DVS1: Draw Outside The Lines

interview collaboration with


Joining us in the Lee Jeans pop-up studio at the Nexus Lounge Amsterdam edition, we spoke with DVS1 about his experiences moving from Minneapolis to Europe, his unusual stance on cameras at concerts, and why you should always strive to try new things.

Known for his boundary-pushing techno sound, DVS1 has spent over three decades as one of the electronic scene’s most creative voices. Although born in Saint Petersburg during the height of the Soviet Union, his family moved to the United States at a young age, where he was raised predominantly in Minneapolis. This area still remains important to him all these years later.


The home of R&B and soul and the birthplace of musical legend Prince, Minneapolis’s music scene is like no other and yet receives little recognition from other major musical hubs.

"Cities like Minneapolis are where you see music get created, and then, a lot of the time, those people end up moving to the bigger cities. They move to New York and Europe, but in reality, Minneapolis is an incubator and has always been an incubator for music. Growing up there, I by no means missed out on anything. I got the chance to live in a city, create my own sound and voice, and take that internationally."

That said, one major advantage that ultimately persuaded him to move to central Europe was the touring scene. With such a rich and dense touring scene, living in Europe has made it easier than ever to find the venues that match their style, so much so that he says people are almost spoiled for choice.

That said, if you plan on heading to a DVS1 live show, there’s one important rule you’ll have to remember: no cameras.

"I have this stringent policy of what happens in the club, what happens when the DJs are performing live - that should stay in that moment… [people] are addicted to this idea of capturing a moment, but they're missing a moment in the pursuit of capturing it."

As such, he even went so far as to launch an ‘Enjoy Right Now’ campaign a few years back, and the rule has always stuck around.

And it’s not just cameras he shuns. Regarding social media, DVS1 feels free to play by anyone else’s rulebook. He has a Facebook page but has yet to post on other platforms. It shows that if your work inspires people enough, they’ll be willing to look for it themselves.

For more information about DVS1, his advice to aspiring artists, and his experiences performing worldwide, be sure to check out the full, exclusive Nexus Radio interview.

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