At San Marcos, we have many students with an array of talents, but would anyone ever think “radio host” would be one of them? Juniors Kadin Donohoe (DJ K-Dog) and Matt Rollins (DJ Matty B) are the co hosts of KCSB’s Sunday afternoon segment, “Dungeon Pop”. This mix of nuance techno and electronic music leaves listeners engaged from 2-4 pm. We at the King’s Page were lucky enough to score an exclusive tell all interview with the creators. They joined us this week at the King’s Page HQ to release their secrets on how they became teen radio icons.
How did you first learn about KCSB, and why did you choose each other as co hosts?
Matt: “So, K-Dog, he’s been in the scene for a minute right. “Through the Ether” was Kadin’s show last year, he told me about it and I got interested about it. So I started to the process to get my own show, first the AM station and then I had to take an operator competency test, that was kinda hard, but I passed it. Then I was eligible to apply for a show.”
Kadin: “I was doing my show. I was doing “Through the Ether” and I thought this would be fun if I had a cool kid doing it with me. And I was like who’s into music? Matt Rollins, he’s into the music scene right. So he passed the test, we got the station, and then got going.”
How would you describe the music that you play on “Dungeon Pop?”
Matt: “My AM show was more ambient electronic music, slightly influenced my trap, but more energetic. When we got together for Dungen Pop, Kadin and I agreed that it would be a good vibe and we could find a lot of material in general.”
Would you say that your station is fairly successful? How was it compared to “Through the Ether” (Kadin’s previous show)?
Kadin: “It think with this show we get more high school listeners, because we’ve expanded to both of our friend circles.”
Kate: “And you have been advertising it more, right?”
Kadin: “I did not advertise it, and I still don’t advertise it. I don’t advertise myself ever. No one wants to see you advertising yourself.”
Matt: “But they do dog, you gotta get yourself out there.”
Kadin: “No, if people want to listen to your show, they’ll listen to it.”
Matt: “But they won’t know about it, how do you listen to a show you don’t know about?”
Kadin: “Anyway, the other show “Through the Ether,” it was just really mellow and I would be pretty calm. The callers I would say stuff like ‘This is cool’, ‘What’s the next song’, but now with Dungeon Pop, we’re the rowdiest radio show on the radio. We got people calling in they are asking for our names for us to come over, you know how it goes.”
Matt: “Yeah, with “Through the Ether” I feel like Kadin was just doing his thing, just for fun you know what I mean? But for Dungeon Pop we wanted to make it a real thing, add some production value add some chemistry between the hosts, add more to it, get hype before the shows.”
Who are your biggest inspirations for what you create on your own time and what you play on Dungeon Pop?
Kadin: “George W Bush, Surrender Dorothy, for the music I make probably Boards of Canada and Surrender Dorothy. “
Matt: “The music that we play ourselves, when we’re recording, a little bit bleeds into what we play on the show, but not completely. It kinda has its own department, Dungeon Pop. It is way more professional and better. Some influences we play on the show are, Aphex Twin,
Oneohtrix Point Never, and HEALTH. Darker pop music with light electronic melodies, that’s how we came up with the name.”
Kadin: “Yeah Matt actually came up with the name.”
Do you plan on pursuing music later in your life, do you think being on the show and creating your own music will give you an advantage?
Kadin: “I always plan on pursuing music as a hobby, I don’t necessarily see it being my thing, but a —”
Matt: “You’re a cubicle type up guy.”
Kadin: “You’re a cubicle type up guy I’m like a —”
Matt: “You literally told me that…”
Kadin: “Yeah, I would be totally content with being in a cubicle, or a park ranger, maybe a janitor”
Matt: “He missed one question on the SAT and he wants to be in a cubicle.”
Kadin: “I don’t want to be in a cubicle, but I would be totally content with it, I’m fine with whatever it’s all good. Anyway, I still enjoy music, that’s why I don’t want to connect it to something I have to do as a profession so much. In terms of if this will help, I think this has introduced me to a lot more music that I would have never even knew existed beforehand and also the people I met at the station has probably the best thing about the whole experience for me. Opening the doors, the gates of hell, into the deep pits of people who do college radio.”
Matt: “I know I want music to be a huge part of my life, I do not know if that means career because it can be very difficult to make a career out of it, especially when you’re into underground music. For the station, it’s definitely is the beginning of something and I don’t know what. For Dungeon Pop, I want to go further, this is the start of something. I don’t know where it’s going to go, but I like this.”
Why do you play Kevin Bacon’s PSA every week?
Matt: “Well, when Kadin was doing ‘Through the Ether,’ he found a gem of a PSA of Kevin Bacon saying, ‘This is Kevin Bacon, you’re listening to KCSB FM in Santa Barbara’. And in the first episode we thought to ourselves let’s slide that in, during a song.”
Kadin: “We try to slide that in every week on the show.”
Matt: “We’re at the climax of a track, then just throwing Kevin Bacon in there.”
Kadin: “The listeners are just confused.”
Matt: “We actually started throwing in Danny Devito in too, in addition to Kevin Bacon. So keep your eye out.”
Kadin: “We just have a laundry list–”
Matt: “Listen this week and you’ll hear Danny Devito and Kevin Bacon, so stay tuned.”
If you could choose a special guest, who would you choose and why? What would you ask?
Matt: Richard David James, aka Aphex Twin, because he is the inspiration of the name Dungeon Pop and the show. He is kind of like the godfather of the type of electronic music that we play. I would ask him about his inspirations in general, like what gets his creative juices flowing. I would love to hear his take on mainstream music from now and when he was just getting started.
Kadin: I would choose Greafer because he/she is my favorite artist of all time. I would ask why he/she keeps his identity a secret, what their influences were, whether he considers himself a genius/or is he talking about someone else, how he tracks his guitar and why he doesn’t sell his music.
Matt: We want to open up a website in the near future, and sell our merch.
Photo courtesy: Dungeon Pop