What’s in your bag? is a recurring feature where we ask people to tell us a bit more about their everyday gadgets by opening their bags and hearts to us. This week, we’re featuring electronic music producer and DJ NGHTMRE.
When NGHTMRE is onstage headlining any manner of festival, he’s a spectacle. The trap and bass-driven artist is never still, climbing and jumping off every surface while the stage spits fire, confetti, or blasts of CO2. By the end, he’s drenched, sweat whipping off with every headbang. This mammoth-sized stage persona is markedly different from what The Verge encounters when we meet the DJ and producer to rummage through his bag. Here, on the rooftop of Hotel Americano in New York, NGHTMRE is simply Tyler Marenyi, a soft-spoken 27-year-old with a gentle smile.
A signee on Diplo’s Mad Decent label, Marenyi’s festival-driven tracks with wild, snarling synths have cemented him as a bass superstar in the past few years. He’s not only put out several EPs of his own, but he has collaborated with the likes of Dillon Francis, Zeds Dead, and Wiz Khalifa. Gig-wise, you can find Marenyi playing banner events such as Lollapalooza and Coachella or at his Las Vegas residency with the Hakkasan Group.
His newest single with WAVEDASH titled “Grave” follows in the same fashion of what NGHTMRE fans have already come to expect. Crafted for hungry throngs of bass-loving crowds, “Grave” dances between cinematic breakdowns and lacerating, speaker-shaking drops. It comes on the heels of an already packed summer of releases for Marenyi, including his Magic Hour EP and remixes of Flosstradamus’ “MVP” and Ekali & Zhu’s “Blame.”
Marenyi’s popularity has led to a life that’s never static as he hops from fest to fest, day after day. As a result, his bag’s contents, and the bag itself, reflect a simplistic paring down with essentials that can withstand a little knocking around. Poking through, Marenyi finds he’s not exactly sure what some items are, even though he doesn’t carry much. Perhaps it’s a side effect of rarely having a moment to breathe. “I don’t even know what [model] this is,” Marenyi bashfully says while holding his iPhone 7 Plus. “Do you guys?” Life’s a whirlwind, and Marenyi’s along for the ride.
Alright! So first we have…
The MacBook is probably… I don’t know, it’s reasonably old. I’ve been making music on this MacBook for so long it’s just really hard to go through the process of getting around to putting all of my stuff on [a new one]. So yeah. Still kicking with the MacBook Pro.
And then your sneakers.
We’ve got these Air Maxes. I used to always try to wear cool, fashionable shoes, but I jump around too much and play too many shows and I’m always walking or moving too much. So I have to keep these for when I actually play. I wear comfortable shoes because otherwise, my feet will start to hurt really bad. Too much walking and jumping. I’m just always jumping on stage.
And then the wallet, of course. Got some foreign cash. That’s about it.
I’ve got a Nintendo Switch — basically the new handheld Nintendo. But it’s also the console, which is nice. I can hook it up in a hotel room and bring an extra controller to play Mario Kart with some friends. Sometimes, we’ll use it for meet-and-greets. It’s more entertaining to do a meet-and-greet when you’re playing Mario Kart against some kids versus trying to make small talk. It gives me a way to introduce myself and learn more about them. It’s fun.
And then this is basically a portable charger. It has Quick Charge 3.0. For some reason, I’m stubborn and always let my phone die. It’s pretty rare for me to have a fully charged phone. This saves my life all the time.
I’m the same way.
Yeah, it’s so good. It’s not that big, and it charges your phone multiple times. It’s a game-changer.
What phone do you have?
Got the old iPhone… 7S… I think. I don’t even know what this is. Do you guys?
I think it’s the 7.
Right? Maybe a 7 Plus. I think that’s what it actually is. I literally don’t know. I got it almost exactly one year ago. But it’s just old enough that it’s right when iPhones start to go to shit for some reason. That’s exactly what happened with this. So, I have to get a new one.
I have a wireless microphone so I can record my radio shows. We have a show on SiriusXM and iTunes every week called Gud Vibrations Radio. You can just stick a little SD card in the microphone and record. It sounds amazing. It’s a super close-range mic that’s meant to do live performances at festivals and stuff when there’s a bunch of noise and you won’t be able to focus in on one person’s voice. It just sounds really, really good.
The Bose SoundLink Mini is a little portable rechargeable speaker. My mom got it for me as a gift for Christmas, for when I was on the road. It’s nice. It’s powerful enough that it can make a hotel room sound really good. So whenever we need any pre-show music, we use this.
This first pair of headphones is… actually… I don’t even really know the model. I just got these the other day when we were in Tokyo. I’ve been using these specifically for my music production because they sound really good. And even though they’re not noise-canceling headphones, having them on is like sound-proofing. They’re also really comfortable. When I get lost and just work for six hours straight, they don’t hurt my head.
And then these V-MODA Crossfade LP2 headphones are really light, really enjoyable, really loud and crisp, and clean-sounding. So I always use them for DJing. It’s always really loud onstage, so they’re great DJ headphones. I sometimes will use these for production, too, because it’s always good to hear things on different headphones.
And tell us about this bag.
The first time I was ever on tour with another artist who I looked up to was Flux Pavilion, a bass music guy from the UK. He had this backpack, and he had already been wearing it for like 10 years and said, “This is the best bag ever. You have to get it.” So I bought it. I had also noticed that a lot of DJs and photographers seem to have this nice Tumi backpack. It’s great. I’ll sometimes lose things within the backpack because there are so many pockets, but it’s got a little bit of space for everything.
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