With over 12 years spent behind the decks, Arun R has been a fixture on the music performance circuit in Hong Kong and around Asia. His refusal to be pigeonholed has seen him seamlessly drift from balearic vibes to raw deep house, taking his listeners on ethereal journeys of sound and music. From handling bookings, curating and organising events, collaborating on productions and holding DJ residencies at Hong Kong’s top locations; he has now set up his own independent business providing consultancy for hotels, clubs and bars for music and hospitality services.
Above all that, he has also been seen playing at festivals such as Ying Yang Music Festival Great Wall of China, Karma Kastle by Karma Klique, Hong Kong’s Clockenflap, Sonar HK just to name a few. In this edition of City Nomads Radio, he shares with us his favourite haunts in Hong Kong and that very moment he fell in love with electronic music.
Where were you born and raised?
Hong Kong. And, Hong Kong.
Do you remember the moment you fell in love with electronic music?
There wasn’t just one moment that made electronic music become a familiar part of myself. When I first started to enjoy ‘dance music’, there were artists like Moby, New Order, Depeche Mode, Paul Oakenfold, Mark Farina, Satoshi Tomiie, David Morales, Ashley Beedle and so many others that, through so many different ways, drove me to create my own musical realm. The deeper side of house and electronic music that I’ve come to love today is because of that diversely-traveled journey.
How would you describe your sound to a complete stranger in 10 words or less?
Come close enough to the speaker, and you will know.
What do you listen to at home when relaxing?
If I really want to take it easy, any show selected or curated by Chris Coco always does the trick.
Tell us a little more about the party (or nightlife) scene in Hong Kong.
I never party, what a terrible question to ask me!
It’s late at night and you’re drunk after a gig, where would you go for supper?
Late night munchies have been off my regular menu as of recent, but when that gluttinous moment does happen after a gig, anything roadside other than a kebab or hotdog does the trick. A plate of gritty fried rice or a bowl comforting soup noodles always works.
Some of your favourite haunts in Hong Kong?
I love natural wines, and La Cabane is the only and best place to enjoy them in Hong Kong. Coa is a new favourite focuses on my new love, mezcal while Stockton makes the best Sazerac in town. Komune – I’m hooked on the comfort of this space that gives you space! Tasty Congee has all my favourite local fixes executed with quality and I go to Pici for fresh, handmade pasta. And for the best after-hours experience, you’ll find me at #AfterDarkAndBeyond.
Apart from music, what else do you dabble in?
If you can’t tell already, I’m an aficionado of natural wines and good food. I will happily feast any time, any day. Aside from that, the cosmic world fascinates me, I like to dabble in curiosity and wonder.
Tell us something about the mixtape you’ve created for City Nomads.
When people ask me about music style, I usually don’t have a straight answer, and I don’t see why I need to be directive of any genre or style; pigeon-holing is a painful thought to me. I end up saying things like “positive vibes, or, eclectic, or, I like to build my set when given a chance’… I guess this mixtape is a bit of all of that! And I guess a bit of House music!
**Top image by Paul Bradshaw