Trance, progressive, techno, moombah, trap, dub step, house—it seems the electronic music wave has become unstoppable, bringing with it a perpetual tide of new genres and subgenres. Both artists and fans struggle with a desire to remain faithful to one brand while simultaneously trying out new sounds. Few have managed to walk that line so successfully as American electronic duo Tritonal, who jumped onto DJ Mag’s Top 100 list after just three years of working together. The two met up with Elektro Magazine before a show at Fort Lauderdale’s recently renovated EDM haven, Off the Hookah, to share their thoughts on the dance music culture and to remind us that the best music is good music, regardless of its category.

“There’s no real beating around the bush—we don’t play straight trance like we used to play,” said Texas native Dave Reed. “We came up as trance producers, and if you listen to Tritonal sets over the last year, they’re not like that.” Chad is the kind of guy you’d love to have as your uncle or your best man. He’s loud, warm, and unapologetic when it comes to Tritonal’s musical shift. Dave is the younger one.

“I don’t really care to try to act like its something its not. I’m proud of our sets; I think they’re awesome. Are they electro? Yeah. Are they progressive? Yes, and I love that. But at the same time I don’t feel like we’ve abandoned what we love about trance, which is melody. When it comes down to it, I just like tracks that are catchy and melodic and powerful.”

It’s a crossover he and his fellow DJ Chad Cisneros have managed to pull off flawlessly. Their opening set for Armin van Buuren at EDC Orlando had the entire crowd raving. It’s this ability to balance a delicate musicality with electro-style energy that has enabled Tritonal to expand their audience while maintaining their original fan-base.
“Culturally, I think Americans are predisposed to instant gratifcation, whether it be advertisement, food…we’re spoiled. Its the same way with music—three minutes, hook, hook, hook, next song,” said Chad. Although he’s the younger of the two, he exudes a calm and down-to-earth collectedness that mediates Dave’s crackling electricity.

“I’m sort of with the kids here in the US, though; I like the explosions—I like playing balls-to-the-wall, slamming eight Tritonal tracks mashed up with eight others, just three minutes of maddness every one, and then I’m out,” said Chad. “I’m not a Markus Schulz ‘let’s-go-play-for-fifty-hours’ type of guy…with the amount of energy that we put out onstage and through our music, I am physically not able to do that for long.”

Its understandable enough; after a two hour set for Air Up There 100, Chad admitted he collapsed. It wouldn’t be the first time he’d fallen while performing, shared Dave with a grin.

“I get it,” said Chad. “If you’re going crazy, you might fall down. It’s not a gimmick though, its purely, naturally us enjoying ourselves.”

And do they ever. Of all the artists we’ve seen perform at festivals and clubs alike, Tritonal are always two of the most captivating and fun to watch. At EDC Orlando, they ran in front of the sound booth and spun, arms oustretched, in front of the entire crowd. Their performance at Off the Hookah was just as super-charged with energy. From air-guitars to jumping jacks to full-out headbanging, the two have such an infectious enthusiasm and passion for their music and their audience that its impossible not to be sucked in while watching them.

We asked them where they saw it all going—their careers and EDM in general—and they admitted they couldn’t be more excited.

“Living in the US right now in today’s scene, to be where we are is amazing. We’re on the pinnacle of something awesome,” said Chad. “Everybody says it’s a bubble and its gonna pop—whatever. Its going to peak, but so did disco, so did rock. So what? Why are we all waiting for that to happen? Enjoy it, ride it! When you see 350,000 people out in the desert celebrating life, to me that’s amazing.”

“We like the middle ground of everything,” added Dave. “Yeah, I love trance—I think its awesome. But at the same time, I love where trance is going. I’m all about melody so we’re doing all we can do to cater to that. Good melody, good music, and a good vibe, whatever that may be. If its electro, awesome. If its house, cool. But its going to be Tritonal no matter what.”