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with 2Spade

Who are you?
I'm Ilan, 20 years old, and I study in Ghent. I started spinning 2 years ago. For a year and a half it was just in my room, but now I'm bringing it out a bit at friends' parties. I'm also working on a demo to send out to all kinds of events. I'm starting to produce, gradually, when I find time for it. I like doing quieter things like meditating, reading and so on. but I've stepped away from it for a while now because I don't find it as enjoyable anymore.                          

What pushed you to get behind the booth or get more active as a DJ?
2 years ago I was at a party with a friend, and we had seen someone spinning there. As a result, my friend had bought a turntable, the DDJ-200 I think. I was super excited to discover that turntable with him and then 4 months later I bought the DDJ-400. Whether there was a moment that pushed me, I'm not sure. I did it on my own for a long time and I thought that was really nice. Then as soon as there was an opportunity to do it for others, I was very happy to do it. It's those experiences of playing for an audience that really got me excited. In addition, my girlfriend also motivates me strongly, she makes me dream that it is possible.

Within your sets, in terms of musical style, are there influences from where you've tapped or that have shaped your style as a DJ?
That evolves. I really like the vibe of what they play at Fuse. A little groovy and also not too fast, because the new techno of today often goes a little too fast I find. I like the consistency of the Fuse. The parties I go to also inspire me. It's just little things like that. I went to a Retro Party, for example, and learned things from it. I pick up things from everywhere.

Is there a particular DJ you look up to?
Yes, several. Anetha has inspired me really hard in terms of creativity. I think she can drop certain things in her sets that you don't expect at all. Hadone plays very well with rhythms. The way he loops, keeps the music going and really creates something himself out of what he has also inspires me very hard.

You recently started playing in front of an audience; have you experienced a moment where you were like "wow this is a big moment for me"?
There was this party about six months ago. A friend of mine was with the one who organized the party, and they were looking for one last DJ to close, so she put in a good word for me. The lineup also really consisted of DJs I knew by name before, so that was nice to be among "real DJs" like that. It was more than just a party for friends, no one knew me there so I was really there to spin, which was nice.

What does the future hold for 2spade? What are your dreams?
When I dream, I think of the Main Room at the Fuse. The atmosphere between the people there is amazing. What the future brings, we'll see. I'm now getting a taste of this world, and seeing what I can do in it. I'm going to do my best for that, too. In two years I'll be done studying, then I'm going to see where I stand. Suppose I stand somewhere, then I can go for it completely.

Is there a story behind the name 2Spade?
I don't know how, but there was a song among my tracks on Rekordbox, I didn't know from where. The intro to that track was a German vocal that said "Ich Bin zu Spät," and I thought that sounded really cool for an intro to a set. I then asked someone what that actually meant and they managed to tell me that it means "I'm too late." I'm also quite often late, which is why "zu Spät" changed to "2Spade."

If there is one person you would want to share decks with, who would it be?
Then I'm also thinking of Hadone, or Jeff Mills. I think I would look a little in amazement and ask myself "can I still do something?". But it seems really cool to me!

Do you have a particular message you want to share with aspiring DJs?
Get all the fun out of it that you can, you don't have to achieve anything. If you do, you also have to be able to dream that it can be done, and then it can be done!

Were there moments that you would have preferred to have known certain things earlier as a DJ and discovered along the way?
There was a long time when I knew something was missing on a technical level. I didn't find anything on it, I didn't know what it was. There was something that the experienced DJs did in clubs that kept the flow in their sets much more active. Eventually I learned this by observing a DJ at a party named Soja. That's how I finally understood what I had to do. A kind of watch and learn. I also do learn a lot from listening in the clubs and watching. It's not something I would have wanted to know before, because suppose I knew it right away, I might have learned it in a different way. I'm glad I learned it my way, all in good time!

Interview by Tim Borlez

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