Earlier this year, our sister publication, Wunderground, set about on a tour of some of Europe’s hottest festivals in an ambulance.
Yes, you read that right, an ambulance. Now, before you start speculating about whether they’ve swapped goading tech house DJs about their floral shirts or claiming all sound technicians are reincarnations of Saddam Hussein, for a career in paramedics, it’s not what you think. They haven’t thrown in the towel or retrained as emergency response professionals. They’ve actually done something much crazier than that and converted an ambulance into a fully mobile, Void-powered festival stage.
Having driven the ambulance across five different countries so far, the Wunderground Rescue stage has been bringing some of the brightest emerging talents in the dance music scene to some of the best festivals on the continent and letting them play to the crowd through the greatest sound system known to man. So, we’ve decided to chip in by picking the cream of the crop and featuring them as our Ibiza Club News Emerging Artists.
This week we caught up with Kruger, a London based techno DJ who has been making a name for himself thanks on Europe’s techno circuit. With a recent set at Elrow Town Antwerp to add to his impressive 2019 resume, we think Kruger will be an artist you’ll be hearing a lot more of this year and beyond.
You’ve been selected as an ICN emerging artist, tell us about your journey to where you are today?
I started as a bedroom DJ (as so many of us do), just messing around and experimenting with Traktor in university and playing at the odd house party here and there.
I think it was back in 2015 or so that I started thinking about taking it a bit more seriously and trying to get actual gigs rather than playing at parties and online radio shows. I took a DJ course from Point Blank Music School to further hone my skills and got some pretty big gigs after that.
Soon after, I started getting into production, working on my social media, releasing content continuously and networking as much as I could. Fast forward a few years and here we are.
Looking back it’s actually quite surreal, my first ever gig was at a bar with the equipment placed on a table and 2 elevated chairs. I think I got to play only 15 – 20 minutes. Few years later, I ended up playing at We Are Fstvl and Elrow.
What words of wisdom would you give to other artists who want to do the same?
Probably to keep at it and not getting disheartened (as cliche as it sounds). The industry is so saturated, literally every second person you meet these days say they’re a DJ or producer.
Take time out every day to practice. Work on your socials and most importantly, get to know the people in the industry, whether it’s the local DJ’s or the promoters. If you’re really serious about it, you need to invest both time and money in yourself.
Talk to us about the set you put together, how did you prepare, what do you like about it and what can our listeners expect?
That’s a funny one actually, the majority of the lineup on all stages (except one) was tech house, deep house, disco etc. The guy playing before me was a house DJ, so the set I initially put together was a lot of bouncy tech house tracks with vocals and melodic riffs and so on, basically stuff I don’t ever play but had bought and compiled for the day. However, at the last minute, I thought “Fuck It, I’m gonna play what I want to” and went into my Techno folder.
I think, because of the change of pace, tempo and style, people found it quite refreshing and a lot of them seemed to like it. At one point, a group of 10 – 12 lads came to the front and just lost their shit, which is always great to see. One of them was a local London promoter and ended up taking my details later to book me for a future event of his – so I guess playing the style I always play worked out in the end. You can expect a lot of hard, thumping, industrial, driving techno with some acid tracks interspersed.
This set was recorded in the Wunderground Rescue ambulance, tell us how that was?
“Absolutely fucking nuts” would be one way to describe it. I’ve been fortunate to have never been injured enough to be in one and would’ve never thought that my first time, ever in an ambulance would be because I would be DJ’ing in it at a festival.
It was bizarre seeing things like USB’s and hard drives and headphones next to defibrillator signs.
In your opinion as a DJ, how important is it to have a good sound system when creating a vibe at a party?
I think it’s the most important thing when it comes to creating a good night. You see a lot of festivals and clubs these days having massive LED screens and projections and 30 trillion lasers and strobes, but at the end of the day, if the music is too low or distorted, it can clear a dance floor.
Out of all the club sound systems you’ve played on, what’s been your favourite?
Cafe1001 – Funktion One’s!
What is the one piece of kit you always make sure to have at your gigs?
Apart from a spare space cat/sloth t-shirt? Probably my external hard drive
What are the top 3 tracks you are playing at the minute?
Tim Tama – Why The Fuck Is Everyone Wearing A Mask? (Original Mix)
Where can our readers see you play in the coming weeks/months?
I’m off to Croatia to attend Sonus next week and we’re hosting a party at our hotel on the last day where I’ll be playing. After that, I’ve got a few gigs lined up in London which will be confirmed soon.