01. What was the scene in Germany like when you started out?
It was the time electronic music was becoming the big thing so the scene was about to explode. Many clubs started playing this new sounds coming from Detroit and Chicago. Pretty fast a German scene started growing as well.
02. You have managed labels for some time what changes have you seen?
As it got pretty easy producing music on any computer , and more and more people do something, there’s so much music on the market. On the one hand it’s good for the general development of everything but on the other hand it got harder getting through when you’re a beginner. The easiest way to find interesting music is to follow established names you like. That’s what most of the customers and djs do. On the label side it got quite hard establishing new artists. Even when you’re a successful label and sell 2 releases in a row not a lot of tunes, you get less support from the shops, from the clients from the media as well. Pressure got higher from that side and everything turned faster. Most of the tracks seem old after 2 weeks. That’s the main change I think.
Also it’s not true running a label got cheaper than before. Being successful means you have to spend money in high profile remixers, promotion and web 2.0 communication.
03. Do you think there is a particular reason that Germany was starting to look like vinyl’s last stand?
I am not sure if this is really the case. I heard vinyl is back in fashion. In places like New York or other cities people start buyin vinyl again. And I am not only talking about electronic music- its any kind of from rock to hip hop.in fact vinyl sales increased the last 3 years about 20%. You should not forget there’s much more labels out there. Single labels might sell less but in total it went up.
But Germany has the strongest club scene in the world right now. That means so many producers and djs from all over come here to live in Berlin. Labels are there and electronic music culture is pulsating, this leads to more vinyl sales I guess.
04. Do you still play vinyl?
No I stopped playing vinyl when the first final scratch was released. I still like the feeling of playing with turntables that’s why I use in many Dj sets still time code vinyls. But generally for me vinyl is done. I don’t want to jump into this discussion but I can not understand why there’s labels who release vinyl only and try to fight digital releases. I own about 60000 vinyls what proofs my love for that. But I always was guy who tried to look forward. Playing with traktor and doing a different kind of performance instead of playing one record after the next is the thing I like. Its like in my studio: I own a Studer tape machine and it’s amazing. But one day tape was over, it was even better than vinyl from some aspects, but no one can stop a technical development.
Any way we do still manufacture vinyl with our labels even though it’s expensive and I think everyone should chose what he likes best.
05. How did you arrive at your ‘Electro-Tech House’ style?
This is something what happens slowly. I try to be open for any kind of music and in fact I like pretty different styles. That doesn’t mean I would play all of that. But stagnation is something I don’t like. Over the years my style changed and sometimes of get inspired by other releases, ,djs or producers and this gives ou a slight kick into a different direction. At the moment I am aware that nudisco and deep house is the thing but I don’t want to quick change my style just because it’s what everyone does. I try to follow what I like. Kling Klong is one of the best selling labels so we dont think we should change something. By the way I think music will get faster soon again. We will see…
06. Your label is called ‘Kling Klong’ presumably after a certain recording studio. Can you tell us about the effect of hearing Kraftwerk when you were young?
Haha actually no that was not what I thought about. It came more from the kind of Kling Klong sounds at a time where in. I didn’t think of Kraftwerk, even though some people didn’t believe this. Another funny story about the name was that Sharam Jey was pissed as he believes I stole the name from his label King Kong what I also never had on mind.
But coming back to Kraftwerk. I definitely liked what they produced and it was without discussion a milestone in music history but I never have been that huge fan. A few songs I listened to when I was a kid but that’s it.
07. Where can we catch you this summer?
This summer for me is avelling like crazy. Been to china lately, went straight to Chile and Argentina. Then I had 2 nice gigs at Sonar. In July I will perform in Seoul, a nice festival in south of France, 10 days Mexico tour. August is sankeys Ibiza, a festival in Russia on the black sea and then Brasil. In between I move to Berlin for living and building a big studio with 2 partners so summer is busy than ever.
08. What’s next for Klink Klong?
right now we just released our 7 years anniversary compilation with tracks from our regular producers and ourselves (My partner Rainer Weichhold and me). Next one is Rainers new single teaming up with Nick Olivetti. Then also a new single of mine with remixes by Santé and Benny Grauer will come out. Followed by a classic from the trancesetters with Ray Okpara and a rmx by myself.
09. Can you tell us about the dj mix?
Rainer and me picked our favourites from the last 2 years and each of us did the mix. It was pretty hard because we could have chosen every track as we always love what we release. By the way we only release tunes we both like. We have slightly different taste so this sounds easier than it is but when we like something it mostly sells.