Describe yourself, your background and what you do today.
I’m a DJ and producer from Aartselaar, Antwerp, and I own the label Deep Down and half of the microhouse live band Pur Sang. Besides that I also organise the Sunday Matinée outdoors parties together with Jonathan Calvache and I’m a resident at Ampere.
How has where you come from shaped who you are?
Growing up in Aartselaar probably taught me to keep it simple and just enjoy life.
In your view, what explains Belgium’s considerable contribution to global house music? What “makes” our sound what it is?
The ability to adapt, learn and make something our own is in Belgium’s DNA. Our history and geographical location probably made us the smartest chameleons in the world.
What, to you, characterises your home base’s unique nightlife and its main players?
Antwerp has big players like Ampere and Café d’Anvers of course, but the essence of our city’s nightlife relies on the promoters. They’re the ones who drive this city, always looking for new locations and opportunities that keep the scene interesting. Think In Your Face, Under or Sunday Matinee to name a few.
“Promoters are the ones who drive this city, always looking for new locations and opportunities that keep the scene interesting.”
To you, which place in Belgium best symbolises the country’s way of partying?
In essence I’d say Bocaccio was one of the pioneers but let’s not to go too nostalgic on that one. So I’ll go for Fuse, not because I think it symbolises the country’s way of partying, but rather because to me, Fuse has been our number one place for many years.
What, in your opinion, is missing in Belgium nightlife-wise?
I think we’re already spoiled but I’m really sad to hear that the quality of the sound at parties is sometimes below average these days. I’d love to see promoters and clubs investing in their sound system instead of Facebook promo.
In your opinion, what are the key ingredients for a good night?
Quality sound, music and DJs; friends; love and Tripel Karmeliet.
If you had to pick three essential Belgian house music releases, what would they be and why?
R.A.W. Shit, Goddamn (aka Smos & Baby Bee)
These friends of mine recorded this track in the legendary USA Import Studios, Antwerp.
Dow Jones – Just a Techno Groove
Found this 7 inch at a flee market. Epic video at Cherrymoon.
Dream your Dream – Soushkin
10 years old. Bonzai Chapter One. Enough said.
Talk to us about a memorable night out, good or bad.
Laurent Garnier and then Jeff Mills showed me the way at I Love Techno 1999, but more recently I’d say last a:rpia:r night at Ampere was crazy and I’m really proud I had the chance to do the warm-up for these legends.
What’s in the pipeline for you in the coming months?
On May 25, we have the honour to play live at Fuse as Pur Sang for the next edition of The Void, which I’m really looking forward to. And then of course I’ll be working on our vinyl imprint Deep Down; and summer is here so the Sunday Matinee is back.soundcloud.com/delbaenmusic