Q: Please introduce yourselves.
My name is Marco Strous. I’m a DJ and producer originally from Portugal, currently residing in Manchester, UK.
Q: One person you'd dream to have a coffee with and why?
I’d love to sit down with Skream over an iced vanilla latte. Though I’d suspect that encounter would quickly turn into cocktails and karaoke, given he’s a crazy fella, and you never expect what he comes up with next. And I’m here for it.
Q: If you were to have a superpower, what would it be and why?
The ability to summon my vape at will. I’m always looking for the son of a b*tch. It’s a first-world problem, I know, but I am passionate about my peach-flavoured steam, okay?
Q: If you would have been given the chance to do a film score, what movie would you choose and why?
Harry Potter series. But I’d do a kazoo rendition.
Q: Who influenced you the most in your music career? And who influenced you the most in your personal life?
Musically, there are too many to name. Often when I stumble across any track I like, I delve deep into that artist’s catalogue of music, and they’ll completely enamour me. No matter how big or small said artist is. It’s a continuous thing as I discover new music. I guess in terms of what I currently do, it’ll have to be Loco Dice. The guy has serious style.
Personally, My mum 100%. She’s my biggest hero. She had so many cool career changes, from working with diamonds to being a pilot, to now owning her own business making artisanal soap, haha. She’s unreal.
Q: Tell us about your journey, the good and the bad that got you to where you are today.
When I grew up in Belgium, I was really into street dancing. We’d often take a boombox into town and have dance-offs. I became enamoured with how beats could move me. I wanted to make my own music to dance to. So at the age of 14, I got my first DAW on my mum’s crappy notebook, and I became obsessed. That was the start of everything. I made everything - electro, house, dubstep, drum and bass, hip hop, you name it. I produced and released music well before touching a pair of decks. And I remember my first DJ booking came before I even knew how to mix! They gave me four months to learn. And so I did. I rocked up to the gig nervous and played a terrible set. However, I also knew then I wanted to put my whole being into it. Fast forward to now, I’m extremely grateful to be doing what I love to do and visiting so many new places around the world. Of course, it comes with a lot of stress and anxiety, but the good outweighs the bad. I’m at my happiest when I do music and dance.
Q: Everyone goes through ups and downs, what’s one habit you adopt to push through the downs?
100% talking to my friends. They can lift me up without even knowing it. In this game, you meet a lot of people, but even then, it can get lonely. Or even when I get writer’s block and I get frustrated, sometimes all I need is to check up on my friends and give them a call.
Q: What is one pro work ethic that you would recommend to the readers/listeners?
Look after your workspace, keep it clean, and personalise it. Make it look nice. That space shouldn’t be a chore to go into, which can affect your creativity. It should be the space you want to be in and feel comfortable in. Also, take breaks regularly. Give those lovely ears a rest to recover.
Q: How has your music style evolved over the years?
When I first made music, I dabbled in pretty much everything. Since I’ve stuck with house music, I’d say I started using hip-hop sounds a lot in my tracks, especially the drums. I’ve picked up the tempo a lot more these days - around 130-135 bpm, with tighter drum machine beats and sassy vocal samples. The music is very tailored towards divas, haha.
Q:If you had to follow another music genre, which one would you pick and why?
Drum & Bass. 100%. I lived in Bristol for a few years, so it’s hard not to be involved in it! I love the tempo, the grimey basslines, and the parties are always fun. I’ve never gone to a bad DnB party!
Q: What are 3 tracks that got you into electronic music and why?
Boomfunk MCs - Freestylers
Louie Vegas and Julie McKnight - Diamond Life
Skrillex - Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites
All very different kinds of music, but I love music and take away something from everything. I hold these tracks very close to my heart.
Q: Tell us about your upcoming releases and plans for this year.
I just released a dope EP on Ben Sterling’s label, Planet X. Next up, I have a single track that’s been doing a lot of damage on the floors. It’s quite different from my usual sound, so it’s really refreshing for me, and the fact it’s been received so well makes me really excited to release it. Gig-wise, I’m delighted to be doing a tour in Brazil and making my very first appearance in Peru, plus a couple of dope parties lined up in Italy, Spain and the UK.
Q: Tell us a fun fact about yourself that most of your listeners don’t know.
I speak six languages! English, Portuguese, French, Dutch, Afrikaans and Spanish. It works out nicely for me when going away for events!