Techno Tuesday: &ME on finding his sound
Techno Tuesday is a feature on Dancing Astronaut documenting the culture of underground dance music. We’ll bring you exclusive interviews, tracks, and narratives from artists within the techno, tech house, and deep house world in an effort to shed light on some of the best talent outside the world of mainstream dance music.
Hailing from Germany, &ME has built an extensive repertoire of impactful house and techno, enticing listeners with tantalizing track development and hints of strategically-placed melodic accents. His career began to gain major traction in 2009 when he joined with his fellow DJs Rampa, Reznik, Adam Port, and David Mayer to create their prolific record label and collective, Keinemusik.
&ME entered 2016 on a strong note, having released his widely-recognized single “Woods” a few months prior, and then proceeding to drop the inescapable techno hit “Shadows.” Next up for the producer is a North & South America tour throughout the month of September, including dates at Miami, Ecuador, Argentina, and Brazil before returning to Texas on the 30th.
In honor of his recent Electric Zoo performance and ongoing tour, we enlisted &ME to tell us the story of how he found his sound as an artist.
When you take your first steps as a producer, sooner or later you will experience some barriers and borders that will try to limit you in what you want to do. I felt that the most when I began producing hip hop in the early 2000s. Starting with night-long turntablism sessions I immediately got hooked on producing when I listened to the first album of DJ-Qbert and Mixmaster Mike. Soundwise anything was possible at that time but that changed when I got more and more into rap music. Now you had a certain pattern how everything needed to be to get the most out of a track and all of a sudden certain sounds were forbidden because they came from the “Techno“ world and therefore were not “real“. So doing this stuff I always had an eye on electronic music and thought that everything would be more easy and open-minded on the other side.
From the French hip hop culture came a fresh breeze to my mind and my productions. They were experimenting with unusual samples, sounds and tempos and seemed to have no fear of pushing the boundaries (if there were any). Following 113, Fonky Family, DJ Mehdi and many more I decided to slowly step towards a more electronic approach on my music. Now I thought that everything would be easy and I could finally do whatever I want and just get my stuff out somehow. But being a producer and a DJ you know how people react in the club on certain tracks, sounds, elements or grooves and you always have that in the back of your head while sitting in the studio. So I found myself in the same position as I was before. Right now I am thinking – “now those hip hop producers are doing anything they want mixing everything with everything“. But the fact is, that you can do anything you want whenever you want and everything that matters in the end is the quality of your music. If you don’t break the unwritten rules nothing new will come out of it and especially in these times where everything probably already has been done before it might help to think out of the box to make your tracks stand out. You might even set a new trend where the next 10 heavy rotation records sound like yours. Easy to say but at least we should give it a try. So maybe that next big thing might be the 145bpm minimal cosmic-kraut dub you did.
View &ME’s upcoming tour dates:
29-07-2016 &ME Sumatra Helsinki FL
31-07-2016 &ME THINK Festival Leipzig DE
06-08-2016 &ME TBA Moskau RU
12-08-2016 &ME Szgit Festival Budapedt HU
13-08-2016 &ME Blijdorp Festival Rotterdam NL
13-08-2016 &ME Übel & Gefährlich Hamburg DE
20-08-2016 &ME Pacha Hammamet TN
25-08-2016 &ME Chiemsee Summer Übersee DE
26-08-2016 &ME Back To Fundamentals La Grande Motte FR
27-08-2016 &ME Rakete Nürnberg DE
28-08-2016 &ME Replay Sunset Madrid ES
02-09-2016 &ME Kowalski Stuttgart DE
03-09-2016 &ME Pleinvrees Amsterdam NL
04-09-2016 &ME Electric Zoo New York US
04-09-2016 &ME Output New York US
08-09-2016 &ME Electric Pickle Miami US
09-09-2016 &ME Baum Bogota CO
10-09-2016 &ME Lost Beach Club Montanita EC
16-09-2016 &ME Club Berlin Cordoba AR
17-09-2016 &ME Jet Buenos Aires AR
21-09-2016 &ME TBA Campinas BR
23-09-2016 &ME D.Edge Sao Paulo BR
24-09-2016 &ME D.Edge Rio BR
30-09-2016 &ME Ethics Austin US