A new year, means new talents that rise and show what they’ve got! A2 Records did proudly present their new talent, coming over from X-Raw, named RVAGE. We had the honor to catch up with Menno Hectors and ask him about the present and future! You might know him from the tracks ‘Fake as pimp’ and ‘Oh Shit!’, but to learn more about this young producer. Let’s have a chat with RVAGE!Hi RVAGE, first of all congratulations on your signing at A2 Records, the present months must have been amazing for you. How are you doing today? Can you give us a little recap of 2016?
Thanks for having me! The present months were really great for me, as you already noticed I signed at A2 Records recently.
2016 did feel like a rollercoaster. In the beginning of 2016 ‘Hit ‘M’’ & Fake Ass Pimp got released, before I blinked my eye, these tracks did receive amazing support by many great artists in the scene. Just before festival-season my new track “Oh Shit!” was ready to play. From then it all went really fast. For instance; The managers from the label X-Raw, were I was signed, the sub-label of Scantraxx Recordz, did want to talk with me about the promotion to A2 Records.
For all the new readers, can you give us a little introduction about yourself and your alias?
Sure! My name is Menno, I am 20 years old. I produce my tracks under alias RVAGE. I mainly produce RAW Hardstyle. I signed at A2 Records in January, and my booking agency is Most Wanted DJ.
In 2016 you released great bangers like ‘Fake Ass Pimp’ and ‘Oh Shit’ which did received many support by other artists. What can we expect in the future?
Both tracks did receive many support indeed. Personal I prefer to create different kinds of music and sounds, and use them in my tracks. So, I can also make a melodic track one day, with a RAW touch. But, you can also expect something really heavy, to stampede, haha! Expect different sounds, different tracks but all with the RVAGE sound!You recently changed your name from Ravage to RVAGE, can you tell us something about this name change?
That is a funny story actually. I had to check if my name was still free to use. When I did my research my eye did come across a ladies underwear brand from France. I thought I had to change my name, so I changed it a bit to RVAGE. Still, the Ravage Brand could have been a nice sponsor, haha!
Now that you’re signed at A2 Records, it all did go really fast didn’t it? How did you come in touch with them?
In 2014 I did start with the Herman Brood Academy, that is a producer school in Holland. I am in the same class as Devin Wild at the moment. He was already signed at Scantraxx Recordz. During Amsterdam Dance Event I went to the Scantraxx Demodrop. Devin brought me in contact with the Scantraxx Manager and I did deliver my demos to him.
When you first heard the news you had the honor to sign at the grand A2 Records label, how did you feel, who did you tell first, or did you scream it from the rooftops, haha?
It did feel extremely well! This is a once in a lifetime opportunity. I did call a friend directly to tell the good news. Nobody could get the smile of my face the whole day, well actually now they still can’t!
Let’s go way back in time. How did you come in touch with Hardstyle in the first place? Did you directly fall in love with the sound? Who was your favorite producer back then, and you perhaps had a favorite track which you did play on repeat? Back in time I did listen to Jumpstyle. One day I had to play a gig with my classmates. Really small events, because I was still around 9 years old, haha.
We had to prepare a mix but we had never done it before. We did cut and play around but actually we didn’t know what we were doing back then. Anyway, I really loved to play around with music. So, from that day forward my interest in Hard Dance Music did increase a lot. My first Hardstyle track I’ve ever heard is ‘Noisecontrollers – Feel It’. From that day I still listen to Noisecontrollers, Headhunterz and Wildstylez.
RVAGE - About To End This
When did you decide to start producing yourself? How did you start? Did you get any help, follow a course or a study?
As mentioned above, my interest did start by playing around while creating the mix for the small school event. After that I did research a lot about studio software. Finally I did come across FL Studio. I did start to recreate some melodies from the big tracks, analyze the tracks and listen to the music a lot! From my 13th I did start to create my own tracks.
After my mid school I had to find a study. I did not know what to choose. I did research about a producer school but couldn’t find anything. Finally I did walk into someone who told me about the Herman Brood Academy in Utrecht. They did except my apply and I did start in the same class as Devin Wild, Sub Zero Project and JNXD. They were already at a higher level than me, but we did become close friends and so I learned a lot!
From this whole learning process, do you have any tips for other talented producers out there?
Keep doing what you love, don’t do what others want you to do, stay with your love for producing. Try to analyse productions from the professionals, tracks that you like, to get ideas and ways to work out your own tracks.
Your first release at A2 Records will be ‘About To End This’, can you tell us a little bit more about this track? How did you start with producing this track, what gave you the inspiration?
For the first release at A2 Records, I did want to combine the Euphoric and the RAW feeling into one track.That feeling you can mostly hear in the climax. It is euphoric with the melody, but behind it is a RAW kick. The feeling I had for this track actually all came forward from the news that I did sign at A2 Records!
The preview is online now, when is the official release date and where can we buy it?
The 6th of February my EP will be released including “About To End This” and “Bad Motherf#cker” on all portals
RVAGE - Bad Motherf#cker
Speaking about previews, you recently premiered your collab with E-Force at Fatality NYE, can you tell us something about that track? It sounds powerful and devastating!
That is true indeed! The track is very powerful on his own, I wanted to include crazy screeches, heavy kicks, but also a nice melody on top of it. A ‘Beukplaat’ we call it in Dutch. A track to stampede, and will blast through the speakers.
About the forthcoming tracks, can you describe us what is the RVAGE feeling? Which feeling do we get when we listen to your sound? What do you wanna bring to the Hardstyle music spectrum?
As a mentioned before I want to create a diversity of tracks. One track can be really euphoric, but the other one is more powerful and RAW, with kickrolls, screeches and dark melodies. I want to combine the styles in different tracks to create my own RVAGE sound. And of course a melodic climax.
If you could pick any artist, also outside the Hardstyle spectrum, who would you like to collaborate with?
I would really love to produce together with Noisia. They have a sick sound design! I can learn a lot from that. When I listen to their music, my mouth slowly opens from amazement, haha!
As the new generation of artists, which new artist do you recommend to keep an eye on?
Without a doubt Sub Zero Project. Their new track and project ‘The Project’ is dope! They are going the right path!
I think many hardstyle fanatics would love to see RVAGE on stage during a grand event really soon, can you tell us something about the upcoming events you will perform?
At this moment I have some bookings confirmed. For instance; Rebirth, Beat The Bridge, Pinkstereo and Dreamfields are ahead! I’m proud to be part of these events already! But there are many more events to be announced, but for now I keep them secret.
If you could choose one super power, what will it be?
Well, to teleport would be very cool. Hop from Gig to Gig, haha!
Final Question: Do you have anything to share to your fans, the whole scene, a neighborhood warning for all the noise, kicks and musical violence you will produce the upcoming years?
I can not wait to share my music, and show you my passion on stage! I am thankful to everybody that is supporting me, and helped me to become an artist. Besides I also like to be in the audience and party myself. So you can spot me over there as well, don’t hesitate for a small talk 😉