Aug 07, 2017
Maurice West's Magical Tomorrowland
Tomorrowland is a magical experience for both artists and fans alike, but this year Maurice West’s weekend may have been one of the most special. On Saturday of Weekend 2, he made his debut on The Sound Of Tomorrow stage, dropping a set filled with new, exclusive material to the excitement of all in attendance. Only minutes after finishing his set he hurried to the Mainstage where he joined KSHMR on stage as they dropped their brand new collaboration “Festival Of Lights.” We caught up with Maurice to talk about his highlight filled day and get a look inside his work with KSHMR.
What did it mean to you to play Tomorrowland and what was your mindset going into your set?
I actually wanted to just go as a visitor this year because my friends and I have been telling each other that we have to go every year. Playing Tomorrowland has been one of my dreams ever since I started getting into dance music and producing so it definitely felt very special! Although my set wasn’t going to be on the livestream I still wanted to prepare properly and play new original tracks and edits. My mindset was to make sure everyone would have a good time and I wanted the people who didn’t know me yet to get a good impression!
How did your set go overall? Were there any particular moments that felt really special or where you felt particularly connected to the crowd?
I think I was smiling and jumping around my whole set. The crowd was super energetic and happy, which made it feel like we were feeding off each others’ energy throughout the whole set. The most special moment for me was when I played a bootleg I made of “I Will Survive” at the end of my set. Everyone was singing along and it felt like the perfect ending.
Can you highlight two tracks included in your set and why they stand out to you?
Armin van Buuren and Sunnery James & Ryan Marciano – “You Are” is in my opinion a very unique and hard-hitting track. The drop has the same melody as the break, but it still takes the crowd by surprise because of the unique combination between Sunnery and Ryan’s rhythm and Armin’s huge lead sound. I’ve been seeing Sunnery and Ryan a couple of times this summer when we were playing the same festivals and I just love them. They’re always super positive and tireless. I love playing that track!
My collaboration with KSHMR of course is a highlight in my set. Playing it gives me the opportunity to bring some different sounds and elements into the set that I haven’t yet played. Also, the drop always seems to go off!
Let’s look a little closer at that collaboration – do you remember the first time you heard KSHMR’s music?
When I first heard KSHMR’s music I immediately felt connected to it in some weird way. I felt like the melodies and harmonies had a certain depth to them that I hadn’t heard before. I loved the idea of involving unusual scales into dance music. I’d heard KSHMR’s music before, but once he started doing more progressive stuff like “Secrets” and “Memories” I got really into it.
How did you guys come to collaborate on “Festival Of Lights”? What was the production process like for the track?
Just this one day a melody popped up inside my head which wouldn’t leave and it stayed that way for about a month. I knew that it was a good melody, but I also knew it could turn into something way bigger if I’d combine my ideas and sounds with KSHMR. So I told myself, “Fuck it, don’t wait for shit to happen… make it happen!” I sent Niles (KSHMR) an email and got a reply back within a day and we started working on it. Seeing the track come together was amazing. Niles is probably the easiest and most down to earth producer I have ever had the pleasure of working with. At one point he even told me he didn’t want me to work on the track anymore because he felt like I’d already done enough of the work!
What does it mean to you be the first release on his new label Dharma?
It’s a big honor! I love KSHMR’s style and vision and it’s awesome to be a part of this brand new project.
Can you take us through joining KSHMR on the Mainstage at Tomorrowland to drop the track together?
It was one of the most memorable moments of my life so far. I actually met Niles for the first time two hours before his set. I had to play a set from 21:00 until 22:00 and was going to join Niles at 22:13 so there was really no time to think about what was going to happen. After my set I was escorted to the back of the Mainstage and watched Niles play on the livestream until I heard “Festival Of Lights” being played. The rest is all kind of a vague memory to be honest and still doesn’t feel like it actually happened. I’m happy that I have the livestream footage because otherwise I’d still think it’s a dream haha!
What has you excited for the rest of summer?
I’m very excited for Sziget Festival! My full set will be livestreamed and I’m gonna play a lot of new stuff. Furthermore I’m excited for all of the other shows this month (Portugal, Slovakia, England, Germany) and I’m really eager to finish the music that I’m working on right now.
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