29 april 2014


From his tiny room in Amsterdam Nachtbraker (translation: night hawk) produces house music in the night and when the sun comes up he either studies, sleeps or produces some more. After years of repeating this process Maurits has developed his own unique style and that is something you can truly respect. Not following a trend and letting your creativity do it's thing is a virtue only acquired when one has confidence in their sound. Nachtbraker seems to be on the verge of a breakthrough. But when do you breakthrough? I don't know. Maybe if you've had gigs in other countries? Check. Releases on big labels? Double check. Ass-slapping reviews about those releases? Triple check. Oh well did he do a podcast for the Muziekbeer yet? QUADRUPLE CHECK. 

I did a small interview with Maurits Verwoerd about this podcast, his view on producing and the hype his latest EP received. His EP, titled Gute Laune, was featured on the MUZIEKBEER here

What's up Maurits. Can you tell us what your thoughts were behind this podcast and how you recorded it?

Sure! This time I recorded a podcast with some dubby chuggers and deep minimal tracks. I wanted to show the other side of Nachtbraker… the darker side.

I chose to start off with a track by Floating Points (“Wires”) to slowly get into the set. I really dig that track, amazing composition (as all of Floating Points productions are). Its that kind of track where you can just dream away on but also gets that head noddin’. After the short rhodes (I must say, my favourite instrument) Pol_On comes in. This is where it starts to get deep and rough, I know that because I always get that dirty face when I play that track. It’s like smelling your own farts which smell awful but you kind of dig it at the same time.. that kind of face… 

Okay let’s move on. After that I stall it for a track or two and than the real dubby mofo’s come in. Tracks by Isherwood, Deso, Henry Gilles and friend of mine (Levi Verspeek, one to watch if you’re into this minimal deep vibes) really want to make you move every part of your body. Rauwkost (at 1hour 33min) and Rozzo (at 1hour 39min) will pull you out of the dreamy dubby minimal and you might notice you can’t prevent your feet from tapping the ground.. Finally a track I really, really like as well is by Kjofol (album on Apparel Music) damn that drop at about 1hour 53min and all these textures and percussion sounds. I just had to include this masterpiece in the mix. But just have a listen for yourself ;).

You seem to be on a roll lately. Your third release on Heist Recordings titled Gute Laune EP received a lot of positive coverage on the internet (and in sets). How does that make you feel? Did you expect it? Or was it bloody-fucking-time?

Haha, both. I did some releases on Deep Edition Recordings and Piekup Records about two years ago. I thought I was ready to get my shit out there.. but I changed my mind so I waited until I got the right sound before I wanted to release anything. The EP on Apparel Music (Lonely Wally EP) was the kick-off. Four really deep tracks for their limited catalogue. I’m really honoured to be part of the Apparel Music family now, since I followed them for quite some time. I actually included one of the four, “Aauw”, in the mix. The two tracks on Fullbarr’s compilation (which should have been released in March but they were postphoned for some reason) continued in the same vibe (except for “Shower for an Hour”).

Regarding the Gute Laune release.. I kind of expected that a lot of people would like it. Its a perfect combination of tracks for an EP. On A1 “Gute Laune” gets the mood right on the dance floor, B1 side “Bluebottle” is the intelligent one with a funky electronic vibe and B2’er “Xantippe” is the deep rough motherfucker. I really benefited from Detroit Swindle’s popularity with this release since they are in the spotlight, their label Heist Recordings is too. And that is what I need, more visibility and exposure. Both the hardest things to achieve as a producer nowadays, especially if you don’t produce simple dance floor hands-up-in-the-air tracks.

But anyways, I said I kind of expected it. That is not entirely true. The awesome feedback by legends like Jimpster and Luke Solomon, Shur-I-Kan and Till von Sein, as well as the positive and well written reviews on my EP. I did not expect that to happen. 

How hard was it to get your name out there?

Hard.. and it still is because I’m not there yet. Far from it actually. I got a great release but I think I will only feel I succeeded when I get this thing going steady for at least a year or two. So many, talented but also untalented, producers and Dj’s are doing their things at the moment. It makes it almost impossible to stand out, or at least to get people to have a really close and good listen to your music. But I’m still growing and we’ll see where it goes.

Gute Laune EP sounds mature and very distinct. I don't know a lot of producers that do things this big, this early in their 'career'. Do you feel you've made a lot of steps, producer-wise, prior to this release? 

Haha thanks, thats a great compliment. Yeah I really did make some steps, as I said before. It took me some time to figure out the right sound, but I actually still am. And I feel every good producer is. Music is moving forward, everything is moving forward and so should my productions. I try to see what other music is out there and what other well-known, but even more unknown, producers do and try to capture how they get that feeling inside a track. For me, the most important thing in a track is that it has to grab me. It has to display this kind of feeling you want to get your hands on, and you sure as hell know how.. but you don’t exactly know what it is. That is the magic behind great tracks. Producers like Fred P, Floating Points, Theo Parrish, Pepe Bradock and Henry Gilles are masters in transferring emotion and feeling in a track (and DJ sets). I know this all sounds really vague, so lets just keep it to the old slogan “House is a Feeling”.

Everybody always writes about you how you keep your head down and work hard on your music. Now you and me both know there's dozens of DJs that release nothing and only want to spin the tables. How come you've focused on producing first and deejaying second?

Simply because I like that the most. The magic of creating your own track, the control to implement anything you want in there.. there is nothing more satisfying than that. I kind of sound like an addict now right haha? Well, I guess I am.

But besides that, my second favourite thing is playing someone else’s music. The DJ in me is just as strong. Always looking for new and exciting stuff by other producers, and when I find it, I feel this really strong urge to play out those tracks. I send them to friends, post them on Facebook, play them in podcasts, let my parents hear them (hoping they would finally like the music I play… to no avail), pulling my roommates out of their beds when they’re still asleep or trying to sleep.. It’s a cyclic process which drives the people close to me crazy. Especially my roommates and my girlfriend. Oh but now I’m forgetting my lovely neighbours. I would now like to take the opportunity to thank them for not ringing the doorbell when the music is too loud.

Okay, just between you and me.. The only reason why they don’t ring is because I live on the second floor and the doorbell downstairs is broken, ghehe.

What are your short-term plans for Nachtbraker? 

I want to continue producing tracks and develop my sound. The latter would be long term since there’s no end to that. I’m trying to work on a live set, but its hard since I’m addicted to producing music. So when I finally start to work on my live set I always end up producing a new track.. very frustrating. But I’ll promise I will have that live set ready soon! Second I just bought two Technics. I really want to learn how to mix vinyl. At first I couldn’t afford turntables, let alone records. But I’m finally making some money now with some gigs. I feel obligated to learn how to play vinyl. Not because a good DJ needs to know how to play vinyl and beatmatch. But because there are so many goddamn awesome records which are vinyl only which need to be played out (see, that compulsive behaviour, that urge..).

Any upcoming releases?

Yep! Very proud to say that I have my second vinyl release on Dirt Crew Recordings, which will be out probably in September! Very excited about that. Furthermore I got a very deep dub techno’ish track coming up on a compilation for Apparel music’s anniversary this summer. I’m also talking to an English label (which I can’t mention yet) to do a vinyl release late 2014. So lots of exciting stuff coming up!

Thanks for a two hour musical glimpse inside your head. I really enjoyed it and I hope you did too. I have one last question. What's your favorite bear species?

My masculine side says: GRIZZLY BEAR YEAH!! My feminine side says a cuddly teddybear. 

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