By Carla TorresIIt’s been a big year for Belgian brothers Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike. After releasing successful tracks “Wakanda” and “Mammoth” and winning “Best Break-Through DJ” during the WMC International Dance Music Awards, the boys aren’t slowing down anytime soon. ADANAI caught up with them earlier in March just a day before the IDMAs.
They had no idea what lay ahead.
March 20th, 2013:
Somewhere in South Beach…
“I’m good with being nominated.” Dimitri says about not preparing an IDMA speech in advance. “If you prepare a speech and then you don’t win you are double pissed off. I know I would thank my mom and dad.”
DV & LM prefer to stress how excited they are about the numerous WMC events they’ve booked. No Sugar Added at Nikki Beach, the Hyde Beach pool party at SLS, and Pacha’s pool party amount to all work and no play. “Not even a tan. Look at us,” says Mike.
If they had to pick one event in particular, they most look forward to the Laidback Luke and Friends Super You & Me pool party at The National. “I get to wear a costume for Super You & Me,” says Mike. Then, taunting his brother, he adds, “He wants to be a superhero.”
Dimitri has a fascination with comics. He’s been reading them since he was a little boy, and sill has a subscription. “He thinks he’s Spiderman,” says Mike.
“He’s dead. Peter Parker is dead. After #700 they kill him off and start a new series called ‘Superior Spider-Man,’” Dimitri interrupts. Mike signals to his watch as if this is going to go on for a while. Dimitri sees him. “Never mind, I’m done.”
Men in spandex aside, Dimitri claims, “Mike’s the creative one. I’m the business.” DV actually got his start with hip-hop. It wasn’t till LM’s banishment to Ibiza one summer for bad behavior that they realized they could work together and make stellar music. At the time Dimitri was working in Ibiza. Pretty cool parents they’ve got that Mike was sent to the number one party capital of the world to learn good behavior. “It worked out,” he laughs.
After WMC, DM & LM tour Mexico alongside Chuckie and the Nervo twins. With tons of collaborations in the works and Belgium’s Tomorrowland just a few months away, they have lots of close-to-the-chest secrets. For the past couple of years they’ve been charged with providing the anthem for their hometown festival. “Tomorrowland’s not just a festival anymore, it’s a way of life,” says Dimitri.
2013 marks the festival’s first international venture outside of Belgium. EDM event company, ID&T decided on Chatahoochee Hills, Georgia for its debut at the end of September. “It’s not even confirmed we’ll be involved in TomorrowWorld (the international offshoot’s name), but as far as Tomorrowland, there’s something very unique and next level. Not saying we’re involved but it will be special,” says Dimitri.
He could be hinting at something to do with the brand new Tomorrowland comic book due out on July 17th. The story has been written by Eisner Award-winning writer Paul Jenkins (“Spider-Man,” “Wolverine: Origin,” “Batman”) and is split over four separate issues with artwork by the Stellar Labs art team (Hulk, Superman, Power Girl, Cyber-Force, Heavy Metal). The story follows the brothers – who have become the public face of the Tomorrowland festival – as they are drawn into an impossible adventure to save the vital spark of creativity from the forces that would destroy it.
Dimitri and Mike have been closely associated with the festival for the past few years and were the obvious choice to lead the way in this new adventure, especially given Dimitri’s comic book obsession. “He’s a nerd,” says Mike.
“I would like to be more like a villain,” Mike continues. “I would be The Joker.” According to Dimitri, Mike reads just as many comics as he does because he got Mike hooked. He even has an account on Marvel.com and it’s all he does when they travel.So what to they have to say about their journey together?
“Work hard and believe in yourself. Keep working when you think it’s not worth it,” says Mike. “I’ve been nurturing this dream since I was 13 and there’s been lots of times when people have said it’s enough, it’s time to grow up,” says Dimitri. Reading comic books, starring in them and traveling the world playing badass music; Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike seem to be reaping the grown up fruits of their childhood labor.
Their brotherly dynamic is what makes these two not only fun to interview and be around but also fun to watch. They’re always enjoying themselves and involving the crowd. Last time they gigged at Mansion, Dimitri fed vodka out of a magnum bottle to cheering fans. Once it was kicked, he went crowd surfing. There’s never a dull moment.
Even now, with Mike suffering from a month-long ear infection, his morale stays steadfast. Last night, they were at Story – MMG Nightlife’s (LIV) newest venture – with Chuckie. “We did a lot of drinking,” says Mike. “Story is a really cool venue. We love the Miami crowd and especially during a time like WMC when we get fueled by very energetic fans,” says Dimitri.
They perform at Story twice during WMC, but this year they don’t appear on Ultra’s roster. Why? Hesitant, Dimitri responds simply. “There’s no easy answer for that,” he says.
Makes sense in retrospect since days later, friend and current collaboration partner Laidback Luke would reveal in a short interview at The W that he had a few surprises in store. “If you’re Dimitri & Mike fans, you’re in for a treat.”
On Saturday of Ultra’s Weekend 2, while Laidback Luke headlined the main stage, Dimitri & Mike uploaded a picture to Instagram showing they were en route. Low and behold, moments later they took the stage with LL and played their new track “More” for the receptive audience and the rest of the world (via Sirius XM’s UMF Radio station).
“You guys are probably wondering who the fuck we are.” said Mike to an enthusiastic audience. “We’re Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike and we’re here to present a brand new collaboration with this guy right here (pointing to LL). Miami are you motherfuckers ready for this shit? Make some noise.”
Then, they took their shirts off and Mike ordered the rest of Miami to follow suit. Soon shirts were being thrown in the air and Ultra’s main stage played up to its high expectations. Flags from across the world were waved, and ravers flocked to witness three of the best names in EDM – a very Laidback Luke, the always smiling Dimitri Vegas, and a topless Like Mike looking to change the world one song and superhero at a time.