sMash2Dance was founded in 2013 when Kris Van Meel and Bart Ribbens decided to start exploring the true power of electronic drums. Together they started to create new mashups and look for a combination of VJ and live drumming. The name is based on the mix (mashup) of different words explaining the purpose of the project:
sMash: The sound of a violent impact (cfr. English wiktionary)
Mash: Abbreviation of 'mashup', this is a remix that combines two or more songs from different artists into one track
2: Stands for 'to' and the fact that we are with 2 drummers
Dance: A sequence of rhythmic steps or movements usually performed to music, for pleasure or as a form of social interaction. (cfr. English wiktionary)
Biography Kris Van Meel
Kris Van Meel started his musical career at the age of eight in the local music academy by playing the oboe. With this instrument he has been for many years a member of different local music associations. On his fifteenth year he switched to his first love, the drums. Pretty soon he chose for a music education at 'Dé Kunsthumaniora' with Koen Lieckens (K’s Choice) and started playing in his first band: The Hobbit. After highschool he was continuing his training at the Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp. There he attended classes of Jan De Haas, Stephane Galland (Aka Moon), Chander Sardjoe, and many others. He also participated in workshops and practical training with Antoine Cirri, Dré Pallemaerts, Hans Van Oosterhout and Michael Schack. Currently, Kris is teaching musical education, drums and combo at the 'College van het Eucharistisch Hart' in Essen and at the local music academy in Wuustwezel, Brasschaat and Kalmthout. Over the past twenty years he has been playing with Steel Sender, Henry V, Nhoa, X6, The Nightcreamers, 10tation and many projects of Robin Aerts (het zesde metaal). At this moment he’s a member of the rock coverband Barking Bruce and his dance project sMash2Dance.
Biography Bart Ribbens
The passion for music originated when Bart started his first keyboard lessons at the age of seven. After two years of exploring the first sequences of notes and chords he wanted to become a drummer, but he never stopped playing the keyboard. There was always the fun of playing the music on the radio. After a few years of private drum lessons he joined the local music academy where he first met Kris Van Meel. From this point on his journey through many local bands started. The corresponding rehearsals had made it impossible to continue the keyboard lessons, but there has always been a keyboard in the living room. It was there that an exploration of sounds started. With one of the first General MIDI keyboards it became possible to reprogram songs from Jean Michel Jarre, Vangelis, etc in a fast and convenient way. To create realistic remakes he started looking into the sound editing and layering options of the predefined sounds. His interest in music styles changed from blues to pop and finally to jazz. But as soon as he started partying, he was wondering why people were dancing and how the technicians were able to synchronize the lights and the music. With the introduction of broadband internet it became clear that it was time to start exploring the power of sampling, VST plugins, etc. The keyboard was relocated and connected to the computer and until today there has always been a MIDI device connected to his computer. After years of exploration it was time to use all the knowledge in a new project and sMash2Dance was born.