Paul Van Dyk Interview.


Over a decade has passed since Paul Van Dyk played his legendary first ever 6 hour set as a new resident of the mighty Gatecrasher in Sheffield. The show marked one of the most significant moments in clubbing history. This summer marks his triumphant return as Gatecrasher welcomes the return of its favourite son.


Paul has announced three Gatecrasher shows across the UK in celebration of the newly released Gatecrasher album – Gatecrasher Anthems – Paul van Dyk. The shows will take place at Gatecrasher 7 in Leeds on the 25th of September, the Millennium Music Hall in Cardiff on the 1st of October and will culminate with a legendary 6hr set on the 2nd of October at Gatecrasher in Birmingham in celebration of the Birmingham club’s 2nd Birthday.

The shows promise to take clubbers back to the halcyon days of the trance revolution. Back to a time where Gatecrasher ruled club-land with the most euphoric nights on the planet. When van Dyk was ‘Leader of the Trance’ feted for his 6hr sets. Where Gatecrasher’s trance uprising became clubbing folklore and van Dyk was enthroned as the world’s no 1 DJ.

We spoke to the man himself to find out more about the homecoming, what inspired the anthems mix, and how he feels about the electronic music scene today.

 So Paul thanks for talking to us, tell us a bit more about what inspired the track selection on the anthems Mix.

“I looked at the tracks that I knew were absolutely important, for everybody who is in electronic music, in terms of loving it, and in terms of essential tracks, looking at some classics, some stuff that’s absolutely massive right now and some stuff that’s going to be really big in the next 6 months. Mixing all that together wasn’t about a timeline, starting with the old days and the brand new at the end of the CD; I wanted to put all this together in a very musical way, and in a very atmospheric way. So when you listen to it in the car you just flow with it, when you’re listening to it with friends you’re gonna have a good time, and when you turn it up really loud you’re really gonna party to it! Which is what people should do with it really!”

You’ve been playing for Gatecrasher for over a decade now, what does it mean to you to be releasing this mix and doing the tour?

“I think it’s just always been a natural match in a way, because obviously Gatecrasher was very influential and still is. I’ve done my fair share of work and productions that have left a mark, so it’s just a good match for a project and a product like this. It’s been a lot of fun mixing the album together, and thinking back to the days when I first started playing at Gatecrasher. It was absolutely great, and obviously doing a tour now, a complete UK club tour is something that I’m really looking forward to, as the UK has always been one of my most supporting markets. It’s like back in 96, when the British clubbers discovered me, they supported me the most at that time and I’m really thankful for that, and I hope I can give something back.”

What’s been the best part of playing your legendary 6 hour sets at Gatecrasher?

“Well you know normal club nights normally program 6 DJ’s, one form 12 till 2 and another from 2-4 etc., and you know it’s pretty much like 6 hours full on, straight and banging, and if there’s a really big track out at the time, you hear  it, like at least 3 times that night! So with a 6 hour set you have much wider possibilities of playing all the different elements. As an example, at 2 O Clock its hands in the air, full force, I could then take it all the way down, play something really atmospherical or minimal, and then take it back up which makes everything afterwards feel even more intense. So the whole experience of electronic music throughout a long set is much more intense.”

Many younger DJ’s are missing out of this kind of experience, as it’s often about getting as many DJ’s on the bill as you can these days, do you think this affects their potential for creativity?

“Well it would be unfair to say their missing the creativity, I’m pretty sure that if they were given the chance to do so, they would probably be able to pull it off. At the same time of course, you need a vast and major interest in music in order to oversee that kind of set. More than just one genre really. This is why I always say it’s not just about trance, or electro, or techno. It’s about electronic music. And for me it’s about playing the best that electro has to offer, the best that techno has to offer, and the best that house or trance has to offer. And out of that you actually create something that unique, that people call the PVD Sound.”

Your own label, Vandit, has been running for 10 years now, what’s the key to its on-going success?

“Well first of all we have phenomenal artists, who actually make great music. And it’s also connected to the philosophy behind the label. We don’t have any artist deals with our artists. They’re with us because they want to be with us, and that makes the music so much better, because they don’t have to make music, they want to make music. I think this is something that’s really important. And we only release what we really really like. So therefore, we’re not a top 40 record label, but we are a very happy record label! We release our music because we love it.”

You’re such a big name DJ, having been voting the world’s number 1 twice, do you think this puts a pressure on you to deliver something that your fan’s already know and love you for, or so you still give yourself complete creative free reign over your music?

“I seriously believe that people that enjoy my music enjoy that fact that I actually make the music 100% the way I think it should be. That makes the music authentic and believable. I’ve never played a single note to achieve something that I didn’t achieve. Every single thing I have done I’m proud of because I did it with my whole heart, with a whole meaning that I wanted to put behind it. And I think that’s what people appreciate.”

“And in terms of feeling the pressure, it’s not pressure from other people; it’s my own expectations of myself, to deliver 100%. That’s the minimum of what people could expect, of what people should expect from me.”


Gatecrasher Anthems- Paul Van Dyk- Is out now.

For more information on Paul’s UK tour visit: