Mute Medellin / Facebook
Most know him as "Truncate"; others, as "Audio Injection" or "Broken Rules"; to his mother, he’s simply "David." But I prefer to call one of the hottest techno producers on the planet DJ I.B.U.*
(*Not a name he actually goes by… or anything I’ve ever called him to his face).
That’s because David Flores (a.k.a. Truncate) is one of the most devoted beer fans I’ve ever spoken to. Not only does the man keep up a killer Instagram feed that mashes up photos of world traveling, record spinning, and beer drinking, he is also somehow -- despite an incredibly demanding work schedule -- able to keep up with all of the latest beer hype and releases.
Though he’s been DJing in the Los Angeles area since the early ‘90s, David Flores took on the moniker Truncate in 2011 to mark the beginning of a rawer techno sound. His music has since been supported by world class artists such as Modeselektor, Ben Klock, Marcel Dettmann, Chris Liebing, and Josh Wink, to name a few. And he’s also remixed tracks for big names such as KiNK, Slam, and Trus’me.
I caught up with Truncate while he had a minute to breathe back home in Signal Hill, California (just outside of Long Beach). After speaking about all of the ways his passions for techno and beer intersect, he created a Mixed 6 playlist for us, pairing his own tracks with some of his favorite brews. Check out our interview -- followed by the playlist -- below!
credits:"Dean Paul de Leon" align:center width:800
Ethan: So how did you get into beer?
Truncate: When I turned 21 [in 2002], one of my cousins took me to this beer bar in Redondo Beach called Naja’s Place, [with] like, 70 beers on tap and 700 different bottles. Back then I was drinking Coronas. I got to try all these different styles of beer that I had no idea existed. I didn’t know there was this whole beer world out there.
So what beer styles get you going these days? What are you into the most now?
Right now I’m all about the hoppy beers. I gotta admit, I’m on the trend with those New England IPAs. I like those really juicy, hop-forward beers. Session IPAs as well. Even some hop-forward lagers and stuff. I’ve been a hop guy for a really long time. I also love stouts, but in the summertime I’m not drinking many.
credits:"@audioinjectionla / Instagram" width:300 align:right
Makes sense. Any specific breweries you especially love?
I live close to Beachwood Brewing, one of my all-time favorites. We’ve got Stone out here, Ballast Point, Modern Times, and now in downtown LA we have a Mikkeller. They’re brewing in San Diego. I have a friend that lives in Brooklyn -- we beer trade, and he sends me stuff from Other Half, which is killing it. East coast beers are so good right now.
We [the east coast] were so behind for so long; the west coast was always dominating. It’s sort of like the reverse of hip-hop: born on the east coast, and then the west coast caught up. In some ways, it’s the opposite in the beer world.
Yeah, the New England stuff is totally crushing it. And there are some that are doing [the style on the west coast] -- like Noble Ale Works, another favorite of mine in Orange County. They’re doing the hazy, canned stuff. And then there’s Monkish -- I tried one time to get one of their can releases, but it’s insane: [The release] starts at like 2:00 p.m., and people are lined up at like, 10 in the morning. I don’t have the time to sit there!
credits:"@audioinjectoinla / Instagram" width:450 align:right
Speaking of time management: how do you discover or keep up with new beer while you’re on tour?
In the more obscure towns, it’s hard to find craft beer, but I’ll usually ask promoters ‘Hey, where can I find some local beers or pubs?’ Also, through Google. I try to stay on top of it as much as I can, and I’ve got Untappd, where I can rate and keep a log of all the beers that I’ve tried. I try so many, I can never remember everything.
Where do you tour, primarily?
Mostly internationally, in Europe. I would say Europe is way behind compared to [beer in] the US, but there are some cities that are on top of everything. Like Berlin, Stockholm, Madrid, and Barcelona. And the UK, of course.
Do you have a favorite beer city?
Berlin, for sure.
Is that also your favorite place to play?
Well, it has one of my favorite clubs in the world, which is Berghain. I play there a couple of times a year. But I also make Berlin my home base, so when I’m traveling within Europe over several weekends, I have an apartment there. I have friends there, and I’m always checking out beer pubs.
credits:"@audioinjectoinla / Instagram" width:450 align:right
Do you drink while playing or recording?
Oh yeah, all the time. At my local shop, I’ll go every week, stock up, and have a beer a day to try something different. While I’m DJing, depending on the city, the promoters will be really cool and pick me up some local craft beers.
They know of your reputation as a beer guy?
A lot of these guys follow me on Instagram, so they see that I’m a beer guy. They’ll go, ‘Hey we have a surprise for you: a six-pack of local craft beers!’
So do you think the music you play has anything in common with beer?
Actually, yeah. With techno, there’s a certain formula you stick with, and then you can veer off those formulas and go in a different direction, just like with beer. Let’s say an IPA: it’s gotta have hops and barley. But then you can start throwing in some fruit, or experiment while still sticking with the original ingredients. And that’s like techno: You have your base instruments, but then you can experiment with different sounds and go in different directions, but still keep it techno.
Are there any crossover beer/techno fans out there?
I meet some on the road sometimes. Some beer-head fans follow me on Instagram, and they’re like, ‘Oh you gotta try this brewery.’ I see some guys wearing local brewery shirts to gigs. I’ll be DJing and I’ll wear some brewery shirts as well -- like, I have a Modern Times shirt I’ll wear to a gig.
credits:"@audioinjectionla / Instagram" width:330 align:right
Are you as passionate about beer as you are about music?
I can’t say that I put the same amount of passion into beer [as I do music], but it’s pretty close. Beer is a really big part of my life. I’m always on the lookout for new beers. I’m beer trading very often.
I guess the biggest difference is that you’re not making money from beer… at least, yet.
No, not yet. Maybe at some point I’ll want to start brewing, or do something with beer…
Have you homebrewed before?
Yes, I’ve made a couple of beers. One of my friends, Jason, has a homebrew system, and I’ve brewed three times with him. Each time were IPAs, of course. He’s actually opening up a brewery called Sandbox Brewing in Montclair [California]. And when he gets up and running we’re going to do a one-off Truncate IPA can release, which should be pretty cool. I’m going to help him brew it.
Do you have a name for the beer?
Truncale! It was kind of a joke, but then after, we were like, 'That actually kinda works.'
Check out Truncate's Mixed 6 Playlist to pair his tracks with some of his favorite brews!