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Lucien Foort

Author: Jo Vraca
Thursday, 13 September 2001
When you think of Holland, peep shows, coffee shops and windmills may come to mind. When you think about Dutch music, you could be forgiven if the first words that spring to mind are gabber and hardcore. Although, when you consider that a few of the best remixers/producers/DJs - namely Lucien Foort and Ferry Corsten - come from Rotterdam, the home of hardcore, then it's time to start looking at the more progressive elements that have developed over the past few years.

"The sound of Rotterdam is slowly sliding towards progressive house. Techno and American garage have been the main music influences. Hardcore originated in Rotterdam but I'm happy that we have [alternatives] now," Foort laughs. "I played at the Aquabest Festival yesterday with Seb Fontaine and Danny Howells. I couldn't believe it. It was the first time in Holland that everybody was going for a progressive sound." And while the city of Rotterdam, continues to inspire Foort with its thriving activity, it's to the UK that he continues to look for inspiration. "Sasha, Digweed, Danny Howells, [Australia's] Anthony Pappa - they have been and still are the originators when it comes to this kind of music. So in Holland, the crowds are slowly accepting the different angles. For me, I was interested in that music from the get-go and I couldn't find it here so I started looking at England and after a year I realised that all the records I really liked were English…

Along with Anthony Pappa, who played at Foort's 'Singularity' night in Haarlem's Stalker club recently, the Australian theme runs through his musical choice with the inclusion of Infusion's 'Spike' on his most recent mix CD 'Singularity'. "When I first heard those bleepy sounds, I just couldn't resist. When you play it out the sounds are literally everywhere. So more please … I'm compiling the next one so could you ask [Thunk Recordings] to send me some more… I played with [Anthony Pappa] a couple of weeks ago. His goal is the same as mine - how to get people on the dancefloor and make them as crazy as possible."

Over nearly fifteen years on the electronic circuit, through the endless musical training that encompassed saxophone and orchestral instruction Foort who admits to being a late bloomer in the world of dance music production. At the tender age of fifteen, feeling that he could no longer develop his own creative ideas, he began writing rap lyrics while at eighteen he teamed up with rap group The Funky Tribe [it must have been that Beat Street compilation he picked up in the 80s] and later became part of the Quadrophonia live crew when the idea of creating his own music came to fruition. And his folks will be pleased to know that the years of sweat and tears didn't go to waste. "It really helps when you're making melodic progressive dance music to know when you're out of key. I think that it [orchestral training] does give me a little bit of an advantage. I didn't realise that in the beginning but now, after so much DJing, I get to see how a DJ/DJ works or how a producer/DJ works. It's a very different situation."

Funk Function, Foort's live project was born from an inclination towards testing the boundaries of the digital medium. "Funk Function is all about depth, warmth, percussion and murky sounding bassbins in conjunction with uplifting, filtered sounds. My goal is to get you hypnotised and let the music work your head. That's the whole point. I'm now making tunes that are completely different to that Funk Function style because I know that, with Funk Function, if I wake up in the morning and I've slept for two minutes and my head is still banging with the amount of drinks I had the night before, I know that I can go to my studio and if I start making music blindly, it's gonna turn out Funk Function. All the other projects are things that I'm really trying to develop." But while Foort may appear, in his own words, to take the music making experience very much in his stride, it's the endless<
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