1. Is there a song changed your journey as a DJ
Probably the song that initially put us into the picture was our “remix/bootleg” of Disney’s Frozen. That was literally played everywhere and we still play it now - it’s probably about 5 years old now and works every time. We’re also known for many serious tracks - but another one that has definitely been a big part of our sets lately has been “Jägermeister” which is a little tribute we made for our favourite liquor :)
2. 6 months had passed, tell us about your plans for the rest of 2019.
Well, we’re already in the middle of a very heavy (but fun) Summer tour schedule. Probably the highlight of this Summer, although there are many more we should be mentioning, would have to be performing at the MainStage of Tomorrowland, which is obviously a huge honour.
We’ve also got some cool tours coming up as well as our Tweekalution concept which we’re bringing to many countries throughout the year and a HUGE amount of music which we’ll be releasing very soon.
3. Da Tweekaz had been mainstage headliner around the world, would this year mainstage appearance at Tomorrowland means anything special for Da Tweekaz?
Well, for us this is very special and actually for Hardstyle in general this is really special to be giving it even more spotlight on one of the biggest stages in the World for Electronic Dance Music. So, we’re hoping it will open some more doors for events to think a little out of the box and try something different - we promise they’ll love it.
4. What does it takes to elevate an artist from the club level to the festival stage.
Well, in The Netherlands there are so many festivals which have so many stages, that they literally have a lot of room to try new and upcoming talents on smaller stages or opening slots, so that’s a great start. However, we also LOVE playing intimate club bookings. It’s a totally different vibe. But, if you mean - what does it take for ‘new’ artists to break through? We think a very unique stream of music that you create and probably also a strong brand to really put yourself out there.
5. Talking about Hardstyle, from your view how Hardstyle has evolved over the past 10 years?
Obviously, the sound has evolved quite a lot. And that’s not only due to the creative aspect, but technology has also advanced quite a bit, that we as producers have so much more new toys and computing power to play with. Also, productionally, Hardstyle is one of the most advanced ‘technical’ styles we know. If you’re a Hardstyle producer, you basically have the skillset to make any style you want because you’re so fixated on EQing, frequencies and fine tuning everything so much, distorting sounds and samples that you can really start to think outside of the box and implement so many different styles into your own Hardstyle productions which really helps the style evolve quite a bit as well.
Also, the fanbase has grown quite exponentially on a global scale, which is only a good thing.
6. Can you tell us more about Tweekacore? What type of sound and performance can we expect from Tweekacore?
We grew up listening to UK Hardcore / Happy Hardcore and we’ve idolised Darren Styles for many years. We thought it would be fun to take a little side step from our normal ‘Da Tweekaz’ style and so some Happy Hardcore which turned out to be a very big success! Together with Darren Styles (!!) we even started our own label “Electric Fox” especially for this type of sound. So, Tweekacore is just that - Happy Hard. It’s fast but still highly appealing and easy digestible and doesn’t directly conflict with our main artist brand ‘Da Tweekaz”.
7. With the booming of electronic music in Asia. How would that affect a DJ touring calendar?
that’s difficult to say. Usually, we need to know many months in advance so we can block our calendar for Asia shows. But the landscape in Europe is so fast paced lately that bookings are coming in so fast, that we’re usually fully booked MANY months in advanced which then makes it very hard to block dates for Asia who book a little more “last minute”. In any case, we love performing in Asia. It’s such a different vibe and it’s so great to show Asia what we stand for.
8. How often do you perform in Asia and in China? And which is your most favourite city
Mostly we do about 2 to 3 tours a year. And each tour consists of about 4 to 6 shows.
Hard to pick a specific city. As we’ve been coming to Asia for a few years now and we’ve really seen how the scene has been growing. When we first came, it was good, but we think that the audience didn’t really understand it at first. And then the next times we’ve been coming, you just keep seeing more and more dedication and passion. And that goes for every city we’ve been to. So, let’s just say we love ALL of Asia! Especially the food. Actually getting hungry just thinking about this...
9. Given a chance to host a stage at one of the big music festival? Who would be in your lineup?
Hmmm… we’ve actually done a few hostings at many big stages. But, we usually bring artists to the lineup who we feel we have a connection with, who we ourselves love to listen to and watch and also what we think would work in any given region. That goes from what an artist plays, to also the popularity of the artist. So, we wouldn’t necessarily go for a full on Hardstyle line-up so we’d do something out of the box. Like… wouldn’t it be awesome if we had Pendulum or Alan Walker tag along!? Haha.
10. Any new songs for 2019? Would there be a chance for an Asia producer to work on a song with you?
Wow, we have quite a handful of songs. We’ve been hard at work prior to the European festival season to finish many tracks so we can freshen up our sets during the festival season. So, just keep an eye out because YES, we have A LOT of releases coming up!
Would definitely love to work with an Asian artist… does BTS or Black Pink count? :)
11. Is there anything you can exclusively reveal to us?
Exclusively? Well.. by the time you’re reading this, our latest “Disney” cover will be out. Circle of Life (from The Lion King!). Fun fact: David Spekter did ALL of the vocals and we even got someone to play the part of the pan flute you hear in the track. So, every single element of that track we made from scratch! So… SURPRISE!
1. Tell us more about Dirty Workz? And what are the plans for 2019?
If you do not already know, Dirty Workz is the world leading Hard EDM label. Not only are our artists important, but we take great care to be as close as possible to the fans - listen to their questions and answer them ti our full potential. Next to that, we also have a large merchandise store (we deliver to all countries all across the globe) for which we create and produce not only label branded merchandise to wear but also that of our artists.
We represent some of the genre’s leading artists such as Coone, Da Tweekaz, Psyko Punkz, Wasted Penguinz, Sub Zero Project and many many more. We have also just launched a platform which will cater for the newcomers to the scene and also allowing for use to work a lot closer with content creators so they can use our music in their videos - copyright free.
Furthermore, in 2019 we’re working closely with a great partner to bring the brand and its artists to the Asian market - so look out for a an event coming your way!
2. Tell us , how are labels shaping the landscape of the music industry today?
Labels, at least if done right, are a key factor into marketing an artists music across many different platforms and both on and offline. An artist is in charge of their creative freedom and the label has to ensure that it maximises as much exposure and in an extension, also income, for the artist. So, it’s always good fun tower on new projects, new ideas and to not only be stubborn and keep doing things how we normally do things, but also watch how the landscape moves, listen to the ideas and wishes of artists and fans and also react to that to stay ahead of the game.
So, it’s not just about putting music on a streaming or download portal - there is so much more behind it all and its just immensely important to always keep your eyes and ears open for new things to utilise to make sure that the brand as well as the artists and its fanbase can keep growing and flourishing in this fast paced World.
3. What are the advantages of signing with an established label?
First and foremost, the largest advantage - depending on the label - would be its reach and exposure. It’s up to a label to introduce an artist to its fanbase, and it’s definitely not something that happens over night. Many years goes into building a fanbase, and with consistency and perseverance we believe that there’s always room for new and exciting artists to build a fanbase.
Furthermore, established labels know what they’re doing. They have partners and know the right people for the right job. From artwork to video clips, to streaming curation, how to push videos online, how to capitalise on social media and things like that.
So, we think that there should always be a good harmony between labels, artists and fans. We’re all in this together!
4. We noticed that there are 16 Dirty Workz DJ performing at Tomorrowland this year. How crazy is this?
Oh, yes! It’s amazing right!? Good thing is, this isn’t limited to only this year. For instance, Coone has been able to perform at every single Tomorrowland edition since the very beginning. And he even got to perform at the Tomorrowland MainStage in 2018 - making him the very first Hardstyle artist to perform on that stage. 2019 sees Da Tweekaz take over the torch to show the World their take on Hardstyle on the Tomorrowland MainStage.
Also, did you know that Dirty Workz had a stage at Tomorrowland in 2016? After that, we also supported Coone (& the Gang) with multiple hosting at Tomorrowland. So, it’s always like coming home from us. And technically, it’s almost in our own back yard :)
5. Is it important to be a DJ and a producer nowadays in order to be noticed by the label?
In all honesty. No.
Obviously, it’s important to be a good producer and to deliver very exciting, fresh music. Because a label works with music and not with “performances”.
Of course, it’s also important for an artist to be able to show his or her music to a broad fanbase, and the perfect way to do this is to DJ at festivals, clubs and events. But, to sign at a label - we don’t think it’s highly important to be a DJ. It definitely helps in ‘choosing’ an artist - because labels receive so many demos, they do have to make a choice as to which artist to work with. But - mainly a label just needs music and a creative artist to work with.
6. How to prepare a demo and making it stand out to the hundreds of songs send to a label daily
Well, that’s a good question. By the amount of demos we get on a weekly basis, we notice that everyone wants to be a DJ or producer and most can produce music “somewhat”, but not all of it is quality. And that’s where you can stand out. If you deliver music that sounds high quality, the mix down is good, the idea is good - it’s only a little bit of extra work to fine tune for release. So, try and be original. Don’t copy other artists. Labels want to hear something fresh, something out of the box and something special. It’s not exciting to release music that sounds like 10 other tracks out there.
Also, if you do send a mail (we actually stop accepting mails, because it became so so busy) make sure it’s short and to the point. Send the tracks you believe are your best work. It’s also best to send at least 2 tracks so the label can get a feeling of what you stand for. And definitely do not send your tracks as an attachment but use a service such as dropbox or even soundcloud to share your music.
And of course, if you don’t get an answer immediately, don’t hesitate to check up on the mail after a week or 2. It can get very busy and labels don’t always have the time to sit down and go through new tracks. So, it’s always a good idea to follow up on your mail - but try and not be too pushy, or you’re not going to make a good impression :)
7. Who is your newest signing to the label? And what makes this artist standout among the rest.
We’ve actually got about 3 new signings coming up in the next few months :) So, we’re excited to share that very soon. But for the moment, still a work in progress.
The last signing we did to the DWX Update (talent) label would have to be “Betavoice”. He’s a young guy from Russia. He’s advantage would have to be that living in Russia, he doesn’t really have a lot of artist friends living around him - especially in the genre “Hardstyle”, so he’s not being heavily influenced by any other artist that much. So, it’s very refreshing to hear his music. As it stands out quite a bit from what we’re used to. And we like that. It’s what makes an artist unique, and it’s up to the artist to really build on that and push hard to make it.
8. What is the main difference between the European Hardstyle Music and to Asia Hardstyle Music? Would Dirty Workz keen to look at new producer out in Asia?
Is there a real difference? We’ve heard some tracks from Chinese artists, but I think the main issue is that those artists are trying to sound like a “European” artist. And that’s not exactly what we want. We think it’s important that there is some kind of a connection to the European style, but also with that uniqueness of what’s hot in Asia, you know? Like, maybe Asia likes anti-climaxes or some different form of kicks, or a different way of making a melody just anything that is “fresh”. It’s hard to explain, really. But we think Asia has an advantage in that Hardstyle isn’t as heavily widespread as it is in Europe, for instance so there is a lot of room to experiment and to do something different.
As to the question, are we looking? Yes - we are looking and we’d love to sign an Asian Hardstyle act :)
9. Streaming streaming streaming - do you agree that streaming is saving the Music Industry
Absolutely - 200%! We have to admit though, a few years ago. It was still difficult to really understand the power of streaming. But, wow… streaming is just a godsend! Not only on the financial part, but marketing wise and the global scale of it all - it’s just very very exciting. Furthermore, where downloads used to have a lifespan of say 1 month, before the track was forgotten under the dust, Streaming allows for a track to live so much longer. Basically, a track can even become a hit even after a year. It’s just such a powerful medium. And it really took down a lot of the illegal downloads as well. Obviously not fully, but it’s so much more easier to stream a track than having to wait for new music, then search for it somewhere online and then download it and then add it to your music library… you know? Streaming is just like “ok, here is the track - get listening”. And it’s so much easier to discover new artists, new types of music and really is an adventure for the listener. So, we’re definitely happy about streaming.
11. With more and more Dirty Workz artist performing in the best festival around the world, any chance for us to see Dirty Workz label night in Asia?
Oh definitely. Some of our artists have been performing in China / Asia for a few years already. And each time they come back they keep telling us how big the genre is getting over there. So, we’re definitely excited to start working in Asia and to show the Asian people what we stand for and how we work together with the artists and fans. Actually, we do have quite a few fans who we often talk to on Instagram or Facebook - and quite a bit of them are also on our Youtube channel. So, we do notice that there is quite a following already.