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Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Skrillex drops emo image, sells out Majestic concert

Since leaving From First to Last, electronic dubstep artist Sonny Moore, a.k.a. Skrillex, is doing well for himself on Deadmau5’s own Mau5trap label with a new EP released in October and the freedom to create what he wants.[/media-credit]

“They took me into the bathroom and did the full dick touch.” Even the musicians you hear on the radio are not immune to the wrath of Transportation Security Administration. 

“It was a basic cavity search. They went over my underwear but on my penis. On my butt. Everywhere in the bathroom. Opened every single nook and cranny, every single fucking pocket, my wallet, my backpack. Everything.”

Skrillex isn’t a neophyte to whim of TSA agents and their see-through gadgets. But at least now you know that they’re very, very thorough. With the amount of traveling he’s doing, he was bound to get felt up. Although a lot of people wouldn’t mind an extra hand in exchange for Sonny Moore’s rock star life.


Most can only dream about the life of a jet-setting Dubstep artist, whose whirlwind of a career boasts a record eight best-selling tracks on Beatport’s 10 best selling tracks list, and its first dubstep single sitting at number one. Add to that, Deadmau5 picked up Skrillex onto his Mau5trap label.

Three years ago, Moore left the life of an emo rocker (complete with eyeliner, piercings and pitch black shoulder length hair). But if anytime between 2005 to 2009 you sold your soul for a From First to Last concert ticket and passed him on the street today, granted that you were unaware of his rebirth as Skrillex, he would be unrecognizable behind retro over-sized glasses, check shirt, metallic skinny jeans and a half-shaved head parting his thick black mane to the right, exposing a large ivory left ear gauge piercing.

At 22 years old, he’s already a veteran of the music business, who in a past life, lived as a head banging screamer (until his voice box gave out). When asked about former band member Matt Good, Moore said, “I’ve run into him.” But he hasn’t looked back.

He’s chill and down to earth, throwing “yo,” “dude” and “man” into his rhetoric; it’s a comfortable conversation interjected with laughs and interesting recollections – kind of like talking to an old high school friend “about that time…”

But, I have hard evidence that his head isn’t in the clouds.

First, he Tweets his own Tweets. There isn’t a ghost bird managing his account.

Second, his cell phone of choice isn’t an iPhone. For a dubstepper, and the many apps the iPhone has to offer from synthesizers to guitar apps, coupled with the popularity of the iPhone girl (aka applegirl 002) and the first iPad DJ, Rana Sobhany, a Blackberry isn’t the most media-centric phone. But lo and behold, Sonny Moore is a Tweet-a-holic via Crackberry. 

“I’ve been on it for so long. I love the iPhone because of the apps – that’s the biggest reason I’d get an iPhone… but I like the Blackberry. I’m so used to it. I have 50 people on BBM all over the world to keep in touch,” Moore said. BBM is free, so you can’t blame him.

Blackberry, meet your new poster boy for the campaign to tackle the iPhone market share. He would make a fine addition to Diplo, who backs the Blackberry Torch 9800.

Moore’s Twitter page is riddled with replies to musicians and miscellaneous retweets – his responses to the various jibberish @Skrillex followers or musician friends have sent messages his way. He’s generous enough with his time to repost a birthday retweet request -“@Skrillex Don’t mean to sound like a pooface, but could you possibly wish my friend @CyborgAnastasia Happy Birthday? or possibly RT this”? Which means, he actually reads his messages.

Typically, the Twitter bio is the quintessential identity of that user and the keywords he or she wants search engines to scrape. But his bio simply states, “Want people to be happy.”

He has a vision for his ideal world, and its ever-changing from record to record, but under one condition – that it doesn’t come attached with a corporate music label that tugs the leash attached to their musician’s necks. The day of the interview, hours before our conversation, he Tweeted, “You don’t need a big shiny fancy ‘major’ label to make it. Just make awesome music and build your own world around it for people to live in.” It was retaliation against the paper pushers at Atlantic Records who are to blame for his departure from From First to Last.

“I had three records worth of material shelved by Atlantic and they wouldn’t let me release any of my solo stuff,” Moore said, lowering his voice as though in a manner of a high school student talking about his rejection from his top choice of college. 

But why? 

“I dunno, maybe because they have their heads in their ass?” Skrillex suggested. “They’re a major label and they doctor everything that goes through the system, so Skrillex is a way for me to do exactly what I wanted and when I wanted to do it.”

The past is in the past. Skrillex, a name derived from a gaming handle, is on his second utopia entitled, Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites. He’s not going to force anything on you and if you join his utopia, you can reshape his world into your own as long as you’re happy. He’s content with, “whatever Scary Monsters visually speaks to you, however that speaks to you,” Moore said. “Then my next ideal world would be the next record.” 

Skrillex will be playing at the Majestic Theatre on Jan. 20 at 10 p.m.

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