‘It will be beautiful’; Fedde Le Grand promises to turn heads enroute to full length album
‘This year I wanted to reinvent myself, but just for me. I want to move away from the status quo – not necessarily what everyone else is doing, but definitely give it my own twist again. Because of the easy access now attributed to this genre, music is getting somewhat generic. That just isn’t for me. People don’t have to like it but if I can at least raise a few eyebrows then I am happy.’
Fedde Le Grand is in reflection mode. He had a good year; no continent untouched, no lull in studio momentum and no sign of disdain from the seasoned Dutch heavyweight. But as he opens up to Dancing Astronaut in Amsterdam, change is in the air. At the back end of 2013, it took the aural form of “Where We Belong” – a track in collaboration with Dutch alternative rock outfit DI-RECT that not only set the tone for his impending full length album, but asserted that even the practiced icons are open to shaking things up in grand style. Given a fully live premiere at Amsterdam Dance Event, his first dance with the machine that is live instrumentation was accepted gracefully by an industry now keen to see where the surge of likeminded albums will lead dance music over the year ahead.
He confirms that 12 tracks are now committed to his next full-length album, hinting that we have only seen the tip of this particular iceberg. ‘Musically things were a bit different in 2013 and I think people will really hear that in the year to come,’ he admits. ‘I feel like people have seen a fair preview of what is to come and where my head is creatively. For me it is 100% clear. For the fans, it is going to be one hell of a journey.’The journey so far has been a cumulative affair. For the man who first stared commercial success in the face as early as 2006, it would have been too easy for “Put Your Hands Up For Detroit” to become the boilerplate solution to his sound. Thankfully, with time, a balance of the functional, the radio-friendly and the outright experimental has kept all fans guessing, seldom to a sigh of shame. Behind the scenes, Fedde has been patiently waiting to spruce up the functional like never before found in his own discography.
For some time now, Fedde’s ball park has been a festival circuit burgeoning in a seeming state of vogue. His air miles say it all, but as travelled as the Flamingo Records forbearer may be, his outlook remains cautious at best to this supposedly sacred medium for income, fandom and the posterized experience of live dance music. ‘These sorts of peaks never do last. Don’t get me wrong; I don’t want to be the end of the world guy – I think at the moment it is very good. The fact that there are so many festivals means that the competition is truly gauged, meaning more concentration and innovation. That is where this game gets really interesting for artists. You are evolving alongside that enthusiasm and that is a tough but exciting terrain to balance. Who will last? It comes down to natural selection. At some point you will end up with too many festivals and not enough people to fill them, so some events are sure to drop off. Right now I think there are some out there that can only get better and better, but you can count them on one hand.’For many, Fedde has been the middle ground between the iconic and the untouchable, a brand as honestly adaptive as it eager to ruffle some feathers along the way. With a brand new album up his sleeves, whisper of a shiny new live experience to accompany and no shortage of global bookings to his name, Fedde appears rightfully consoled with the prospect of turning some heads on the long road ahead.
Purchase ‘Where We Belong’: Beatport