Belgium Band Stavroz Brings Fresh Ideas for a Minimal Techno EP, Kick Up The Dust

Finding harmony between the different instruments and personalities in a band is no easy feat. The Belgium band Stavroz has not only found it, but they’ve turned this fine balancing act into their biggest strength – both on stage and studio. Prior to 2014, Stavroz had been a DJ duo composed of friends IJsbrand De Wilde and Gert Beazar, but it was after Maxim Helincks and Pieter De Meester joined in that their sound truly flourished into the acoustic and jazz-infused strain of electronica they have become world-renowned for.

Their EP The Ginning represented a breakthrough for the foursome, showcasing their ability in combining all four members’ diverse backgrounds in punk, blues, minimal techno and world music not only in coherent but truly intimate and sensuous sound journeys. Stavroz has been on an upwards trajectory since, releasing chart-topping new material and collecting accolades, gracing international stages such as those of Coachella and Fusion Festival, and even launching their own label, Moodfamily.

This year they’re ready to shake up the music scene once again with a new release. With their EP, Kick Up The Dust, Stavroz brings to the table an array of fresh ideas, languages and tonalities – from Brazilian-sung vocals to jazzy duduk – in a warm and stripped-back journey that reminds listeners that it’s this vibrant yet harmonious exchange which makes this band so special after all.

Stavroz – Kick Up The Dust

“We like to use the metaphor of a vehicle,” says Stavroz, “some of us hold the steering wheel, others are the fuel, there’s those who keep the vehicle from falling apart, someone’s the engine…”. If the band functions as a vehicle, then Stavroz would be one hell of a smooth sailing ride.

The same can be said of Kick Up The Dust – it’s got punch, swag, and surprise but there are no bumps on the road. The EP’s title track flows from hard techno beats and wailing synths to middle-eastern inspired trumpets and climaxing percussions with astonishing naturality – as if these varying sound worlds all belonged to the same landscape and were being taken in from the passenger seat of the Stavroz convertible. A variation of moods, tempo, energy and instruments defines the whole record, in suave progressions akin to those of The Doors and Pink Floyd.

“We simply made a collection of favourite ideas we were bouncing back and forth that went well together and gave a good overall balance for a lovely short trip in our musical world,” says the band. Kick Up The Dust flows gently, but the overall mood of the journey isn’t always easy to pinpoint.


There’s a certain vagueness to Stavroz’ sound which allows for bizarre experiments to seep through without interrupting the course. “We like to keep it lightly twisted, like a wink with a frown,” says the band. In Dae El, a track featuring the Brussels- based producer and sound designer Poltrock, ethereal-sounding synths and duduk are combined with ghostly high-pitch distortions. Despite a backbone of muffled beats, the tune has vaporous qualities, reverberations that wobble and tinkle into space – it’s an easy listening experience but in a trippy, spaced-out way.

“We’re trying to go for the sweet spot between the couch and the club”. The  other guest participant on the record is the Brazilian singer and composer Castello Branco, who brings intimate Sade-like vocals to the track Valente. Beneath the sensuous Portuguese singing, rubbery scratches, acoustic guitar and horn segments turn the tune into a lush lounge piece –  somehow both chill and empowering, transparent and provocative.

“It’s quite the exercise to find  compromise within the band, let alone when you add more artists to the mix. However, this collaboration with Castello Branco proved the exact opposite. It was a very fluid cooperation that restored our faith in working with the right artists that clearly share our vision,” says Stavroz.

Like with most bands, Stavroz’ energy is best experienced live. Their performances have become coveted events, and in September the band will embark on a Kick Up The Dust tour through the US. During the period, fans will be able to experience first-hand the magic of musical synergy, as well as partake in the special dialogue that  makes Stravoz a one-of-a-kind act, “Music is a  connector, you cannot touch it, it’s about throwing energy and getting it back from a crowd. The interaction is key”.

Stavroz Tour dates:  

  • 01.09 Phoenix, AZ, United States
  • 02.09 Denver, CO, United States
  • 06.09 Cambridge, MA, United States 0
  • 8.09 Brooklyn, NY, United States
  • 09.09 Washington, DC, United States
  • 14.09 Montreal, QC, Canada
  • 15.09 Toronto, ON, Canada
  • 17.09 Chicago, IL, United States
  • 23.09 London, United Kingdom
  • 05.10 Maastricht, Netherlands
  • 06.10 Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • 07.10 Rotterdam, Netherlands
  • 12.10 Portland, OR, United States
  • 13.10 Vancouver, BC, Canada
  • 14.10 Seattle, WA, United States
  • 19.10 San Francisco, CA, United States
  • 20.10 Los Angeles, CA, United States
  • 21.10 San Diego, CA, United States


Press Release

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