Peking Duk | bio
for Sony Music Australia
All bounce and zero boundaries, Peking Duk gives you anthems for the good times, best enjoyed from the sweaty, heaving thick of it – which is exactly where Adam Hyde and Reuben Styles have come from.
New track ‘Sugar’, a sweet-as-candy collaboration with beloved Aussie singer-songwriter Jack River, is the latest in a long hot line of audio fire that has poured out of the Peking Duk studio in the last few years. You know the sound – uplifting choruses, killer drops and a who’s-who of Australian and international collaborators including Aluna George, Nicole Millar and Icona Pop, all underpinned by a bass slappin’ harder than a 24-hour Seinfeld marathon.
In the seven years since a bootleg of Passion Pit’s ‘Take a Walk’ plucked the duo from a bedroom studio in our country’s capital and set them crashing onto the national stage, the boys have chalked up eight Aria nominations and two wins, for 2014 breakthrough hit ‘High’ and 2017’s ‘Stranger’. With every release shooting to the pointy end of the charts, the Duks’ discography is nudging its way towards a whopping 300 million streams worldwide.
We loved them as a loose-unit electronic act, but the moment Adam and Reuben emerged from behind the decks and channelled their antics into the glorious shitstorm of energy that is a Peking Duk live show, was the moment Peking Duk became legend.
The act was unleashed for the first time at Splendour 2016, when the Duks threw a ten-piece band, spanking new song arrangements, the finest guest vocalists Australia has to offer and a lifetime’s supply of confetti at a twenty-thousand-strong crowd who would talk about the show for years to come. Peking Duk’s playful take on electronica had evolved into roaring live beast that refused to be tamed.
With the creative possibilities exploding out, the boys are now determined to go bolder in the studio and on stage, delivering fresh edits and originals with a mix of spectacle, surprise and sheer insanity. “We are stoked to have made the transition into live,” the Duks admit. “It’s changed the way we write music and opened up way more possibilities.”
Last year Peking Duk took its hot sweaty mess of chords and confetti on the road for the sell-out ‘Wasted’ tour. This year the stakes are set even higher for a three-month run of shows packing pure fire. “There’s no perfection, and that’s what we like. The element of danger or uncertainty that comes with playing live is part of the thrill.”
Be it on stage or in the studio, the Duks know the key to truly killing it is collaboration, and latest single ‘Sugar’ is no exception. “This song went through so many different lifeforms before Holly [Jack River] jumped onboard,” the boys explain. “She changed a sombre skeleton of a song into a playful, sugary playground.”
The result is a piece of noughties-inspired pop perfection, which stirs up as much joy in the listening as it did in the making. As Jack River puts it: “Working with the boys was so much fun, we were like kids in a candy shop. Hopefully that sense of fun drips out of the song like a melting ice block.”
With this summery future-classic in the arsenal for 2019 and more tunes on the way, the sky ain't no limit. But no matter how high the Duks fly, they’ll always keep one foot in the sticky mosh from whence they came. In the end Adam and Reuben are just like the rest of us reprobates – but with stronger moustache game.