Belgiums Maxi Meraki has been on fine form throughout 2020 with releases on the likes of True Romance Records and this year he ramps up his efforts of truly establishing his own imprint with a third release on the Meraki Records titled ‘16 Billion Faces’ EP. We got to know Maxi a bit better including what he got up to during lockdown, his food blog and more!

Maxi’s EP arrives on Meraki Records 5th February:

How did you get through 2020, what got you through it?
The start of the lockdown here in Belgium was a period of adaptation in the beginning. But at that time I lived out of the city centre so I could go walk and run a few times a week in green and peaceful streets.
Of course I missed events or going to a bar or restaurant, luckily I was in Spain a few months and the end of the year where everything was open again. Also started my foodblog on Instagram called @merakihungry__. And most important of all I was happy with all my releases. The most proud I was of the EP release called ‘Love Story’ on Tensnake’s label called True Romance Records.

Did you manage to stay creative and to continue making music?
The next 3 months, I have new releases every 3-4 weeks. So yes you can say we stayed busy and creative haha! Looking forward to my EP release on the ‘Future Disco’ label February 26th. Bringing a cover from Aretha Franklin’s ‘Get It Right’. The vocals are re-done by Tasty Lopez. She is known from her collaboration with Mark Knight. Together they brought the successful ‘All 4 Love’.

Tell us about your label, Meraki Records – is it exclusively for music you make yourself?
Sometimes you produce tracks which aren’t 100 procent the taste of the labels you wished would sign them. Therefore I started releasing on my own label. Also I do the graphic design of the covers, so the whole project / release is something from my hands.

It has a particular vibe and style judging from the early releases on it, how would you describe the style in one sentence?
I wanted to create a more minimal deep tech vibe with this 2 track EP during lockdown. So in once sentence I would say “Time seems to stand still but the rhythm will always go on”.

You have a new EP on the way – 16 Billion Faces – tell us about it, specifically the title and the two tracks that arrive on it?
More than ever you see the true nature of people. Being with almost 8 billion human beings now, everybody has 2 faces = 16 billion faces. When you look at the track titles you’ll notice the woman singing ’to be the only one’ and ‘get what you want’. In the end you will never belong to one person even if they say you are. Also not everybody always wishes you the best in life!

What was the creative process like behind the release, anything of note to tell us?
Both tracks were created on the same day. Trying to create a minimal version of how people react and live nowadays.

In Belgium there is a bustling scene, how did you first get introduced and begin working in the industry here – what is the favoured sound there?
When you look at clubs it’s mostly super commercial or on the other hand (more) underground. You don’t have bigger clubs to go to for the more known House sounds like Defected, Black Coffee or Solomun. That’s why I’m happy to be in other cities such as Amsterdam, Ibiza or Barcelona.

If you could share one of your all-time favourite dance music tracks, what would it be?
One of my favorite tracks is Simion – Lost (Club Mix)

Away from the studio and the music industry, what do you like to do?
Next to my own graphic design and marketing, I also create for some other brands and companies. Furthermore I like to cook, go to restaurants and have drinks with friends!

Looking beyond the new music, what else do you have in the pipeline for 2021?
Started working on my own cookbook for the @merakihungry__ page as well as some collaborations to expand the @maximeraki__ brand on Instagram. Keep you posted!

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