When Nina Las Vegas announced she would be leaving her triple j presenting role after more than a decade, music lovers across the country mourned her impending departure.
"I wanted a next phase -- to create something after triple j where I could pull in everything I'd learnt -- which was kind of like a secret code of knowing what music worked and what didn't with listeners, " Agzarian told The Huffington Post Australia.
It was a natural (if not perfect) fit then, when she changed management and they suggested the idea for her own record label.
A year on, the producer and DJ (real name: Nina Elizabeth Agzarian) will celebrate the first birthday of NLV Records, her eponymous dance label at an intimate gallery space in Melbourne on Thursday night.
For artists just starting out, you play as much as you can. That isn't possible now in Sydney. There are no venues and therefore very few gigs.
With seven artists already on the roster including herself, Agzarian curates her label around forward-thinking club music, just as she did during her House Party days. Though her new project allows her to discover acts that might not necessarily have a cookie-cut, radio play path to success.
"[While at triple j] I was watching some really amazing tracks go out without any success," Agzarian said.
"And it's because of our small music scene here in Australia that it often makes it hard for a track to be successful unless it's a radio hit -- and I don't believe that."
The beauty of how different music communities thrive on their own is what Agzarian hopes to capture and recreate with NLV Records.
"I know all of the artists on the roster. I love them and I play all of their tracks in my own sets and they wouldn't be on the label if I didn't feel that way."
Since her departure from the Saturday night House Party slot, which Agzarian often sandwiched between resident DJ gigs at a bunch of Sydney's nightclubs, the nightlife scene has also taken a hit for the worse with the introduction of Sydney's lockout laws.
"For artists just starting out, you play as much as you can. That isn't possible now in Sydney. There are no venues and therefore very few gigs," Agzarian said.
People's mentality of going out has changed too.
"No one really wants to pace themselves and experience different music, for example EDM earlier in the night and then techno in the early hours of the morning."
My aim is to release interesting yet 'approachable' club music. At the same time I don't want NVL to be hidden from people that don't listen to club music. Because I think that once one of the tracks connects to you, the rest will make sense.
"Everyone wants a powerful two hours and then they go home because anyone who's turned 18 in the past two years only knows that model of going out. The decisions have been made for them," Agzarian said.
Discovering new music is obviously a huge part of going out, too.
"People are doing it themselves, in their homes which is why it's so important to ensure people are hearing a whole range of new stuff."
With less people going out, Agzarian said a big part of her focus this year has been figuring out new ways to push different songs.
"I don't want to give up on playing shows or going out -- and if you look at how other labels work, parties and bringing people together is what makes it work."
As she continues to build her music empire, Agzarian said she hopes to provide an alternative to the mainstream club tracks out there.
"My aim is to release interesting yet 'approachable' club music. At the same time I don't want NLV to be hidden from people that don't listen to club music."
"I think that once one of the tracks connects to you, the rest will make sense."
To register your spot at the NLV Records pop-up party on Thursday October 13, head here.
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