“Being back at Defqon.1 felt like going to a bar and seeing old friends from school!” – A moment with Showtek
Despite their “FTS” legacy living on forever in every Hardstyler’s heart, when you take a proper minute to ponder on all that is Showtek, it feels like yonks since these two brothers said farewell to the Hardstyle scene. Since re-routing themselves in 2012, brothers Sjoerd and Wouter Janssen have come an extremely long way; forming a strong identity within House music, this dynamic pair have unleashed several chart-toppers, as well as toured all corners of the globe.
Once legends in Hardstyle and now legends in House, their collection of body-thumping Hard Dance beats will never be forgotten and this year at Defqon.1 the pair stepped foot back onto the infamous RED stage to pay a little visit to their roots.
Alive at Night had the opportunity to catch a brief interview with the Showtek boys at Mysteryland. And yes, we even managed to get them talking about Defqon.1!
– Hey guys, thanks for this interview! How’s your weekend been at Mysteryland?
We arrived only a few hours ago and so far we’ve had a brief look at the site, which is looking great so far. The weather is also amazing; Dutch summers aren’t the best, but we have to admit that we’re quite lucky today. Mysteryland in general is one of the most classic concepts in The Netherlands; it’s been here for decades and we’re once again proud to be a part of it!
– How has your summer been in general?
It’s been pretty intense. This year we decided to do less shows, but we found that with all of the travelling on the days in between it can become a little exhausting, so next year we’ll definitely plan our tour differently. But all in all, we’ve had some great shows – our favourite performances have all been in Scandinavia!
– Back in June you guys paid a visit to the holy grounds of Defqon.1. What was it like to be back on the mainstage in front of tens of thousands of Hardstyle fans?
It was more of a big “thank you” to our fans. Q-Dance contacted us several times (just a few times, nothing crazy, haha) and at first we weren’t sure about whether we wanted to do it. We took some time to think about it and came to the decision that it’d be a good idea. This year also marked 15 years of Defqon.1, which was a little nostalgic seeing as we were part of those 15 years.
The performance itself was great; we were on stage for about 5 minutes and played a few tracks. The entire thing went by extremely fast and it felt like a huge rush of adrenaline. It wasn’t a ‘get your hopes up’ kind of thing – it was more about embracing our roots and paying tribute to it. We feel as though it’s nice to come back every once in a while to pay your respects.
What was it like to run into old colleagues?
It was so great to catch up with our old colleagues and become informed on their perspectives. Being back at Defqon.1 felt like going to a bar and seeing old friends from school; it was really nice to see those familiar faces and catch up with the guys we used to work closely with.
Of course there are guys who we have always been closer to; guys like The Prophet or TNT (who we did a song with last year) were so excited to see us and we had a lot of fun together. And of course, we can never forget that these guys, as well as Zany and Deepack have taught us a lot about music. They played a huge role in our careers and in our eyes are total legends! We will always be thankful to them.
And of course, you guys weren’t the only ones who had a reunion with the Defqon.1 mainstage. Do you have any thoughts about Headhunterz comeback from House?
I mean, we have a lot of thoughts. Primarily, everyone’s gotta follow their heart and go with what feels best. We can’t decide what’s best for Headhunterz, so we totally respect the decision he has made. Always follow your heart!
The EDM world has been really good to you guys and quite quickly you found your way from Hardstyle. What have been your biggest highlights?
After being so successful in Hardstyle, to achieve success again in another genre has been one of the biggest highlights for us. When we left Hardstyle, we literally had no idea what was going to happen – we entered this dark and very uncertain area. We walked an insecure path, but we truly believed that we were able to reinvent ourselves.
As an artist, it’s very healthy to step back and re-evaluate yourself and your goals. When we moved from Hardstyle to House, we had such a different sound compared to other artists and that worked well for us. However, this doesn’t mean that it was easy. We spent two years in frustration; yelling, crying and trying to figure out what we wanted to do. We felt like we needed to make a change, but to build a whole new foundation again was something we had to work incredibly hard on. There was a lot of time and energy spent on our new music, but in the end we feel incredibly proud of where we have ended up.
Full respect to you guys! Before we wrap this interview up, do you guys have any last words for all the Hardstyle fans reading this?
Well, first of all, we’d like to do a little shout-out to our Australian fans. We have a crazy big Hardstyle following over there, but those same fans also believe in and support our new music – this is super encouraging. We’ll be back at the end of the year and we’re super excited for that!
Finally, we’d like to thank all of our fans who have given us the confidence to do whatever we like in music. The energy and enthusiasm from all of you means a lot to us, so a big thanks to our fans who have followed us from the early days, right up until now!
A huge thanks to Showtek for taking the time to chat to us at Mysteryland. For those who want to check out some of their newer tunes, be sure to hit up their channels below.