Typically, the Germans are known for their punctuality and affection for rules. So when West Berlin native Ellen Allien called in slightly late for our phone interview, she wasted no time apologizing.
“Hi, Elvis, sorry I’m late for the interview. I’m very slow today and running behind," Allien told us from somewhere in Ibiza. "Most Germans are typically on time, but I’m an exception to the rule. Today I ate some mussels, calamari, and other seafood and after
But it's hard to stay mad at Allien, a hero to her hometown of Berlin much like Uncle Luke is to Miami. Plus, we've all fallen victim to slightly questionable shrimp before.
The charismatic DJ will be dropping the kickstand on her bicycle in front of Trade this Friday, September 23, as the evening’s headliner. Peddling around on two wheels is her preferred mode of transportation when she's in Miami. Each year during Miami Music Week, she takes a bike ride to Damian Lazarus’ Get Lost party and has the time of her life. It's her favorite party of MMW.
Lazarus told us back in September of last year that his goal is for people to "fall into a big bucket of sound.” Perhaps it’s this mutual appreciation for the abstract that bonds Lazarus and Allien. “I like to fly," she says. "I want the sound to be spacey, hard, and pumping. I love sounds that are distorted, strange, and beautiful... I’m always searching for sounds that open my brain and are interesting. And if the melodies are easy to catch, then it can be hypnotic like a carousel."
Allien isn't just a fan of new and different sounds; she's a purveyor. Innovative house, deep house, and tech house — from artists like Jesse Perez, Maceo Plex, and Hot Since 82 — can be found on the Berlin-based label BPitch Control, which Allien founded in 1999 after cutting her teeth as the resident DJ at Berlin's iconic underground club, Tresor. In 2000, the label launched the career of the well-known German duo, Modeselektor.
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Allien is also a big fan of Florida bass and breaks. She likes Miami’s Otto Von Schirach and Orlando’s DJ Icey. But it’s Miami house booty-bouncing, bump-n-grind producer and BPitch family member Jesse Perez she loves the most. “Jesse is awesome. His music is fantastic. He’s a nice guy, and every track he’s producing is a hit. I hope he comes by,” she says.
But Allien will be ready for whoever walks into Trade on Friday, as long as that person is ready to love. Allien likes to see people kissing in the club and says she’s been seeing more of it lately. “This is great," she gushes. "This is why we go to the club — to find someone for some kissing, and if you like them, then maybe you can have sex by the toilet or under a table.”