We interviewed Coone, one of the most outstanding hardstyle artists of the last decade, about his new album 'A New Decade'.
One of the best soldiers of hardstyle in recent years. In his uniform, hang medals of high value. As he refers to himself in this interview, he always worked to bring this genre to the top. He always did, always succeeded, and will continue to do so during this new decade.
Today, we have the pleasure of talking with Coone for his new album 'A New Decade'. A combination of solo tracks and collabs with great artists and composers, teleporting between subgenres and with the conviction that the most creative Coone is here.
1. Welcome Coone! It's an honor to have you here. From your first release in 2002 to 'A New Decade', your career has been impressive. How your music and style has evolved over these two decades?
Thank you for having me! Yes, so my first releases where just called Hard Dance back then, until people started to name it ‘Jump’. I did that for a few years. But also Hardstyle was coming up… Until eventually I was playing almost 60% Hardstyle and 40% Jump. That’s when I decided to go further with Hardstyle. I was hooked! At the moment I feel that on a production level I’m still learning and getting better each day. That’s why you have to listen to the INTRO of ‘A New Decade’ album really good!
2. A New Decade' started in a vacation house in the Belgium countryside, where you invited some of the best singers and songwriters of the scene. How did this idea transform into the album we have today?
The intention was to write as many song ideas as possible. But because the vibe at the writers camp was so unbelievably good, I started thinking about a new album. And because 2023 marks the date of a new decade in my career, the answer was simple.
3. At Reverze, you premiered 7 new tracks, including that 'Nothing To Lose' that we love so much. It was the first showcase of your album and we had the pleasure of enjoying it live. How was that experience for you and what impact did it have on your path to the album release?
You know? I was so happy after this show! You have to realize that not all new tracks work from the first time you play them live. It’s always a scary moment. But almost EVERY track when off on the dance floor. You are talking about ‘Nothing To Lose’, which is a core old school sounding Hardstyle track was a risk. Because that’s not the sound in Hardstyle that is dominating right now. But like I said, also that track… crazy response!
4. Your album features a wide variety of genres and collaborations, with many nods to the past, plus you've worked with Brennan Heart, Da Tweekaz, Rooler and more artists yet to be discovered in the tracklist. What was it like working with these artists and what did they bring to your album?
If you look at the collaborations featured on the album… These are for me still the boys that are dominating the scene worldwide. There’s a bit raw hype at the moment, but it’s these guys who are still killing it around the world. So I’m very proud to have (almost) all my favorite colleagues on the album!
5. You've been a pioneer in many things, from being the first hardstyle artist to play at the Tomorrowland mainstage to having your own album countdown on Spotify. You were even going to be the first hardstyle artist to play at the Worldwide stage at Ultra Miami, but sadly it was cancelled due to the pandemic. How has this influenced your career and what does it mean to you to be a pioneer in the hardstyle world?
Oh, but there are many pioneers in our scene. I just see myself as a soldier who wants to get my favorite genre of music worldwide. Of course it’s an honor if things like this happen. But I keep on marching forward until the entire world realizes who awesome our style of music is!
6. You talked about 'A New Decade' not as a celebration of the last 20 years, but as the beginning of the next 10 years of dedication. What can we expect from Coone in this new decade?
You can expect a even more creative version of Coone. I mean, if you look how kids these days think. They are more open to different genres and styles of music. That’s a good thing! See what’s happening in Techno these days. That genre contains a lot of early Hardstyle influences. It’s also exciting to see and hear how music evolves. Like what I’m doing on this album as well. It features quite a few elements of oldschool, jump and hardcore influences. That makes it fun! The best example is ‘Needle On The Record’ on the album.
7. You are part of 'The Elite' as one of your alternative projects with Da Tweekaz and Hard Driver. Is there any chance to see you guys again this coming year?
Yes, 100%. We are sharing demo ideas in the groups app for our next track. So that project is still up and running.
8. To finish, changing the subject a little bit and as a regular attendee of Ultra Miami, these 2 years have been amazing seeing you play there. I still remember your words at the end of your set that someday we would see a hardstyle act on the mainstage. Can we expect to see Dirty Workz at Ultra for the third time?
That is still a secret. What’s not, is that I still stand behind these words. I don’t mind if it’s gonna be me or some other Hardstyle act on that Mainstage… But better believe that some of us are gonna pull this of. One day, in this new decade!
We would like to thank Coone and all his team for all the facilities in this interview and wish the best of success to a great artist both inside and outside the booths. We can't wait for our paths to meet again at a festival!