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From its trail-blazing 90s rave days to giving birth to the world-conquering Tomorrowland, Belgium has long punched above its modest size in the world of electronic music. Now rising star Siege, whose techy take on house has graced labels from Strictly Rhythm and Amplified Records to FFRR and Glasgow Underground, adds to the influential acts that it has gifted the world.
Raised in Hasselt, outside of Belgium's best known clubbing centres, Siege, aka Sieg Motmans, is a beacon for the power of focus and self-determination. From recording tracks off the radio on a tape player given to him by his grandfather, to buying a mixer to try to learn to mix with this and a CD player, the desire to play music has always been with him.
Buying his first vinyl turntables before he was old enough to go to a club, instead he listened to mixes on the internet, using this knowledge to buy the hottest records of the moment. It was after playing his first major gigs just a year or two later, however, that he realised he wanted to similarly inspire others by producing his own tracks. Self taught by his own dedication and the help of Future Music Magazine, when his first remix stopped just shy of the Beatport House Top Ten his reputation was assured.
It was Defected who passed his breakthrough track 'Crunk' to Azuli, vocalist Eeva re-singing the hook to Mary J Blige's classic 'Family Affair', beginning an ascent that has made his releases a standard for DJs from Claptone, Adam Bayer and Prok & Fitch to the BBC Radio One family of Pete Tong, Danny Howard, Annie Mac and Monki.
Mixmag premiered his remix of Disciples's 'Daylight', while a heavily supported edit of Chic's timeless 'I Want your Love' has been accompanied by official remixes of other bona fide classics, one of Planet Funk's 'Chase the Sun', another of the legendary Romanthony's 'Too Long' (originally the last track on Daft Punk's seminal 'Discovery' album).
It's 2017 that promises to be his game-changing year though. As well as warming up for Hot Since 82 at Belgium's iconic Fuse club and playing the UK's WE R FSTVL, he's already made his debut at Tomorrowland. Throwing their full weight behind him straight away, the giant festival brand has also had him represent them in Dubai.
His summer release schedule is fully primed to support this step up in exposure. Hot off the back of releases on Nothing Else Matters, Amplified and Brobot, James Jackson collaboration 'Work Out', a re-working of Eddie Bo's classic 'Spank', has already received Eats Everything and Bicep approval on Shir Khan's Exploited imprint. Following on, he returns to Glasgow Underground for the techno-tinged 'Questions EP', another collaboration, this time with Illyus & Barrientos. Already further down the pipeline is an EP for Abode, with a Mr. V fronted track coming on Strictly Rhythm.
Having guaranteed his name back home, shored up by his own roving party Bandar, Siege is fast moving onto the world stage. Catch Belgium's hottest new export near you very soon.