You just made your debut with Reinier Zonneveld’s excellent Filth On Acid label, tell us about that?
This EP was my solo debut, as I had a track with Citizen Kain on Filth on Acid before. I met Reinier last summer at Mystic Garden Festival in Amsterdam and I gave him the tracks. I am very happy about this EP and it is doing quite well, so I hope it won’t be the last one.
And of the three tracks on the EP, do you have a favourite? One that’s been doing well in your sets maybe?
The three track are all quite different and I still can’t pick a favourite. Moonwalk is a real peaktime track that makes the dancefloors go crazy. It works all the time and everywhere. Synaptic Wave also works similar, but it’s a much more special track. This one is a track that probably can still be played 10 years from now. And finally Shiver -the only one that didnt make the Techno top100 on Beatport. But still, this one is the favourite of many of the biggest names in the industry. It’s more underground and still makes dancefloors go wild. I cant really pick my favourite, but if I would have to I think it would be Synaptic Wave.
On the subject of DJing, you’ve played many of the worlds most important clubs and festivals now, tell us about an experience that blew your mind?
I played over 1600 gigs around the world so far and it is always very hard to choose the special ones. Of course – many years ago it was the performance at Berlin Loveparade, last year it was probably Tomorrowland, but one of my all-time best experiences was just now! Two weeks ago at Rainbow Serpent Festival in Australia. This Festival in the desert is quite unique and the people are really making it stand out. The dancefloor has such a great vibe, even at times, it has over 40 degrees Celsius in the shadow. The music on the massive Funktion One systems never stops for over 100 hours! Playing to a dancefloor of over 10,000 people that are truly into the music – that really blew my mind.
And are there any events coming up this year that you can’t wait to get to?
As always I am looking forward to the Ibiza season. I will probably play more than 10 gigs there and most of all I am looking forward to my nights at the Zoo Project. The location and the vibe are very special and are the best Ibiza experience one can have. Besides that I am very much looking forward to Mystic Garden Festival in Amsterdam – once again, a festival with an amazing crowd and atmosphere and it’s always a highlight in the annual calendar!
We read that you’ll be releasing with Carl Cox and Jon Rundell’s Intec Digital label this year, how did that come about?
It was quite funny. I was in Carl’s DJ booth last summer in Ibiza, but I didn’t want to disturb him, so I gave a stick with my music to my friend that works for Resistance. In the morning after the party, I bumped into Carl outside the club and he shouted: “Naka, I got your stick” while holding it up in the air. It took 2 months, but then I received the mail that he wanted to sign two tracks. These tracks where actually in high demand, I had more labels that all wanted these two, but finally, they will be released on June 14th with Intec.
And any labels we might expect to see you on during the rest of the year?
I don’t want to jump around too many labels. When I find a ‘home’ I like to stick with it, so Filth on Acid and Intec fit my sound very well and I hope I will continue releasing there. But I also have a more melodic side and one EP will be out on Berlin’s Ballroom label in April. Then in May, there will be a very special track released on Days Like Nights. It’s my remix of Eelke Klein’s Maschine 2.0 – this is one of my own favourite tracks I produced so far and it works like magic on the dance floors.
Thanks for taking some time to chat, anything else you want to mention before we go?
Thank you for the opportunity! And I would like to ask the readers to stay open minded and listening to music with an open ear. Today’s clubbing and DJ industry are getting ruled by massive cooperations that try to tell you what you have to like. Now we are seeing the system of the EDM world taking over the techno world and that’s not healthy for the scene at all. The music should do the talking and not the money.