We caught up with Joyhauser to chat about their latest EP, Beyond Wonderland SoCal, release ramp-up, and incoming MEMORO label!
If it includes beer or booming techno beats, you can count Joyhauser in! The Belgian duo, who gave life to their debut album, In Memoro, last year, have stayed on the production grind with the turn of the new year. Now, a month after the arrival of their Beatport smasher, “Drop It Down” with Eli Brown, Hardcore Rabbit has leaped into existence.
The three-track EP has nostalgia running deep within the community, featuring a lead single with undertones from Joyhauser’s 2017 hit, “Rabbit.” We’ll let them talk more about that in the interview below. When it comes to the here and now, smashing play on this untamed package will have you begging for a dark room surrounded by hundreds of your fellow rave heads.
For those who love their techno served up on the festival side, Joyhauser’s heavy-hitting sound palette will take you on the ride of your life. Just ask anyone who witnessed them last year at Extrema Outdoor, Awakenings, and Pukkelpop on their MEMORO Live tour. Over here in the US, they’re getting ready to unleash the power of the rabbit on Beyond Wonderland SoCal alongside fellow beat crusher Bart Skils.
But before you head off to grab your tickets, smash play on Hardcore Rabbit on Spotify and read on for our chat. In it, Joyhauser members Joris and Stijn reveal extra details about the EP’s production and talk about what they have brewing in the studio, all while making a major label announcement in the process.
Stream Joyhauser – Hardcore Rabbit on Spotify:
Hello, Joyhauser. Thank you so much for taking time out to chat today!
I’d love to kick things off with a chat about your first EP of 2024, Hardcore Rabbit. It has quite the backstory, evolving from your 2017 hit, “Rabbit.” Can you open up about how revitalizing this previous production has affected the scene?
Joris: It’s the first time in our career that we rebranded a track and re-released it. Back in the day, in 2017, Rabbit was the first EP we released on an external label. It came out on Reload from The Yellowheads and people liked it, but because we were just at the beginning of our breakthrough it didn’t get the success it deserved on Beatport.
When we were preparing our live set last year, we wanted “Rabbit” to fit but because it was a bit outdated we decided to remake it. When smashing it on several dancefloors, we felt that people liked the new vibe, so we sent it to Reinier Zonneveld and he liked it a lot. It’s nice to see new fans who weren’t there from the first minute are now re-experiencing “Rabbit” from 2017.
There are two other gems to be enjoyed on Hardcore Rabbit. Can you talk about the vision for both “Dexo” and “Blood On The Floor” individually? What were some of the most unique aspects of their creation?
Stijn: With “Dexo” we wanted to recreate the typical hard trance and hardstyle vibe of the early 2000s while still maintaining our signature energetic sound. During the creation of our live show, the idea sprung to mind.
The track came together very quickly, and after just one test before an audience, we decided we had to incorporate it directly into our live set! It’s one of the peak moments of our MEMORO Live show and we’re really happy it has now found its official release.
J: “Blood On The Floor” is one of the hardest-paced tracks we’ve ever produced. It sounds downright mean and aggressive, full of energy. We made it with a release on Filth On Acid in mind. FOA is, for us, the perfect label to showcase the harder side of Joyhauser.
“Blood On The Floor” is quite an intense title and perfectly represents the techno experience (figuratively speaking). For those thinking about stepping into this realm, can you give your thoughts on why the heavier sounds resonate with so many music seekers?
S: Well, I think most of us agree that the scene has changed a lot in the last couple of years. The “harder side of techno” is moving away more and more from what real techno used to be, and moving more and more towards the harder styles of electronic music.
We don’t care, though. We’ve never been “pure” techno artists. We just play what we like and what fits within the Joyhauser domain.
We think after COVID, the next generation of party-goers wanted to experience something fresh and new, something that felt liberating after that awful pandemic. Music is always evolving and we can only be happy about that.
You guys will head to the US in March for a back-to-back set with Bart Skils at Beyond Wonderland SoCal. Can you give us the scoop on your history with him, how this special booking unfolded, and your vision for the set?
J: Bart has always been an inspiration for us. We were already big fans of his when we were just little techno lovers back in 2008. We met each other several times at Awakenings and started talking and hugging. He’s a great artist and also such a beautiful person.
Last year he invited us to one of his residencies at Shelter Amsterdam, and now again next weekend at Lofi Amsterdam. Now, we’re looking to bring him back to one of our MEMORO shows in 2024, so you can tell we have a good relationship.
When Insomniac asked us to do a special b2b with him in the US we were really happy. I think we’ll strike a perfect balance between our sounds. When it comes to music taste, we have a lot in common, like the groove in techno. But, also some differences — like the BPM — and that will make it interesting. It’s gonna be the bomb for sure!
We also have more music news for 2024 but we can’t tell you yet, haha.
What would you consider some of the most interesting places you’ve ever played?
S: One time we played in an old coal mine, and now in March we’re gonna play in one of the biggest brickyards in Europe, in our hometown. That’ll be one for the books for sure! It’s almost eight years ago that we played there so a lot of our family and friends will be there. It was sold out in two hours. Looking forward!
Now that Hardcore Rabbit has arrived, what’s up next?
J: Soon we’ll give birth to our label, MEMORO. We waited for a long time to start it but we feel now is the right moment. When you have a career releasing on the best techno labels in the world like Terminal M, Filth on Acid, and Drumcode, you show the world what you can. Now it’s time for a new chapter.
We’ll start with an EP from ourselves and after that, we’ll release dope music from friends and young talents who we want to support and give opportunities to grow. Furthermore, we’re working on a collab with our friends Space 92 and there’ll be a remix EP coming up for our album In Memoro on Terminal M, featuring great remixers.
Similarly, with the new year comes the drive to level up. What are some areas of growth on which you have your mind set, both personally and professionally?
S: 2023 was the year we wanted to focus on the full album only and not too many releases around it. This year we’re scheduling more music again and want to do more collabs too, like we did with our friend Eli Brown. In 2023, MEMORO was born, and this year, it’s time to make the brand bigger by hosting more festivals, clubs, and AV shows.
We’re also working on super nice merchandise. So investing and putting all our energy into the concept is a real goal for us now. We also recently started with management from The Bliss Office, and we hope they’ll help us with it because there’s lots of work to do.
Before we wrap up, I’d like to turn my attention to your second love: specialty beers. You started to sell your very own following COVID, and I’m wondering if you can offer advice to others who may be thinking about getting into the beer business.
S: We’re indeed beer lovers (duh, we are from Belgium) and during COVID everybody needed to adapt in those horrible times. So we came up with the idea to create our beer. We did it together with a local brewery and created something special.
The result was a beer aged in oak wine barrels. It had to rest one year and we can say we’re proud of the result. It’s the best of both worlds and, in our opinion, accessible for men and women.
Honestly, when touring a lot again after COVID, we lost a bit of time, which is a bit of a pity. But we’re gonna work on that again with our management because it’s really interesting!