Edm Magazine spends time with showtek in their trailer backstage at insomniac’s beyond wonderland, to bring you the exclusive dirt on this dynamic duo of hardstyle brothers..
EDM: So, guys…was an INSOMNIAC event everything you thought it would be?
SJ: It was more than that! Every expectancy.
WJ: MORE! The whole atmo-sphere, how it sounded, every-thing…it was just perfect. When we finished, people were still screaming. We shook every-body’s hands because we love our fans.
SJ: It was so fat! So cool!
EDM: You guys were bringing it a little harder tonight. Is that something that you had planned?
WJ: Nah, actually we come from a pretty rough scene in Holland. It’s even harder there, because our background is really rough.
EDM: Have you always been such energetic performers?
WJ: You know, maybe the name says it a little bit. With all respect to other DJ’s out there, there are so many Djs. You have to have something special on stage and bring it to the people, so they remember: “Wow, that was nice!” When we make a new track in the studio, we’re like: “Eff, this is amazing!” We want to have the same experience on the stage. Sjoerd doing the mic and I’m playing the music; and you get that same feedback as you have in the studio, when we were making the track. It’s the best feeling. We want to get to that level every time we’re on stage.
SJ: It’s about the high energy level we have. We give it to the crowd, they give it to us back, and like: “WOW!” It’s amazing. It doesn’t even matter if it’s 145 or 104 BMP – as long as they’re dancing and partying… SHOWTEK style.
WJ: We play 10-12 times in a month, and every time we go on stage, we go 150% for it. And the crowd tonight, they were amazing!
SJ: This time it really impressed us. California is, for us, a really good place to play in the U.S.A. But this was like: “WOW! OK!” WJ : He was almost crying (laughs). I shed a little tear (laughs). But seriously… Massive!
EDM: I saw you pumping up the crowd. You were playing them like an instrument! How does that feel?
SJ: I don’t know. It’s like…having sex with a really hot girl.
SJ: I don’t know how to describe it. It’s like: “YEAH! FUCK BABY! COME ON! LETS ROLL! DON’T STOP!” (laughs) Even when I told the light guy, through the back of the mic: “Hey, put the lights down. I want to see all the lights in the air” and he put the lights down. All these lights were going up. It was giving me shivers going down my spine. WJ: Awesome. Just awesome.
EDM: Do you guys share most of the responsibilities and switch off, or are there certain things that each of you does?
SJ: He always MC’s.
WJ: If he MC’d it would sound like a girl on the mic. (High-pitched voice) “Hello! How you doing tonight?” I’m like, “Come on, give me the mic.”
EDM: Oh, you were getting aggressive with the crowd. I think you were issuing orders.
WJ: That’s his frustration being expelled the right way.
EDM: Well, they seemed to like it.
WJ: (laughs) You do what you’re good at. When he’s DJ-ing, I could be as well, but like… I can give him a keyboard and let him play a melody, but he will fuck it up!
WJ: It sounds like Mozart is smoking weed.
SJ: (laughs) I do the music; he does all the lyrics, the vocals.
WJ: And they mix together.
SJ: The combination is good and we mix together. Two brothers, rockin’ the stage, going crazy!
EDM: What do you guys have planned for your next shows?
SJ: To be honest, we just started with expanding our set. We’re thinking of getting even more spectacular shows. We’re just trying to build on the brand.
WJ: Yeah, we got this nice visual show with all the visuals behind us, and the video clips we have on our tracks.
SJ: We also have a live singer sometimes.
WJ: We’re evolving our set, to bring them something new every time we go on stage.
EDM: Do you have any advice for our readers who are aspiring DJs and producers?
SJ: I think the most important thing is: do something you really like and go for it. And don’t bother with other people or genres.
WJ: We always say that “Assumption is the mother of all fuck-ups.” That’s a good one, you know.
SJ: Don’t listen to other people. Just do what you really want to do and go for it.
EDM: Do you get push back when you guys want to experiment with your stuff?
SJ: Of course, everybody gets it. And you get stories from left and right.
WJ: In Holland, we say “The high trees get the wind.” If you get bigger, you have people saying: “But hey, that’s different than two years ago.” Of course! I don’t want to do the same thing for ten years. I want to change, which is positive. We live for the music. That’s what we’re saying. Love music.
SJ: For new producers, if you want to be out there – there’s already so much music and so many producers. Be different. I think that’s the most important thing; be something unique and you’ll be out there.
EDM: Do you have anyone who inspires you? Any influences?
WJ: Well, a big inspiration for us has been Prodigy. I like their aggressiveness; punchy kicks and snares. I really love it.
SJ: I want to say Faithless. Definitely want to say Faithless. I really like them.
WJ: Even hip-hop inspired us really big. Like R.I.P. to Nate Dogg…he was a great, great vocalist for hip-hop. We also like Snoop Dogg. Everything with the right energy.
EDM: What do you guys think of social media, as artists? Like Twitter…good or bad?
WJ: It’s cool. I like to say to our fans: “Hey, I’m now in Switzerland eating.” Or Austria, eating schnitzel. Its funny, they want to know where you are.
SJ: It’s a small, real-life thing. People see where you’re going, and you’re a little more accessible. They care what you’re doing now. Normally, this was never possible. I think it doesn’t really affect the thing you’re doing, but it can only help you.
WJ: We’ve always had good contact with our fans. After a gig, we never go home. We never say “bye-bye.” We always go down, shake hands, sometimes do autographs and stuff. We always take half an hour, or an hour for our fans. Yesterday, in Germany, we signed over 600 cards. It took us like forty-five minutes to sign. But then, that’s our lives. We always want our fans to be happy. Even if we’re really tired, you know? Don’t care. They come for us and they have a good time, and we want them to have a good time. They are the most important to us. Our fans.
SJ: So thank you, Cali! We had a great time here, right? WJ: California Rocks! See you next time!
EDM: Thank you guys on behalf of EDM Magazine.