Julio Nunez much better known as Havok Roth has been making huge moves in the scene for a few years now and at the age of 24 can already say he’s been able to play his music for audiences around the world. Roth has received recognition and respect from producers such as R.L. Grime, KRNE & Graves and we were lucky enough to be able to catch up with him on the day he released the first item in his merch line, an extremely dope bomber jacket with a contrasting orange interior. You can pick up your own bomber on his website for a limited time, havokroth.com.
Havok Roth’s Bomber Jacket, available on havokroth.com
Take an exclusive look inside the life and mind of one of Miami’s Hottest producers as we discuss collabs, tracks, inspiration and what’s on his playlist right now.
Where did you get the name Havok Roth from?
I actually don’t remember how I came up with the name, or why I spelled it with a K. It was an alias I used on every forum or game I played since I was in 8th grade.
The first time I ever heard Thorns was when RL Grime dropped it in his Bonnaroo set, I hunted the song down and it’s been a favorite ever since, tell us a little about the creative process for that track, what inspired you?
That track was actually a product of lots of rushing and making many mistakes along the way. It was in the middle of WMC in Miami and the collective I’m now a part of (Daruma) approached me to see if I wanted to send them over an original to release via their bi-monthly compilations. I didn’t have any originals that weren’t already signed at the time, so mid WMC between going to network for 8 hours to events and waking up extremely hungover, I managed to make the track in about a week. s/o RL for the spin at bonnaroo.
You’ve released a nice amount of bangers at this point in your career, what’s been your favorite track you’ve put out so far and why?
This is a tough one but I’d say it’s probably my track with ‘TYNVN’ titled Vessel. the ideas just came together very effortlessly. The og rough draft that he sent over was sick and it was so easy to work with him. Also that track goes the hardest when I play it live tbh.
You’ve also collabed with big names like KRNE, Crankdat & Grammy award winning graves. Who do you think you’ve learned the most from & who would you like to collab with in the future?
They’re all very different and I learned a lot from all of them. graves specially I’ve learned a ton from, mostly his ‘idgaf’ attitude. I think he doesn’t even realize it but he taught me to not take life and this industry so serious and just have fun. When it comes to skills, I learned the most from KRNE.. he honestly blew my mind with the way he produces. Zero regard for the rules and did a lot of things in our collab that I didn’t think were even possible.
You have been producing for a few years now, tell us about one of the most memorable experiences for you so far?
It’s gonna sound cheesy but honestly I still sometimes can’t believe how far I’ve come in just a few years. It feels like just yesterday I started producing but also feels like a lifetime ago. Going from being overlooked to getting to chat with someone as big as RL Grime and hearing that he loves what I’ve been making is one of the most memorable things that have stuck with me.
What do you think has helped your career take off the most for you at this point?
Consistency. Proving that I don’t take shortcuts and that I try to pour my heart and soul into every project I make. Whether it’s music, or artwork, or the new merchandise I’ve been slaving over. I take the ‘Steve Jobs’ approach to things. Do things with excellency or not at all.
Were you born and raised in Miami and how do you think living in a city that hosts one of the largest electronic dance music festivals in the country every year has influenced your career?
I was actually born in Venezuela and also have Brazilian family I grew up with. I came over to the states when I was 10 years old. I consider myself a Miami native I owe my personality and my mentality towards life to this city I grew up in.
Was there a defining moment in your life that made you decide to get into producing and DJing?
Pairing this answer with the one above because I remember clearly the moment I decided I wanted to do it. Fun fact, I’m a bartender on the side, always have been drawn to the nightlife. I got a bartending gig to work at Ultra 2012.. prior to that I had never been to a rave or electronic music festival before. The minute I stepped inside I looked at the stage and said, “I want to do that”.
Word on the street is you can play a lot more musical instruments than just CDJS, what all can you play and have you sampled yourself playing anything for any of your songs?
I can play guitar, bass, piano, and sing. I actually haven’t had a chance to record myself yet but I plan to do something like that in the future. Very likely not for the Havok Roth project.
Do you have any plans for any upcoming EP’s? What can we expect to hear from you in the future?
A lot of singles currently. And more touring. No plans for an EP, I want to come out strong when I finally decide to do one and it doesn’t feel like the right time yet.
You have very unique sounds that definitely stand out from the pack, what’s been inspiring you lately to create?
Lately I’m just trying to make things I haven’t heard before. Or maybe something we’ve all heard before but doing it in a way that it hasn’t been done yet. Hit or miss I want to try to create my own lane. I’d rather my music suck but sound original, than sound like the other 10k producers that are all trying to sound like NGHTMRE or Slushii right now.
You’ve accumulated a nice sized following over the years, I know we would love to have you come play Stereo Live Houston. Of all the shows you’ve played so far, what’s been your favorite and why?
I think this is a tie between my headline shows in Sao Paulo, Brazil and Space Yacht in LA. Space Yacht it’s such an intimate vibe, filled with industry people. You can’t find something like that anywhere else. Brazil on the other hand was the opposite. It was an insanely packed club that had like 800 capacity and we packed to about 1000. None of those kids knew how to speak english but they connected with my music and knew all my tracks. Insane feeling seeing in the flesh just how far my music had reached at that point.
Can you name a couple of your favorite tracks by other artists that you have in rotation right now?
Ricky Remedy – Kikit
Baauer – How Can You Tell When It’s Done
Oski – Super Hot
Reach – Maya Maya
When you’re not in the lab or at show, what are you typically doing with your time?
That’s the secret.. I’m never not in the lab.