Arne Weinberg Biography
Born 1973 and raised in south Germany Arne was influenced as a young kid by his mother and her varied musical tastes. After several excursions into different musical styles such as Death Metal and Hip Hop in his teenage years, Arne finally discovered Techno music at the age of 21. Since that time he became infected and soon started to deejay.
After practising his turntable skills at home he became a resident deejay at the Depot club in Tuebingen, where he ran a monthly party event for 5 years. There he met with artists like Oliver Kapp, Fabrice Lig, Shake, Pacou; DJ Tim and lots of others, and developed his passion for the deeper shades of techno music, especially those coming from Detroit.
In 2000 Arne decided to make his first attempts at producing deep melodic techno himself with only a computer, and soon realised that he needed to get some real gear to express himself authenticly. Armed only with a few pieces of gear he started to do his first real tracks and soon got a record deal with the Frankfurt based label Propaganda. His first 12", the "Through the colonnades EP" was released in early 2001 and gained some good reactions such as getting charted by Laurent Garnier.
Becoming far more influenced by deep electronic music, Arne began building his studio and his own musical style. Soon he got in contact with Otto Koppius, labelowner of the Dutch Groundzero/Keynote label, and got his second release, the "Snowflake EP" in 2002.
After that a lot of 12“s followed, released on labels such as Starbaby, Down Low, Headspace and Technoir Audio (together with Shawn Rudiman).
Many more projects have been realised since that, including releases on Matrix Detroit, Styrax etc..
2004 was the birth year of Arne Weinberg’s own label, AW-Recordings with artists such as The Moderator, Sean Deason, Duplex, DJ 3000, Erell Ranson, Kubra, Convextion, Deixis and Arne himself.
Finally his first album was released in early 2007 and gained a lot of attention all around the globe.
In the beginning of 2008 Arne and his label moved to Glasgow where he concentrates on his own productions, his label imprint and the deep sides of soulful electronic music.
Interview with Arne Weinberg by Kazuumi Ishii
First off, why did you move from Germany to Glasgow ?
The move to Glasgow was one of the best things ever. The reason why we moved here is that germany is dominated by selfishness, stress and complaints all the time. People in Germany tend to complain about problems but don’t do anything against it. So we decided to do something and left the country. Apart from that the music scene in Glasgow is unbelievable, not only for electronic music but for all kinds of music and art aswell. Scotland has some of the most beautiful landscape to offer too, and it is not overcrowded like germany. It’s very inspiring to go to the highlands and have the chance to be for yourself for a while before you return back to the city.
What do you think of the minimal scene that’s been so big in Germany ? I really like minimal music from Detroit by artists like Jeff Mills, Robert Hood and DBX, but a lot of modern minimal music is lacking emotion. I guess some people don’t really know what minimal is.
I think the same way. Minimal is not a bad thing in general but nowadays minimal is too cold and focused on technical things. What matters are production things and sounds, not the track itself. That’s very sad because like you said stuff from Robert Hood for example still has something special that you could easily describe as emotion. Another problem is that a lot of people do their music with exactly the same software and therefore the tracks don’t differ a lot.
How does living in Glasgow affect your thinking and creative output as opposed to living in Germany ?
In Glasgow I have the big advantage that the city itself is inspiring because you are surrounded by interesting people and music all the time. Also I think Glasgow is not dominated by trends and hypes and in general the people here are more into high quality music. The parties we have here are really amazing and I feel spoiled with excellent parties.
This all inspires me a lot and I have the possibility to focus on my own music much more because the stress level here is much lower than in Germany. Life is just a little bit easier than in Germany.
Your music is very soulful so I’m really interested in what other types of music you listen to. There is obviously a big Detroit influence but what else inspires you ?
Yes, I’m a total Detroit fan but I like a lot of other stuff like good IDM/electronica, ambient and so on. I’m a huge fan of The Cure, Depeche Mode, Morrissey and The Smiths. I also like a lot of old soul like The Temptations or Marvin Gaye and funk like Parliament & Funkadelic. I have started to listen to some old Heavy Metal stuff again in the last couple of years, but more the traditional stuff that is not too hard, like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest or Saxon. A little bit of old jazz from the 60’s is my cup of tea aswell.
I was very surprised by your remix of Erell Ranson’s ‘Sense Of Our Life’ because it brings me back to the days of Rhythim Is Rhythim. Brilliant ideas, brilliant production. So how did you approach the remix ?
That remix was really easy to do because the original is a great track and the melodies and ideas gave me a kickstart to remix it. Thanks for the comparison with Rhythim Is Rhythim by the way, I feel absolutely honored. The most important thing to do a remix is that I like the original track. If that is not the case I can’t do it. If I get the midi files of the track I pick out what I like and try to build a new loop out of these parts with my own sounds and build the track from there. If I get samples I try to make some new sounds out of those. For me it’s very important to keep the original alive in my remix. You should be able to recognise the original.
But your Onmutu Mechanicks guise has a strong spaced-out experimental focus. What’s your sort of take on that kind of sound ? What were your inspirations ?
Lately I focused on dubby techno with my other project Onmutu Mechanicks. I try to do it a little bit different and give it some more characteristics. Onmutu Mechanicks is like a playground to do some other stuffl. I use it to get the mind free when I’m suffering from a writing blockade. It’s a project without rules. So everything is possible. Total freedom is the inspiration.
You’ve just released your second twelve on Detroit’s Matrix Records. Great to see you on Matrix as well, and your heart really belongs in motor city. So how do you feel it differs from the first twelve ?
For me it’s a dream coming true to be on Matrix as I love the label since the early years. The biggest difference between the two records is that the new one features tracks I did in Glasgow. They are all from the last 6 months. The first one features older material. When Sean Deason signed those tracks it took another really long time before the record was released because Sean had to change distribution and so on. The second one was really a quick thing to happen. Sean asked me if I’d like to do another record for him a few months ago.
Your relationship with Sean Deason goes a long way back to when he’s remixed for your track. Do you have any plans to collaborate with him in the near future ?
I will release an EP by Sean on my own label AW-Recordings in early 2009. It’s called Eternal Sunshine and I’m very happy to be able to release it. It features three tracks that are totally different from each other. One is deep Detroit techno, the next is a nice pushing clubby techno track for the dancefloor and the last one is a Drum and Bass track. I always loved Sean’s approach to Drum and Bass, so I’m happy to have that on the EP.
Your label AW has released its first compilation. There are some new talented producers like Derek Carr. Can you explain how you discover artists ? Are they friends or do you get music in the post and decide to release it ?
The artists featured on the compilation are nearly all friends. I really like to have a family feeling with the artists. It’s very important to have a good relationship because we are not talking about big business here. The label is very small and I’m happy when a release is breaking even and I don’t loose money. So I really want to be confident about the music and the artist. Most of the artists I know through the internet, for example MySpace. I don’t get a lot of demos in the post. People send MP3 links which I absolutely don’t understand. I’m old fashioned about that. If I want to release tracks on a label I should get in touch, ask for a post address and send a proper CD with information about me. A little bit of effort should be the least.
What future producers and artists are you lining up for the release on the label ?
A lot of stuff is planned. At the moment the next release is just out. It’s from Deixis, a friend of mine from London. There are releases in the pipeline from Sean Deason, CRC from Finland, Myon from Germany, Shawn Rudiman and Stephen Brown. I also want to release my second album in 2009 on my label. And there will be a second part of the Viewpoints compilation. But that’s future talk as I really don’t know how long this all will take.
A cover for the compilation has been designed by Detroit legend Alan Oldham. I am really into what he is doing. How did you get involved with him ?
Oh, that was pretty simple, I just asked him for artwork. He was instantly interested and he is very professional. Steven Tang is a good friend of mine and he is on the compilation, so that might have helped too. I think that Alan’s drawings are expressing so much of what techno should be about. It’s dark and futuristic. I definitely want another drawing from him for the second part of Viewpoints once it’s time for that.
Next year it will be 5 years since AW-Recordings was born. Any birthday plans ?
5 years already ? Wow, I didn’t noticed that myself. Time is running. I think I’d love to have a label party some day. I never actually did any label nights, even though I tried once to get some gigs together for some of the artists. Maybe that would be a good idea.
Finally, any plans for the rest of 2008 ?
My focus is on the Deixis release at the moment and I hope it will get the attention it deserves as I think his tracks are really great.
I want to do another 12" from me in january 2009. Apart from that I try to work on more Onmutu Mechanicks stuff and definitely enjoy life in Scotland.
EDP07 – Arne Weinberg
Our seventh Electronic Directory podcast comes from Arne Weinberg.
Listen available: ecdr podcast 07 – arne weinberg
Arne Weinberg Selected Discography
as Arne Weinberg
Path Of The Gods, CD/LP
A True Story, 12"
Nebula Trap EP, 12"
Frantic Flowers (2008)
Abstract Forms (2008)
as Onmutu Mechanicks
Blossom / Hypophysica, 12"
Echocord Colour (2008)
Marco Bernardi – EF, NG (Arne Weinberg remix)
EF, NG Remixes, Nice & Nasty (2008)
Terrence Dixon – Tranquility (Arne Weinberg remix)
Tranquility, Nice & Nasty (2008)
Deixis – The Hour Of The Soul (Arne Weinberg remix)
Nomads Soul & The Mannequins Romance, AW-Recordings (2008)