With hotly tipped sonic envelope pushers like David August, Adriatique and Stimming on its roster, it's no surprise Hamburg's Diynamic Music would emerge as one of this decade's most esteemed labels among discerning international house and techno lovers.
At the label's helm since first launching in 2006 is DJ-producer Mladen Solomun, a Mixmag 2012 pick for DJ of the Year and consummate tastemaker whose bold A&R vision helps steer Diynamic's cutting-edge sound.
Ahead of his highly anticipated New Year's Eve performance at Story Miami, we here at Crossfade caught up with Solomun to chat about Diynamic's most successful year so far and five essential releases from its catalog.
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Crossfade: Berlin is touted as Germany's electronic dance music capital, but Hamburg has quite the formidable scene as well, as Diynamic has proven. What do you think distinguishes Hamburg as a hotbed for electronic dance music innovation?
Solomun: Hamburg of course is much smaller and with less clubs than all the other cities, but regarding house music, we have quite a long history. Hamburg has always been a good place for house music, and there are a lot of great artists coming from Hamburg -- besides our Diynamic camp, people like DJ Koze and Tensnake.
What is your longterm vision for Diynamic? What is your criteria for selecting artists to sign and material to release? Are you looking for any particular sound or aesthetic?
I don't know, for me, it's an ongoing process of never being satisfied or at an end. Music is changing constantly, and as a label, you always have to have an open ear for new talent, new sounds, no matter where in the world they are hiding. My vision for Diynamic is to constantly develop. My criteria for new artists? They have to deliver something unique with high quality. And to be part of the Diynamic family, they have to fit into the team with their personalities.
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You've had a busy 2014 on the production side, managing the label, and zigzagging around the globe playing Diynamic events. What have been some of the biggest highlights of the year for you? Any memorable moments and milestones?
Of course, the whole Solomun +1 residency at Pacha Ibiza was amazing. Then, especially, the Diynamic festival in Amsterdam: amazing production and thousands of happy faces -- I still get goose bumps when I think back. Also the Space Moscow birthday -- this was totally unreal, including an after-party playing till 6 in the evening. [Laughs]
So what can we expect from yourself and Diynamic in 2015? Any special projects or releases we can look forward to in the new year?
I will take almost three months off, starting in February, so I can concentrate on studio work. Let's see what will be the results. And then the Ibiza season will start again. As Diynamic, we will go to Burning Man for the first time, something I am really looking forward since I wanted to do this for years and also for the first time. Then, there's gonna be a compilation with my favorite remixes.
Solomun, Stimming and Guido Schneider's Feuer & Eis EP
"This was like our first small success. And people keep on telling me till now that the track 'Feuervogel' from Stimming and me had been an inspiration for them. Those tracks made the early Diynamic sound."
H.O.S.H.'s Under a Fig Tree EP
"For me personally, the best H.O.S.H. EP ever. Three really strong A sides -- all tracks are different -- so H.O.S.H. as a producer shows all his skills there."
David August's Instant Harmony EP
"The breakthrough of David August, right away with his first release. We already knew before what big, big talent is coming from Hamburg -- after this release, all the others also knew it."
NTFO, Karmon and Betoko's Wowshit EP
"NTFO and Karmon in full effect. 'Nobody Else' was a real smasher. 'Wowshit' from Karmon was kind of the trademark sound during that time. The Romanian-Dutch axis showed its strength."
Adriatique's Lophobia EP
"Stands for Adriatique's recent sound. Mr Creasy was quite a hit, but in my opinion, the title track is the more obvious hit."
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Solomun. Wednesday, December 31. Story, 136 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. The show starts at 10 p.m., and tickets cost $75 to $125 plus fees via wantickets.com. Ages 21 and up. Call 305-538-2424, or visit storymiami.com.