Kraak & Smaak
Kraak & Smaak Biography May 2018
The Dutch producer trio consisting of Oscar de Jong, Mark Kneppers and Wim Plug released their first album ‚Boogie Angst‚ in 2005 and things immediately took off with Europe and the US all hungry for the Kraak & Smaak sound.
Performing both as DJs and with a full live band, quickly turned out to be a musical phenomenon on the Dutch club and festival circuit, leading to invitations to play at Europe’s s biggest festivals and renowned US festivals like SXSW, Coachella, Miami’s WMC and New York’s CMJ, a month-long Australia tour and remix duties for Jamiroquai among others.
The second album ‚Plastic People‚ dropped in 2008, and off that album, the hit single ‚Squeeze Me‘, made for an even more rapid international rise of Kraak & Smaak. The acclaimed UK dance magazine IDJ labelled K&S as a “Must see live act”, together with big guns such as Chemical Brothers and The Prodigy. The band subsequently performed at Glastonbury in the UK, Lowlands in the Netherlands and Europe’s biggest festival, Sziget.
During a five-week live tour across the USA they performed at Jimmy Kimmel’s late night show on ABC television and further mainstream support came from the unlikely source of US Celebrity blogger Perez Hilton. Even Kanye West (!) declared himself a fan after seeing Squeeze Me’s ground breaking video. To top things off, they won the European Border Breakers Award (EBBA), the same year as a then emerging Adele.
In the following years, the upward trend of K&S continued with the release of the albums ‚Electric Hustle‘ (2011) and ‚Chrome Waves‘ (2013) alongside a gruelling schedule of international live and dj touring including career highlight shows at Detroit Movement, Glastonbury and Exit. Key single releases included “Let’s Go Back” which featured a superb vocal from the sadly departed Romanthony which when remixed by then rising star Solomun became an absolute anthem of the deep house scene. “The Future Is Yours” saw the band hook up a second time with Ben Westbeech who at the time was hitting the top of the charts under his Breach guise and the soulful “How We Gonna Stop The Time” with Irishman Stee Downes was an instant club hit that went on to be licensed for release on Axtone Records. Moreover, new remix work came through for Moby, Aretha Franklin, Chromatics, and Royksopp.
In 2015 Kraak & Smaak started planning their fifth album Juicy Fruit. After a run of single releases on acclaimed dance labels like Spinnin’ and Axtone they wanted a return to the organic sound of their debut. This lead to a collab with Mayer Hawthorne on the successful single I don’t Know Why – picked up again by Jimmy Kimmel, and fresh new vocal contributions by upcoming international talents as Parcels, Cleopold, ALXNDR London and Eric Biddines.
Released in Spring 2016, a string of new international live and dj dates followed, with 2016 and 2017 performances in countries in West-, Central- and Eastern-Europe, the Americas and Asia, topping it all off with an extensive tour in the USA and again a live show on 2017’s Glastonbury.
Alongside their K&S work the guys also set up their own label in the mean time, Boogie Angst, which releases material from themselves and upcoming electronic and leftfield dancefloor acts Moods and Snacks.
The Summer 2017 release of “Juicy Fruit Remixed”, with input from Eli Escobar, Fouk, Purple Disco Machine, Moods and Thatmanmonkz among others, also gave a new fresh outlook on the tracks by producers they admire, and effectively rounded off the album campaign to give way to work on new material: the balearic-vibed ‘Hendo’ single was subsequently picked up by the well-known Exploited label, while the track ‘Scorched’ made waves for globally renowned Spinnin’ Records. Furthermore, recent remix work involved UK soul man Omar, upcoming Australian band Parcels and French wunderkind Roman Kouder.
This year’s Spring saw the release of the brand new single ‘Keep It Together’, with LA disco don Luxxury on UK’s Future Disco, plus a single (‘Pineapple Jam’) and dj mix compilation for Mark Knight’s legendary Toolroom Records’ Poolside Disco series – ‘Poolside Miami 2018’. Last but not least, the guys are frantically working on new single and album material to be released later on in 2018.