Sounds of the Scene: DJ Mela Leone

In this interview, Mela Leone reveals her musical inspirations, creative process, and the exciting direction her career is headed.

Interview by Reimundo Correa

Reimundo Correa

DJ Mela Leone is making waves in the electronic music scene in Vienna, blending a tapestry of sounds that push conventional genre boundaries.

Her musical journey is one of evolution and exploration, tracing its roots back to the psychedelic rock from her teenage years to the raw techno that defines her current sound. This fusion, enriched with a touch of what she calls oriental magic tunes, results in unique sets that defy what's expected on the dance floor.

In this exclusive TRPPN interview, Mela Leone reveals her musical inspirations, creative process, and the exciting directions her career is headed.


Q:How would you describe the genre or mix of genres you primarily work with, and what draws you to that particular sound?

Mela Leone: Throughout my career as a DJ, I've been fortunate to draw inspiration from a diverse range ofmusical influences.

When I started to explore techno music in 2017, artists likeDrumcomplex, Reinier Zonneveld or Oliver Koletzki & Solomun were major inspirationsfor their innovative use of the different elements, influencing the way I approach my stylenow. During the lockdown in 2021, I mostly played downtempo or melodic and organic house, which I still love to play, and mixed some oriental elements into the harder genres.  Township Rebellion and Rafael Cerato were my two favorite artists when I started DJing in clubs 2022.

As my musical journey progressed, I found new inspiration in raw techno, groovy sounds, and bass drum and added elements from my musical roots as a teenager – rock and pop music, also psychedelic rock, which added a new dimension to my sound. The Beatles inspired a lot of the electronic music I play now.

Over time, I incorporated these dirty and psychedelic rock elements with oriental, magical sounds to melodic, raw driving techno in an explosive burst of fast, hard and groovy beats, creating the unique blend that defines my current style. Overall, my music is a fusion of these diverse influences, creating a dynamic and evolving sound that reflects my musical journey.

photo: Reimundo Correa

Q:Walk us through your creative process when curating a set or producing music.
ML:When I'm putting together a set or producing music, it's like taking a creative road trip. It usually kicks off with something that sparks my imagination – could be a feeling, a theme, or even a cool memory. Once I've got a clear picture in my mind, I start digging into a huge pool of music to pick out tracks that fit the story I want to tell. I'm all about mixing things up, throwing in different genres and styles to keep it interesting.

The set I named 'Labyrinth' is a good example. I was deep in conversation with two friends about a wooden labyrinth I had created on my living room wall, with no exit. Because I forgot to include a way out, I told them as a joke, “You can’t escape my labyrinth”.


Later I played the set and, in my mind, I envisioned a magical story of walking through woods and a beautiful, sunny nature, eventually transitioning into a storm, etc.

Q:Are there particular goals or aspirations you're aiming for?
ML:Diving into production is on my agenda. One of the big dreams is to drop my own tracks. But you know what I'm really looking forward? Hitting the decks at summer festivals.
Here's the twist – I've never been to an electronic music festival myself, but ever since I started grooving to techno beats, it's been on my bucket list.
Fingers crossed that dream comes true soon!