INTERVIEW: A performer needs a good name, so when Marcel Oosterom started appearing in clubs to play mixes of what was called raggamuffin’ and hiphop beats, he did so as DJ Insane. Did that help draw a crowd? Undoubtedly. But it was the quality and intensity of his music that kept the crowds coming back.
The artist now known as DJ Insane began with a delightful mix of hard club thump (the classic boom-boom-boom-boom dance or rave approach) and hiphop’s more sophisticated beats.
Working constantly, DJ Insane quickly built a following in the Netherlands during the early 1990s. His style underwent a change when Holland began rocking to house music, a fusion of electronic synth with some funk-oriented basslines (do a search on “house music” if you want to see some longer definitions). Insane created his own version of house for the Dutch lowlands, where it became known as hardcore gabber.
He was also quick to incorporate tones and sounds from his native India, offering audiences new flavors and textures in an increasingly boombasstic dance club scene. Playing before larger and larger crowds, DJ Insane became too big for one name or one persona, as you’ll see in the interview.
(Note: The album “Crazed + Dazed,” by DJ Insane and The G-Man, was released 05/15/07 by Delvian Records.)
G-Man: Do you call some of your music “trance” or “electro-beat” or “hard club thump” or. . . ?
DJ Insane: I have various styles of mixing. That’s why I’m producing under three
names to keep my styles separated.
Tell us about them.
For example, when I’m DJ Insane, I work in hard/jumpstyle, hardcore, and techno. These are the harder styles of house music. When I work under the name M-V-O, the music is club, trance, electro, latin grooves, and dance. The smooth styles of house.
And there’s a third side to your musical personality?
Yes, called INDIAN ARTAFFECT, where I compose and perform Desi, Drum ‘n’ Bass, Asian Underground, and Asian Fusion. These are the experimental styles of house.
Multiple personalities, but in a good way. Is that why you make a distinction in the musical styles?
The reason why I keep these styles separated under 3 various names is I don’t want fans or anyone to be confused in what I’m going to play that night. For example, if I was playing all these styles under one name, people don’t know what sound to expect.
Do you think some trance music is mystical or magical? Can it take listeners to another place spiritually?
Yes it does. I find any music made with emotion and devotion is spiritual and a medium. Especially trance, if you hit the right chords and melodies and make the entire track from the heart. That is usually what I do, and then you can easily spread your emotion in it.
When you began the songs on “Crazed + Dazed,” did you try them out in clubs or just do them in the studio?
Most of the time when I make records that are meant for the club, I try them out. I love to see how the crowd is reacting on the new sounds I bring. And what I did with “Crazed + Dazed” was really involved. I was playing demos of the album in clubs every night and remixing the songs on the spot with new beats and loops. Then, after the party, I added those ideas again to the tracks.
It was a layering of sounds?
Yes, starting with beats, then adding more beats and tones and loops. The whole thing kept getting bigger and more exciting every night.
Name some of the clubs and festivals where you have performed as a DJ.
I have a huge list of parties I play throughout Europe. A few names of the biggest clubs are:
Club Butan – Germany
Club Pacha – Spain
Club Aria – Greece
Club NRG – Greece
Club The Hideout – India
Club Baja Impariale – Italy
Club Carnaby – Italy
Club Fuse – Belgium
Club Now & Wow – Holland
Club Las Palmas – Holland
Some of the events where I perform are:
Fast Forward Dance Parade
If someone wants to start making songs, what do they need in their heart?
You have to be into the music 24 hours a day. You think, eat and drink with melodies and beats. When you hear music and you don’t just hear but also are experiencing the music from the inside, that’s a sign that you really are feeling it with your heart. It’s the same way if you compose a remix or a track.
And what do they need for equipment?
Equipment for starting to mix, well, for just the basic stuff you can easily get a music software pack and start experimenting with music. Nowadays there are so many musical toys in software and hardware for music. Find out which program lies within your range and capabilities and let your heart flow with the sounds.
How would you describe the perfect dance club?
A huge club filled with lights and strobes, decoration, full of stars and a moon, girls with angel wings and magic wands, huge projector screens, a high-tech deejay booth with state-of-the-art equipment, and a dance floor with various platforms, so everybody dances on different levels, and a huge chillout lounge above the dance floor. And the most important thing is a very loud and clear sound system.
How would you describe the perfect dance song?
For me, the perfect dance song of all time is Donna Summer’s “I Feel love.”
Right, with music by Giorgio Moroder and Pete Bellotte.
Every time I hear the track, I always get some new ideas. That track is so magical, I always get new inspiration by listening to it. The same thing I have with Kraftwerk’s “Computer Love” and New Order’s “Blue Monday.” I hope someday that someone will feel the same way about a track from “Crazed + Dazed.”
[tags]DJ Insane interview, Crazed and Dazed CD, trance music, house music, dance clubs, CD releases, music composition, audio production, Scott G, gman[/tags]