By: Cassi Catsaros
Q-Base, Scantraxx, Defqon 1, B2S, Reverse bass and Nike. Knockout, Timeout, Masif Saturdays and Dirty Workz. Who could forget about Fusion, WE R, The Qontinent, Q-Dance, Theracords and XXlerator. Hard with Style, The Spell of Sin, Extreme Audio and the beloved “screech”. Audiofreq, Brennan Heart, Frequencerz, Zany and Outlander. Sacrifice, Bass Control, Decibel, Unleashed: once again and pre-parties. A2, “raw or melodic?”, Thunderdome, Qlimax and KICKS.
To the average deep house or even punk rock listening civilian of this modern day and age, the previous string of words above more than likely mean absolutely NOTHING. I could have well of been writing an erotic fantasy in Arabic which would have been better understood than that last paragraph.
This 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days per year non-stop energy, dedication and hard beats is part of my life and many “ravers” all over the world can also sermonise my very statement. Cutting this all down to size, this hard thumping, beautifully crafted and ever so creative style of music is responsible for 90% of my social media posting, 100% of what I actively blast through my car speakers whilst stuck in peak hour traffic and 50% of the basis of my choice in companionship. (Boys who are intolerable to my love for hardstyle, sorry but I will be intolerable of your dick. NO NEGOTIATIONS).
So you’re all sitting here scratching your heads wandering, “BUT WHY IS EVERYTHING SPELT WITH A GOD DAMN Q” and “WHY ARE THERE FUCKING Z’S AT THE END OF EVERYTHING.” I could simply answer your questions with a simple “I do not know,” but being the great philosopher that I am, I decided to investigate and bust all of the generalisation myths about hardstyle and the community, the community that myself and many other likeminded individuals find themselves caught up amongst.
By the end of this 5 part journey, my aim is to have at least 75% of you thinking more positively towards the ravers in our society, 40% doing some musical research and opening your mind and for 90% to be a little more tolerable of this beautiful kind of music (after all, we do tolerate elevator music for society so maybe it is time we got a little bit of recognition). Most importantly, I hope to gain some more dedicated members and friends into the hardstyle community. We are all about peace, love and everything melodic here and although our “gabber” is mean, most of us aren’t.
Let me begin my investigation with busting the first myth about the hardstyle scene:
MYTH #1: RAVERS ARE ALL “FERAL”.
Ok so for those of you how do not know me or have never seen me, you probably have already formed a vivid image of what exactly I may look and act like based on the stereotypical raver image.
It would go something like this:
- Mildly overweight or underweight. Listening to hardstyle as an “escape because I am fat and unhappy” or underweight because I eat 10 pills every weekend at raves and go on crazy methamphetamine benders.
- Unhealthy (refer to above bullet point)
- Disgustingly aggressive and breaking out in a random “hakken” in suburban streets and shopping centres.
- Bad acne (probably from the accumulated methamphetamines in my system)
- One to be spotted out in public wearing a striped nautical polo, fluffy boots and “khandi” bracelets overtaking all of my limbs.
- Spitting everywhere, even whilst smoking a cigarette or necking a beer.
- Really bad regrowth because I spend all of my money on raves, drugs and iTunes.
- Owning way too many record label merchandise for my own good.
- Wearing Nike tns everywhere I go and never taking my dry fit off (unless I am washing my hair, which I do not do very often because I am always at raves or smoking crack).
- Wearing tiny little sports shorts and a crop top out clubbing.
- Wearing only Nike, Nautica, New Balance and Adidas. “I just wanna be comfy when I’m running away from cops so they don’t bust me with 100 pills and 10 grams of meth.”
- Always wearing a colourful backpack with drugs, inhalants, more drugs and glowsticks inside.
- Owning a meth lab/ knowing somebody who does; somewhere out in the Western Suburbs of Sydney.
All I have to say is, ENOUGH WITH THE GENERALISATIONS!
To bust this myth, I asked 32 strangers to rate my aesthetic appearance out of 10 and to my pleasure (and a celebratory glass of wine) I scored a mean score of 7.86 (just for your information, the median score was 8.0 for all of you statistics nerds). So, let us clear one thing up; the stigma of being a “raver” in modern day and particularly Australian society does not immediately classify you as being “feral”, a methamphetamine addict and having terrible regrowth. And even the stupidity of me having to go out and ask strangers to place my appearance on a scale of 1-10, the way somebody looks shouldn’t have to dictate their personality and ability to function in society, however, sadly, in this day and age – looks matter… apparently…
Secondly, just in case my “considerable” looks are not enough proof, I may as well just throw in a fun activity for all of you non-hardstyle listeners. If you happen to have some spare time, maybe jump on Google images and do some visual research on the actual producers of this genre of music. You will be extremely surprised to see how incredibly sexy some of them are, sexy enough to probably update your iPod and start attending hard dance festivals. If you would actually like to take up this little activity of mine, I suggest that you type the following names into your search engine: Coone, D Block & S-te-Fan, Rebourne, Radical Redemption, Adaro, Outlander, Code Black, Frontliner (hottest bald guy I have ever seen in my life) Bass Modulators, E-Force, Geck-o, Adrenalize, Chris One and just putting it out there my Mother kind of has a crush on Bas from Noisecontrollers. And it doesn’t stop there either, for all of you guys, you are lucky enough to be blessed with the eye candy of: Anime, Korsakoff, Miss K8, Dj Stephanie, Kamikaze and Lady Faith for some solid proof that there is some quality female action out there in the hard dance scene.
Thirdly, I could easily say: go buy a ticket to The Netherlands (Hardstyle’s country of origin), attend Defqon 1 and a few other raves while you’re at it and keep score of all of the good looking people that you see. I can assure you, you’ll stop counting at approximately 529 and say “Well, that chick who wrote that article knew what she was talking about.” If you’re broke or do not want to go to The Netherlands, go rock up at Bass Control in Sydney or even at Masif on a Saturday night and conduct the same experiment; you will be shocked to actually find that there are fashionable ravers, very good looking ravers and for all of you guys, fuck you will LOVE the abundance of chicks in short shorts.
Personally, I do not like making generalisations about people – stereotypes that form through different musical genres is ridiculous and these stereotypes are usually formed by those who are not even involved the genre themselves. So I say, regardless of whether you would be classed as a 2 out of 10 or a 10 out of 10, your musical choices are yours and don’t let your aesthetics (or lack of) determine who you want to be. Hardstyle welcomes everybody, whether you dress yourself in bacon or Prada…
Seeing as my escapade to bust the first common misconception about “ravers” and the “hardstyle scene” ran smoothly, I have decided to give you more, YES, I am going to give you MORE. I suggest you stay tuned as the best is yet to come…