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Nyack, NY | Established. Jan 01, 2009 | INDIE

Nyack, NY | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2009
Duo Hip Hop Alternative




"Rapping Nyack brothers release hip hop album"

The history of popular music is littered with tales of feuding brothers: Liam and Noel Gallagher of Oasis, Chris and Rich Robinson of the Black Crowes, Ray and Dave Davies of the Kinks, for example.

The rapping brothers in Nyack-based hip hop act TRØN & DVD don’t fit that mold.

Norvin and Darian Van Dunk finish each other’s sentences and appear to mesh as well in person as they do when they perform.

It’s not that they never fight or disagree.

“I feel like we don’t really fight that much, as much as you would think, on the music stuff,” says Darian, who performs as DVD.

“No, we fight about other stuff,” interjects Norvin, aka TRØN.

“The real-life stuff,” Darian adds, “not the music stuff.”

“On the music we mesh very well,” says Norvin. “We’re brothers, so there’s really no quitting … We’re also really good friends.”

Darian says “it’s just our relationship … We don’t hold grudges that long.”

After years of playing showcases and parties, the brothers landed spots in the Bamboozle, Vans Warped, and CMJ music festivals and have supported acts such as Pusha T, K.Flay, and Twenty One Pilots. On Friday, TRØN & DVD’s debut full-length album, “Afraid of the Dark,” debuts with a listening party in Nyack followed by a live performance at Manhattan's Mercury Lounge on Oct. 23.

The pair, who formed TRØN & DVD in 2009, talked over a meal at Prohibition River, a restaurant just across Nyack’s Main Street from the Kiam Records Shop, where both of them have worked.

The store is also where owner Jennifer O’Conner, an indie rock singer-songwriter, runs her Kiam Records label, which is releasing “Afraid of the Dark.”

The brothers’ relationship with Kiam — which is hosting the listening and recording-signing party on Friday and live performance Monday at the Mercury Lounge in Manhattan — developed by chance.

“Their dad came into the store when we first opened,” saying he wanted to buy a gift certificate for his rapper sons, O’Connor recalls.

Later, “two guys came in who seemed like brothers and they were looking through the rap section, and I just had a feeling it was them,” she says. “We started talking about different kinds of music we liked, and I just liked them as people.”

Kiam “never had anything remotely like” TRØN & DVD on its roster, says O’Connor. But, as a big fan of rap, she decided to take a chance on making a record with them.

“It’s been an adventure. But it all happened kind of naturally, through the store,” says O’Connor, who, along with her spouse, singer-songwriter Amy Bezunartea, contributed guest vocals to the album.

The brothers are grateful for the support. “She’s the first one who took a chance on us,” says Norvin.

Both are in their twenties — Darian, 26, is the younger of the two, although his angular features and serious demeanor make him seem older than the outgoing Norvin, who’s 28, married, and has a young daughter —yet they still embrace the suburban nerdiness of their formative years in Nyack and Valley Cottage.

That was when they fell in love with video games and grindhouse and horror movies.

They’re proud of their nerd status. After all, “you have to be genuine to yourself” to be a successful hip hop artist, says Norvin. “Nobody likes a fronter.”

They explore their nerd-dom on “We Are the Weirdos,” the second single released from “Afraid of the Dark.”

“Now put your drinks up, it’s time to make a toast. They never thought that they’d be cheering for the weirdos,” Norvin intones.

Moments later, Darian name-checks a popular video game from his childhood: “I was shy, spent my time playing Mario Land.”

Music — rap, rock, and the music of video games — also played a big part in their upbringing.

“The first things we ever listened to were the Doors and Rage Against the Machine,” says Norvin.

“I don’t remember a time when it wasn’t about music,” says Darian.

Kanye, Eminem early influences

While Kanye West, Kid Cudi, and Eminem, are some of their biggest rap influences, they take plenty of cues from rockers, too. On their long list of favorites: rock bands Nyack-bred Coheed and Cambria, Paramore, Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park, and Thursday, along with indie bands such as Tacocat, Alvvays, Lights, Chvrches, and Purity Ring.

Their father, Norvin “Woody” Van Dunk, 57, takes some of the credit for that musical tastes.

“One thing I tried to teach them, and they do do it, is they listen to all music," he says. "It’s not just rap, they listen to rock and country and some other stuff. You just can’t pick one and listen to one. You have to listen to everything.”

While the pair aim to make music their sole career, both are doing other things, at least for now.

Norvin, a graduate of Mercy College, where he concentrated in music industry and technology studies, has two part-time jobs including at the record store and does freelance engineering at Platinum Plus Studio in Central Nyack. He also has a side business called Lil Beats that teaches kids about music production.

“I sleep, I just don’t have a lot of doing-nothing time,” he says. “I basically work to afford the music habit.”

Darian is just as busy. He’s completing an undergraduate course in TV and radio production at Brooklyn College, and holding down an internship at Rock Shrimp, a media production company co-founded by celebrity chef Bobby Flay.

But music is their main focus.

“It’s always working towards that goal. We’re not planning on doing these four jobs forever. We’re just trying to work toward that one goal. There’s no backup plan.”

New City-based journalist Steven P. Marsh blogs about arts and entertainment at - The Journal News

"Daily Dose: TRØN & DVD, "Vigilantes""

In our sadly fractious times, when we’re seeing far too many images of white supremacists taking to the streets of the U.S. in an effort to “take their country back,” more than ever we need to see and hear culture that better reflects the true diversity of our nation. That’s just one reason I chose to present this video for the song “Vigilantes” from hip-hop duo TRØN & DVD. The other reason is simple: this song slaps.

This family affair—the group is made up of brothers Norvin and Darian Van Dunk—have been bubbling under the hip-hop scene in their native New York for the past few years, releasing a bevy of mixtapes and solo efforts along the way. But they are about to receive a big boost with the help of Kiam Records and its owner Jennifer O’Connor. She is not only releasing the duo’s full-length Afraid of the Dark on October 20th through her label, but she helped co-produce the record, and guests on a track.

Check out the video for their powerful new single “Vigilantes” below. And if you like what you heard, you can catch TRØN & DVD this Friday, August 18th, at Our Wicked Lady in Brooklyn, as part of the Summerslam Weekend Kick-off Party, or catch them at their album release show at the Mercury Lounge on October 23rd. - Paste Magazine

"Label Debut for Nyack Rappers TRØN & DVD"

Norvin and Darian Van Dunk have made rap music for as long as they can remember. Performing as TRØN & DVD, the brothers’ rap careers have outlasted the mixtape-sharing platforms of their adolescent years at Nyack High School. But as the group prepares to release their label debut, Afraid of the Dark, on October 20 via Kiam Records, their approach resembles that of a new beginning.

“This is like our first at-bat,” Norvin, 28, said. “We’ve either got to hit a homer, or even just a single to get there. And then our next album, we’ll hit a better shot. It’s just steps at a time.”

When I met the brothers in Nyack’s Memorial Park, their local roots became immediately apparent. Several people waved or stopped to chat with them on the street, and Norvin wore a pair of sandals ill-equipped for New York City sidewalks. Darian wore his ever-present snapback and a t-shirt boasting the hardcore rock group PVRIS. When he spoke, it was with the same booming, gravelly voice that makes his microphone presence sound natural.

“[Norvin] and my other brother would write out lyrics for me,” Darian, 26, said of the group’s early days. “They’d make me say the words through a tape recorder, and we would record songs on old beats.”

In those formative years, “beats” often meant the theme music for video games, or the walkout songs of their favorite wrestlers. Almost two decades later, these cultural touchstones still make their way into the brothers’ music, whether as a lyrical reference to Sonic the Hedgehog or as a sci-fi-influenced instrumental. What has changed is the scope of their music, and the resources available to the duo since they met Kiam Records founder Jennifer O’Connor in 2015.

“When we went in [to Kiam Records Shop], we gave her our CDs, and she liked it enough to help us out and sign us,” Norvin said. “Which is cool, cause we were always doing everything ourselves.”

Apart from improved studio equipment, the partnership has garnered the Van Dunk brothers newfound collaborators in the form of accomplished labelmates like O’Connor, Amy Bezunartea and Tom Beaujour. The new album, too, will receive a proper promotional cycle, culminating with a release party at Mercury Lounge on October 23.

As the duo’s first full-length project to appear on major streaming services, it is an all-encompassing view of the sound and subject matter they’ve developed over their years in Nyack. Largely shaped by Norvin’s production work, Afraid of the Dark’s paranoid sonic landscape stems from indie rock as much as it does Wu-Tang Clan or Eminem. Topically, the album’s focus is local, exploring the adolescence of two young black men in suburban America.

“There’s always drama, and stuff that happens. But it’s a suburban lifestyle, to the T,” Norvin said. “We’ve got high school, being nerds and drinking—going to college.”

“Getting drunk in cul-de-sacs,” Darian laughed. In contrast to its lighter moments, the album’s title track comments on social and political tensions stemmed from recent instances of racial violence.

“That was around the time that a lot of stuff was happening, and I just had to write something to get it out,” Darian said.

As a form of self-expression, music is essential to both of the brothers’ lives. While the album’s lead single, “Vigilantes,” has just begun to gain traction, the restless duo has already started work on the next project.

“We’re going to make music and put it out regardless of the business situation,” Norvin said. “Now, we hope the business situation goes as well as it can, but we’ll always be making music.”

TRØN & DVD will perform at the Great Nyack Get Together in Memorial Park on September 16.

Chris Stanton is a recent graduate of Cornell University. - NYack News & Views

"You are Cordially Invited to Tron & DVD’s “Party”"

This party doesn't require an RSVP to a Facebook invite. You don't have to get dressed up (or dressed at all), and you don't have to bring a gift. All you need are your ears and your willingness to be in the moment and you're on the guest list for Tron & DVD's latest single "Welcome To The Party".

This hip hop duo consisting of brothers Norvin and Darian Van Dunk (Tron & DVD respectively) hail from Valley Cottage, NY and are the newest additions to the Kiam Records roster. They have crafted various LPs and EPs throughout the course of their burgeoning career that contain authoritative deliveries and bass heavy production that'll make any backpacker's day.

"Welcome To The Party" has an infectious vibe that'll make you want to hit the dance floor, spit a mean 16 or a combination of the two. Tron kicks off the festivities with his sharp drilling bars delivering a bold proclamation stating how him and his partner in rhyme "ain't your average everyday rap duo." DVD follows up with a second verse that booms both literally and figuratively given the nature of his commanding voice and braggadocio firing off lines like "It's Mr. Blu-Ray don't hit the skip". "Party" also contains an enchanting yet hypnotic hook that features Tron & DVD's label mate AND Kiam Records head lady in charge Jennifer O'Connor.

So you want to be able to enjoy good music and party without the long lines, the jerky bouncers, and over priced watered down drinks? Then press play or head over to iTunes and purchase "Welcome To The Party" and show some love to your gracious hosts Tron & DVD. And If you're in the Nyack area in New York, you can see Tron & DVD live at Olive's on December 23th. - Pop Dust

"Exclusive song premiere: TRØN and DVD unveil ‘New Kings’"

Since its inception in 2007, Kiam Records, the label founded by singer/songwriter Jennifer O’Connor, who we profiled back in March, has been mostly a home for indie rock artists such as Amy Benzuartea, The Foil Swans, Tim Foljahn, Choo Choo La Rouge, and O’Connor herself.

Now the label has ventured into hip-hop with the addition of TRØN and DVD to the Kiam roster. The act consists of brothers Norvin and Darian Van Dunk of Valley Cottage, New York–they’re currently working on a debut album scheduled for release early next year. Right now, TRØN and DVD are sharing their latest track, the powerful and direct “New Kings,” which is not on the upcoming album. O’Connor tapped Brooklyn Based to premier the song before its official release this Friday–stream below:

“New Kings” is a very hard-hitting, declarative statement from these two newcomers who emphasize self-empowerment and a proactive mindset in advocating about never losing sight of what’s important.

“This song to me is the perfect introduction to what we’re all about,” DVD said in a press release. “It’s about creating your own lane instead following someone else’s vision for you. Somewhere along the line, we stopped caring about what everyone else thought and just started making the music that we wanted to hear out there. We wanted to hear references to 90’s cartoons and beer chugging. We wanted to hear about living in a suburban town and being judged because all of your peers are going into business or becoming teachers while you chase a dream. We wanted to hear lyrics back in the forefront but also talk about situations or a lifestyle you might’ve never heard in hip-hop.”

Visit TRØN and DVD, on their Facebook page. “New Kings” officially comes out Friday via Kiam Records. They’ll be playing on Nov. 7 with Sir Kn8F and at Sunnyvale, 1031 Grand St, Brooklyn, 8pm; $10. - Brooklyn Based

"Fresh Hip-Hop from Tron & DVD: “Magma”"

Rapping about everything from the Vice President to Darth Vader and rhyming “fallacy” with “audacity,” duo Tron & DVD deliver a new track filled with literate lyricism that finds the intersection of comic book nerds and hip-hop heads and insists they have “magma flowing through [their] veins.” The duo also dropped the first episode of a new web series, “Boys Get Lost, Men Explore,” that follows the rappers around, provides a glimpse at some of their creative processes, and chronicles some of the making of the recently released single. Head “Magma” and watch the web episode below. Keep up with Tron & DVD happenings via their label home, Kiam Records. - Pop Press INTL.

"Tron! & DVD - Team Rocket (Feat. Maz)"

Since posting their underrated Adventure Time mixtape all the way back in August, I’ve undeservingly left Tron! & DVD out of the post spotlight. Righting that trend is their new single “Team Rocket,” which features a catchy sample from “Gotta Go Home,” singalong hook from fellow Sick Life memeber Maz, and that raw, unconstrained lyrical flow from the NY duo that caught my eye to begin with.

“Team Rocket” will live on Tron! & DVD’s upcoming Adventure Time sequel, and if you’re in the NYC area you can catch these guys performing at Santos Party House on May 30th (ticket info in that link).

Read more: - Sound Is Style

"Tron! & DVD - Team Rocket *Single*"

New single from Tron! & DVD! They have a super promising mixtape, Adventure Time 2, set to drop in July, no set release date yet. We’ll be sure to keep you updated on that project. Their next show is on July 20th at the loft with the always fun Spose, from Maine. Download Team Rocket from SoundCloud and enjoy! - That Crack Music

"Tron! & DVD Set To Release 'Adventure Time 2' Plus Tour Dates"

Tron! & DVD are a rap duo force from the suburbs of New York City who make feel-good party music with infectious dance beats and catchy hooks that reflect the energy of their live show.

After a busy year in 2011 playing Bamboozle and the Vans Warped Tour, 2012 has proved to be equally jam-packed, from opening up for acts like Down with Webster, F. Stokes, and K. Flay, to playing the 2012 Bamboozle Festival with Matt Toka. They are currently working on their second mix tape “Adventure Time 2”, set to release at the end of the summer. - Grunge Cake

"Tron! & DVD - Hammer Bros."

It’s been a while since I’ve given Tron & DVD a post. Luckily, the duo’s latest track is here to right that trend. “Hammer Bros.” sees Tron & DVD trading bars over a nice drum-driven beat. Take a listen. - Swell Beats Music

"Tron! and DVD: Bridging the Gap to a New Generation of Rap"

Nyack’s Tron! and DVD are far from your traditional hip-hop duo. Most artists come from big cities but they grew up in a small village. The brothers don’t rap about peddling drugs or acts of violence. However, the process by which Norvin (Tron!) and Darian (DVD) Van Dunk have created a hip-hop network in Nyack is very similar to some of the earliest and most famous rappers.
Historically, there have been a few cities that have produced rap’s biggest stars. This may be because these urban centers have provided their troubled youth with a lot of material to write about. Or maybe it’s because many of these stars grew up in close proximity to each other, allowing a rap culture to emerge. For instance, the Queens Bridge housing project is arguably the biggest hotbed for hip-hop talent the world has ever seen. It was home to some of the biggest names in hip-hop including Nas, Nature, Prodigy and Havoc (Mobb Deep), who all became wildly popular in the early nineties.
Today, in the digital era, it is much easier to produce, market, and share one’s work with a large community of avid fans. Moreover, as crime rates have fallen, so has the popularity of ‘gangster rap.’ The combination of these factors has led to a large underground hip hop scene, filled with talented rappers whose backgrounds would have been unimaginable twenty years ago. There is no denying that as long as rap music is popular, places like New York City will be major hubs of hip-hop. However, in recent years in small towns like Nyack, the underground hip-hop scene has been able to flourish.
Tron! and DVD are at the forefront of this movement in Nyack. The duo has been rapping since they could talk, and recording since elementary school. However, it was only a few years ago that they began to perform their work. Since that time they have been moving at the speed of sound to try to perfect theirs. The brothers have not done all of their work collaboratively, yet between them they have created seven mix-tapes, and they are currently performing roughly one show per weekend.
Tron! and DVD and are largely responsible for the creation of Sick Life Music, a collaborative and supportive group of local rap artists. “It’s nine people who just make music together, do shows together, and help each other out,” says Norvin. They have collaborated on a variety of songs and many members have performed in the same shows together. The formation of Sick Life Music, draws comparisons to one of the original, yet lesser known, members of the Queens Bridge Housing Project. Rapper-producer Marley Marl gained notoriety in the early eighties. One of his biggest claims to fame is the creation of the Juice Crew. Similarly, to Sick Life, the Juice Crew united some of the area’s best talent into a hip-hop conglomerate that undoubtedly helped each member of the group to better hone their skills.
Yet, the helping hand that Tron! and DVD have lent out has gone further than Sick Life. They have recently helped up-and-coming Nyack-based artists, Empty Pockets and Sam Elliot, with their respective mix-tapes. Tron! acknowledged the budding talent around Rockland, but he describes himself as a “one-upper,” and claims that listening to everyone around here fuels him to want to top them. DVD on the other hand is more laid back, and laughs it off when Tron! glorifies himself. Yet, if you heard them rap, you would think their personalities were switched. Both are versatile in style, yet DVD has the deeper voice and comes across as the darker rapper. Nevertheless, their versatility has translated into a broad range of work from the up-beat Adventure Time that brings the listener on a journey to a carefree world of childhood dreams, to the wrestling themed Tronamania, to the occasional party song, to high intensity songs that feature samples from Coheed and Cambria and Watchmen.
The duo has amassed a rather impressive body of work and has played in renowned venues like Webster Hall. In 2011 they played at New Jersey’s Bamboozle Music Festival, a three-day event featuring established artists and new groups who compete for a chance to showcase their talents. Darian said the Bamboozle show was the greatest moment of his life. “It was unreal,” said Norvin.“It felt like you made it.”
Although they are proud of their place in Bamboozle history, they left the stage feeling unsatisfied with their performance. “It was like winning the musical lottery and then blowing it,” said Norvin. The pair admits they probably weren’t ready for such a big venue and their sloppy performance was due to being overly excited.
Performing Bamboozle is arguably the greatest accomplishment of any Rockland-based rapper in recent years. Tron! and DVD are performing in local contests and hope to get a shot at redeeming themselves at the 2012 Bamboozle Festival.
Tron! and DVD fans have open access to the rappers through Facebook and Twitter (@ThisisTron and @superdarioworld.) The pair promi - Nyack News & Views - Max Cea

"Mixtape: Tron! & DVD - Adventure Time"

I’ve been waiting to drop this one for awhile… Genre hopping hip-hop duo Tron! and DVD just released their brand new mixtape, ADVENTURE TIME! The brothers’ jam-packed mixtape is poised to infuse the blogosphere with killer songs that range from hands-in-the-air party tracks to heavy, dirty hip-hop jams. Mastering the art of sampling, Tron! produced many of the tracks on ADVENTURE TIME, saturating the 19-song mixtape with Florence and The Machine, Fall Out Boy, Matt & Kim, Dev, Muse and more. Brooklyn is sure to welcome these hipster-hop sounds with open arms.

“RUN”, which samples Florence & The Machine’s “Dog Days Are Over”, is a personal favorite of mine alongside “This Is All Me”, the feel-good, yell-it-aloud hip-hop version of Matt & Kim’s catchy, high energy hit, “Block After Block”.

If you’re into Hannah-Montana-backpack-wearing college students’ party hip-hop, with a splash of creativity and alternative influence, you definitely need to download Tron! and DVD’s new mixtape, ADVENTURE TIME, on!

In a suburb far, far away, Tron! & DVD find themselves stuck in an alernate reality, traveling through different genres, rapping through sticky situations and battling fierce villains. Take a leap into their world and experience a journey like never before…


"Tron! & DVD - Adventure Time"

Tron! & DVD are a hip-hop duo affiliated to the Sick Life Music group. Their mixtape Adenture Time is surely among the best hip-hop projects I”ve heard all year. Since they’re kind of underground, you can tell the production isn’t as on point as it could be, but they’re able to pull it off with a great use of samples. You probably know most of the indie samples on there, for example we have The XX’s “Intro” on “Never Odd Or Even” or Matt & Kim’s “Block After Block” on “This is All ME”. Basically, if you enjoy catchy feel-good hip-hop with awesome samples, you should really check out the whole 19-track mixtape on datpiff HERE. Listen to a few favorites below. - Trolls On Acid


Still working on that hot first release.



TRØN & DVD (brothers Norvin and Darian Van Dunk) have been making mixtapes, EPs, and solo albums since 2009.  They've played the Bamboozle,Vans Warped Tour and CMJ Music Festivals as well as numerous shows alongside a diverse assortment of hip-hop and rock acts - from Pusha T to K. Flay to Twenty One Pilots. While taking nothing away from the duo's earlier work, Afraid of the Dark marks an immense step forward, sonically and artistically.   Drawing inspiration from hip-hop heavy hitters like Kanye WestEminem and Wu-Tang Clan, as well as from indie and pop acts like Lana Del RayGrimes, and The Weeknd,standout tracks “Afraid of the Dark,” “So Far Throne,” and “We Are the Weirdos” are unfussy in their production and anthemic in their hooks.  Each stares into an adult life that promises to be complicated (“We gonna succeed despite being so demonized," raps DVD on the album’s title track), but each is filled with the ambition to bend the future.  Afraid of the Dark is a serious album, but it's equally humorous, littered with intricate pop culture references that could only be made by two such diehard fans of music, wrestling, videogames, movies and television. This spirit is evident in every single one of their songs and you can feel the exhilaration in rhymes like: "Squad like Taylor's/'Cept they paler/Prayin' that we make it that major" (DVD on"Bloodline"),  "Kofi Kingston with the grind, Just needed the right team" (TRØN on "Destructo Bros") and "Young black aspiring artist, I harness, 16 bars like bits on a cartridge, Whole family opposite of Partridge" (TRØN on "Afraid of the Dark").  Written and recorded over the past two years (with all initial tracks recorded and produced by TRØN), Afraid of the Dark was co-produced by TRØNTom Beaujour and Kiam Records-owner and labelmate Jennifer O’Connor (who is a also a guest vocalist & co-writer on "So Far Throne") at Nuthouse Recordingin Hoboken NJ.   Another Kiam Records labelmate, Amy Bezunartea is a guest vocalist and co-writer on the opening track “Regeneration”, the duo's brother Lynk is a featured rapper and co-writer on "The Three-Headed Beast” and Christina Van Dunk wrote and raps the hook on "Year One”. Musically, the album sets the average bounce meter in the area of 95 bpm, with heavy kick drums and gurgling, fuzzy synths pushed straight into the foreground.  Lyrically, hints of formation, revitalization, and new life bubble up through every verse. The duo's focus is often somewhere in the distance, with a hard look at the challenges in front of them; other times it drifts to the pull of old habits as well the minutiae of everyday challenges such as how to keep your writing light on without waking the baby.  This attention to detail is an important part of what makes Afraid of the Dark so compelling.  It's one of the rare albums that reveal lyrical layers with every listen. It makes a lot of sense that Afraid of the Dark is being released on Kiam Records, a label known for artists whose work can cut to the bone. “Our music has got to be authentic and not something that’s fabricated or forced,” says TRØN. “Even though life can be sporadic, it’s still some kind of story whether you think of it as having a beginning and an end or not. That’s what came into this album, the past two years and everything leading up to it. ”

Band Members