Belgian DJ/Producer Duo Filterheadz, comprised of brothers Bert and Maarten Wilmaers has become an industry fixture in the past decade. Having released “Sunshine” on Carl Cox‘ Intec Digital nearly 20 years ago, the duo now looks forward to their latest release Emerge EP on Unity Records, a techno-centered EP to complement their high-energy DJ performances. For the anticipation of their latest release, they answered a few questions about dance music, their inspirations, and what the past year has been like for them.
This latest EP is out on Unity Records, you’ve made quite a home there. What was building that relationship with D-Unity and his team?
It all starts with the music. We always enjoyed playing Unity tracks in our sets so when Damian asked us for some original music we were happy to work with him. We feel the label is a great fit for our music.
You’ve been around the music scene for quite some time now, what’s one thing that sticks out to you as having changed in the past 20 years?
Apart from the influence of social media and the evolution of technology both in the studio and on stage, I would say the sound of techno itself has gone through a cycle over the last 20 years. From the harder and faster sounds in the early 2000s slowing down with minimal and getting more tech-house influenced a few years ago, we now are more or less to where we started 20 years ago.
You’ve mentioned that starting in rock ’n roll led to a sudden discovery of house music, what was that discovery like?
While we were both studying at the Jazz Academy in the mid-nineties we got exposed to Acid Jazz. That led us to discover US house from the likes of David Morales, Roger Sanchez, and Masters at Work. The real eye-opener happened when we got lucky to get free tickets to see Underworld in concert. That evening probably had the biggest impact on us. It had the energy and songwriting of rock music but with a fresh electronic sound. That really put us on our way to pursue a career in electronic music.
As producers, it’s great to look back a bit further in history and not just follow the latest trends. It gives you a deeper understanding and fresh perspective.
Filterheadz on what makes for innovative production
How has the pandemic affected your production? Did you find yourself in a creative rut or have you been able to maintain a steady flow of inspiration?
The whole pandemic situation gave us the chance to reflect on our music and productions. We started to dig deeper into the history of house and techno. As producers, it’s great to look back a bit further in history and not just follow the latest trends. It gives you a deeper understanding and fresh perspective.
What are you looking forward to the most as the world is regaining some footing with quarantine?
Human interaction. Being able to travel all over the planet again. It’s ok to work in the studio but nothing beats playing in front of a crowd and see people react to your music.
Anything else you’d like to share?
We’d like to thank everyone for checking out our music. We hope to see everyone in real life soon!