Bananas and pillow fights from DJ duo Dada Life

DJ duo Olle Corneer (left) and Stefan Engblom promise partygoers that they will “come absolutely beautiful and leave ugly”. -- PHOTO: COURTESY OF DADA LIFE
DJ duo Olle Corneer (left) and Stefan Engblom promise partygoers that they will “come absolutely beautiful and leave ugly”. -- PHOTO: COURTESY OF DADA LIFE

Dada Life, who will play at Siloso Beach, often feature the fruit and champagne at their gigs

Swedish house duo Dada Life have done the craziest things, from hosting the world's largest pillow fight to petitioning the United Nations to recognise Dada Land as a sovereign nation.

"Pure happiness" is what drives their music and their fun-loving antics, says Stefan Engblom, 32, one half of Dada Life.

Engblom and his DJ partner Olle Corneer will play at Sentosa's Siloso Beach on Oct 11 at Illumi Nation, one of Asia's biggest glow-in-the-dark paint parties.

The duo will headline the event along with Dutch electro house act Bingo Players and French house DJ Martin Solveig.

Engblom, who was speaking to Life! over the telephone from Stockholm in Sweden, says: "We always try to do random and fun stuff. It started with us being like, 'What's more fun than a pillow fight? Nothing'. We started doing it at small shows, with just 200 and 300 pillows and, one time, we did 800 pillows and we were like 'Wow, this is really cool'."

Last year, the duo held the world's largest pillow fight at a Dada Life concert in Chicago, where 3,813 people took part. Engblom says the pair will take a short break from record-breaking stunts. "It takes a lot of planning, the work put into the whole thing was like releasing an album."

In 2012, the duo reportedly used more than 3,600kg of bananas and 3,000 bottles of champagne while touring the United States and Canada.

It is the official party snack for the duo, who use inflatable bananas and champagne bottles as props in their shows. Partygoers even come dressed in banana suits.

Engblom says: "Bananas are the perfect club food because they have this protective yellow shell.

"Let's say you're in a sweaty club, and you have one banana and an apple, and sweat starts dripping from the ceiling and all the food gets messy and greasy, which one do you pick? The greasy apple or the protected banana? Champagne speaks for itself."

Quirky antics aside, Dada Life, which was formed in 2006, are known for their high-energy electronic dance music, churning out club anthems such as Feed The Dada, Kick Out The Epic Motherf***er and Born To Rage.

The duo, who rank No. 35 on British dance music magazine DJ Mag's poll of the top 100 DJs in the world, recently released the track One Smile, another upbeat summer anthem.

Engblom says of the song: "We wanted to make a track that makes you want to eat an ice cream and puts a big smile on your face.

"Nowadays, a lot of tracks are so hard and aggressive, so we wanted to make a really happy track."

Their music attempts "to capture a little bit of a moment" when the duo catch a glimpse of a smile on a fan's face and see how happy he is and the energy he exudes.

"We take that moment and remember it, and we try to recreate it into a track," he says.

And while the duo's attempt last year to have their own sovereign nation, Dada Land, recognised did not pan out, Engblom says the duo "claim the area they play at as Dada Land".

So when Siloso Beach is transformed into Dada Land on Oct 11, he says: "Expect the unexpected. We're Dada Life, s*** goes down, it's going to be fun. Come absolutely beautiful and leave ugly. That's a promise."

melk@sph.com.sg