In the run up to his debut album Dutch artist Feiertag took time out to chat to us about the album, his hometown and some of his favourite LPs.
Hi Joris, thanks for taking the time to talk to Music is 4 Lovers. Can you tell us a little about your personal year in lockdown?
Hi, it’s a pleasure. My year in lockdown was very tough to be honest. My relationship ended, the whole process was very painful. It look a long time to recover from it. I can say without a doubt that 2020 was the hardest year to date for me. Luckily, I feel a lot better right now. Of course, the lockdown year gave me the opportunity to finish my 16-track debut album, which was basically my therapy and I’m stoked to show this piece to all of you!
You’re coming up on the release of your debut artist album ’Time To Recover’, a truly musical LP with a host of collaborations. Walk us through the writing and recording of process if you will, including some info on the folks you worked with.
I felt like it was time for my debut album. I’ve been producing for over 10 years now, played a lot of shows, but I’ve been searching a lot for my musical identity. Starting releasing with Sonar Kollektiv in 2019 felt like coming home. Seriously, it sounds stupid, but I’ve really found my path with them. After releasing two EP’s, I wanted to capture my whole musical spectrum into one big journey and it turned into this 16-track double LP.
I’m a real intuitive person when I create and write music. Most important for me, is creating the right atmosphere and mood first. I’m always searching for weird textures, like self-recorded background noises and sounds for example. I usually start with this type of stuff, followed by sampling interesting weird little instruments such as (Koto) harp, kalimbas, the hang drum, the koto drum, sitar etc. I re-create them into something new and try to find the – for me – perfect loop. The drum / beat part comes very natural to me, since I’m a drummer and always have access to a full recordable drum set.
After a day or two working on a demo, I usually decide whether the track will need vocals or not. On this album, I worked with six vocalists; Tessa Rose Jackson, Oli Hannaford, Pete Josef, GOSTO, James Alexander Bright and Msafiri Zawose. They are all so extremely talented and a lot of fun to work with. I couldn’t be happier!
Aside from your solo work, you’re noted as the drummer for Kraak & Smaak. How long have you been doing this and what have been the highlights?
Well, while writing this, I’ve concluded that I’ve been playing exactly 10 years with Kraak & Smaak now. It’s amazing to play with them, it feels like one big family and I would love to continue working with them forever. I was really young when I started, and luckily they gave me the confidence to grow as both a person and a musician in this whole journey. I really feel part of it now. Highlights? Oh, that’s a hard question! We traveled so much. I would say going to Budapest is one of our yearly highlights, because the fans there are so loyal. And the tours through the U.S. were memorable as well, especially our show at The Regent in L.A.
You’re based in Utrecht in The Netherlands, tell us about your hometown, the highs and the lows?
I’m born and raised in Utrecht. I’ve studied and lived in Amsterdam for five years, but I’m happy to be back in my hometown. Well, it’s a very cosy little city with a lot of creativity, music and lovely people. I’m living in the center of the city, and it’s both quiet and lively. You bump into friends easily. A negative part about Utrecht is that it’s becoming more popular and I’m afraid that it will lose it’s charm.
What are the three greatest albums in your music collection, and why?
I can hardly answer this! But I’ll give it a try:
Great album, could be anything from FlyLo though! His album ’Cosmogramma’ would be second up. Every time I hear these compositions, I’m hearing new things. His sounds, his grooves, the beautiful orchestrated violins. He is a real master and ‘Los Angeles’ is a masterpiece.
Bonobo just keeps getting better and better. It’s hard to pick just one album, but I love ‘The North Borders’, and a flashback to my youth: my brother and I relentlessly searching and discovering LimeWire for ‘Flutter’.
Underworld – ‘A Hundred Days Off’
Underworld is one of my all time favorites. ‘They Brought Light Into’ my life literally with this track when I was around 14 years old. The repetitive vocal lines combined with the deep synths and driven beats, makes this a timeless album.
What have you got planned for the year ahead?
The album is coming May 28th and I hope I’ll be able to perform it live if it’s possible because of Covid. I’ve a positive mind and I really think it will get better soon. I’m also working on new material already, so expect a lot of music from my side this year!
‘Time to Recover’ by Feiertag drops via Sonar Kollektiv on 28th May 2021.