Detroit Swindle talk up Heist Recordings

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On Friday 14th July Heist Recordings takeover the “Hidden Palace” stage at Farr Festival 2017 with special guests Honey Dijon, Henry Wu and label affiliate Adesse Versions. We caught up with Dutch duo Detroit Swindle, real names Lars Dales and Maarten Smeets, to discuss pre-festival anticipations, the Dutch approach to electronic music culture and what's next on the revered Dutch powerhouse "Heist Recordings".
Detroit Swindle

Last year Heist Recordings debuted at Farr Festival by hosting the Adventures In Success stage on the Thursday. Tell us about your experience of the festival? Was it everything you dreamt of?

Lars: We had a great time hosting the stage. We all arrived quite early and had Nachtbraker, Frits Wentink and Nebraska playing the stage together. We’re all good friends so it felt like a bit of a day trip, just hanging around the festival and listening to each other’s sets. We closed the stage and I remember it was nicely packed and there was a super vibrant energy. Curious to see what this year will be like! 

This summer you're hosting The Hidden Palace stage, which is set deeper within the woods. What are you envisioning about this stage? 

Maarten: The whole forest vibe at Farr is great, and I hope this stage will really have the magic of a secluded stage, overrun by trees, bushes and weird decoration. A place to really get lost.

You’re playing alongside Honey Dijon, Henry Wu, Adesse Versions. Do you have much report with these special guests? Tell us about your connection with these artists?

Lars: Adesse Versions did an amazing EP with us last year and he’s working on new material. We’re big fans of his raw, stripped down house and he’s an all-round cool dude. Henry Wu is working on a remix for Heist, so we thought it’d be fun to mix things up and get him involved for the daytime into night transition with his soulful and jazzy sound. 

Honey is playing with us because we still need to get even with her after she got Lars drunk at our Boiler Room in Madrid last year. So she’d better look out cause we’re coming prepared. All jokes aside, she’s a killer DJ and great person to have around, so as a friend and artist we deeply respect, we’re happy to have her as our special guest this year. 

Heist

Which other producers and selectors are you excited to see perform at Farr Festival?

Maarten: If there’s time I’ll definitely get into some yoga! We’re flying back home the next day so we don’t have a lot of time to see other artists and I’m not sure who’s playing the Friday as well, but I hope to see Floating Points, Leon Vynehall, Mr. G, Young Marco (who played a kick ass set 2 or 3 years ago when we were at Farr Festival for the first time), Mister Saturday Night, The Red light Radio boys Orpheu and Tako and John Swing.  

Both Heist and Detroit Swindle are going from strength to strength - give us a recap (releases, gigs, key milestones) about your highlights so far in 2017?

Lars: Wow.. 2017. Well I guess our biggest thing of 2017 was that we took 3 weeks of from gigging for the first time ever, and locked ourselves up in the studio to record new music. We’ve had a few guests over to jam with and we’re really really happy with the music we recorded. It might be the groundwork for our next album, so that’s super exciting.

We’ve also just finished a new EP, which will be out two weeks after Farr Festival with a dark and heavy Willie Burns remix, who has been great to get to know and work with. Heist is super focussed this year, so we’ve been doing quite some label shows across the globe and we’re hosting a party / BBQ in Amsterdam end of summer which hopefully will turn out to be super fun. 

We’ve had an amazing first show in Argentina in Cordoba this year, and we’ve done our most intense week of gigging ever earlier this year, flying from Amsterdam to South-Korea, to the south island of New Zealand to Australia and back in 1 week. That was heavy, but good fun.  

Talk us through the Netherlands love for electronic music. Amsterdam is clearly spearheading a progressive approach to embracing electronic music and the culture that surrounds it. Why is this, something in your blood?

Maarten: I guess there are a lot of (important) people in Amsterdam who see the potential of nightlife in terms of culture and business value, and so there’s much more focus on the positive aspect of parties and culture, then on the negative. 

I think we deal with the difficult issues like alcohol use, drug (ab)use and public disturbance in a smart way, combining the efforts of the night life, (local) government and law enforcement, rather than opposing each other. I guess this, along with cultural innovations like appointing a Night Mayor (Go Mirik!), makes it easier for everyone to focus on cool initiatives, support new venues, to explore the 24-hour economy and in general to just make way for cultural and musical development.  

DS Decks

How do you see the record label progressing over the next couple of years?

Lars: We’ve come to a point that we have a steady base or crew of some very talented people contributing to the label, so you’ll see a lot of familiar names popping up on the next EP’s, although we always look out for new artists. 

We’ve been selecting remixers for a while now and that is a process we really enjoy, and we’re gearing up for our 4th round up this year, where each releasing artist of that year remixes another artist. We’ve made a next step in artwork and as you might know, the aesthetics of the label are very important to us. 

We’ve started to work with photography on top of the stripped down linear style of the Heist artwork, which is super inspiring to us. Each release now really feels like a little work of art. 

I’m sure that you’ll see some new artists popping up in the coming years and we might expand our releases with some LP’s, albeit artist albums or compilations. 

Do you have any advice to any budding producers out there keen to get involved with Heist Recordings?

Maarten: If you think you’ve got a sound that is unique to you, and feel like it sits well with the artists that we have on the label, then I would love to hear your music. Easy as that. 

What are your top 5 festival essentials?

  • A towel
  • Aspirine 
  • Sunscreen
  • Pocket charger
  • Socks (plenty of) 

Finally any words of advice / warning to offer ahead of Farr Festival?

Get in there early and avoid the festival traffic jams. Avoid hangovers. Avoid not having fun. Avoid getting (too) lost in the woods. Come see the Heist crew on Friday at the Hidden Palace.

* Interview by Tom Durston / Inverted Audio

Heist Recordings lineup

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