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Deeparture: “Music is the most central theme in my life”

Dominique Vijverberg, better known as Deeparture, is a Melodic Techno DJ/producer from Amsterdam, The Netherlands, who is steadily building a reputation for exquisitely crafted and well-programmed melodic house.

His musical style can be described as uplifting, extravert, melodic and climax drove. A true blend of the emotional and rhythmic content of progressive house, combined with high-energy buildups and basslines found in techier styles.

Connect with Deeparture on Soundcloud | Instagram

Thanks for talking to us today – how’s the year been treating you so far? 

Thanks for having me! The year has been very kind to me thus far. I started the year with a release I’m very proud of, called Appreciation, I have many more exciting ones in the pipeline and the agenda is filling up nicely with great events. Most of all, I’m enjoying the process more than ever. 

First of all, we want to get to know you “from the beginning”. How did your history with music begin?

I grew up listening to many genres, but I got caught with the electronic virus when I was around 12 in the early 2000s when Vocal Trance was a big thing. The emotional electronic genre got me hooked and it never faded since. The subgenres I loved the most, but grew particularly to Trance, together with Hardstyle (and even Hardcore). I think my love for the dancefloor developed with these hard dance events, whereas the deeper connection with the music itself developed more due to the more ‘kind’ genres of Trance and Progressive.

I grew up listening to A State Of Trance and Trance Around The World (which became Group Therapy at some point). Melodic Techno as we know it now didn’t exist at the time. I started DJ-ing regularly in my teen years but didn’t pursue anything around producing yet, as I didn’t have any musical background and didn’t play any instruments. I did notice my own obsession though with the music, knowing every new track, and being completely occupied constantly with the latest developments.

When I started college, I finally started fiddling with Fruity Loops (FL Studio) in my spare time. This was also the time when Youtube tutorials started to emerge more and more. Not as professional and abundant as today, but still more than enough to learn the basics. The real passion definitely started here. I became obsessed with making music as I am still now, almost 12 years later. This was also during the time where Trance and more downtempo genres started to blend more (though Anjunadeep for example) and ‘modern’ Melodic Techno made its entry. This influenced me greatly: more ‘groovy’ music instead of that ‘big room’ sound, but still with a subtle emotional depth. 

For you, what is the magic of music? The thing that makes it such a big part of your life?

Music is, apart from my loved ones, the most central theme in my life. It comforts during hard times, it enhances the peaks and it acts like an archive of memories. When you hear specific music, there’s always a certain memory connected to it. They can be specific ones or a reminder of a certain period of your life. I also have a strong connection with the dancefloor myself, apart from enjoying to DJ. Being able to make my own music is the ultimate creative outlet. The feeling when you create something new that really excites you is magic on its own. Anyone who creates (whatever that is) will relate. Being in a position now where so many people want to listen to it and me getting to play the result of these solitary musical sessions is the cherry on the icing.

From all the artists that have supported your music, is there one in particular that makes you feel proud of what you’ve accomplished? 

If I would mention one absolute recent highlight then I have to say my contribution to Anjunabeats Volume 16 with my track Brake ft. Belle Doron. Knowing that these compilations are handpicked by Above & Beyond themselves is quite a milestone for me. Having said that, seeing the support from so many artists who have been inspirations for my own musical development makes me just as proud.

How important is road-testing your tracks at live performances before you consider them properly finished? 

Very important! The best tracks are often the ones that are abundantly road tested and tweaked based on the crowd response. Sometimes you know immediately that an idea is going to work, sometimes it feels like rolling dice haha. Crowd response is the most honest form of feedback and you notice quite quickly if changes are necessary. 

How important is harnessing and evoking emotion in the music you create? 

My musical style is mostly based on melodies and chord structures. I get a lot of inspiration from film music and I usually try to incorporate a similar emotional load to my own music. Working with melodies and chords that ‘hit’ the listener is very important to me. Once I feel it myself, I know I’m on a right track.

What does your current studio set up look like? Lots of hardware, or are you mainly ‘out of the box’ type producers?

My current studio has quite some gear, My favourite synths are the Prophet 6 and the Moog Sub37. Having said that, I find myself working with most software these days. Many plugins are so versatile and sound so natural that it’s almost impossible to make a distinction as a listener. Of course, there’s no such thing as twisting the knobs yourself live when using hardware, but using software has the advantage of endless flexibility in terms of saving/automating everything, even when working from outside the studio (which is usually the couch for me).

What should we be looking out for from you in the next few months? 

Music-wise, I’m finalising a few EPs at the moment. I’ve released a lot of music over the last few years and decided to pace it down a bit this year in terms of quantity. I want to focus more on keeping it interesting for myself and taking more time to experiment with new creative ideas. I finished a lot of new music with fresh ideas recently, some instrumental and some with amazing vocalists, so I look forward to announcing the next release soon. In terms of performances, you can find me at various nice events this season. Keep an eye on my socials for all the dates!

What is the best advice you have ever received as an artist?

Honestly, I learned more from receiving bad advice than from good ones from people who claim to know how the world works haha! One piece of broader advice that always stuck with me was a scene in the Avicii documentary. He talks to a reporter about it ‘being almost a universal truth that when you work hard enough, doors start to open and things start to happen’, as he constantly saw this happening around him. This is one piece of advice that actually checks out haha.

Thank you.

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