The initial EP release immediately began to gain clout in the industry, which opened up opportunities for the brothers to play alongside industry heavy hitters like Calvin Harris, Tiësto, Zedd, and Deadmau5. They now have a variety of major accomplishments under their belts– ranging from playing mainstages at massive festivals to their single “Tsunami” going double platinum and ranking in peak chart positions globally, being no stranger to the US Top 100. From what can only be described as a whirlwind start, the group is now currently based in the heartland of the American music industry– Los Angeles, California; a long way away from their humble roots in Toronto, Ontario.
Upon initial exposure to DVBBS, you’ll likely pick up on their unique sound that can’t be pigeon-holed into one genre. The duo is firmly against putting themselves inside a creative box, confined to limitations and stagnant growth. Chris told us “as children we were pretty blessed to have been able to travel to a lot of countries, so we definitely picked up on a lot of those vibes– South American music, Caribbean, spent some time in Barbados so we picked up on reggae music, punk rock.” Their process of creating progressive house music is birthed organically out of just jamming with a few instruments and seeing what they like, putting an emphasis on new sounds and creative growth. The brothers split writing and production credits because they work in conjunction to develop every song, each adding their own flares and balancing one another out. Alex describes it as “a 50/50 process in the most opposite way possible.”
Although music purists out there may disagree with the value of electronic instruments, Chris points out that as is the case with most of the elements of modern lifestyle, there’s technological advancements happening constantly and it’s the natural progression of modern life to turn towards those gadgets and embrace them– it should be no different with music. Alex chimed in “Things are changing. You need to be ahead of the curve. You have to have your ear to the street and know what the kids like, what people in their mid-20s like, what elderly people like. We approach the studio with that in mind. It changes all the time, but we change as well.”
In an age of digital music consumption, the duo sets themselves apart with their legendary live performances, creating an energetic environment that transcends a typical live music experience. They design the show format meticulously with background stills, orchestrated lights, and a thumping base tuning to make the experience extra sensory to appeal to the individuals sense of the audience. The brothers can influence giant crowds in overpacked venues and command attention at huge festivals, creating a natural draw towards the effervescent baselines, sharp leading synth riffs, and seamless production. Most fans walk away savoring the upbeat vibe, dance party atmosphere, and memorable beats that set DVBBS apart from other EDM artists in the scene.
Most recently, DVBBS released “Listen Closely” featuring fellow Canadian artist, SAFE. When asked about their current placement in music, Alex responded “Right now we’re currently loving writing pop songs, we love producing for upcoming rappers or established hip hop artists. Some days we’ll wake up and because of our love for all genres of music, we may wake up and start working on a reggae record. It’s a big blend of how we’re feeling. That’s basically what our music is.” We at Spirit & Flesh are ecstatic to see what new creations loom on the horizon from the minds of Alex and Chris van den Hoef.
We’ll be keeping up– make sure you are too! To learn more about the electronic house duo and to keep up with their touring schedule, visit DVBBS’ official Facebook page, their website, or follow them on Instagram.