WHUS holds Livestream Mix Cypher for electronic music DJs

WHUS General Manager Santiago Pelaez browses his computer during the radio station's Livestream Mix Cypher event in the UConn Student Union on Friday, March 25, 2016. (Amar Batra/The Daily Campus)

On Friday, members of WHUS Radio at UConn held their fifth Livestream Mix Cypher of the semester.

The program is meant to promote and bring together electronic music enthusiasts. Participants went back-to back-based upon a theme track selected, according to WHUS Promotions Director Scott Hoffmann.

Right now the target audience is typically people that follow WHUS and already are into this type of genre. Hoffmann is aware it is a niche group on campus, but believes that there are more people out there who are into electronic music and wants to introduce the genre to others who are not familiar with it.

“Unfortunately I am graduating this year, but will do what I can [to expand the program to a bigger audience],” he said.

The Mix Cypher is a new program that was created this year by Hoffmann and WHUS General Manager Santiago Pelaez.

In an interview with Hoffmann, he said that he and Pelaez were throwing ideas around to start a “collaborative thing” at the station.

They came to the conclusion of having a cypher to invite DJs to show off what they are into.

Even if you are not a DJ, WHUS holds training sessions throughout the year to teach those interested in learning.

“DJ mixing is difficult to do with anything that’s not electronic,” Hoffmann said as to why it’s an electronic cypher.

“But we do dub with other things, it’s not exclusive to electronic,” he said.

Hoffmann clarifies though, electronic is not just house music and what you hear at EDM (Electronic Dance Music) festivals.

The cypher typically takes place in one of their studios, however this past Friday was a hectic day at WHUS, with a live studio performance and DJ training sessions happening throughout the day, so it was held in one of their office rooms.

Although the room was tightly packed, with the lights off and a light projection display behind the DJ stand, the four walls faded to the background while the music did its job of taking listeners away.

As mentioned before, there is usually a theme to each cypher but this week since it was just Hoffmann and Pelaez djing they went with whatever they wanted to play.

Hoffmann went first and played “Elevated” by Bob Traxx, “Body Double” by Lokane, “Bitch Better Have My Money (Champion Remix)” by Rihanna, “Sounderror” by Moke. “Dead” by Mssingno, “Throw Dat” by Holloway and “All Night (RK Remix)” by Cash Bandicoot.

Pelaez performed next, picking up where Hoffmann left off by blending his mixes: “It’s just a ride” by Akufen, “October” by fzpz, “Papers” by Sango and “Bim Bom” by Sango.

Pelaez listens to everything when it comes to music, which is where he gets his inspiration.

“[By doing the cypher] We’re promoting a spectrum of songs and genres rather than an individual one,” he said.

Hoffmann went into telling me about how SoundCloud – an audio sharing website that lets users listen and create sounds – has changed the platform of making music.

Regardless of the legal battle surrounding mixing, Hoffmann said, “Internet/SoundCloud music,” as he refers to it, allows people to be as weird and different as possible to find and make whatever sounds they want.

He likes mixing with lots of hip-hop and “forward thinking” club songs as well as elements of Latin influences. It’s mainly “stuff you wouldn’t show your mom,” he said with a laugh.

To listen to past mix cyphers visit mixcloud.com/WHUS.


Angie DeRosa is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at angelina.derosa@uconn.edu. She tweets @theangiederosa.