Berlin’s Paul Kalkbrenner makes serious, populist techno
At Coachella this year, dance tents were new and welcome engagement in the subway. No doubt the pictures were beautiful and the movie people were very good, but it was clear that something new and strange was in the air of the Swedish Sahara.
Perhaps no artist has designed this transition better than Paul Kalkbrenner. A long underground hero in his native Berlin, he has released six albums (including his most recent, “Guten Tag”) with his tecno soul, suspicious and slow cooking. His profile was a major boost when, as an actor for the first time he played in the cult film “Berlin Calling” whose soundtrack featured his simple monster “Sky and Sand”, which became a core element of the club and pop during More than two years on the German lists.
Fonda Theater is being offered during its first solo tour head-to-head on Friday night. Do not confuse a “DJ game” – it only plays live original material on your own custom hardware. We talked to him by email, and on Friday reports show another consistent movement between the Weirdo metro festival culture and Big Tent, USA.
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“Sky and Sand” spent two years in the top 100 of Germany. It’s an incredible race for any song. Why do fans believe they have not only adopted but continued to discover and return from there so long?
As it is collected, there have been 140 weeks in the German Top 100, which is incredible. The music, the lyrics, which are quite timeless, do not seem dated, even if you listen now. It’s something I’m very proud of.
This song was related to his debut as an actor, “Berlin Calling”, who played as a rookie actor. So serious electronic music, especially in Berlin, is to stay away and keep attention in sounds and productions. When growing up as an underground artist, is it odd that you adjust to being the center of attention in a movie?
“Berlin Calling” was an opportunity to do something unique, once in a lifetime. The paper is organic; It was not planned. Initially the director, my friend Hannes Stohr, took me to see, but after working together on the film for a while, I was told I had to play Ickarus. We had no idea what would happen, not even a plan, the movie was an X factor. This certainly helped me reach more people with my music, and it’s a very happy accident.
I caught their Coachella set and I really liked it, and unlike many of the artists out there, they were not afraid to take their time with long interruptions and let them breathe and build trails. I know you only focus on your own equipment and your own live material when playing – is it important for you to show fans the difference between being a “DJ” and an electronic artist performing original organic materials live?
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I’ve never been or ever DJ, too selfish, I just want to play my music to people. I’m not trying to show people that I play live, because I only play live. Each program is different, the music is organized differently on stage every time I arrive. I only play my own music, and my music is not just a bang-bang dance, not the music I want to play or play with people. I have played many great shows to the tens of thousands of people and I found that you can take your time and the crowd will go with you; Not everything has to be bang-bang all the time.
In his career, he has remained very faithful to the reflected techno sound, while so many electronic musical partners have become more “pop.” Is it more interesting to find new ways to develop this relatively more difficult sound? Do you feel you are still perfecting your craft and you have found interesting new methods?
For a long time I could not make the music I wanted. I just do not know how. So my music has not changed; It has been the same from the beginning, it is only now, I can feel the music as I want. My music comes from me; It’s very personal, and I try to pass the outside influences so much of time to allow the music to come out. It’s been 18 years and six albums now. Each record is different, but it’s still Paul Kalkbrenner. I want to keep it, because it’s the music that I want people to listen to.