Prolific artist and DJ, Stefan Melis aka Bountyhunter started his careers in 1990 in a very small after club called TGV. During this period he recorded his first record with a sample from the Star Wars movie and “Bountyhunter” was born. Released on the brand new up and coming label Bonzai Records in 1992, this single would go on to be a huge success and help in shaping the sound we all know and love today. Many more releases would follow including “Woops”, “Demilitarized Zone” and “The Return” to name a few. These releases would make a big mark on the Bonzai imprint and propel Bountyhunter into the big time and ensure that when people speak of not only Bonzai but of classics in general, then the name Bountyhunter is always mentioned.
Stefan’s tunes have appeared on many compilations including Bonzai Compilation Chapter I, Bonzai Compilation II – Extreme Chapter, Best Of Bonzai, Midem ’97, Turn Up The Bass and Retro Arena and loads more. He has also teamed up with artists on collaborations such as Chain-Dance and X-Change which saw releases on Bonzai Records from 1992 – 1994.
Today Stefan is producing Hardcore music along with Tech and Electro. He is constantly DJing in Holland with the likes of Darkraver, Rotterdam Terror Corps and Paul Elstak. Recently he returned to Cherrymoon where he played a lot of the early classics from Bonzai and he has many other parties lined up. Bountyhunter is still an in demand DJ and will for sure feature in lots of retro parties in the future.
We had the chance to stand just next to him during his "hardstyle" live set at Tomorrowland 2017 and it was amazing. Find here the exclusive interview that we did with him:
I would like to talk about your project "Steve Romani". You used to play Big Room Music in the clubs using this alias, now you are planning to do something different with it? another evolution?
BH: Yes, right! I'm still playing Big Room and EDM but I'm also playing and producing Trance Music now, Trance and Uplifting Trance. With 128 BPM like Cosmic Eight and Above & Beyond, that sound, and also the faster-uplifting Trance.
Can we expect any "Uplifting Trance" release soon?
BH: Yes, I have about 5 tracks ready to release and I think 3 or 4 projects ready to finish.
I want to ask you about the "Bountyhunter" project, there's something new coming or you want to keep it "old school" playing and producing pure hardstyle?
BH: It's pure for old school, and in Belgium it s a very popular name, that's why I use Bountyhunter for Old school hardstyle and Romani for trance and bigroom. BUT... I did a techno set as An experiment and that turned out to a succes. So i also did soms techno Productions now, that Will Be released as bountyhunter. And More techno Will follow , as well as techno sets because i enjoyed it. I prefer the Carl Cox style and the style of the record label drumcode ... Things like that i can appreciate.
What's your feeling about Tomorrowland? Even when you already played here before and two times this year, do you still feel nervous or excited?
BH: Nervous? I'm not very often nervous but I feel that is always great to play here!
We saw a huge crowd reaction! What is the best track to play in here? Do you have a favorite track you always play in Tomorrowland or you always change your set ?
BH: I never prepare my sets and I always change it no matter what style or alias . In the old school style, there aren't new songs anymore, so there are always tracks that come back like "Outside World", but the "we are your friend" remix is very popular now. I also played " From the Left, To the Right " Is not really old school but and it's working like wow! It's one of the favourites! And i m glad that Whoops also is one of the people's favourites.
So, we want to know what's going on between you and DJ Flash Finger. New song alert ?? Why he is following you during your gigs these days?
BH: We are going to be in my studio later this week. We still don't know which style of song we will produce. If it will be an Hardstyle song then it will be released under my alias Bountyhunter, but if it will be a Big Room or Trance song then i'll release it as Steve Romani or....maybe we will do both of it, who knows hahah
@2017 DJ Mag Malaysia
Tomorrowland - The Kraken Music
Ultra Music Festival doesn’t need introductions if you don’t know it you have to ask yourself you are a true fan of electronic music!
We are talking about true love for this music genre, in a festival that blows your mind every time with a high-tech structure and sound, which is a dream of many artist/DJs and is a stage for unbelievable performances. Yes, Ultra Music is a must and live in our hearts, we, the electronic music lovers!
We made a countdown with the past editions since June, where this year we had Ultra Music Singapore until now when the next edition will be placed at Rio de Janeiro Brasil!
Come with us on this journey!
Ultra Singapore was insane!
In September Ultra found his way to India
And we had two wonderful days of this celebration for electronic music!
But It didn’t take long, two days after Ultra came to Taiwan and yes, they went wild!
Also at the same time, we had Ultra China in Shangai!
4 Days later Ultra decided to go Bali, that was a party!! Don’t you agree? Look at this place!!
The next stop was Hong Kong! Let’s get busy! What an amazing edition!
Enough? No? Great, because he had Tokio! Ultra Japan! Looked like a video game!! Amazing!
Are you ready for Ultra next step? Are you ready to go to South America? Ultra is coming now to Rio de Janeiro Brazil!Take a look at the past edition in 2016!
Want to know how it will go? We will get you every detail!!
@2017 DJ Mag Malaysia
The Kraken Music
Tomorrowland this year was one for the books. It's one of the world's most iconic music festivals that pays homage to every nationality that makes their way over to the magical grounds in Belgium. Every year flights from loads of countries fly out the electrifying community of Tomorrowland to Belgium and it only seems to get bigger each and every year.
If you attended this year, or experienced this at some point in your life, Tomorrowland is truly like a family; when you go there, you feel like it is home. It's perfect. Everything from the music, theatre, the food is arranged incredibly so that you get the most out of your experience.
Chefs are hired from all over the world to add to the diversity and authenticity of their home country's special dishes. Asian, Italian, Greek, American and many more types of food are all found there, cooked identically to what you'd experience in that very country.
Something also neat about Tomorrowland is that it's become a festival of Belgium pride for those that attend from the country. The entire volunteer staff is from Belgium, offering their citizens a chance to get immersed in the festival in a variety of ways.
There were so many highlights to what happened this year, one of the most prominent being the theme of Circus. It meshed wonderfully with DJ performances, as you'd catch acrobatics and many other wild entertainment acts to accompany what you'd be hearing on stage. It brought to life a whole new element that very few festivals can even offer, entirely capitalizing on the mysterious, magical elements of the festival.
Most importantly, the music heard throughout the Tomorrowland was absolutely legendary. It doesn't matter what genre you prefer, because everything is there! Big room still rules main stage and whether you approve or not, when you see a sea of people moving to some of the hardest drops, it can't help but get your heart racing to all that's happening. Just watch David Guetta's set, and you'll see what we mean.
2017 was our favorite year thus far (although it just seems to exceed expectations every single year) and we cannot wait to see all of you next year!
@2017 DJ Mag Malaysia
City branding and marketing run through our veins. Ask people all over the world to describe Amsterdam in a few words and you'll only hear positive things. Amsterdam, one of the world's most open-minded cities; the dance capital of the world. With Amsterdam being such a strong brand by itself, we decided with our team to make a club touring event of all the positive things our home has: One Night in Amsterdam.
HOW DID IT START?
One Night in Amsterdam (ONIA) was founded by two Dutch youngsters Jordi Hartgers and Roshan Binda in 2010, with one of the very first shows being at the world-famous Pacha. Within a few years the event has toured literally the globe: over 20 countries and 30 cities have experience the One Night in Amsterdam show. With our infamous Dutch DJs we're taking the scene by storm. From our very own official DJ, to artists like Chuckie, Blasterjaxx or Sick Individuals; all have toured with us. Imagine a great visual show, free give-away merchandising, ONIA flags and more on top and you'll get a glimp of our show.
WHERE DID WE HOST THE EVENT SO FAR?
As mentioned we've toured the concept to 20+ countries and 30+ cities world wide. One Night in Amsterdam is currently active in Europe, North and South America, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. A few of the highlights (flagship events) are definitely Pacha, Nasimi Beach (Atlantis the Palm), Fusion Shanghai, Zentral Hong Kong, Rendezvous India and Chaos Manila. Let's not forget our yearly Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE) showcase. For ADE 2017 we're definitely taking it to the next level with not just one, but two showcases at the world's largest dance music conference/event. This year's headliners are Daddy's Groove, Thomas Newson, Tom Soon, Justin Mylo and Tomorrowland's very own Sem Thomasson. At all of our shows we also have one of the event's founders, ROSH, playing as he guards the quality of the music at our world wide shows.
Soon we'll start focusing on 2018, as our 2017 agenda is almost completely full. Shows coming up in Asia, Middle East and Europe in the coming months. On top of this we'll start our very own label in 2018: ONIA Records. Keep an eye for the stuff that's coming as this is just the beginning.
Grammy Winner for Best Remix in 2013 for his version of Lana Del Rey’s ‘Summertime Sadness’. A monthly Spotify audience of over 2.3 million listeners. Billboard, UK & ARIA Chart Top Ten Hits. Multi-platinum selling singles. Beatport, Buzz, Hype Machine & Cool Cuts Charts Number 1′s. 2 BBC Radio One Essential Mixes. 3 Essential New Tunes. A weekly Global Radio show. The go to remixer. Acting roles in Michael Bay’s blockbuster film ‘Pain & Gain’ alongside Mark Wahlberg and The Rock, and Pete Berg’s ’The Long Night’ alongside Mark Wahlberg and Kurt Russell. Residencies in Las Vegas, New York and Miami. A yearly tour schedule & sell out shows spanning the world over. These are just a few things that have been making French born Miami resident Cedric Gervais one of the most sought after House DJs & electronic music producers in the world today. With the launch of his new imprint, ‘Delecta Records’ where he will release monthly singles, alongside a major label deal with Universal Worldwide (Polydor / Interscope) Cedric continues his ascendancy into 2016 and beyond.
What do you believe is most important when it comes making a remix?
The most important thing I think is to keep the magic of the vocal and the record, not to, I think, to destroy the record, you know, sometimes people do remix and they don't use, I love to keep the original vibe, magic of the record and not destroy the record and turn into mine own production.
What called more your attention when you decided to do "Summertime Sadness" Remix? As an artist how did you felt when you saw the tremendous acceptance of your remix?
I was a very big fan of Lana Del Rey for many years and the song was incredible, the song writing, the melody, the vocal. And I always… I knew the original the original for a very long time and one day I said: one day I need to do this thing. Even I bootleg or whatever, and my manager came up to me one day and said: Hey would you like to remix this song? And I was like: Yeah! Perfect!
I was very happy I didn't expect that because I did the remix for my DJs friends to play, and I was just happy with that at the beginning and I didn't expect the remix to play on the radio and sell all the 8 million copies that were sold. I just didn't expect that.
How did you felt when you won the Grammy for "Summertime Sadness" Remix? Was it some of your goals?
It was not one of my goals, it was an incredible achievement, I didn't expect that, like I said when I did the record I didn't expect all that, I didn't expect to be the biggest radio record and selling… and every the DJ playing it. Like I said I was happy with my friend playing it. And When I won the Grammy it was the biggest thing.
Your new song "Somebody New" is amazing, can you share a little with us what did you think when you created this one?
I just wanted to do something different, a little musically different of what I was doing, It's an amazing, the lyrics are incredible, the melody is incredible, and if you listen to the record is very different.
Tell us about your record label "Delecta Records", what are you looking for in a song? What your fans can expect from Delecta releases?
I put music that I want to put out, that I do myself when major labels don't want to put it out, I just put it all myself, I believe in the record. So far every release we put out, every record had over 5 million, 10 million streamings, we are doing very well and I want to find new artist and help them put out music and stuff like that's my goal.
As an artist, what are your next steps?
Just keep making music and performing, and just making music, non-stop.
How are your feeling after playing here on Tomorrowland?
I feel amazing, I've just finished right now, actually for me it's was better than last week, cos I played on different stage, the stage was incredible the first week, it was crazy the first week but the energy on this stage this week was incredible.
Facebook - Website
@2017 DJ Mag Malaysia
Tomorrowland - The Kraken Music
It’s a spectacle of magic and high quality! It’s real and you can see it all on Tomorrowland’s After movie!
Every year we have the chance to experience Tomorrowland Festival and when we thought it couldn’t get any better than the year before, they made this year edition even better.
We already wrote our review as soon as we got home after the festival and you can check it out by clicking here
But we couldn’t help by getting nostalgic over this amazing after movie. Seeing it all and some things we didn’t even get the chance to see at the moment we can enjoy now, it’s so incredible.
First let’s talk about how Tomorrowland grew in the past editions that combined in two weekends on this year edition, when it could be too much now you can see it, you know you wanted more, so bring it on Tomorrowland, we just can’t get enough.
High-level structure in a huge festival, and by that we mean the full structure since the food area with all these amazing restaurants, camping area, until the stages and decorations. In this video, you can have your tour inside this experience and see for yourself what we are talking about. You can see the best moments of this year edition and how the magic was made.
The theme was so well explored in different stages of the festival, and the main stage was a full circus, not only because of the structure, by also by the circus artists performing while the DJs were doing their own magic.
And most of all Tomorrowland remind us the concept of unity, love, respect and that means we have a future, we are the people of tomorrow.
@2017 DJ Mag Malaysia
The Kraken Music
Every once in a while we hear that someone got lucky and became rich and famous with their music overnight and they didn't even see it coming. Like it was no effort on it. Lies Lies Lies...
Well, I don't see why people do that, it's sad but it's common. And the problem is that this gives the wrong impression of how things work.
I'm not saying that all things work in the same way but there are some things that followed some rules like the licenses for remixes, streaming playlists, record labels promotions and priorities... So when I hear those stories I can clearly see the gap between each information. So please, again, there's no recipe for success but work.
If you dream of success, work should be like breathing. Because it will take work to study to do a great song, even if you are a producer already, to do a song that will become a hit takes research. Especially if you are a Dj, you should take references and find out how to create your own sound. Alan Walker talked a lot about that in our interview, how he came up with the idea for "Faded", it was a combination of two different songs he got inspired. If you are a songwriter, I can say from my own experience that you have a lot of different ways of creating a lyric.
My favourites are taking something from the daily routine that will relate to a specific group of people, and turn into a song, can be happy song, can be sad, can be funny, can be romantic, but it's got to be something with your vision, that's really the key to be unique. You will hear a lot of songs talking about love or a heartbreak, some artist release 3 or 4 singles with the same theme, but their vision and way of saying things will make it different,
but, making music is something, turn into a business is another thing.
That means how to compete for space in some areas and get the right attention of the audience that will like your song? That's mainly when the white lies work, most of the artist doesn't like to talk about business, not clearly, but don't fool yourself, every word means business. Contacts are important, but contacts with no song on the pocket it's a waste of time, don't make routines will not be able to follow like: "now I will only care about the productions" you must never isolate yourself for a long time because your music is for people, you must not lose the connection with the world. But the most important thing is to be ready to talk business. Electronic Music or Dance Music has something really useful called remixes!
When Pop Music needs to make collaborations, featurings, that have to have a great advantage for both sides and normally may compete for the same spaces in Radios, Festivals, The DJs have the power to do remixes that will be played in places that the artist doesn't have space, the artist doesn't need to do a new song, so one product became two for the same cost, what makes the artist help to promote even more the remix inside the fan base, what helps the DJs be known by other people and grow their fan base. And this is just the beginning, a lot of things can be negotiated in this process, and the best part is that everybody wants to make the song work, win-win situation. What makes it easy for the artist to sign the remixes as the official, with that being said, it's already clear that the remix should be good, that it's your obligation, getting the licences is a negotiation with the labels, producers, songwriters and artist, most of the times in that order, and everything can be the last thing that influences the final decision, lately the popularity on the social media has been the treasure for some artists. Something that bloggers taught well the market, how influencer can sell things better than just a face.
Because your music is your responsibility, needs to be in a high quality, something new and that represents you, but fans, tours, and a big career are business and especially selling. You don't need to do it all, but you need to know everything in the game and play with what you got, to get where you really want.
White lies cause damage when makes you believe stories that are made up to sound like lucky, don't go for lucky, go for what you want because things are simpler than they seem but that doesn't mean it's easy and that takes no effort. For my experience, everything that we work for can turn into something that we couldn't even imagine at the beginning, great things, and it worth every second you were working on it, but you need to plan it and make it happen.
@2017 DJ Mag Malaysia
The Kraken Music
Taking his name from the Finnish word for ‘villain’, Roisto hails from the deep, dark forests of northernmost Finland, where he inhabits a small studio, filled with old analog synths, tape machines, and 12” disco records. It is within the confines of this musical safe haven that he creates his own stylish brand of disco. His debut EP ‘Apart In Love’ featured three original disco tracks introducing the trademark Roisto sound with catchy sampled vocals, slick guitars, and super funky bass-lines.
Released by Finnish indie label Youth Control, the EP and the clever music video portraying the ‘Liking’ obsession of Millenials on social media, created a huge buzz. The EP and the video ended up being featured on The Wired, DJ Mag, Music TV, Thump and many others, while MySpace featured the newcomer as “Artist of the Day”. ‘Apart In Love’ was also supported by DJs such as Armand Van Helden, The Magician, Utah Saints, The Swiss, Louis La Roche, The Knocks and many more. After hitting the Hypem top 10 ’Apart In Love’ ended up on tens of playlists, gathering almost 2 million plays on Spotify within a year of its release.
The title track ‘Apart In Love’ was also included on Toolroom records hugely popular WMC Compilation, with the ‘Apart In Love – Disco Despair Remix’ being featured on the new Poolside Croatia 2016 collection After the success of ‘Apart In Love’ word of the ‘Disco Wizard’ as stated by Complex started to spread and Roisto found himself in great demand becoming hugely busy in the studio working on remixes for a plethora of artists, including Bob Sinclair, The Magician and Lotus, as well as for labels such as Kitsuné and Spinnin’. With the cold and dark Finnish winter looming ahead, the eccentric ‘Disco Wizard’ keeps his analog synths warm working on his long waited new material, which no doubt will raise the bar for millennium era disco music sometime in early 2017.
“The Finnish producer’s new EP ‘Apart In Love’ is neodisco in a class of its own”– MySpace
“The weeks best music videos! [Roisto - Apart In Love]” – The Wired
“Roisto’s work flows with grace and dance-inducing charm, adding the Finnish beatmaker to the list of potential breakouts for 2015” – Earmilk
“Charged, vast in scale, and laden with a beautiful groove.” – Magnetic Magazine
“His stylish brand of disco is almost villainous as it will steal your undivided attention” – Kick Kick Snare
“Finnish producer Roisto shares an absolutely divine original single “Apart In Love” that is summer pool party worthy.” – Discobelle
Hey Roisto, welcome to DjMag Malaysia! In which part of the world are you based at the moment?
Hello and thank you for the invitation. I'm currently producing new music at my studio. It's a small room built at the end of a very old defunct cattle shed, located in Ylivieska, north side of Finland where I live.
The hottest news right now is the release of your massive brand new single 'No regrets' on It's great! (Axtone) .
Can you tell us more about this song?
It's a combination of anthem style house and french touch electronic disco. Although I'm definitely not a french guy, I feel it's my journey to keep those vibes alive. Track relies heavily on synth works with addition of simple but catchy vocal line. It was produced both reminding what disco house was all about but also bringing something new to the table. A whole release combined with music video is follow up for 'Apart In Love' single and was made together with 'It's Great' imprint of Axtone and 'Youth Control' . Music video was shot in near town of Alpua and was directed by Kalle Kotila.
Where do you take your musical inspiration from?
I'm gear addicted type of a guy, so obscure techniques and forgotten 'abandon' machines are itself my inspiration. I usually start from sampling and like to keep thing outside computer as long as possible, also listening and adapting a lot from old funk, boogie and italo disco records of 70's and 80's. For a counter weight I go to walk into nature.
How do you would to describe your sound to someone who's never heard about you before?
Imagine world where french disco never went out of fashion but instead became mainstream
Name few things you likes to do in spare time while you are not making music!
Nowadays my life is super busy so there's not much spare time left, but that's not a problem I like it that way. I'm also family guy, most of my spare time goes to participate with children with their hobbies. One thing I would love to do much more is disc golfing, and whenever there is an opportunity between gigs I try to familiarise a new course.. disc golf suits perfectly for a dj, spinning disc comes naturally.
The new technologies are bringing many benefits to music producers. What's your favourite ones?
That's true it's very different now than 20 years ago when I started producing, some things are better but not absolutely everything. I love hugely increased computing power, algorithms which are modelling circuit behaviour, DSP power and hugely developed impulse responses. Instead I like to keep on old synths and samplers, they just have way much better feeling and tonality is always spot on for my taste.
What do you think about the digital music releases? You think there should be more control on labels and online music stores? should anyone be allowed to release music?
There is a certain problem that comes with hugely increased amount of releases of today, it's extremely time consuming and difficult to find quality specific style of music and keep track on what is happening. Earlier when tracks were released physically, you would rely in the fact that there was always a quality control going on, labels had to ensure tracks were worth releasing, which ultimately leads to better music. Everyone should be able to release and sell their music, but same time we have to keep sure tradition of quality won't die.
If you weren't a music producer, which one could be a possible career for you?
I went to art academy and by my education I'm contemporary digital artist. If I wasn't doing music I really have no idea!
What sparked your interest to make music in the first place and how long have you been producing for?
I was learning to play a guitar at age of 15 and was given private lessons by a teacher at his home, one day he said we could check his personal studio which was full of synths and computers. I quit the next day playing guitar. I have produced music since then, and this was mid 90's.
Which advice you can give to upcoming producers who are trying to get their music heard?
For any kind of producer I suggest to produce lot of different style of music with different type of setups, for electronic music producer nothing is more revealing than to create something like jazz, heavy metal, rock etc. album from starting point to finished product. If you try to get your own music heard you have to create a signature sound, generating one will take some time but being patient and consistent will be worth of doing it.
What can fans expect from you in the next future?
More original releases, and more remixes. I'm starting to gig globally, so keep your eyes on that.
Having set clubs ablaze across the globe since their first release in 2008,
now is the right time for Firebeatz to stoke up the fire.
With new single ‘Till The Sun Comes Up’, the Dutch duo not only deliver a sizzling-hot dance floor scorcher, but also spark their own label: Ignite Recordings.
Consisting of Tim Smulders and Jurre van Doeselaar, Firebeatz are among the most prolific DJ/producers of this decade. Their track record includes countless mainstage anthems, collaborations with dance music luminaries such as Calvin Harris, Tiësto and Martin Garrix, and a seemingly never-ending list of remix work for the likes of Rihanna, Pitbull, Flo Rida, Justin Timberlake, P!nk, Snoop Dogg, James Blunt and Sean Paul.
With pummeling live shows from Electric Daisy Carnival Las Vegas to ADE Festival in Amsterdam and tracks such as ‘Dear New York’, ‘Guitar Track’ (with Sander van Doorn), ‘Helicopter’ (with Martin Garrix) and ‘I Can’t Understand’ (with Chocolate Puma) as clear-cut fan favorites, their rise to stardom has been so fierce and swift it’s no wonder many claim it to be a firestorm. And that intensity is what Firebeatz will carry over into their new label.
Interview Firebeatz x DJ Mag Malaysia
1) What's the story behind your track "Till The Sun Comes Up" ?
We did a two week studio session in LA and met Vertel in one of the latest sessions. We loved her vibe and managed to create the base of TTSCU in that session. We finished the track back in Holland, and we were all so happy with the result that we decided it should be the first release on our new label Ignite.
2) Why you decided to create your own record label?
We’ve been thinking about a next step in our carreer for some time now and starting our own imprint is something that just felt right to do now.
We want to release our own music of course but more important we want to make it a platform for young producers that we love. There’s so much talent and we hear so many tracks that, with a little help, are worth releasing. We hope that with Ignite Recordings, we can help taking these producers a step closer to achieving their dreams.
3) Which sounds are you looking for? and how to get signed on Ignite Records?
We don’t have a strict policy when it comes to sounds, it really comes down to listening to a track and feeling the vibe. We have a pretty broad taste in music and don’t want to force anyone into making a genre. If it sounds good, you don’t need the label of a genre.
4) Any advice for upcoming producers?
Make what you love and make lots of it! In the end you will find your own sound and that’s the thing you’ve got to work on and stay close to. Plus, don’t be afraid to express yourself, send you music to other djs, friends, let them know what you’re up to etc.
5) What about your next projects? Any secret news you can share with us?
We’ve got a new club track coming up with Apster, plus another collab with Lucas & Steve. And dozens of other new tracks that you will be hearing about in the next months!
6) Leave a message for your Malaysian fans please!
We always have a great time at Zook and hope to come back very soon!
Charlotte Devaney is looking for an official remix for her latest collaboration with RiFF RAFF “Lemon Latté"
Charlotte Devaney is looking for an official remix for her latest collaboration with RiFF RAFF “Lemon Latté"
Download the stems HERE