Toronto-based dubstep/house act Zeds Dead -- named after a line from Quentin Tarantino's 1994 film Pulp Fiction -- are a production duo consisting of DC (Dylan Mamid) and Hooks (Zachary Rapp-Rovan). The two first formed the hip-hop-oriented Mass Productions in 2004 and released an independent album, Fresh Beetz, three years later. They switched to Zeds Dead in 2009, embracing house and the direct, physical side of dubstep. Their debut song, the All Seeing I-sampling "Journey of a Lifetime," arrived in 2009. It would be the first of many downloadable releases made available for free. The track was quickly followed by more free downloads, as well as a remix of Barletta's "Panther."
Throughout 2010 and 2011, they were increasingly active. They released material on a number of labels, including Kissy Sell Out's San City High, Steve Aoki's Dim Mak, and Diplo's Mad Decent; remixed tracks by Blue Foundation and the Electric; and they also toured extensively throughout the U.S. Their first release of 2012 was Adrenaline, an EP issued on Inspected that balanced blitzing dubstep tracks with lower-key breakbeat workouts. The Living Dead (Ultra) arrived months later, before a trio of Mad Decent EPs followed each subsequent year: Victor (2012), Hot Sauce (2013), and Somewhere Else (2014). The latter featured appearances by Twin Shadow and Perry Farrell and entered the Billboard 200. The duo's debut LP arrived in late 2016. Released on their own Deadbeats label, Northern Lights included collaborations with Diplo, Pusha T, Weezer's Rivers Cuomo, Jadakiss, Styles P, and more. ~ Andy Kellman & Neil Z. Yeung