Wouter de Vink
Door Wouter de Vink

Afgelopen zomer vertelde Corey Soljan, beter bekend als Code Black, dat ook hij bezig is met een album. In de video vertelt hij onder andere dat binnen één maand de eerste preview online zou komen. Maar deze liet nog even op zich wachten en in die tijd kwam alleen de collab met Brennan Heart en Jonathan Mendelsohn ‘Broken’ online – die verscheen op het album van Brennan Heart zelf.

Nu bekend is dat hij met zijn eigen album komt, verdeeld over 4 EP’s en binnenkort een live optreden tijdens ‘Haunted – A Hardstyle Halloween’ gaat doen, vonden wij het tijd om maar eens met hem om tafel te gaan zitten.

Haunted features artists such as Ran-D, Bass Modulators and Public Enemies. How do you think that the line-up fits the Hardstyle Halloween concept?
People come for good music and I think the line up delivers just that! A lot of artists that fit the spooky vibe will be there and I’m working on something cool with make-up to fit the theme of the night.

Talking about halloween, are you a halloween-kinda-guy in general?
Sure, I love it! If there’s ever an excuse to dress up and drink it sounds like a good time to me, haha. Unfortunately it’s not really celebrated in Australia, but because of my frequent travels I still get to enjoy it.

With Bioweapon, your act together with Audiofreq, you made quite a few spooky tracks such as ‘Dead of the Night’ and ‘Fearful Symmetry’. Can we expect some darker tracks in your set at Haunted?
Definitely, I have a brand new ‘dark track’ with Sub Sonik which follows the same kind of theme and has that eery vibe. And I have another upcoming solo track from my second album EP which I will also be playing on the night. And I have some bootlegs ready to get people on their feet. Just wait and see!

Aside from that I have been totally busy with album mode and have recently dropped the previews for the first 4 tracks of my album to Spotify and YouTube. Those 4 tracks should be released officially in the next few weeks.

Those 4 tracks are part of the first EP of your upcoming album. Recently you revealed that you’re going to release multiple EP’s before releasing the full album. What is the reason for this
In the modern day I have never really believed in an album in the hardstyle world.. I have seen so many albums come and go and personally as a fan and consumer of some of my colleagues, I just felt that there were too many tracks for me to listen to at once and also a lack of content before and after.

This is why I have never done an album, but have rather focused on quality music and that one hit track through the year that keeps things interesting. Now I felt it was the right time to do something I haven’t done before. I also wanted to make sure that I didn’t just expose all my music at once and then disappear..

This is why I have decided to split my album into EP’s with a different look and campaign for each EP. It gives space to each track and videoclip to breathe.

In the album teaser you talk about huge ups and downs in your personal life. Could you describe some of the highlights of the past years?
I don’t know if I will ever be able to explain the feeling you get when you are connected with the fans while playing one of your best feelsy euphoric track. It doesn’t happen all the time, but when the gig is really good, the feeling is unbelievable..

Playing at events I would dream of attending as a teenager in Europe has also been one of my goals. As is traveling the world to play my music with fans in countries I never thought I would ever see.

Unfortunately you’re also talking about downs. Could you tell us more about that?
The first would have to be the collapse of Bioweapon within the first months of moving to Europe.. it was a scary and a tough time. To build up again from the beginning and just to pay rent while there was no more income coming in. It was a the first real hurdle of my career.

The second hurdle was my three year long visa application which cost me a lot of stress, time, money and perseverance to finally get accepted as an Aussie officially allowed to stay and do business in The Netherlands. There were a few times I was told I had 30 days to leave Europe. Not my best moments.

And the third hurdle was a personal one. Leaving behind family and friends which then smacks you in the face with the diagnosis of both of my grandparents with aggressive brain cancer… nothing can prepare you for real life shit like this and it becomes extremely painful being so far away and not being able to spend that last quality time with the people you love most.

That’s harsh, but luckily you’re still able to find the joy in making music, as well as it being a distraction. Experimenting can work as an outlet, and we often hear different edits coming from you, like the Psy version of ‘Pandora’. Will something like that also appear on the album?
I have a mixture of music on the album, mostly hardstyle but varying in feelings from raw to euphoric and including some genres I have done for years before I moved to hardstyle such as tech trance/hard trance and UK hardcore.

Let’s get back to Haunted, because you will play a special Code Black Live set. This hasn’t happened often before, right?
I wouldn’t say I’m launching a live act, though I will be delivering a special live set for b2s which will include some of my most known hits, some brand new material from my upcoming album and some music that fits the theme of the night, all mashed into a cool 30-minute power set. After all, we are there to party and the best way to party is with a drink and some music you know and love.

The speed at which music is delivered, the track selection which will be purely tracks I have worked on and i will be fitting in more music per minute than a normal hour set. Oh and it will include new tracks and a few cool edits specially for this event..

Klaar voor een griezelig hard halloween? Tickets voor ‘Haunted – A Hardstyle Halloween’ zijn te verkrijgen via b2s.nl/haunted