12.08.2016 | Words by: Jack Dolan.
Marco Sterk has never been one been one to beat you over the head with an anthem (at least not an obvious one), he prefers to come at you more subtly. In the early days when he and Orpheu De Jong were playing Cosmic Disco records to a largely empty room (the beginnings of the Velvet Morning nights), he chose to hone his talent for delivering something unexpected rather than something familiar and safe. As the years have gone on he’s become more and more adept; nowadays Young Marco plays to largely full rooms but the approach remains the same.
In an interview a couple of years back for RA, Marco lamented going to parties where “there are two DJs booked that probably have the same records in their bag.” When Marco joins forces with Norwegian legend Thomas Moen Hermansen (better known as Prins Thomas) at De School, it certainly won’t be one of those nights. That’s not to say that there won’t be points of crossover; both pack a wealth of outer planetary disco, oddball synth workouts and obscure grooves mined from Electro, Jazz, Psychedelia and all the secret pockets others overlook. It’s a safe forecast that neither will be reaching for the sure-bet bangers and while the two might inhabit neighbouring galaxies, there is a great deal of space in between them.
Thomas, along with long time collaborator Lindstrøm, has spent the past couple of decades spearheading what became labelled Space Disco through his Full Pupp label. An obvious parallel can be drawn back to Marco with his Cosmic Disco nights, although there are just as many differences as there are similarities. One thing which does run through both artist’s work is an ability to pull from a wide spectrum of musical influences and create something that is both diverse and cohesive. Putting the two DJs together in the same room on the same night only serves to reinforce this ethos.
If it does so happen that both carry a matching sleeve in their respective bags, you can bet it won’t be the one you expect. Okay, they may both have a similar stack of Italo Disco in their living rooms but when two selectors come together who pride themselves on the unlikely esoteric banger rather than the commonplace one, there’s a level of one upmanship to consider. This is what keeps things exciting. Rather than setting a destination and plotting a course, it’s about finding a way on the fly and looking out for signs. Whether both DJs agree on a route or pull each other in different directions, it’s all exploratory.