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Sunday, April 21, 2024
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	Verdult (left) and Alzayat (right) spin tracks at Jimmy Valentine’s.

AU student rises to fame in DJ duo

DJing requires delivering a constant river of diverse musical styles to create an effortless union between sound and rhythm. For Chanel Verdult, a sophomore in the School of Communication and College of Arts and Sciences, this is an inescapable chase of a lifetime.

Verdult is one half of Bromar x Punkproper, a DJing duo who performs in the District and gaining notoriety.

“We combine new school with old school,” she said. “So we’ll have throwbacks like Aaliyah to Biggie and we’ll suddenly go into modern day deep house and play really big trap bangers. I have a specific sound and when you hear a DJ, you know it’s going to be me or my partner because we always have a hip-hop, R&B, trap, rap sound.”

Verdult and her DJ partner Omar Alzayat will face their first DJing battle at LivingSocial’s The 7 Deadly Sins Halloween Party on Oct. 26, but Verdult said she’s not worried about their sonic competition.

“We feel really confident because our sound is so different,” Verdult said. “There’s not a lot of trill, rap, Trap, hip-hop throwback here and we feel confident we can win it.”

But in the beginning, Verdult met Alzayat, a World Bank employee and University of California-Berkeley graduate, almost on a whim through friends.

“We sort of just got together one day and he liked my music choice and we should start a duo because he had the more technical side and I was more of a composer,” Verdult said. “So I was more of the ears and he was more of the hands on deck and so we collaborated and decided to make a duo to DJ with.”

As Punkproper, Verdult spins Vogue House, hip-hop and trap whereas her partner Bromar uses more trance and EDM cuts. However, they find a balance at trill and deep house.

“We started practicing about five, six months ago,” Verdult said. “We liked the way it started sounding. Then we started looking for gigs and out first gig was at Jimmy Valentine’s Lonely Hearts Club.”

Their performance at Jimmy Valentine’s was the duo’s first live performance, but certainly not the last.

“It’s a really interesting feeling to see the crowd interacting with the sounds you’ve been working so hard on,” Verdult said. “Them dancing to the beats and the music you’ve been playing and rehearsing for months.”

Verdult incorporates influences from fashion and art into Punkproper x Bromar’s aesthetic. Similar to a conductor at the podium, hand selecting tracks to cut requires thought regarding the audience’s reaction and the sound’s impact.

“We put it through a couple trial test runs and then we really tailor it to the way that our trademark signature sound is,” Verdult said. “It’s very much so like a game. That’s what’s really fun about DJing because you have to mix the bpm’s perfectly and then you have to see how your crowd is.”

Bromar x Punkproper distinguish their style of DJing through their heavy incorporation of trap, a sound commonly used in southern hip-hop that relies on the heavy use of kick-drums and synth. Originally used by artists like Gucci Mane and T.I., Baauer’s “Harlem Shake” eventually brought trap into the mainstream consciousness of popular culture.

“I really like that trap is in right now because we’re both from California, and trap is extremely emerging there,” Verdult said. “But what’s great about D.C. is the trends are a little bit slower here, so we have a newer sound here than in California.”

See Bromar x Punkproper perform at “The 7 Deadly Sins Halloween Party” at LivingSocial’s 918 F Street Oct. 26 at 8 p.m. Tickets for the event are still on sale.

dkahen-kashi@theeagleonline.com


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