RECENT POSTS: M.I.K.E.
Audio Noir’s ‘Transfagarasan Highway’ which performed very well on the circuit gets a rerub with the help of some top producers in this massive remix pack.
The Original Mix intros with a wonderful and very distinct sub bass, the bass just eases in effortlessly and you begin to realise how recognisable it is, this track is one that will bring back memories of an awesome time in EDM, all the qualities are there for your aural pleasure. The classic vocal sample will have you jumping in no time along with the rolling bassline and tight arrangement. On the break we are treated to a super cool piano and again that vocal sample will keep you focused in on the journey ahead, simply stunning!
Belgium’s legendary M.I.K.E. is first up to the remix desk with an absolute stomper of a remix. Currently, as you would expect, Mike is always busy with something. He juggles a hectic DJ schedule which takes him all over the world, he churns out the quality from the studio on a regular basis and he still finds the time to engage with his loyal fanbase and spend time with family, how does he do it! On this remix he takes the main elements from the original and adds that M.I.K.E. touch that will light up any floor. A thumping great bass intros alongside some sharp percussions that steadily build a smooth rhythmic vibe. That massive vocal sample gets the veins pumping as the track breaks loose with a classic bassline and techy synths as rolling snares raise the temperature even more. The track continues to build with high octane precision and forces you to get those hands in the air as the break unleashes a massive hook which quite simply blows your mind, top stuff from the master!
Airwave aka one hell of a talented guy is up next to remix duty with his own stunning take on this classy track. Laurent is an extremely busy artist at the moment, he is a regular feature and many venues worldwide and this trend is ever increasing as gigs will be taking him to Canada as well as a recent stint in Goa. He is also a hard working studio artist, at present he has many projects on the go alongside Phi Phi and with J00F, aside from that he lends his talents to remixes like we have here. The track intros with that familiar kick and bass combination as crisp hats and percussions begin to form up. Very cool FX deliver a surreal atmosphere before the track takes on a new dimension with the introduction of some tightly arranged drums. The pace quickens and we soon met with some amazing melodic pads that sweep across the sound which is further enhance by a beautifully deep pipe instrument. The break offers up a sublime sequence of melodies before slamming back into this full on progressive grooving monster, stunning!
The ever impressive Manu Riga is up with his Angel On Earth Mix. Manu is always keeping busy with lots of remix work as well as his own material which we will hope to be seeing very soon. From the get go you can feel the energy dripping off this remix as the kicks pick up the pace. These are complimented by a tweaked stuttering vocal and a bassline that drives the groove with a throbbing punch. Beautifully emotive melodies weave an intricate pattern with an ethnic tinge. The break delivers sweet laced arps which ebb and flow alongside that bubbly bassline. A cool, flowing and intense groove for the floors which is not to be missed.
Next up is Thorin with his stunning remix which is full of deep progressive delights. Thorin churns out quality productions on a regular basis. He has a hugely impressive catalogue of remixes as well as his own material which is always very well received from all quarters. His remix intros with a full on in your face groove as chunky kicks are met with contrastingly lush pads a tough edged bass, which makes for a cool combination. This groove powers on relentlessly up to the first short break where the pads come to the fore. Soon after a nice and smooth synth comes into play and adds cool textures to the sound. At the main break some more melodies ease in and that vocal sample also makes a showing before the track kicks right back into the main sound, which makes this a must have track in any set!
The Zen Mix is pure bliss, a huge soundscape that you wish would go on and on. The bass just flows along and is the perfect match for the myriad of sounds in attendance. Spitting pipes, bright synths and that superb vocal blend together beautifully creating an awesome atmosphere where you will lose yourself for a while, brilliant!
We caught up with M.I.K.E./Push as he took time out of his very busy schedule to answer a few questions. With a lot of projects on the go and the owner of many different monikers we get an exclusive reveal on some of Mike’s best known guises as he resurrects them for the 21st century along with an insight into the man himself.
Hi Mike, thanks for taking the time to have a chat, how are you today?
Mike: Hi thanks. Can’t complain, just finished a remix and a brand new track, happy days!
You’ve been based in New York for a few years now, how have you been adjusting to life in a new country?
Mike: About three years now, yes. Life is MUCH different in New York City. I did visit many times before, but living is a totally different experience. My first time here was back around 2000 when I played for what was back then, The Limelight, it was a great experience.
You’re a very busy man right now, producing under different monikers and DJing across the globe what do you do in your downtime?
Mike: Messing about in my studio still is a downtime for me. But family is important to me and we do special things as much as possible. I also love training my oldest boy for football, I know he appreciates that. I’m a huge follower of Barcelona FC, so there you go.
How would you define your sound and what are your inspirations?
Mike: My main heroes and reason for my love for synth is Depeche Mode. Although very different sounding, they are the main reason why I am here doing what I love, which is music. I grew up in the 80ties when Acid House and Belgium made New Beat conquered the Club scene back then, and the first time I put my hands on a synth, I knew it was love at first touch.
You have many guises that you produce under and a few in particular that you focus on, how do you switch from each project and still maintain the creativeness for each of them?
Mike: Well, sometimes it starts out by me just walking into the studio. I get into a few sounds, tweaking here and there, and a track comes out of it, either during or after, I decide this is X alias. Nowadays my most used aliases are M.I.K.E. , Push and Plastic Boy, and I know when I want to produce something under those aliases, so I just take it from there.
And speaking of projects, we hear that you are returning home to Bonzai and bringing back a couple of your Bonzai monikers, can you tell us which ones and why you choose now to revamp those?
Mike: Oh really? Haha, well, my connection with Bonzai will never fade, and there is a reason for that. We’ve recently discussed about releasing a new Tribal Warriors and Sector 7, its more darker progressive yet with that M.I.K.E. touch. It all started after our 20 years of Bonzai reunion last year, we all felt good meeting up and from one came another. And of course there’s Push… will it be back? watch out for that one!
Rumour has it that you are creating a new album for Bonzai, can you tell us anything about that?
Mike: One word – 4 letters. Can you guess? The rest I say no more!
Do you prefer DJing or producing, and why?
Mike: I prefer BOTH! producing is a HUGE privilege and passion, and having the power to share my music with the world is a blessing and I take FULL advantage of that with my DJing.
Just last year you were part of Bonzai’s 20 year party, how was that for you?
Mike: It was awesome, I had a blast! gathering together with all the guys was a real trip, more like this please.
You’ve worked with so many great artists over the years, particularly within Bonzai’s realm, do you have any favourite collaborations?
Mike: There are some many great people I collaborated with, in and out of Bonzai. I hold a special place for these experiences! Armin, Moby, Rank 1 ,Fred Baker, Airwave .. and so on.
Apart from Tribal Warriors and Sector 7, what are your plans for the future, can you let us in on any secrets?
Mike: Tribal Warriors and Sector 7 are once a year spin-offs. More Live shows for Push! Yes, something that’s on high demand from my fans! And I will bring it back as long there is a demand for it. The bookings are flying in for this coming summer, so keep an eye out! and this time it will go globally!
Well Mike thanks for taking the time to speak with us, best of luck to you and your family in whatever you do, thanks.
Bonzai turns 20!
On the 17/11/12 Belgium’s ravers will gather in STUDIO @ ETHIAS ARENA, HASSELT to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the most well known labels of our time.
Built from the ground up the Bonzai sound broke barriers as it was unleashed upon our senses, with literally thousands of releases and still releasing quality music to this day, it is clear that Bonzai is here to stay so here’s to another 20 years!
To mark this huge milestone there will be a party like no other with some of the best DJ’s and artists that helped shape and define many genres into the history books of EDM, and touch the hearts and minds of an army of followers.
Join us as we embark on the ultimate retro experience as we delve into the archives of past classics and rave until the early hours with tracks like “Bonzai Channel One” to “The First Rebirth” and “When Things Go Wrong” to “Universal Nation”, there will be something for everyone to cast their minds back and enjoy what helped create an explosive era in dance music.
Get your tickets, get your rave gear on and get to Belgium for the most spectacular show on Earth!