KLANGKUENSTLER – THE FINAL DECISION

Whether deep, booty or tech house – his sets and productions neither fit into a simple category nor do they follow popular trends. By focusing on an infectious blend of percussion and rhythm, KlangKuenstler stands for a strong characteristic sound with high memorability that can easily send every dance floor into a state of ecstasy. From his releases on Toolroom, Suara, Simma Black or Great Stuff to the numerous gigs such as Stil vor Talent’s label showcases – KlangKuenstler is always seeking for exciting variations within his style. The ambition of always reinventing himself not only explains his recent success but indicates a bright future ahead.

You’re currently riding high in the Beatport tech-house chart with ‘Jam Master Jack’. It samples Run DMC, are you a hip-hop fan?

“Yes, absolutely! I mean, I not only listen to hip-hop today but it was a big part of when I grew up and I still love hip-hop tunes from the ’90s and early 2000s.”

Your earliest experiences of electronic music were at Harry Klein in Munich. Who were you listening to then? At what point did you decide that DJing and producing were the path that you wanted to follow too?

“Actually, I don’t remember. At this time I didn’t know any names or labels, I just went in and got closer with the music, because it was the first time I listened to this sound. The point came when I asked myself what a DJ does exactly and what is behind this whole thing. So first I got excited about just searching for new music, instead of getting served. Next step was the interest in all the different kinds of techniques of how to DJ. After most of that seemed familiar to me, I thought that couldn’t be everything, and I didn’t like just to play tracks from other people anymore, which was my intention to start producing. In short, it was just my curiosity which brought me to DJing and producing.”

One of your breakthrough tracks was ‘Barfuss Auf Wolken’. What does the title mean? And how did you come to the attention of Stil Vor Talent?

“Translated directly it means ‘bare feet on clouds’, which should describe the vibe of the track. It took a while to get the full intention. First of all I sent it to the A&R from Stil Vor Talent; he liked it and forwarded it to Oliver Koletzki, who has the final decision because he’s the label founder and owner. Unfortunately I didn’t get an answer back. So I decided to release it on my own small label, which I ran at that time. But then a few weeks later I got sent videos from Oliver Koletzki playing it several times during the summer. I was quite confused why he played it, but didn’t want to sign it. So I wrote to him directly on Facebook, without any expectation to get answer of course. He answered that he was actually not sure why it didn’t happen, so he decided to re-release it, which was a good idea in this case because on Stil vor Talent it got another push, after the track had already had a lot of plays on SoundCloud. This was the start of our relationship. Proof that one has to be persistent sometimes!”

https://soundcloud.com/klangkuenstler/klangkuenstler-barfuss-auf

It seems like your sound has changed since then to a techier, more driving sound? Is that a result of getting more DJ bookings? Do you still make or play more melodic tracks?

“That’s right, it’s changed a lot in the last two years. I don’t think it came through the amount of gigs, I am just searching for something new all the time, and I think by getting older you are also developing your taste of music. So it’s not just about the taste, but also about understanding the music. That means I probably wouldn’t have understood the music which I do now when I had listened to it four years ago. If I now do any melodic music, it is different to my earlier tracks though. I am a lover of classic house, which means I love the Korg M1 piano for example. But I focus on groove-based music when I am playing and producing. Sometimes I just play a melodic track with a special vibe as last track.”

You’re already released your debut album, ‘That’s Me’. Are there any plans to follow that up? Was it a different process to making tracks to put out as a a single?

“At the moment there are no plans for a follow up album. The difference, in my opinion, is that you like to show a big range of styles which still sound like you, which is not that easy like it sounds.”

https://soundcloud.com/joordekker/sets/klangkuenstler-thats-me

A lot of acts anglicise their name but KlangKuenstler is obviously very German. What does it translate as?

“To be honest, I would also do that if I had the choice now, ha ha. It is a very simple name and just means something like ‘Sound Artist’.”

Imagine you have just 24-hours left on earth. How would you spend them?

“I would definitely like to spend it at a party with all my closest friends and family at a sunny place with palms nearby.”

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