Described by Gilles Peterson as ‘The best DJ I’ve heard in 10 years’, and being personally invited by Grace Jones to DJ in her hotel room are not normal accolades for most DJ’s.
But Dea Barandana is no ordinary DJ.
Born in Jakarta, in the 80’s Dea grew up with the sound of Indonesian city pop and new wave.
Forced into learning classical piano by his parents, he soon developed as taste for many other instruments too.
At the age of 18 he joined a breakdance crew as its DJ and quickly began fusing their usual elements of electro and breakbeat with Chicago and Detroit sounds he’d been furiously digging for everywhere he could.
By 2001 he was hosting his own warehouse parties in the city for 3000 people, firmly establishing himself as one of the cities foremost selectors.
Following a move to London to study sonic arts and sound design, Dea soon found himself hunting through flea markets and charity shops across Europe, feeding his developing taste for more obscure sounds for the dancefloor.
Fast forward to 2005 - alongside a stint as a roadie for Roger Waters Dark Side of the Moon tour - he began picking up gigs across Europe, as well as a return to Asia to play at the legendary Shelter in Tokyo.
2012 saw a return to his native Indonesia, and alongside a job as a sound designer for a safari and marine park in Bali, Dea was offered a residency at the islands newest hotspot, Potatohead Beach Club.
Earning plaudits from every international act he played with, it wasn’t long before the Creative Director asked him to fully develop the music policy of the brand moving forwards.
Utilising his skills not only as a DJ but also as a highly ambitious sound designer, he has created the islands only audiophile space, Studio Eksotika, featuring an incredible, painstakingly sourced array of vintage analog speakers, where he showcases the vinyl he has dug from every corner of the planet.
The venue has become a must visit hangout for visiting DJ’s and music lovers alike.
And it’s not only in Bali where his unique skills are in demand.
He has also represented the Indonesian Culture Ministry at a number of events across Europe, showcasing Indonesian music and culture in Belgium, Germany, France and Sweden.
2018 sees Dea return to Europe for summer shows.
The summer also sees his band project ZATUA release a new album, as well as him launching a new label focussing on Asian artists.
There will also be a single in May forthcoming.
Defining what Dea plays defeats the object of his mission.
There are no genres, no hype tunes.
It’s one man sharing his love of the obscure with the dance floor.
As Gilles Peterson put it: "he's built an entire set around a sound that never sounded better to my ears”