Last year, we featured Subway Music’s head honcho Nicon. After publishing, we put our minds together and decided to bridge the relatively short gap between the UK and the Netherlands more often. We subsequently had the pleasure of releasing an awesome free download from Requake as a further collaborative piece with Subway, but have yet to make any headway with the collaboration this year.
Although we feature producers and DJs regularly here on FKOF, we thought it odd we’ve yet to feature many MCs. Having met him at the first Blendits event of 2014, we thought it was time we shone some light on an MC who’s received more than 10 residency spots over the past couple of years within the Netherland’s bass scene. He seems to becoming the voice of the biggest events both within and outside of Holland’s borders and continues on a well-deserved upward trajectory.
He’s a man extremely dedicated to his ‘weekend profession’ and is the right man to ask for keeping your crowds energised for hours and hours. This is MC Swift – in his first ever(!) interview…
Hey Arshad, how are you? I’m doing good man, can’t complain!
Good to hear. For the people that don’t know, who are you and what do you do for a living? I’m MC Swift, based in Rotterdam. I MC on both DnB and dubstep.
Besides that, I’ve also almost finished studying Architectural Engineering.
How did it all start for you? Any particular influences? There was a moment at Triple Vision. MC Dart came to the store and I asked him if I could hang out with him and drop some bars at a party. He was like “Yeah cool let’s do it”.
A couple of weeks later, we met at PRSPCT and dropped a few bars. From that moment on, I was like “this sound is the shit”. DnB and dubstep were genres I really wanted to get into and that moment kept me going. Slowly the hobby took over my life.
What’s it like being the voice of a party? I hadn’t thought of it like that until you just asked me that… It feels cool and maybe a bit unreal!
Who’s inspired you over the years? And how have you become so prolific in such a short amount of time?! Basically, Dart who was the main inspiration because I saw him as the true definition of an MC when I grew up, as I started going to the parties during that time. It just basically happened, as I immediately received love for my hobby at the time, and started to develop into something bigger and more serious. I started writing more bars and doing more shows; subconsciously it gradually helped in developing my own kind of style.
As I travel a lot, I write lyrics on the go or wake up with ideas while listening to Yunx podcasts on Rinse FM (for example). I always think of bars when I’m busy, I really can’t sit down and write – it has to come naturally.
People started to notice me and before I knew it, I started doing shows in Belgium, one in Hungary and I had gained more residencies in Holland. I feel blessed!
You’ve recently had a tune pressed on vinyl, with an EP that recently came out on Demand Records, alongside the Belgium producer trio Bredren. What happened there? I met Bredren at a festival in Belgium where we both played, but as Bredren is Requake we already had been in contact. We played at the festival together and that led to a collab called Control. It ended up getting released on vinyl, my very first one!
What can you tell us about your relationship with Subway? Have you got any other duties besides your work as MC? Yeah, we don’t have a deal or anything, I just help out where ever I can. For example, brainstorming about line-ups or thinking about the event concepts. It’s mostly for the fun of it and I get to help one of my best friends out!
You’ve been done a few collaborations with producers, including Leon Switch. What can you tell us about them? How did they come about? Well, I met Leon a couple of years ago in Paard van Troje, the Hague where I hosted his set. We stayed in touch and met up at other parties while he was still playing as Kryptic Minds. I even ended up hosting Yunx at Outlook Festival by coincidence! and after Kryptic Minds parted ways Leon sent me some beats. I’ve actually featured on one of them, which is still in the making so keep an eye out!
Watch out for the volume!
Every Dutch person I talk to who has caught you live throughout the Netherlands agrees with me. Your voice has something that captivates. How do you feel about that? I feel blessed that people feel captivated by my voice, but it’s not really something I think about. I just do what comes natural and it’s just how it goes.
We’ve heard, more than a few times, people who don’t quite like (or appreciate) an MC or host – either recorded or live. What are your thoughts? I think an MC is like an add-on (not every set needs one per se), but it creates more interaction with the crowd. Having a voice talking to you, a person that is someone that hypes people up, helps them to get in some sort of vibe. But in the end, it is just a matter of taste.
Given your huge number of appearances on stage, you’ve probably got some pretty epic stories. Are there any highs or lows that stand out in your life as MC Swift? Most of the parties that I went to were pretty crazy, but the PRSPCT raves are simply legendary.
We’ve discussed the collabs you’ve done, but are there any other possibilities of you working with producers? Or you venturing into producing or DJing yourself? I’m not into producing but who knows in the future. Right now I’m working on collaborating with some DnB producers and other musicians I think make sick music.
In your opinion, what makes a good MC? A good MC sets a good vibe throughout the whole set, bringing diversity and originality. Good timing is really important, as it has to add something to the music.
Are you a freestyle MC or do you go to the dance prepared with a few lines written? I say whatever comes to mind, some lines are already written, but it’s not like I prepare my sets.
What piece of advice could you offer to those looking to become an MC? Work hard and enjoy what you’re doing to become better at it. Practice makes art!
What’s the one tune being played out at the minute that you know will always destroy the dance? Under Control…
Thanks for your time man! Any final words or shoutouts? Big up to the FKOF crew for taking the time to have me. The Subway, Major League and PRSPCT crews and all the people that have been supporting me. Much love to all the people that have taken the time to read this interview as well!
Thanks to Korrupt for putting this awesome feature together
You can buy MC Swift’s debut vinyl release alongside Bredren on Demand Records here
Images (where watermarked) by FKOF photographer Luiza Photography. Check her out!