all again. We try to keep ourselves on a good schedule, so we’ll pretty much always start our studio day at 11 AM to give us a little bit of time to take care of any personal appointments or anything in the morning.
Favorite neighborhood restaurant?
Hm, favorite restaurant is always a tough one. We actually just recently went to this place with our agent called Crossroads, which is a vegan restaurant near West Hollywood, but it was crazy. Their take on chicken parmesan was legitimately one of the top three chicken parms I’ve ever had, and it was the same for most dishes. None of us are even vegan, but it was highly recommendable.
What’s in store for the next year?
We have a wholllllllllle heap of new music that we are extremely excited for. We had our most recently single “While We’re Dreaming” a couple weeks ago, then the follow-up single coming middle of November, then a bunch more for early 2018—and of course a bunch of remixes in between.
And then there’s, of course, also the batch of other new songs that we’re currently starting and writing. It’s an exciting time. 2017 has already been so fun and rewarding, and we’re excited to keep gaining more momentum into next year.
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