Party Top 15

Party top 15 / 2019-03-20

Stereo Express: a veteran DJ adapting to a new century

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Prepare The Flash

Prepare The Flash: Daniil Lavrovski

Boudin Room: livestreaming beats and butchery

Party Top 15

Party top 15 / 2019-03-13

Is CLUB WIT the new black?

Party Top 15

Party Top 15 / 2019-03-05

Listen! Festival 2019: bigger and bolder

Tsar B: finding her own way to Belgium's pop throne

"Reverze is the Cirque du Soleil of hardstyle!"

Party Top 15

Party top 15 / 2019-02-27

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It’s an even better day when that club supports alternative music culture. ZWARTWIT is the latest addition to Ghent’s sparkling nightlife scene. Located in an industrial area in close vicinity to the Ghelamco Arena, this multipurpose venue aims to serve many different purposes other than just playing out music. 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It’s always a good day when a new club lands in our country. It’s an even better day when that club supports alternative music culture. ZWARTWIT is the latest addition to Ghent’s sparkling nightlife scene. Located in an industrial area in close vicinity to the Ghelamco Arena, this multipurpose venue aims to serve many different purposes other than just playing out music. “This location is perfect for a wide use of different activities”, explains manager Tim Synaeve. “We also opened a restaurant here - and the venue is suitable for business meetings and private events. Then again it wouldn’t be us if we didn’t also throw proper parties in there under the CLUB WIT banner. The challenge was to design a space that looks good both in the day and at night - and we are confident we’ve succeeded in doing so”.

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But how do you position yourself in a musical landscape where many clubs are dominating their respective micro scenes? “Ghent already has many different scenes, crews and concepts. For us it’s a matter of finding the blind spots. On the one hand, we will book leftfield house, disco and Italo, while on the other we will give attention to the new urban music. we’re also open to hosting external events\nand/or concepts”, adds Synaeve. “With a capacity of 400 we can’t go too crazy with the headliners, but this gives us the opportunity to invite DJ’s that have proven theirselves already or artists that might not fit elsewhere. As we’re not a traditional nightclub, we don’t feel the pressure to sell out every Friday and Saturday”. Being able to make yourself stand out from the rest takes more than just booking the right DJ’s. Co-manager Dominique Brion agrees, “we don’t want to set trends. There are many others who have set this as their goal. A general cosy atmosphere that can attract many different sorts of ravers is what interests us most. There are plenty of CDJ wizards around who can serve that purpose. Give those guys a proper Martin Audio sound system and we should be in for a great night out”.

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With a large, sunny terrace, CLUB WIT’s first summer promises to be so filled with plenty of lazy afternoons. But before that happens there are some very promising club nights on the schedule. A refreshing variety of scene stalwarts like Jeremy Underground, King Doudou, Sassy J, Faisal, Merca Bae, Carista and Lefto have already been confirmed, but there are still plenty Synaeve and Brion can’t tell us about. If anything, these are plenty of valid reasons to get down to Ghent's outskirts for a night of pure, uncomplicated fun.

"},{"type":"interviewfooter","text":"

Follow CLUB WIT on Facebook and Instagram.

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Festival 2019: bigger and bolder","photographer":{"name":"","url":""},"slug":"listen-festival-2019-bigger-and-bolder","excerpt":"Listen! Festival’s tagline (“Clubbing, expo, talks, workshops and concerts on various locations in Brussels”) uncovers the ever-expanding ambition of the 5-day festival that’s preparing its fourth edition. Between April 17 and 21, visitors will be able to indulge themselves in an incredibly wide array of different activities. 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Listen! Festival’s tagline (“Clubbing, expo, talks, workshops and concerts on various locations in Brussels”) uncovers the ever-expanding ambition of the 5-day festival that’s preparing its fourth edition. Between April 17 and 21, visitors will be able to indulge themselves in an incredibly wide array of different activities. There’s one common thread: the love for quality electronic music. So whether you’re eager to check out the opening concert at Flagey with Tony Allen and Jeff Mills live, the main event that spans 3 days at Horta Gallery with dozens of heavyweights or just curious for one of the many side events: Listen! has your back. We understand that such an over-the-top schedule may be a little overwhelming. So instead of explaining it ourselves, we let Nicolas Bucci, artistic director at Listen!, do the explaining. What? Where? When? And most importantly: what’s new? Everything you need to know is right here.

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Listen! 2019: bigger and better than the last 3 editions? Seems like you will extend the daytime activities this year, right?

Yes, this time we’ll have a distinct centre for daytime activities at Les Halles St Géry in the heart of Brussels: the Listen! Sound District. Here, we will put everything together under one roof: an independent record label market, a synth and gear fair, feedback sessions, talks, workshops, a photo exhibition and live internet radio.

Live internet radio: who is hosting that?

Kiosk Radio, in collaboration with international counterparts like Red Light Radio, Le Mellotron, LYL and Dublab. Most invited DJ’s will be Belgian, so these sets will be broadcasted not just here, but across their networks too. It’s a simple way to showcase local talent.

Why did you pick Les Halles St Géry?

Because of many reasons. It’s an old market in Flemish Renaissance design, much bigger than you would expect from the outside. When we first checked it out, it made perfect sense for Listen!: it’s located in the middle of a tourist zone with dozens of bars which are not often frequented by locals, so it could function as a bridge between both audiences. The basement is perfect for hosting various workshops. We really wanted to create a physical meeting point during the festival, much like Cultuurhuis De Brakke Grond during Amsterdam Dance Event. Eventually, we hope to build up a whole creative district and cooperate with the surrounding nightlife venues.

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What else is new this year?

We’ve added a whole extra day: 5 in total now. On Wednesday we’ll have the opening concert at the prestigious Flagey, Thursday we’ll see various record label showcases, while the main concert and club action will take place across Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Horta. From Friday to Sunday, we’ll also host a series of extra events in collaboration with other local curators…

Tell us more about those record label showcases on Thursday and the extra events…

Other than our main program at Horta, we wanted to showcase a broad selection of organizations that push a relevant sound, regardless of genre, type of crowd, etc. On Thursdaynight, 7 different events will take place in various locations in the city centre, all free of entry. Each night will be hosted by Belgian labels - such as We Play House, Kalahari Oyster Cult, Radio Martiko, Cosmic Pop, Vlek, etc. - who will invite their favourite international labels.

Concerning other extra events, on Friday the amazing STROOM record label will set up a night filled with ambient and cutting edge electronics at Les Brigittines, an old chapel that has recently been renovated. On Saturday Molenbeek’s VK Concerts will be the backdrop for a global sounds night with Rebel Up, while LaVallée will host an avant-garde electronic night curated by Le Bureau Electronique. Finally, on Sunday SPEK and Gay Haze will team up for another day to remember for to the LGBT crowd, from the afternoon till the early night.

That’s a long list of curators! Is that a strategy to involve communities of more niche scenes?

True. That’s a very conscious decision. We want to use the Listen! Festival platform to showcase local talents and support the Belgian music scene’s growth. This creates the most interesting results. Other than those already mentioned, we are working with artists, DJ’s and promoters like Crevette Records, Lefto, soFa, Vice City, Deep in House, Under My Garage and Basic Moves amongst others.

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What are the biggest challenges as an event promoter of such a big event in the middle of the capital?

Our biggest challenge is the future of the festival. Other than Horta, there are not a lot of venues in the center that are able to host these kind of big events. That’s why we decided to let the festival grow horizontally instead of vertically. We prefer a wider diversity over a bigger capacity.

How is your relation with the city?

It’s incredibly positive. We received a lot of support from all the different institutions here – and with great results! Over 40% of our ticket sales are from Flanders, an incredibly high percentage for an event in Brussels. A lot of folks are finally realizing that a festival like this is excellent for breaking the boundaries between our communities.

Does Listen! showcase the strenght of the Brussels music scene at the moment?

We believe this city is such a fertile ground for music and opportunities that allow talent to blossom are popping up more frequently. But that said, we aim for more than Brussels. We try to shine a light on artists and DJ’s from anywhere in this country.

Do you want to win tickets for 'Listen! Festival'? Leave your details below and get lucky.

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Listen! Festival takes place on various locations in the Brussels city centre between April 17 and 21. More information and tickets can be found on listenfestival.be

","type":"interviewfooter"}],"type":"default","locale":"en","categories":[],"id":"5c7d8c574f18d105200bfc3f","isPlaceholder":false},{"owner":"5aa66a8236af8a647e559234","client":"563fa1fd1b73f17f676b8201","author":{"name":"Jonas Lion","url":""},"i18n":{"en":"5c7d566d531b3c5463b573c9"},"title":"Tsar B: finding her own way to Belgium's pop throne","photographer":{"name":"Guillaume Kayacan","url":""},"slug":"tsar-b-finding-her-own-way-to-belgiums-pop-throne","i18nSlug":{"en":"tsar-b-finding-her-own-way-to-belgiums-pop-throne"},"excerpt":"Tsar B’s debut album ‘The Games I Played’ was one of the most exciting projects to drop in Belgium this year. The Ghent-born 24-year-old Justine Bourgeus effortlessly stirs up a cocktail of infectious broken beats, singalong pop melodies and mystic soundscapes, balancing on the fine line between daytime radio material and a passionate dancefloor or bedroom soundtrack. ","updatedAt":"2019-03-04T19:40:20.170Z","createdAt":"2019-03-04T16:46:37.823Z","recordStores":[],"related":[],"publishedAt":"2019-03-04T16:45:00.000Z","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-600x401.jpg","filename":"e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-401x600.jpg","filename":"e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-1200x802.jpg","filename":"e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-802x1200.jpg","filename":"e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-802x802.jpg","filename":"e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"e4e80c35f89c62d6ad8208ee11be245c-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}],"isHome":true,"isVisible":true,"isSticky":false,"tags":[],"body":[{"description":"

Tsar B’s debut album ‘The Games I Played’ was one of the most exciting projects to drop in Belgium this year. The Ghent-born 24-year-old Justine Bourgeus effortlessly stirs up a cocktail of infectious broken beats, singalong pop melodies and mystic soundscapes, balancing on the fine line between daytime radio material and a passionate dancefloor or bedroom soundtrack. “For some reason, I’m frequently charted in sex playlists”, says Bourgeus, who definitely has a knack for humour. “Even though I don’t make my music with this in mind, I play into this fad by handing out branded condoms on my latest shows”. From articles in famous magazines like Billboard, The Fader or i-D to big gigs in L.A., Istanbul or Budapest: 2018 has been an impressive year for this enthusiastic multi talent (she’s a violinist, a singer and a producer). However, all signs point to an even bigger year to come. We invited the tsarina for a photoshoot and an interview about her beginning, her present success and her future.

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What has been your favourite reaction to the release of your debut album?

There have been countless lovely reactions from everybody, like people telling me my music meant a lot to them. Other than that, it struck me how far my music had gained fans. I don’t know why, but the album did really good in Brazil for example.

What’s your earliest musical memory?

It may sound cliché, but my mom used to listen to Mozart when she was pregnant. That may have had an influence. I started playing violin at the young age of 3, although you can’t really call that a violin. It’s like a piece of wood that teaches you the basic movements before you actually move on to the real thing!

When did you realize ‘I can really do this music thing’?

By the time I was 14 years old, I got really into Radiohead. I wanted to be a female version of them, but with a dark twist. And so I got looking for the right people who could help me with that. I ended up playing for a variety of different bands (most notably ‘School Is Cool’, red.), each of which taught me a lot about the music business and touring. Eventually, I realized this was something I wanted to do as a part of a group, rather than individually. That said, I was always quietly working on my own stuff on the side, so after a few years, I started Tsar B without a real plan in mind. I just kept on making music and before I knew I was performing on stage.

How did the band react when you told them you wanted to go solo?

Without many expectations, I showed the other band members I could do some producing of my own. They loved it. This made me realize I can do it on my own too; I don’t need anyone. So by the time I turned 20, I left School Is Cool and I got plenty of time to work on my own music.

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It’s clear that you have a distinct idea of how you want your music, artwork and shows to look like. Do you like to keep in control of everything?

I would never describe myself as a control freak, but deep down I know I am, despite the fact I’m quite the laissez faire type of person who does everything at the last possible moment. Throughout the years I have learned to let go when you’re working with people you trust, letting everything flow naturally. In the beginning, all of the Tsar B shows were very meticulously planned into detail, but now it’s so much more unrestricted. Every band member has a certain space in which they can do their own thing without rules. This approach has influenced me in many other ways. For example, I would never allow someone else to direct a music video for me when I was younger, but now I realized it’s better to let go and create a synergy with different people. Now, I want to include as many people as possible because it will spice things up.

Which track of the album are you most proud of?

I think ‘Velvet Green’, because it’s a track that shows what Tsar B is all about. There are beats, but there are classical elements too. It’s something different, a ballad, but then again it’s 100% ‘me’.

On stage, a whole lot has changed since your first solo performances about 4 years ago. You have become incredibly confident for example. How do you prepare for your shows?

I used to see live shows as a necessary part of music, so I was very cautious when I didn’t get the desired reaction from the audience. I always thought: ‘why should I do my best if you guys aren’t even trying? But now I just go all out. I will give the best version of myself on any stage, regardless of the fact if there are many people or not. When the crowd really gets in the mood, I’ll become even more enthusiastic – much more than I ever would a few years ago. Performing live is an effective way to channel some aggression. Sometimes I wish I could smash my violin on stage! Maybe I should bring a really cheap one with me next time? If I ever get invited for Jools Holland’s show, I’ll bring a violin with the sole purpose of slamming it into pieces.

Smashing aside, would you also consider doing just violin performances?

If I’m honest, I would love to start a classical project next year, writing pieces for an orchestra or something. That’s my next goal. Making music for completely different projects: movie scores, opera, etc. I become so happy just thinking about it.

So what has been the last show where you went all out?

Definitely Istanbul! Everyone was singing along to every tune and in the end, dozens of people joined me on stage. It was wild. I already had a feeling that was going to be a good show, because Turkey – after Brazil – has a lot of dedicated Tsar B fans. That’s something we have learned from checking our Spotify plays.

That’s actually quite interesting. Why Turkey?

I don’t know. A lot of Belgian things are doing really good over there, like Oscar and the Wolf for example. I think ‘Belgian music’ is a thing over there, so as soon as they know it’s from here, they are more open to it.

Which Belgian artists would you love to collaborate with?

If I’m honest: Mauro Pawlowski (renowned singer and guitarist from countless bands like dEUS and Evil Superstars, red). He really is one of the most inspiring Belgian musicians out there. He’s so clever and versatile, whatever project he takes on. He is a massive source of inspiration for me.

Ever since Alexander Chung made a choreography for you, your music has been inspiring dancers around the world. You regularly repost videos of people pole dancing and twerking to your music every week. How does that feel?

I’m so grateful for that! It feels so absurd when people make art from something you created, especially because these are not tracks that you would label as ‘twerk music’. I rarely make music with ‘the club’ in mind. But in the end that doesn’t matter. Nothing keeps your music more alive than people making choreographies to your music. It just makes me so happy.

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Ok, but take the drums and rhythm of ‘Brazil’ for example. I’m sure you knew it had a high club potential when you pieced that track together…

Well, yeah, kind of. I’m really into the baile funk wave that’s coming from Brazil right now. I’m a massive MC Bin Laden fan for example. I got a lot of inspiration from that movement because it uses a highly infective broken beat, which makes it feel really connected to my own music. Some people say it sounds ‘Eastern’ or ‘exotic’, but it’s not. I just don’t want to use things that sound different from an usual snare and kick. Instead I prefer to use rhythms from Brazil, sitars from India or drums from Africa.

Is that the direction you will be going from here?

Actually, no. My forthcoming music will be quite calm and introvert to be honest. But you can be sure there will be a reaction after that. I can already feel the dancefloor itch that will inevitably come afterwards!

What’s your biggest wish for the coming year?

I wish I can make a wide variety of different music and that I can be able to travel because of that. It feels so good to soak up the vibes in new places and being able to translate those into new music. That’s just such a good source of inspiration. Currently, I’m in a good flow and I want to make the most of it.

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Follow Tsar B on Spotify or Facebook to stay in the loop about her latest adventures, releases and shows.

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A fully packed Sportpaleis and Lotto Arena. Pounding beats. Dazzling lasers. 20.000 people going nuts. Sets by acts as Da Tweekaz, Coone, MANDY and Mark With A K. This is Reverze, the perfect example of why hardstyle can’t be ignored.

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“Reverze is one of our all-time favorite events,” say Kenth Kvien and Marcus Nordli of Norwegian hardstyle duo Da Tweekaz. “You start the new year and just know that it’s coming up. It makes you all excited. You want to make new music, you want to make special edits. You want to do so much cool stuff because you know that the Belgian people are anxiously waiting for this event. I mean, it’s sold out. If you check TicketSwap you’ll see there’s like two tickets available out of 20.000. People just don’t want to miss this.”

Roots

“Reverze was born in 2005 at Sotto’s, a big club in Zottegem,” remembers Reverze founder and Bass Events co-owner Marijn Venmans. “It had a capacity of 3000 people and the party was sold out immediately, which was pretty unique in the club scene at the time. The first slogan of Reverze was Switch to Difference. That was a statement: we wanted to bring this hard dance, a new upcoming genre - a sound coming from The Netherlands - to the crowds, to compete with trance and other genres that were popular at that time.”

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“Jump was very popular, so I wanted to organize a night with a mix of the Belgian jump sound and Dutch hardstyle. It was initially planned in a much smaller club but there was an urban promotor who threw R&B parties there weekly and said to the owner that “if this party will take place here, I’ll quit with my urban nights”. That’s when the owner backed out. I was insulted and worse: I had my DJ’s booked already. Cosmic Gate, Marcel Woods, all pretty big names. We had to move to somewhere else. It was a very exciting undertaking to move into unknown territory. We promoted the event as if our life depended on it. 3000 people, it was insane. We even had to round up family members to help at the bar because we didn’t anticipate this big of a crowd at all.”

“What I will never forget is that the floor of Sotto’s was pretty flexible - they had stages that could come out of the floor - so it was trembling when you jumped on it. With 3000 people starting to pound, you get a small earthquake. The vibrations. The goosebumps. The whole club shaking. It intensified everything that came next.”

Coming up

“There was a time when Jim TV was very popular and Reverze was making waves in the party scene,” says Koen Bauweraerts, better known by his hardstyle alias Coone. “I rode those waves. Reverze played a big part in me getting my name out there. No other genre can touch me in the same way as hardstyle does. It’s cool, the melodies have a certain content and feeling, an us-against-the-world feeling. I really love the rebellious side of it. It’s my mission to make hardstyle big all over the world. Luckily, I’m not the only one. I hope the genre keeps evolving. There is still room for improving the sound.”

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“The creator of Reverze himself came over to Norway to recruit us in 2009,” say Da Tweekaz. “He brought DVD’s of Reverze. We saw the footage and thought: holy crap, what is this and why have we not been here before? We played live in Belgium for the first time in 2011 at Lotto Arena. It was so cool, and we’ve been here every year since.”

Power

“Hardstyle is electronic dance music with a lot of kick and bass,” says MC Villain, named Michael Brons in real life. “Millions of people listen to it. It has become a way of living. I always describe it as hard on the outside and very soft on the inside.”

“Hardstyle is a way of letting go,” states Venmans. “I would define ‘hard’ as ‘intense’, a lot of energy. It’s all about connecting. It’s a scene and a community for people who want to go nuts. Hardstyle keeps evolving. Every generation attracts a new kind of crowd. It’s our and the producer’s task to adapt. The quality of the music also improved. You don’t need to buy hardware anymore to make electronic music. You can make a track just with some software on your computer. That also means a lot more DJs and producers, challenging themselves to get ahead.”

“The power of hardstyle is that it doesn’t get commercialized,” says Mark Carpentier, better known as Mark With a K. “The radio does not play us. It kind of stays in a niche. The people say it as well: “this is our music, our style, stay away from it, because it’s our community and if you don’t touch it, it will stay strong.” Hardstyle has grown more popular, but it’s true power lies in its dedicated fanbase. Music goes in flows, in movements. People always go looking for the extreme in every style. I see it evolve in a positive way, as long as there are enough young DJs and producers eager to make a name for themselves.”

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Image

“We don’t fuss about not being included by the mainstream media or that when it happens, we get marginalized and caricaturized,” knows Venmans. “We have a no media policy, as we have our fans and don’t need the attention. Our fans are dedicated, and we want to keep it like this. I remember allowing a journalist once, and for his article he went looking for what he thought a typical visitor was instead of doing a decent interview with us or the DJs. After that, we decided not to get involved with the press anymore. I think it happens in every genre, that it gets ridiculed. We don’t worry about that anymore.”

All around the globe

“Reverze is one of the biggest hardstyle parties in the world. In Holland you have two comparable parties: they are in a bigger venue but regarding show and experience we are at the same level. In Australia, Mexico, Chili and Germany there’s also a big scene. At festivals, hardstyle is getting its own stages now. Last year Coone got the chance to bring hardstyle to the Main Stage of Tomorrowland, and this year it will be Da Tweekaz. It’s not as underground as it used to be, but still credible.”

“It was always my dream to be on stage at Reverze,” says Mandy Praet/MANDY. “Dreams come true! Last year I was here with Lowriderz. Everyone was really into it and it was also a bit busy, even though I played at 21:00. This year I play solo on a primetime slot at the Lotto Arena stage. I feel like everyone at Reverze is very dedicated, more than at all the other events. Personally, I feel like hardstyle is growing a lot. Coone playing Tomorrowland is a great example. A few years ago, people didn’t even know about hardstyle!”

“Reverze has reached its peak capacity in Belgium, because we choose consciously for Sportpaleis and Lotto Arena,” says Venmans. “It’s a unique venue, and Reverze has its roots there. Hopefully we can stay and throw parties for years to come. It’s fine. We don’t need to go bigger and we’re not going to add a day. But we do throw other hardstyle parties with Bass Events, like Flashback and The Qontinent. We also get requests from promotors abroad to organize Reverze in their country. But we are very careful. If we were to grow, it won’t be in Belgium.”

“I think Reverze has grown especially in terms of quality,” says Coone. “If you look at Tomorrowland’s first stage in comparison to now for example, it’s kind of the same story. Reverze has always been the biggest indoor hardstyle party in Belgium. The shows you get to see here, production wise it’s just insane. I call it the Cirque du Soleil of hardstyle.”

“It’s not only a Belgian crowd anymore,” knows Mark With a K. “People come to Antwerp from all over the world. It’s great to see so many people looking forward to it every year, myself included.”

“How Reverze has evolved show wise, stage wise, music wise… It’s really insane!” say Da Tweekaz. “The thing with Bass Events is they always want to take their productions to the next level. Remember the box that came out of the wall? That kind of stuff. You’re on the VIP deck and you’re like: holy shit, what is going on? It’s absolutely amazing and it’s so cool to be a part of that progress.”

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You can put whatever you want in there

“We think hardstyle has always been a very open minded scene,” say Da Tweekaz. “We always try to implement whatever is fun to make and whatever is popular. It will evolve as music evolves. Sometimes we go with dubstep, psytrance, drum and bass or even Disney music. It doesn’t really matter because hardstyle is such a versatile genre. You can put whatever you want in there.”

“If I wasn’t a hardstyle DJ I would have been a hip hop artist,” says Coone. “I use a lot of urban influences. I have a few tracks where I found the perfect match. ‘Sniper’ with Dirtcaps. Or ‘Riot’, a record with E-life, who is a legend in Dutch hip hop. I also made a remix for Linkin Park. Mike Shinoda was a hero of mine. This all results in unique combinations. I would love to do a track with Eminem some day. (laughs)”

“I used to be a commercial DJ, so I played all-round music,” remembers Mark With A K. “I even produced all-round music under other aliases, but I always loved the harder styles. I used to play in Highstreet, a club in Hoogstraten, and even there I played rougher, a bit of German hard trance. I’ve always loved music with some punch. Then little by little I started to produce that kind of music, always going harder. Once you fall in love with it, it never goes away I guess.”

“Of course, the music needs to strike,” concludes Venmans. “But these days there’s a lot more to it: social media, image. You need to show charisma. If you can combine that with awesome music, you can go very far. D-Block & S-te-Fan, Headhunterz, Brennan Heart, Wildstylez, Da Tweekaz and Coone are still the guys who set the tone. But with DJs like Sub Zero Project, Sound Rush, Devin Wild, Sephyx, Sefa, the new generation came knocking on the door.”

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The Ghent-born Chris Laurens aka Stereo Express has been a stalwart in the house and techno scene for over 2 decades. However, ever since he relocated to Berlin about 6 years ago, his life was turned around. Usually, artists become less productive once they’ve passed a certain point in their lives. Laurens however, became increasingly active. It’s no small achievement to release dozens of singles and an album in just one year. At the same time, the man has been working on a brand new live show, which he is eager to take around the globe in 2019. More than enough reasons to visit Laurens for a little chat about the challenges of being a so-called old-timer in a rapidly changing music industry and reinventing yourself across different levels.

Time doesn’t seem to slow you down. You released 21 tracks in the past year already. Isn’t it hard to keep up that pace?

Sometimes I wish my days could be a little bit longer than just 24 hours! To be honest, I don’t feel much pressure the keep up. I have a good team around me and step by step we work together on every big project. This allows me to spend some time in my studio. Being well organised is very important, so we try to work as effectively as possible. We always aim for the best possible results; that is what matters in the end.

You mentioned you gave up on alcohol and cigarettes last year. How has your approach to music changed now that you are sober?

Back in the days, I easily needed 2 days after a weekend to recover from my hangover and to fight my own demons until I was able to do some studio work again. I was gradually losing my energy and creativity. That’s why this decision was one of the best I ever took in my life. It was not that difficult on a personal level, but people around me needed some getting used to. It helps to have a positive and enthusiastic team that supports you of course. But quitting alcohol and tobacco is the single reason why it was possible for me to release 21 tracks in a year. The funny thing is that I never choose quantity over quality. I never rush things in the studio. I just work on my own tempo and deal with every project step by step. Since I changed my lifestyle, I feel fresh and energetic again. I have a much higher sense for my surroundings, which results in a lot more ideas, opportunities and better self-awareness. This has a positive effect on everything I do, like playing live in front of an audience.

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While you’re at it, please do tell us more about that new live show…

Having my own proper live show has been at the top of my wishlist for a long time now! I love DJ-ing, but I’ve been doing that for over 20 years now. And even though I still love to take my audiences on melodic trips through my selection every time, I craved for something more creative. A live show was the perfect response to that. In effect, it’s a 90-minute story in which I give my repertoire an imaginative re-interpretation. Think of it as a story I tell with my instruments (i.e. several synths, controllers and drum pad).

You’re one of many Belgian DJ’s and producers that have relocated to Berlin. How has that city changed since the moment you moved there?

Even though I love my hometown Ghent, Berlin is feels like my new home after more than 6 years. It’s a city that pushes me forward tremendously, both on a personal and an artistic level. That said, Berlin itself is changing rapidly too. There’s a lot of redevelopment, so its original identity is changing slowly but steadily. I would say it has matured a lot over the past years. It’s sad to see a lot of clubs closing their doors, but on the upside, the city is doing a big effort to protect the nightlife scene, like offering them subsidies for sound isolation for example. All that said, it’s still the clubbing capital of the world by a mile for me.

How has the music scene in general changed since you started? For example: do you think it has become easier or harder to discover good music?

Good music is still out there of course; we just have to dig deeper to find it. The internet has become a dominant factor in the way we experience music. I mean, the fact that almost all music there ever was is available for free is just mind-blowing. However convenient that may be, it devalued the industry. Many people rather spend their 5 euros on a coffee than paying for a piece of music that’s the result of hours of hard work and years of big financial investments.

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So what do you make of the relation between music and social media?

On the upside, social media has shortened the distance between the artist and the audience. But there’s a definite downside. Organic reach on any platform has become extremely hard to come by. Reach is for sale. Facebook literally dropped organic reach to less than 2%, compared to paid reach. This really destroys fan bases. Naturally, most users ran to Instagram, but that channel is far from ideal too. This whole platform is made to judge content by its cover and so artists are now forced to become photographers, video editors, models, bloggers and marketing specialists too. Then again, times are changing and this only motivates me more to further develop myself in new ways. As long as we stay humble and sincere, the future looks bright. Respecting the art of any artist is the bottom line.

Other than taking this live show to venues across Europe, what else is on the schedule for you this year?

My goal is to sustain this personal and artistic development and take my live show around the world. Apart from Germany, shows are confirmed in the UAE, India and Greece already. Then obviously, more releases are on the way, mostly on my very own Love Matters record label. I’m very excited about an EP I’m working on with Lunar Plane, two talented twin brothers from Turkey. There are so many plans and goals I want to realize, but I prefer to show them to you, rather than talking about it. Just keep an eye out will you?

"},{"type":"interviewfooter","text":"

‘Stereo Express – Aquiver’ is out now on Love Matters. The track entered the Melodic Techno Top 10 chart in Beatport and is #1 in the Hype Charts for already more than two weeks. Follow the man on Facebook and Instagram to stay in the loop with all future endeavours.

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De recente beslissing van de Gentse burgemeester Mathias De Clercq om Kompass vier maanden te sluiten toont aan dat politiek en nightlife nog lang niet met de neuzen in dezelfde richting staan. De Gentse club is geen alleenstaand geval. Het wringt regelmatig tussen het nachtleven en de lokale overheid. Beschouwt de politiek clubs, cafés en festivals vooral als overlast of ziet ze ook het potentieel ervan? Kortom, hoe gaan onze grootsteden om met het nachtleven op hun grondgebied? Voeren ze een specifiek 'nightlife' beleid en welke plaats neemt dit in in hun algemeen beleid? Welke relatie onderhoudt de lokale politiek met de belangrijkste spelers van het nachtleven? Is er een continue dialoog of gebeurt dit enkel als er zich problemen voordoen? Wat denkt de stad van een nachtburgemeester zoals in Amsterdam of Berlijn? Zijn vergunningen voor 24 uur een optie of is men hiertegen gekant? Wij legden deze vragen voor aan de beleidsmakers van verschillende grootsteden in ons land. In dit eerste artikel laten we Johan Vermant, woordvoerder van  het kabinet van burgemeester De Wever aan het woord.

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Welke plaats neemt het nachtleven in in het algemeen beleid van Stad Antwerpen?

\n\n\n\n

\"De belangrijkste ambitie van het stadsbestuur is om het uitgaansleven te verzoenen met de leefbaarheid van de buurt. Dat is in bepaalde stadsdelen - zoals het Eilandje, dat in volle ontwikkeling is - niet evident. We volgen dat dan ook zo goed mogelijk op met zowel uitbaters als bewoners. Daarvoor hebben we een stedelijke horecamanager die structurele overlegmomenten heeft met bepaalde groepen uitbaters van bijvoorbeeld studentencafés. Zij is ook een aanspreekpunt voor grotere clubs, maar daar is enkel ad hoc overleg mee. De meeste clubs hebben wel een vaste contactpersoon bij de lokale politie.\"

\n\n\n\n

\"Daarnaast voorziet het huidige bestuursakkoord de introductie van een Safe Party Label. Hierbij zullen stad, politie, de uitgaanssector en de taxisector nauw samenwerken aan een veilig uitgaansleven. We stellen convenanten op waarin we aan uitbaters vragen we om zelf de rust in de openbare ruimte te bewaren en systematisch problematische bezoekers te weren. Op basis van politievaststellingen kunnen problematische bezoekers een plaatsverbod opgelegd krijgen. Uitbaters die zo’n convenant afsluiten, krijgen een Safe Party Label. Eerder werkte de stad al mee aan het Quality Nights Charter, dat vooral inzet op preventieve maatregelen zoals gratis oordoppen en drinkwater, veilige vervoersmogelijkheden en gezondheidsinfo. Het Safe Party Label zal eerder focussen op echte veiligheidsmaatregelen.\"

","id":2,"key":1552588898,"text":"","type":"text"},{"id":3,"key":1552648297,"quote":"De belangrijkste ambitie van het stadsbestuur is om het uitgaansleven te verzoenen met de leefbaarheid van de buurt. ","type":"quote"},{"image":{"orientation":"landscape","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-600x401.jpg","filename":"ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-401x600.jpg","filename":"ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-1200x802.jpg","filename":"ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-802x1200.jpg","filename":"ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-802x802.jpg","filename":"ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"ff39b3af0f7fbf50c07525d53ed870d2-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]},"id":4,"key":1552586031,"url":"","type":"image"},{"description":"

Sluit dit Safe Party Label aan bij de Safe Zones die een paar jaar terug op sommige plaatsen werden ingevoerd en waarbij de bezoeker toegang krijgt tot de aangesloten clubs op basis van zijn/haar identiteitskaart? Zullen uitbaters via dit convenant meer mogelijkheden krijgen om zelf bezoekers te kunnen onderwerpen aan fouilles en controles?

\n\n\n\n

\"Op dit moment zijn wij volop bezig met de voorbereiding van de modaliteiten. Wij zijn nog maar twee maanden ver met het nieuwe bestuursakkoord, veel kunnen we er nog niet over zeggen.\"

\n\n\n\n

Hoe staat de stad tegenover het idee van een nachtburgemeester als bruggenbouwer tussen de ondernemers van het nachtleven enerzijds en de lokale overheid anderzijds?

\n\n\n\n

\"Wij zijn geen voorstander van een nachtburgemeester, aangezien we reeds een horecamanager hebben die zoals in andere steden een bemiddelende rol kan opnemen bij problemen. Er zijn bovendien maar enkele grotere clubs in Antwerpen, en de diversiteit van de uitgaanssector - studentencafés, fuifzalen, clubs, gewone cafés - vereist een eigen aanpak.\"

\n\n\n\n

Is de stad het idee van een vergunning voor 24 uur genegen?

\n\n\n\n

\"Er zijn in Antwerpen enkele cafés zonder sluitingsuur, zoals De Rui en De Koetsier. Er is bij ons weten echter geen initiatief in de clubsector met de ambitie om de klok rond open te zijn. Mocht die vraag komen, dan zullen wij dat bekijken – uiteraard met oog voor de leefbaarheid en de nodige veiligheidsmaatregelen. Waar specifieke vergunningen rond 24 uur-openingen bestaan, zoals Amsterdam, worden er meestal wel locatiebeperkingen opgelegd.\"

","id":5,"key":1552591926,"text":"","type":"text"},{"id":6,"key":1552652990,"quote":"De Nieuwe Gemeentewet en de Drugswet bepalen dat uitbaters inderdaad wettelijk verantwoordelijk zijn voor de openbare orde in en rondom hun inrichting.","type":"quote"},{"image":{"orientation":"landscape","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-600x401.jpg","filename":"1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-401x600.jpg","filename":"1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-1200x802.jpg","filename":"1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-802x1200.jpg","filename":"1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-802x802.jpg","filename":"1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"1a1bee40649d6d93189d601ef01f80cc-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]},"id":7,"key":1552603820,"url":"","type":"image"},{"description":"

De Gentse burgemeester startte een procedure op om Kompass tijdelijk te sluiten. Kan een een club verantwoordelijk gesteld worden voor het druggebruik van zijn bezoekers? Zorgt dit er niet enkel voor dat feesten richting illegaliteit verschuiven waar helemaal geen toezicht is?

\n\n\n\n

\"De Nieuwe Gemeentewet en de Drugswet bepalen dat uitbaters inderdaad wettelijk verantwoordelijk zijn voor de openbare orde in en rondom hun inrichting en voor het eventuele gebruik of verhandelen van drugs. Het hoeft dus niet over bewuste persoonlijke verantwoordelijkheid te gaan. De centrale vraag die wij ons bestuursrechtelijk moeten stellen, is: “Zou de overlast/het drugsgebruik/... bestaan als de inrichting er niet was.” Indien het antwoord op die vraag negatief is, kunnen er maatregelen worden opgelegd. Dat kunnen bepaalde voorwaarden zijn, zoals veiligheidsmaatregelen of infrastructurele aanpassingen, maar in een uiterste geval kan een tijdelijke sluiting opgelegd worden. Dat laatste komt in Antwerpen maar zelden voor, en is meestal gekoppeld aan een periode waarin uitbaters bepaalde voorwaarden kunnen toepassen.\"

","id":8,"key":1552623777,"text":"","type":"text"}],"type":"default","locale":"en","categories":[],"id":"5c8a6ad24f18d105200d461b"},{"owner":"57c7d95a6e7405442d6db136","client":"563fa1fd1b73f17f676b8201","author":{"name":"Jonas Lion","url":""},"i18n":{"en":"5c8783554f18d105200cfb94"},"title":"Prepare The Flash: Daniil Lavrovski","photographer":{"name":"Daniil Lavrovski","url":""},"slug":"prepare-the-flash-prepare-the-flash-daniil-lavrovski","i18nSlug":{"en":"prepare-the-flash-prepare-the-flash-daniil-lavrovski"},"excerpt":"Prepare The Flash shines a light on folks that shine a light themselves. The people behind the camera, taking pictures of the artists we all love. Let's take a look behind the scenes of some of Belgium’s most infamous clickers. This has to be one of the most special articles in this series. For this time, we’re interviewing one of Red Bull Elektropedia’s most iconic photographers, Daniil Lavrovski. The Bruges-based 25-year-old started out by taking pictures of the local skate scene and slowly shifted towards nightlife photography, a domain in which he quickly became one of the best in the field. By 2016, he was crowned Belgium’s best nightlife photographer on the Red Bull Elektropedia Awards and people saw the grim-faced Lavrovski on parties across the country every weekend. Now, he told us he wanted to take things into a new direction. That means it was the perfect timing to dedicate an in-depth interview to one of the most influential players in this game.","titleExcerpt":"Daniil Lavrovski","titleShort":"","titleSocial":"","updatedAt":"2019-03-12T12:13:01.932Z","createdAt":"2019-03-12T10:00:53.709Z","recordStores":[],"related":[],"publishedAt":"2019-03-12T10:00:00.000Z","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-600x401.jpg","filename":"24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-401x600.jpg","filename":"24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-1200x802.jpg","filename":"24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-802x1200.jpg","filename":"24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-802x802.jpg","filename":"24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"24f66a143c0cad4c83acaae5ca282723-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}],"isHome":true,"isVisible":true,"isSticky":false,"tags":[],"body":[{"description":"

Prepare The Flash shines a light on folks that shine a light themselves. The people behind the camera, taking pictures of the artists we all love. Let's take a look behind the scenes of some of Belgium’s most infamous clickers. This has to be one of the most special articles in this series. For this time, we’re interviewing one of Red Bull Elektropedia’s most iconic photographers, Daniil Lavrovski. The Bruges-based 25-year-old started out by taking pictures of the local skate scene and slowly shifted towards nightlife photography, a domain in which he quickly became one of the best in the field. By 2016, he was crowned Belgium’s best nightlife photographer on the Red Bull Elektropedia Awards and people saw the grim-faced Lavrovski on parties across the country every weekend. Now, he told us he wanted to take things into a new direction. That means it was the perfect timing to dedicate an in-depth interview to one of the most influential players in this game.

","id":0,"key":1552470738,"text":"","type":"text"},{"image":{"orientation":"landscape","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-600x401.jpg","filename":"366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-401x600.jpg","filename":"366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-1200x802.jpg","filename":"366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-802x1200.jpg","filename":"366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-802x802.jpg","filename":"366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"366311d415d0d3b93956554ede900d1b-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]},"id":1,"key":1552396447,"url":"","type":"image"},{"type":"text","text":"","key":1552395907,"id":2,"description":"

Hi Daniil, it’s great to feature a photographer we’ve been working with since a very long time. You’ve covered countless events for us, but you told us you’re going in different directions from now on. What does that mean exactly?

\n\n\n\n

Well, although I really enjoyed working in nightlife, I have to admit that it has started to take its toll after 4 years. The funny thing is that I never really took nightlife all that seriously. It always felt like I was just going out with a camera by my side. Before I knew, nightlife photography became one of my main occupations and it accounted for the majority of my energy and focus. It's all fun and games until you realize you’ve become a slave of your own lifestyle, you know? I started to notice I didn’t enjoy those long nights anymore. That kind of lifestyle was starting to drown my creativity and productivity. In the end, I've had a pretty good run, I’ve been to so many places, I’ve met incredible people and most important of all, I’ve had so much fun along the way.

\n\n\n\n

So where are you going now?

\n\n\n\n

I’ve decided to recalibrate my focus and work my way back on track towards a new goal. After a much needed hiatus from nightlife photography I want to put my energy on portraits, press, fashion and brand photography. Making this shift is hard though. It’s not that I wanted to quit nightlife but it was more of a rational decision, choosing for a healthier lifestyle. I won’t quit entirely of course. Sometimes my fingers still itch, but you won't find me shooting in clubs that often anymore.

"},{"type":"quote","quote":"The funny thing is that I never really took nightlife all that seriously. It always felt like was I just going out with a camera by my side","key":1552477890,"id":3},{"image":{"orientation":"landscape","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-600x401.jpg","filename":"317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-401x600.jpg","filename":"317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-1200x802.jpg","filename":"317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-802x1200.jpg","filename":"317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-802x802.jpg","filename":"317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"317b10cf7239d8a91a0d8e449070559a-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]},"id":4,"key":1552483441,"url":"","type":"image"},{"description":"

From all the events you visited taking pictures, which have been some of the most memorable?

\n\n\n\n

If I would have to pick out a few, I would go with HORST and Dour Festival. I've covered the former 3 times now and it's always adventurous. The scenery is beautiful, the music is great and the crowd is amazing. For me, it’s just picture perfect. Each year, I get to meet amazing people, discover a bunch of artists I have never heard and just have an absolute blast. That last edition sticks out even more. It's been ages since a festival sparked that desire to relive a moment that hard. And HORST succeeded in doing so. My second choice is Dour Festival, which always feels like coming home. It’s the first festival I ever went to. By now, I’ve already witnessed eight editions and only missed out on one. Shooting Dour is always something special.

\n\n\n\n

How did you end up doing that amazing cover shoot for Amelie Lens on Mixmag?

\n\n\n\n

Well, Amelie and I got to know each other throughout the years when I worked as a nightlife photographer. I've shot multiple events where she played and I also covered the launch event of her CKS clothing collection somewhere last year. One day, I received a message from her saying she will get the cover story of Mixmag and would like me to shoot it. The magazine approved and I was beyond stoked! Just as it was a big deal for Amelie, it was a big deal for me too. I can’t say I wasn’t stressed. The results were good. The shoot itself was very organic. Amelie knows how to behave in front of a camera and it felt like we were just hanging out for the day while I was taking pictures here and there. I'm super grateful towards everyone involved for the amazing opportunity.

","id":5,"key":1552434297,"text":"","type":"text"},{"image":{"orientation":"landscape","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-600x401.jpg","filename":"16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-401x600.jpg","filename":"16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-1200x802.jpg","filename":"16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-802x1200.jpg","filename":"16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-802x802.jpg","filename":"16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"16c5bad331b5fd984ed7516152228e6e-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]},"type":"image","url":"","key":1552445374,"id":6},{"type":"text","text":"","key":1552466378,"id":7,"description":"

Let’s do a little throwback now. Your bio says you were born in Russia and only moved to Belgium when you were 5 years old. Please do tell us your story…

\n\n\n\n

Yeah! I was Born in Kaliningrad, a small Russian enclave by the Baltic Sea, tucked between Poland and Lithuania. I come from a family of musicians: my mom is a pianist, my grandfather was a saxophone and clarinet teacher and my grandmother was a choirmaster. They all taught at the Music Conservatory of Kaliningrad. So I was surrounded by music since I was a baby (which maybe explains why I ended up in nightlife at one point). But life as a classical musician in Kaliningrad was tough. The wages were ridiculously low and most of the musicians lived in poverty. My mom dreamt of moving to Europe to seek for a better life and provide a better future for me, since my biological father wasn't the best person to be around. Around the year 2000 my mom had the opportunity to move to Belgium and she took it with both hands. We ended up in living in De Panne for several years, where I went to primary school. After that, we moved to Oostduinkerke followed by Bruges, where I still live today.

\n\n\n\n

Do you remember the moment you fell in love with photography?

\n\n\n\n

My love for photography emerged through skateboarding. My mom always used to buy me skate magazines like Thrasher, Transworld Skateboarding and Sugar Skate Mag. Seeing all those skateboarding pictures really sparked my interest for photography. I wanted to capture my skater friends in the same way as those shots in the magazines. By the time I was 14, I used my mom’s camera so often that she bought me a snapshot camera so I would stop using hers. By the age of 16, I bought my first digital single-lens reflex camera. From that moment onwards, photography took over my life.

\n\n\n\n

Do you still skate often?

\n\n\n\n

I still try to skate as often as I can. Even though I don't have that much time anymore, it's still very important to me.

"},{"image":{"orientation":"portrait","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-600x401.jpg","filename":"151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-401x600.jpg","filename":"151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-1200x802.jpg","filename":"151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-802x1200.jpg","filename":"151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-802x802.jpg","filename":"151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"151cd10b21b898527d383a3770871f3d-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]},"type":"image","url":"","key":1552484723,"id":8},{"id":9,"key":1552471489,"quote":"I don't use photography as a tool to reflect reality, I use it to romanticize a moment.","type":"quote"},{"type":"text","text":"","key":1552459337,"id":10,"description":"

How many lenses have been broken or stolen over your lifetime? :)

\n\n\n\n

The funny thing is that I've never broken a lens before, nor have I got one stolen. I just hope it stays that way! The only thing I break are flashes. I think I've already went through 7 by now. That’s an expensive joke.

\n\n\n\n

Comparing the past with the present, how would you describe your evolution as a photographer?

\n\n\n\n

In the beginning, I mostly did black and white snapshot photography with my friends as models. Now I work in colour, my images are more calculated and I handle my lighting with care. I've learned how to work with people, how to deal with clients and how to make someone feel at ease in front of the lens. That might actually be the biggest difference. When I was younger, I was really shy. I was so scared to ask people if I could take their photograph and I had no idea how to handle a shoot. Through experience, I learned how to get over that insecurity and how to be more confident. One of the red lines in my work is that I don't use photography as a tool to reflect reality, but I use it to romanticize a moment.

\n\n\n\n

We know it’s hard to say about yourself, but what sets you apart from other photographers?

\n\n\n\n

That’s hard indeed (laughs). It might be in the way of handling things. I always try to keep it fun and spontaneous. I'm not the guy who is extremely serious about his work ethics. I'm a pretty positive person, so it's important that this is reflected in my way of working. Additionally, it's crucial not to force anything. I'm also kind of a nerd when it comes to lighting. I pay a lot of attention on how I use light in my images. I could say I'm pretty technical, but not in the right way (laughs).

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As someone who has always been the middle man between brands and culture (be it skateboarding or nightlife), how do you perceive that fragile relation between both sides?

\n\n\n\n

I try to stay true to what I love and like. If something doesn't feel right, I won't do it. As far as I can, I try to work with brands that stand for those cultures. It’s the only way to keep the overall vibe and credibility of a project. There's a thin line between staying true to a culture and capitalizing from it. There are too many culture vultures these days. Even I cross that line sometimes, but it doesn't make it less important to pay attention to.

\n\n\n\n

You’re one half of Studio DaDa. Tell us a little more about that project.

\n\n\n\n

Well, Studio DaDa is a collective of two that I formed with Davy Denduyver. Davy is a graphic designer I've known for several years now. About a year ago, he started renting a workspace in the same building where I was renting mine, so we passed each other almost every day. We got along pretty well and it became clear we understood each other’s creative visions, which were pretty complementary. That’s why we decided to join forces. My studio was a bit too big for me at the time and his was a bit smaller, so he moved all his stuff to my mines. And that's how Studio Dada was born. We still work on our own projects, but with this joint project we deliver the ‘total package’: I do the photography, while he does the art direction and graphic design. We're only just starting out, but it's going pretty good already. Hopefully it could become a real ‘studio’ or ‘creative agency’ one day.

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If there’s one tip you could give to beginning photographers, what would it be?

\n\n\n\n

My tip for any beginning photographer is that hard work is key. Follow your passion. There will be obstacles, long days, unpaid work, hard times. But it's all worth it. Look for the things that spark your interest, reflect on yourself, reinvent yourself. Take as many pictures as possible, because the more you shoot, the better you will become. As soon as you find yourself having a lot of commissioned work, make sure you don't lose yourself. Keep the balance between paid and autonomous work. Those are the things I always have to remind to myself as well.

\n\n\n\n

Any big projects coming up that you can share with us?

\n\n\n\n

Recently I’ve been working on some bigger projects with Studio Brussel and Bounce Rocks, my agency. But for now, my biggest project coming up is a completely autonomous project. I won't spill the beans yet I’m afraid, but it might be something involving a new photobook (winks).

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Follow Daniil Lavrovski  and Studio DaDa on Instagram to keep track of the latest and greatest.

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Upon first glance of a livestream of Boudin Room, most people react with laughter. The concept of Simon Bomans is similar to that of Boiler Room (a crowd, a DJ and a camera), except there’s the added bonus of a butcher preparing meat and sausages right next to the DJ. Well, it’s far more than just a passion project. Bomans is mostly known for his contributions to the Belgian music scene with his blog Goûte Mes Disques. But recently, the native Brusseleir quit his job as a legal analyst in the financial market to focus on his second passion: butchery, a traditional craft which he feels is often overlooked. Combining both in one project suddenly starts to make a lot of sense. After doing Boudin Rooms (‘boudin’ actually means ‘blood sausage’ in French) at Dour Festival or in cities like Brussels, Lyon and Paris, Bomans’ passion project is clearly here to stay. The time is more than right to ask the man a few questions about this odd, but interesting endeavour of his.

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Hi Simon, after 2 years Boudin Room still goes stronger than ever! Seems like you proved a lot of sceptics wrong!

To be honest, I had nothing to prove in the first place. Not for the music and not for my food. I didn’t start this to look cool or to show people that I was capable of doing so. I only started this because I love my job and because this is the direction I wanted to take my growing know-how in. Although, I can say that now, but at the time we didn’t really know what we were doing or what the real scope of this project would turn out to be.

Let’s go back a bit. Before you started Boudin Room, you quit your financial job to become a butcher. Most people who quit their jobs go traveling or focus on their art - but not you. Where did this passion come from?

Food is art, live performance too, it doesn’t matter if it’s musically or culinary. We’re not making Klimt here of course – we don’t have any pretentions. I’ve always been crazy about electronic music, even long before we created Goûte Mes Disques. In the end, I chose butchery because I wanted to try something completely different. Less than 3 months later I started the first Boudin Room without really thinking it through. In the end all the pieces fell together. If you really listen to your instinct, the rest will inevitably follow. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a big or small idea, what matters is that you create something new that’s able to grow.

We’ve heard that you want to open your own butcher’s shop eventually. Will you host DJ-sets there while customers order their portion of américain préparé?

The question of whether I should open my own business has always been a difficult one and I wouldn’t know what my store would look like exactly. One thing is sure though: I will keep doing these music events. I quit my career at the stock market to have fun and act upon my passion. It just remains to be seen in the coming months what that will look like in its definitive form.

","id":2,"key":1552301691,"text":"","type":"text"},{"id":6,"key":1552545065,"quote":"Food is art, live performance too, it doesn’t matter if it’s musically or culinary. ","type":"quote"},{"html":"","id":3,"key":1552331423,"quote":"","type":"codeblock"},{"description":"

What’s the mission statement of Boudin Room?

Connecting people and making them enjoy the simple things. Whether those are cold cuts or music, it’s all about taking the time to have a good time.

So you’ve done editions on Dour Festival, Paris, Lyon, Namur, etc. Have people become used to what you do now? Or do you still get weird looks from party goers sometimes?

To be fair, our scope is still fairly limited, so we still meet a lot of people who have absolutely no idea what we’re doing when they see us. It’s always been like that. People laugh when they first talk to us, but gradually they see that we’re serious about our project. In general, it doesn’t take more than five minutes before they start eating and dancing.

What have been the most memorable reactions (good or bad) when people first saw what you were doing?

I mostly remember the reactions of the artists who agreed to work with us. Everyone from Lefto to Teki Latex or Laurent Garnier has been really enthusiastic. We came from nothing, we played it cool, we didn’t have any pressure (or money) and people liked it. We’ve received so much love, so I’m very grateful for the positive attitude we get from the people who follow us.

Did you ever have issues with the actual ‘Boiler Room’?

They first noticed us when we did Dour Festival in 2017. At first, we thought they would ask us to take everything down. But in fact, they just wanted some t-shirts! They loved it, so they invited me over to London to meet them. I feel like we’re not really using them beyond the name and the logo. We don’t even play in the same league. They are the FC Barcelona; we are the Standard de Liège.

What does the future of the Boudin Room project look like?

We actually have a gig planned in Barcelona, as well as some festivals in the summer and obviously some events in Belgium. In Brussels, Ghent and Liège to be more precise. The concept will evolve a bit so that it fits with my plans to open my own butcher’s shop. In any case, we do not intend to keep doing the same formula over and over again.

Win tickets for the next Boudin Room!

On Saturday March 16, Asa Moto and DC Salas are taking over Boudin Room. Do you want to win tickets for yourself and two friends? Fill out the form below and get lucky!

","id":4,"key":1552281492,"text":"","type":"text"},{"type":"codeblock","quote":"","key":1552357511,"id":5,"html":"\n \n \n "}],"type":"default","locale":"en","categories":[],"id":"5c85af5e4f18d105200cccc0"},{"owner":"5aa66a8236af8a647e559234","client":"563fa1fd1b73f17f676b8201","author":{"name":"","url":""},"i18n":{"en":"5c81fc064f18d105200c6df3"},"title":"Is CLUB WIT the new black?","photographer":{"name":"Lars Duchateau","url":""},"slug":"is-club-wit-the-new-black","excerpt":"It’s always a good day when a new club lands in our country. It’s an even better day when that club supports alternative music culture. ZWARTWIT is the latest addition to Ghent’s sparkling nightlife scene. Located in an industrial area in close vicinity to the Ghelamco Arena, this multipurpose venue aims to serve many different purposes other than just playing out music. ","i18nSlug":{"en":"is-club-wit-the-new-black"},"updatedAt":"2019-03-08T10:39:40.015Z","createdAt":"2019-03-08T05:22:14.538Z","recordStores":[],"related":[],"publishedAt":"2019-03-08T05:21:00.000Z","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-600x401.jpg","filename":"7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-401x600.jpg","filename":"7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-1200x802.jpg","filename":"7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-802x1200.jpg","filename":"7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-802x802.jpg","filename":"7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"7464a1b435c36f3e5f895b7730ce37b7-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}],"isHome":true,"isVisible":true,"isSticky":false,"tags":[],"body":[{"description":"

It’s always a good day when a new club lands in our country. It’s an even better day when that club supports alternative music culture. ZWARTWIT is the latest addition to Ghent’s sparkling nightlife scene. Located in an industrial area in close vicinity to the Ghelamco Arena, this multipurpose venue aims to serve many different purposes other than just playing out music. “This location is perfect for a wide use of different activities”, explains manager Tim Synaeve. “We also opened a restaurant here - and the venue is suitable for business meetings and private events. Then again it wouldn’t be us if we didn’t also throw proper parties in there under the CLUB WIT banner. The challenge was to design a space that looks good both in the day and at night - and we are confident we’ve succeeded in doing so”.

","id":0,"key":1552105442,"text":"","type":"text"},{"id":1,"key":1552116331,"url":"","type":"image","image":{"orientation":"landscape","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-600x401.jpg","filename":"9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-401x600.jpg","filename":"9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-1200x802.jpg","filename":"9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-802x1200.jpg","filename":"9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-802x802.jpg","filename":"9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"9f617bfc31114fd976603ef40c34bd13-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]}},{"description":"

But how do you position yourself in a musical landscape where many clubs are dominating their respective micro scenes? “Ghent already has many different scenes, crews and concepts. For us it’s a matter of finding the blind spots. On the one hand, we will book leftfield house, disco and Italo, while on the other we will give attention to the new urban music. we’re also open to hosting external events\nand/or concepts”, adds Synaeve. “With a capacity of 400 we can’t go too crazy with the headliners, but this gives us the opportunity to invite DJ’s that have proven theirselves already or artists that might not fit elsewhere. As we’re not a traditional nightclub, we don’t feel the pressure to sell out every Friday and Saturday”. Being able to make yourself stand out from the rest takes more than just booking the right DJ’s. Co-manager Dominique Brion agrees, “we don’t want to set trends. There are many others who have set this as their goal. A general cosy atmosphere that can attract many different sorts of ravers is what interests us most. There are plenty of CDJ wizards around who can serve that purpose. Give those guys a proper Martin Audio sound system and we should be in for a great night out”.

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With a large, sunny terrace, CLUB WIT’s first summer promises to be so filled with plenty of lazy afternoons. But before that happens there are some very promising club nights on the schedule. A refreshing variety of scene stalwarts like Jeremy Underground, King Doudou, Sassy J, Faisal, Merca Bae, Carista and Lefto have already been confirmed, but there are still plenty Synaeve and Brion can’t tell us about. If anything, these are plenty of valid reasons to get down to Ghent's outskirts for a night of pure, uncomplicated fun.

"},{"type":"interviewfooter","text":"

Follow CLUB WIT on Facebook and Instagram.

","key":1552068178,"id":5}],"type":"default","locale":"en","categories":[],"id":"5c81fc064f18d105200c6df3"},{"owner":"56b061b019a9982120da2c8d","client":"563fa1fd1b73f17f676b8201","author":{"name":"","url":""},"i18n":{"en":"5c137aba9ad24929595816c1"},"title":"Ruby Grace","photographer":{"name":"","url":""},"slug":"ruby-grace","i18nSlug":{"en":"ruby-grace"},"excerpt":"Some have already spent years in the shadows, waiting for the right moment - others have barely left their bedroom studios. Some aim for headlining festival stages, others aim for nothing in particular – but all of them have developed a sound with the potential to turn a lot of heads. With this feature we shine a light on some of the most interesting emerging new talents our tiny country has to offer.","updatedAt":"2018-12-14T10:38:18.524Z","createdAt":"2018-12-14T09:41:14.272Z","recordStores":[],"related":[],"publishedAt":"2018-12-14T09:40:00.000Z","images":[{"type":"thumb","filename":"0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-600x401.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-600x401.jpg"},{"type":"thumb-portrait","filename":"0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-401x600.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-401x600.jpg"},{"type":"normal","filename":"0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-1200x802.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-1200x802.jpg"},{"type":"normal-portrait","filename":"0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-802x1200.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-802x1200.jpg"},{"type":"cover","filename":"0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-802x802.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-802x802.jpg"},{"type":"big","filename":"0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-2000x1336.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-2000x1336.jpg"},{"type":"big-portrait","filename":"0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-1336x2000.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/0a29f7b6fd8263c9ae2db15135d64c71-1336x2000.jpg"}],"isHome":true,"isVisible":true,"isSticky":true,"tags":[],"body":[{"description":"

Some have already spent years in the shadows, waiting for the right moment - others have barely left their bedroom studios. Some aim for headlining festival stages, others aim for nothing in particular – but all of them have developed a sound with the potential to turn a lot of heads. With this feature we shine a light on some of the most interesting emerging new talents our tiny country has to offer.

","id":0,"key":1544827927,"text":"","type":"text"},{"id":1,"key":1544857647,"text":"","type":"text","description":"

For most of us, the 20-year-old Ruby Grace will be a name you haven’t heard from - yet. As the Hasselt-native is finishing her final year in college, she dropped a much anticipated first single (Lipgloss) that was essentially avant-garde pop music, yet rough around the edges. The carefully coordinated aesthetic of the sound and music video got a fair bunch of new fans hooked. And for those fans there’s some good news: a full debut EP is hitting the digital shelves very soon. Many things remain somewhat mysterious about her, but one thing is clear: this woman has a distinct vision. In what may be the first interview she ever did, Miss Grace explained to us who she is, what she wants and what we can expect from her in the future.

"},{"type":"video","quote":"","key":1544861005,"id":2,"html":""},{"type":"text","text":"","key":1544798955,"id":3,"description":"

You previously toured around with your band as a cover group. Is this where you got the taste for more? Or did you know you wanted to go solo for a long time already?

\"It’s something I wanted from the very beginning, but I needed to get some on-stage experience alongside other people first. It began with over 2 years of street performances in Hasselt, just me and a friend who played the guitar. After spending some time performing like that, other booking enquiries started pouring in slowly. We mostly performed Amy Winehouse or Black Eyed Peas covers, and although I really enjoyed doing these, I knew I was set on bringing my own thing sooner than later. Being part of a band is great fun, but I was steadily forming my own vision, which strayed away in another direction.\"


And then you met Pieter-Jan from Hook Studio, who now produces the music for you. What made you guys hit it off?

\"I met him when we did a show in the small town he had just moved to – we were the opening act for Belle Perez. He had read about us in the local newspaper and wanted to see what we could bring. After the show he asked if I was interested in testing out a few tracks with him. At first, I was really sceptical, but I gave it a shot. It turned out we were both tuned in on the same frequency and he really believed in my potential. I didn’t want to make just ‘soul music’, because that’s what I had been doing mostly up until that point. I wanted to incorporate different influences, something a tad more extraordinary: combining a soul voice with electro-pop. Pieter-Jan nailed it every time, he always knows exactly what kind of instrumentals I want. We’re a great team!\"

"},{"image":{"orientation":"landscape","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-600x401.jpg","filename":"4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-401x600.jpg","filename":"4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-1200x802.jpg","filename":"4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-802x1200.jpg","filename":"4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-802x802.jpg","filename":"4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"4107294d89576725a983aff3b17ce46c-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]},"type":"image","url":"","key":1544799180,"id":4},{"description":"

Tell us a little bit about the process of making the upcoming EP. How long did it take you to find what you were looking for?

\"All in all, we worked on the EP for over a year – with studio sessions every week. In my opinion that’s a little long because the songs themselves didn’t take that long. We just spend too much time finishing up the final touches. But I’m here to learn and now I know we’ll have to manage to be more efficient!\"


\"I actually wrote ‘Lipgloss’ on the train\"


How do you usually make a new song? What comes first: the instrumental or the lyrics?

\"Usually I have some ideas written down in the notes of my mobile phone – I actually wrote ‘Lipgloss’ on the train – and then I ask Pieter-Jan to send me a couple of his productions. Afterwards we spend weekends in the studio. After a back-and-forth feedback loop, a result we both like will always stick out.\"


Do you usually get inspired for lyrics by the music? Or do you have a subject in mind first for which you want to find the right track?

\"I do have my mind set on a certain theme before I start writing. To me, the theme of a track in general is more important than the actual lyrics, which don’t need to be deep to be good. A theme allows you to use metaphors, analogies and pseudonyms as opposed to more hands-on lyrics which can be too taken a bit too seriously. So, yes, the stuff I write could sometimes be perceived as a little simple, but they always have a substantiated meaning to me.\"

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Visual art direction clearly is an important part of your plan too, right?

\"Artists that embrace a clear visual identity just have a bigger impact - it complements the music. The end result just looks a lot better that way. By developing this part of my act myself, people will know what to expect when come to see my show. Music videos are obviously very important here. Artists that have this in mind always leave a great impression on me.\"


Like who?

\"Kali Uchis or Charli XCX for example. Both have an incredibly loyal fanbase because of their strong artistic identities. It’s more about just the music with them: their lyrics, their videos, their productions, their artwork: everything fits together so well.\"


Is the music video of ‘Lipgloss’ a sneak peek of what we can expect from you in the future?

\"Yes, it is. Bente Pompen, the art director, only just graduated (I think this even was her very first job), but she did an amazing job. I already had a certain idea, but the whole concept of depicting this ‘Garden of Eden’ setting came from her. That said, I need to give a shout out to Karla Q Leon, who absolutely nailed the make-up. It was just a lot of fun to see all these young and motivated people working together on the same vision.\"


This video was your first real move in the music industry. How did people react?

\"I have to admit; it feels a little weird when people you don’t know share your video all over the place! But in a good way, of course. A lot of people around me knew I was making music, but they were surprised nonetheless when they saw this clip. I think because of the fact most people weren’t expecting this change of style, compared to what I was doing before. Maybe also because I was busy with my cover band, people didn’t expect me to be working on something other than that behind the scenes. I loved the surprise effect it had!\"


What kind of artistic career do you hope to accomplish one day?

\"In 10 years, I want to be able to show that I stayed true to my vision. Being able to play big shows and radio stations without making compromises really is the ultimate goal for me. I want this to be my career.\"

","id":7,"key":1544792811,"text":"","type":"text"},{"description":"

Follow Ruby Grace on Facebook and Instagram to remain up to date about the latest.

","id":8,"key":1544812765,"text":"","type":"text"}],"type":"freshonthescene","locale":"en","categories":[],"id":"5c137aba9ad24929595816c1"},{"owner":"56b061b019a9982120da2c8d","client":"563fa1fd1b73f17f676b8201","author":{"name":"Jules Thys","url":""},"i18n":{"en":"5bfe53f5cafbf3396b21ac84"},"title":"Nachtschaduw","photographer":{"name":"Nachtschaduw (Header by Fille Roelants)","url":""},"slug":"prepare-the-flash-nachtschaduw","i18nSlug":{"en":"prepare-the-flash-nachtschaduw"},"excerpt":"Prepare The Flash shines a light on folks that shine a light themselves. The people behind the camera, taking pictures of the artists we all love. Let's take a look behind the scenes of some of Belgium’s most infamous clickers. ","updatedAt":"2018-11-28T10:20:24.976Z","createdAt":"2018-11-28T08:38:13.831Z","recordStores":[],"related":[],"publishedAt":"2018-11-28T08:32:00.000Z","images":[{"type":"thumb","filename":"8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-600x401.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-600x401.jpg"},{"type":"thumb-portrait","filename":"8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-401x600.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-401x600.jpg"},{"type":"normal","filename":"8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-1200x802.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-1200x802.jpg"},{"type":"normal-portrait","filename":"8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-802x1200.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-802x1200.jpg"},{"type":"cover","filename":"8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-802x802.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-802x802.jpg"},{"type":"big","filename":"8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-2000x1336.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-2000x1336.jpg"},{"type":"big-portrait","filename":"8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-1336x2000.jpg","url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/8caed0223949e568c4934203ecea90c1-1336x2000.jpg"}],"isHome":true,"isVisible":true,"isSticky":true,"tags":[],"body":[{"type":"text","text":"","key":1543422138,"id":0,"description":"

Prepare The Flash shines a light on folks that shine a light themselves. The people behind the camera, taking pictures of the artists we all love. Let's take a look behind the scenes of some of Belgium’s most infamous clickers. For this edition we sat down with the winner of the 2 last Best Nightlife Photographer Awards at the Red Bull Elektropedia Awards (2017 & 2018): Nachtschaduw!

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First off: congratulations on winning the award for the second time in a row! How does that feel?

\"Thank you so much! It felt very overwhelming. To be rewarded for the countless hours of work I’ve put into my passion is the biggest honor I can receive. I got very emotional when I was walking to the stage, I have never taken any photography or post-processing lessons, I just started using my camera and was fortunate enough to build a career out of this. The other thing is that I’m visually impaired. In my case this means that my eyes are not able to process light like 99% of the people, resulting in severe night-blindness. I turned my weakness into a strength and I’m really proud of this and also very thankful for everyone that has supported me over the years!\"


You were definitely the most flashy person on stage again, please tell us about your outfits.

\"My first visit to Berghain impacted me greatly. In Berlin club culture you can wear as much or as little as you want. You’re accepted and even rewarded for being able to express yourself and your sexual identity! This inspired me to build the confidence to express myself as an artist through my clothes. Sometimes I like to shock with BDSM accessories, sometimes I like to sparkle with a lot of sequins, sometimes I’m more casual. It varies from time to time and I’ve noticed that people really appreciate this. For the 2018 RBEA, I was wearing a white sateen, in lace and sequin embellished tuxedo and a hand-made leather harness. This was very symbolical to me, as this is something that most men wear at underground gay parties. This year two queer parties (Spek & Gay Haze) were nominated and Thierry from La Démence was awarded with a Lifetime Achievement Award. With this I wanted to make a statement and show my support to the LGBTQ-community. I feel that the Belgian nightlife scene can be a lot more open-minded and queer.\"


Take us back to your story. When did you start photographing and how did it evolve to where you’re at now?

\"I started doing nightlife photography almost six years ago when I was studying at the University of Bruges. I saw a local student café post that they were in need of a photographer. I don’t exactly know why but I immediately responded to their post. Back then I had a semi-professional camera and I wanted to try taking pictures in a bar. It was extremely difficult though: dancing people, smoke, lasers, lights moving like crazy... When I look back at the photos I start laughing at how bad they are, but for some reason I still got noticed. The word spread and local bar/club owners were requesting me as a photographer for their events. That was the start of a hobby that would eventually run out of control.\"

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A very similar start to a lot of your colleagues. And right after that things really started going for you!

\"At that time I started working for more mainstream EDM clubs and festivals which I look back at as a good thing, as this was the base of my current style. They taught me how to take the hero (overview) shots and that’s one of my specialties regarding nightlife photography. As time went on I started to feel more uncomfortable with the m’as tu vu-attitude and vip-culture. It got a little bit too much for me. During the summer of 2015, I got a call from Fuse, asking if I was still available for one of their Fuse on the beach parties. Fuse started booking me more frequently and I fell in love with Techno music. I was happy to set my first steps in underground music, that’s when Nachtschaduw was really born! Thanks to Fuse I could work with legendary dj’s Ben Klock, Len Faki, Joseph Capriati, Chris Liebing, Adam Beyer, Marcel Dettmann and more. Because of those pictures, Café d’Anvers & Labyrinth Club started booking me. Shooting at CDA taught me how to capture a very energetic moment into a picture.

Internationally, Time Warp festival contacted me and Labyrinth introduced me to elrow. Those were my first international experiences and from there it only went upwards. My first time in Kompass Klub was during their first Fuse-Off party with Pan-Pot and Amelie Lens in 2016. That party was the beginning of a beautiful journey for me. The Kompass warehouse in Ghent is a venue where I now shoot weekly or bi-weekly. It became my playground where I can experiment with the energy of the rave and crowd. I’m incredibly proud and thankful that I get to work with such a great team every week.\"

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A lot of people start in nightlife and then leave it for different styles, but you’ve been around for a while. Why is that? And do you see a problem with people moving on from nightlife?

\"Nightlife is physically and mentally very demanding. It’s an industry that requires an insane amount of dedication. Sleep deprivation is the most normal thing as in most cases there’s no separation between day and night, summer or winter, weekend or weekday. In nightlife photography it’s a continuous coming and going of visual artists. Most people do it for two to three years, there are exceptions, but there aren’t many.

Maybe I stay in nightlife because I don’t take it too serious or maybe because I just really love what I do. I love working with artists, pr-managers and marketeers, I love raving and I love music. There are obviously days when I think to myself, why am I still doing this, but for me nightlife photography is an outlet. It’s something where I can release all my creativity and emotions, have fun and be together with old and new friends.

I think it’s very important, if you want to keep up with the rhythm that nightlife demands of you, to listen to your body and to focus on a healthy work-life balance. Me, however, I’m no expert or example as I still struggle with this sometimes. The night can be quite addictive and dangerous, and if you go out ‘till 10 o'clock in the morning when you were supposed to have a good night of rest, you’re going to get in trouble at some point. I’m very strict with my sleeping pattern, I need at least 9 hours of sleep per day during the week, to have the possibility to tour around for photoshoots during the weekends.

Another problem is the fact that nightlife photography doesn’t pay correctly for the hours and amount of work you put in. A-list artists earn thousands of euros for a two hour set, whilst photographers are there for at least a six hours during the night and more or less an extra 6 hours whilst working on post-processing and earn way less. We may not create music or be the headliner of the night, but at least we make sure that the night is documented properly and that the world can see what goes on in our venues. Some can accept this but most don’t and they leave nightlife to explore other fields of photography, such as wedding photography and portrait photography. I think it’s a shame because Belgium always had a really good reputation on nightlife photography in the international market and through this we’re losing a lot of talent.\"

","id":6,"key":1543489113,"text":"","type":"text"},{"image":{"orientation":"landscape","images":[{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-600x401.jpg","filename":"b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-600x401.jpg","type":"thumb"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-401x600.jpg","filename":"b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-401x600.jpg","type":"thumb-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-1200x802.jpg","filename":"b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-1200x802.jpg","type":"normal"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-802x1200.jpg","filename":"b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-802x1200.jpg","type":"normal-portrait"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-802x802.jpg","filename":"b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-802x802.jpg","type":"cover"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-2000x1336.jpg","filename":"b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-2000x1336.jpg","type":"big"},{"url":"https://i.redbullelektropedia.be/b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-1336x2000.jpg","filename":"b68c24e163a4fbbf19b78db28a2b490e-1336x2000.jpg","type":"big-portrait"}]},"id":7,"key":1543408702,"url":"","type":"image"},{"description":"

What do you think distinguishes you as a photographer? And what are some good tips on keeping nightlife pictures interesting?

\"I think my cinematographic style is what distinguishes me from my colleagues. My albums show a more general viewpoint of a night. No filters, nothing artificial and nothing too artistic, just photography that shows a realistic and energetic image of the night. It’s a style that all kinds of clubs or festivals or event firms can use to promote their business. I also adapt my style of photography to each club individually. Every album contains the same type of photographs. Going from overview to architecture and design and from fashion shots to portraits. Each picture is individually color graded. I don’t use presets and I don’t manipulate pictures in Photoshop.

The other thing is also that I try to go incognito. I hide myself in the crowd, hence the outfit which makes me look like a real raver, and dance a little so that everyone around me feels comfortable. I’m continuously observing and when I see a nice composition or action, I try to capture that moment. Having fun whilst shooting pictures is key. I hate perfectionism and I also try to enjoy the night.

Constantly evolving is what ensures that your nightlife pictures stay interesting. I have phases throughout the year where I feel that overviews are more important and I also have phases where I feel that people shots are most important. If you’re successful at capturing the unique identity of each single night, you’ll automatically create the effect that every album is different and unique, and therefore your work in general will remain interesting to watch and follow.\"

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You travelled around Europe for Elrow and even lived in Barcelona for a while. Can you tell us more about that?

\"Elrow has been an important chapter in my life. I was given the opportunity to do an internship in their office in Barcelona, right before they expanded globally. During this internship I had the possibility to travel to their shows all around europe and capture the essence of their brand. Eventually they asked me to continue working there. As soon as I had finished the semester, I started working full-time as their in-house photographer. I was constantly traveling around Europe, to Ibiza and to their parties in Barcelona. Working at elrow taught me how to merge different kinds of shots and create a storyline in an album, and how to deliver and approach high quality albums. I worked with them for about ten intense months until I decided to return to my Belgian roots and expand my work at Kompass Klub.\"


What are you working on right now?

\"90% of my available time is spent on Nachtschaduw, the other 10% I invest in Dark Entities. This is a experimental project where I work together with Malika Maria At Work. We merge photography and videography during our high-end photoshoots on different locations with inexperienced models. We focus on combining erotic art and fashion, but we also want to portray the inner darkness in people. We want to shock and remove boundaries on topics such as LGBTQ, bdsm, bondage, drag, pornography, ... The photos will be used for an exposition in the future, the videos will be shown during one of her live VJ-sessions. I’m really excited about this project as our ultimate goal is to be published in an x-rated Berlin magazine called Pornceptual. Dark Entities both gives us the freedom to experiment with our own boundaries, but also to play with the boundaries of the subjects we work with. Besides this we have the possibility to determine our own art direction and develop our own visual style.

Besides Dark Entities, I’m currently negotiating with a few partners to start organizing my own parties. I have a concept in mind, but I can’t announce the details yet as we want to keep things secret for now. More information will be shared on my social channels in the near future. Parallel with my own nightlife concept would be an exposition featuring some of my best work.

Last but not least, I’m also experimenting with a vinyl-only project. I’m constantly surrounded by sound and I feel that music can be an extra way for me to express myself. I’ve been collecting unique techno and industrial records for a few months now. I’m not looking for a professional career as a DJ, but to be able to express myself beyond the visual spectrum, once in awhile, would be really nice.\"

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What are your plans for next year? How will you try to get your third award?

\"I have a lot of Kompass events on my planning and together with my booking agents and team, we’re currently working on my itinerary for the 2019 festival season. I’m hoping to do a few more international festivals next summer and to return to the festivals and clubs I’ve worked at past summer. I’m also hoping to do some more editorial work in 2019. But we’ll see what time brings. In the meantime, I’m simply planning to just keep on being myself, enjoy what I do and surprise everyone with beautiful photographs taken in legendary clubs in belgium and beyond.\"

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With a buzzing show in the iconic Flagey building in Brussels, the eighth edition of the Red Bull Elektropedia Awards was one for the history books. A whopping 31.884 electronic music fans casted their votes - a new record - and decided who took home the coveted laurels in 21 categories. The ever-smiling pop sensation Angèle topped a truly massive year with no less than 3 admirable first places: Artist Of The Year, Best Song (with ‘Je Veux Tes Yeux’) and Breakthrough Artist/DJ/Producer. Her brother Roméo Elvis - with Le Motel ofcourse - took the gold in Best Live Act. Another Brussels icon, Damso, triumphed in the Best Album category for his hugely popular ‘Lithopedion’. In the DJ Top 100, the first spot was reclaimed by 2manydjs after they last topped the list in 2015. Techno ambassadors Charlotte de Witte and Amelie Lens landed on the second and third place respectively. Traditionally, the stakes are high in the Club Top 30. After a countdown that felt like an eternity, Ghent’s beloved Kompass came out on top. This at the expense of Brussels’ own C12 and Fuse. The former of these two did take the first spot in the Best Breakthrough Party/Festival/Club category.

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Just like in 2016, the globetrotting Lefto got rewarded for his weekly show at Studio Brussel in the Best Radio category. The house and disco lads from Vice City prevailed as Best Party, while the Ghent crew from All Eyes On Hip Hop did the same in the Best Really Big Party division. For the second time in a row, Nachtschaduw claimed the top spot as Best Nightlife photographer. Dour Festival doubled up on that feat: they took away the gold medal in the Best Festival category for a fourth time in a row, ahead of Tomorrowland and Couleur Café.

The Chase Award is reserved for the best urban act on the verge of a breakthrough. The voters decided that Blu Samu deserves her time in the spotlights, with Glints and Moka Boka following closely as second and third. After winning last year’s Best Label, Soulwax’ DEEWEE had to make peace with a runners-up position, making way for Top Notch Belgium’s very first award. Our colleagues at Vice Belgium pulled the same trick in the Best Media division. Meanwhile, Roméo Elvis’ companion Le Motel excelled in the Best Producer league.

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Stromae’s music videos have won several Awards in the past - and this year, the pop star is victorious once again with the video for ‘Défiler’, made by Luc Junior Tam and Sascha Wiernik. Guillaume Kayacan’s design for JeanJass & Caballero’s ‘Double Hélice 3’ claimed the Marc Meulemans Award for best artwork, while Danga’s reshuffle of Kendrick Lamar’s ‘Big Shot’ struck gold as Best Remix.

Two weeks ago, we already announced Susobrino, Cellini and Sylvie Kreusch as this year’s Most Promising Artist. Tonight, they were invited to collect their awards on stage. The charming Sylvie Kreusch delivered with a thunderous live performance. Last but not least, the Lifetime Achievement Awards applaud some of the very best contributors to the Belgian nightlife scene over the past decades. Thierry Coppens, instigator of the incredibly long-running La Demence parties and co-founder of Fuse was praised for his rich career, just like  Bart and Yves De Kegel, the two brothers behind Decadance - the legendary Ghent nightlife institution that had to close its doors the other week.    

Visit this link to scroll through the full list of RBEA18 results.

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