Where My Head’s At: R3hab

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“Where My Head’s At” is a new feature from Dancing Astronaut that gives readers a quick glimpse into an editor’s personal music tastes and how they developed. Subject matter will be all over the map, but we want to let you get a feel for individual editors, and where their heads are at.
It was July 4th of this year and my buddy and I had just arrived at Encore Beach Club hours before the champagne bottles would be sprayed from the stage by Afrojack, Steve Aoki, Lil Jon, and R3hab. It was 11:30 in the morning, the pool was practically empty, and the music was playing louder in my head than out of the speakers. That’s when I spotted a guy in a roped-off area wearing  a purple deep V-neck clutching a pair of headphones as a couple of smokeshow waitresses in red bikinis surrounded him. I recognized R3hab from some photos I had seen, and that’s when we approached a member of his entourage to ask if we could chat. Without hesitation, he came over, shook our hands, and talked to us for a couple minutes. Keep reading for more.

R3hab: “What’s up guys?”

Me: “R3hab, you’re the king, bro!”

R3hab: “Thanks man. How are you guys up so early?”

My friend Mark: “Uh your music…”

I forgot to mention my buddy had woke up that morning and turned the “Bottle Song” on at full blast. I also forgot to mention I have a serious weakness for Dirty Dutch bl33ps and chainsaw madness — both of which happen to be R3hab’s specialty. To put it simply, Dutch house — particularly R3hab’s tunes — makes me want to party. They make me want to scream, jump around uncontrollably, take part in totally consensual womanizing, bro out, etc. No other music has had the same effect on me since Blink 182.

Fadil El Ghould, AKA R3hab, another talented Dutchman signed to Afrojack’s Wall Recordings, has had arguably the biggest and busiest year out of any EDM producer. Just take a look at the list of tracks and remixes he has released this year, including: “Prutataaa,” “The Bottle Song,” “Give Me Everything,” “Koko,” “Til Death,” “Fight Club is Closed,” “Last Night,” “Something On Your Mind,” “Drunk Tonight,” “Bounce,” “Judas,” “In Case I Fall,” “I’m Still Hot,” “Champagne Showers,” “Sending My Love,” “Dance Without You,” “Never Will Be Mine,” “Wepa,” “Papi“. 19+ songs. Who else has done that?

The only argument I have ever heard against R3hab is that a lot of his drops sound similar — and even I will admit that some of them do. But that signature drop is perfect. You could even add R3hab’s chainsaw madness to a Nickelback song (my least favorite music ever created) and I would probably be inclined to put it on my iPod. But R3hab’s music is more complex than a few giant drops, and you can see it in his older material, the stuff that came before his newly recognized fame. Don’t believe me? Check out this set from EDC to see a little bit of his roots. His SoundCloud spans genres from Jungle to Dutch House and touches on a little bit of everything in between. Thinking of R3hab as a one-dimension producer who is only capable of copying and pasting his perfectly-crafted Dutch synths from track to track is blasphemy as far as I’m concerned.

Call me simple-minded or tell me I know nothing about house music — I don’t care. If there could have been one song playing at my Senior Prom, or when I lost my virginity, or at every college party, I wish it would have been a R3hab track — “Mugwanti” in particular. I’ve heard through some friends of friends that drugs have the ability to enhance experiences. That’s R3hab’s music for me; addictive and heartpumping. It’s a shame I only recently discovered his music, but I guess that’s exactly why I’m so excited for the next round of bl33ps to come.

So, where’s your head at?

Check out R3hab’s Pacha NYC debut, Friday, 16 September, 2011. Tickets here.


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