Artist of the Week: M6January 15th, 2009
Dutchman Mark Sixma has only just landed, but has already taken the trance scene by storm with several of his brilliant productions. Though this producer likes to keep things techy and trancy, he’s also exploring the boundaries of minimal, house and even enjoys some classical piano play. Let’s see what 2009 has in stores for this hard worker.
Making a Mark
‘Destination 6′ pointed out exactly where M6 was going to: through the roof. The atmospheric track, characteristic for Mark’s style, was hailed by the trance scene and resounded in every corner of any club. That’s when Armada snatched up this youngster and a new range of productions followed: the mysterious ‘Fade to Black’, the lush ‘Amazon Dawn’ and playful ‘There And Back Again’, plus many remixes with Mark’s sound written all over. Yes, this young man has made his mark. But more’s to come. He’s coming closer to his goal: to produce fulltime. Mark: ‘I’m still working towards that goal. Luckily my boss is very supportive, so this year I’ve gone back from 3 days to 2 at my ‘regular’ job. It feels great now I’m spending the majority of the week in the studio instead of the office!’
As we know, inspiration comes in many forms. In Mark’s case, it’s not only the big masters in trance, but in classical music as well. Mark: ‘I’ve always been a big fan of M.I.K.E. (a.k.a. Push), he created some of my all time favorite tracks like ‘Live Another Life’ and ‘Strange Worlds’. Ferry Corsten has always been a big inspiration throughout the years too! Same goes for Benno de Goeij (Rank 1); one of the most versatile producers I’ve seen. Outside EDM I’d say my biggest inspiration comes from classical composers like Beethoven, Rachmaninoff and especially Chopin. I still enjoy playing their music whenever I stumble upon a piano.’
With a new, diverse duo pack coming up on the Captivating Sounds imprint, Mark is ready to show a different side: a minimal, almost tech-house like style, still representing the M6 sound but all in a new jacket. Mark has shown he’s capable of working hard, look beyond the regular and learn from the past. Mark: ‘I sometimes listen to the tracks I created a few years ago and I think I’ve improved quite a bit since then. But there’s always room for further improvement. Probably the most important thing I’ve learned about the music industry is that it’s 20% inspiration and 80% transpiration. Talent only gets you so far, you need to work hard and be persistent if you want to go places. A good social network is also important.’
Speaking of a good social network, some very exciting collabs are coming up. Mark: ‘There’s a number of interesting collabs. Paul Moelands (Re:locate) and I have been working in the studio on a regular basis which resulted in some very cool tracks! The first track will be released with a stunning remix by Heatbeat. Apart from that I’ve also been in the studio with Willem van Hanegem (half of W&W) and our first track is shaping up to become a true floorfiller! Last but certainly not least, B.E.N. and I created a brand new tune, to be released on Armada later this year.’ Plenty more M6 coming up then!
Upcoming and coming up
But first up, is Mark’s duo pack ‘Into the Unknown/Byte Me’. ‘Byte Me’ comes close to a proggy tech-house track with minimal influence and even has a bit of the typical Deadmau5 sound. All in an M6 kind of way though. Mark: ‘It’s not the first time someone’s linked ‘Byte Me’ to the Deadmau5 sound. It’s indeed a more minimal kind of track, something I hadn’t done before. But it’s always nice to try out new things! It keeps things interesting for me and hopefully for others as well.’ It’s very likely we’ll see more diversity in Mark’s productions. Mark: ‘Yes! That’s very likely. I’m currently working on an electro house E.P. with a friend, but that’s a bit too far from trance to label it as an M6 track. Of course I’ll keep making uplifting tracks like ‘Destination 6′ as well. Actually the follow-up is in the making, as well as a relaxing track comparable to ‘Amazon Dawn’. Some smashing new M6 remixes coming up as well for Orjan Nilsen, Signum, Filo & Peri and Temple One.’
When it comes to gigs, some pretty exciting things are coming up as well. Mark: ‘March 6, I’m playing at Luminosity’s ‘Before The Energy’ party with DJ’s like Lange, Alex M.O.R.P.H and many more’_don’t miss it! Furthermore, we’re planning a small tour in Australia for the end of the year and Brazil is also on the agenda! But I can’t say too much about that yet!’
In the upcoming months, we can expect a lot of interesting, new stuff from Mark. As long as he sticks to his new year’s resolution, we know we’re safe. Mark:’ I’ll go for: trying to keep improving myself technically and musically.’
More info, check Mark Sixma.com
Exclusive Mix (January 2009)
Into The Unknown / Byte Me