WTF Is Hard Tek?! (And why is it so underrated?)
Two very funky, spicy souls meet up for a Tinder date and share a bottle of wine whilst exchanging turnt stories about their lives. One of these individuals is the brutal, yet upbeat Frenchcore – and the other is the cheesy, addictive UK Hardcore. Although these two souls come from completely different backgrounds, have completely different friendship circles and most importantly, listen to music on opposite sides of the spectrum, they share an undeniable attraction which they cannot resist exploring.
Once the bottle of wine is finished, both of these individuals are feeling rather tipsy and decide to take their date back to the privacy of one’s bedroom. Bursting the door open to the apartment, they begin kissing and rapidly removing each other’s clothes, before engaging in some remarkably rowdy (and unprotected) sex on top of the washing machine…
A couple of weeks later, after an awkward pregnancy test was required, an even more awkward phone call was made. There’s now a very funky baby on the way – created by two zesty and impulsive characters… This lovechild inevitably takes on its parents peculiar quirks and from birth, it became fact that this child was going to grow up as one zesty fucking individual…
Ladies and gentlemen, this love story between Frenchcore and UK Hardcore is the only way I can describe the incredibly bizarre, yet addictive genre called Hard Tek.
Alright, so, I’ve wanted to bring this genre of music to your attention for quite some time now, however I’ve always felt a slight uncertainty with how the broader public will receive it. The first time I’d ever even heard the term ‘Hard Tek’ was during an interview with Dr Peacock, where Steve spoke about his intentions to fuse more elements from the genre into his signature Frenchcore style.
Then it got me thinking – “what the actual fuck is Hard Tek?”
As Peacock spoke further about Hard Tek super-group Fant4stik, my curiosity grew and lead me straight into the depths of the internet where I literally hooked myself up to an IV-drip of this insane music. It was back in August 2016, when I gave Hard Tek a good ole’ go. The track I ever laid ears on was Fant4stik’s “Bazooka” and just like heroin, I was hooked. Home alone and dancing around my kitchen, feeling on top of the world I knew that this specific sound would impact my life in more ways than one.
Aside from being the perfect twerk-out music when danced to at half-time, Hard Tek provided me with this obscure and hyperactive energy I hadn’t felt in a long time. Leaving YouTube to auto-play a stream of Hard Tek productions, I soon came across the likes of Billx – who, in abbreviation, is some random French dude who just so happens to be a member of Fant4stik. After discovering Billx, I kept searching and became infected by tunes by Floxytek, Darktek, Vandal, Harry Potar and Guigoo.
UK Hardcore and Frenchcore’s lovechild?
Common knowledge states that ‘mainstream’ UK Hardcore is typically uplifting, upbeat and slightly cheesy. Characterised by its energetic atmosphere, use of pop-like vocals, as well as the typical ‘donk-like’ kicks, UKHC shares a lot of similarities to Euphoric Hardstyle. Pitched at 170BPM, UKHC is quite a light-hearted and fluffy genre. Similarly, in some aspects Frenchcore is also quite an uplifting genre – however, the kicks are less bouncy, rougher and more analogous to Hardcore.
As I mentioned earlier in my shitty piece of erotica, the best way to describe Hard Tek is literally an amalgamation between UKHC and Frenchcore. Adopting DNA from both parents, Hard Tek takes on Frenchcore’s tempo of 200BPM, UKHC’s uplifting and happy ambience and has a kick that’s the perfect balance between ‘donk’ and ‘core.’
Furthermore, this uniquely bizarre style has the constant driving energy that both genres are known for. Hard Tek is not as rough as Frenchcore, however it’s not as fluffy as UK Hardcore. May I stress again – it’s literally the funkiest, spiciest musical offspring that one could ever imagine.
But why is Hard Tek so damn underrated?!
To put it plainly, there’s a certain quota of ‘seriousness’ and intensity that needs to be met for a Hardcore sub-genre to become remarkably successful. I’m almost certain that the majority of UKHC and Frenchcore lovers could very well fall in love with a significant amount of Hard Tek productions, however it’s the 100% Hardcore fans that tend to shun this nimble genre. The lack of traditional Hardcore elements, such as brutal vocals, vicious kicks, dark atmospheres and a fitful flow is undoubtedly one factor that makes listeners wary of Hard Tek. This same mind-set also resonates with both ‘parent’ genres UKHC and Frenchcore.
However, things are looking fruitful for this rhythmic and crazy genre! Last weekend, super-group Fant4stik played an INSANE set at Masters of Hardcore. The fact that they were merely included on this years’ line-up really says something – Hard Tek is slowly, but surely making its way into the Hardcore scene, whether we like it or not!
Another development for the genre is the promotion it has been receiving from Dr Peacock. Regularly working alongside Fant4stik, Peacock recently dropped a rule-breaking EP “Frenchcore Worldwide 01,” which contains four phat tracks. Being open about his intentions to further merge the two genres together, this new venture will inevitably open Hard Tek up to the vast universe of Frenchcore devotees.
What else is there left to say? Get listening to this crazy as fuck genre and you too will be twerking out in your kitchen like Miley Cyrus on 2-CB.