SHED (Berlin)

Shed_by_Will_Bankhead_6-281x460

Shed is a man of action, a living example how to reinvent oneself again and again within the boundaries of electronic music. At the same time, Shed does not follow shallow trends.

The Berlin-based producer firmly believes in the power of techno music. When techno was invented, Shed was not present. Born in 1975 in Frankfurt/Oder in the former GDR, he was simply too young. And also too far away from where techno was happening. As it turns out, being afar from epicentres like Berlin or Frankfurt/Main, was a blessing. Listening to the radio, Shed could absorb all kinds of music, styles and genres without being aware of the music’s point of origin, the fighting and the bitching between various cities, crews and labels. Music is music. This is not only still true, but was at the time the most famous quote from Monika Dietl. She was the first DJ who played techno on the radio in Berlin. Like no one else, she was in this for new music only and perfectly ignored the past. She did not play cheesy disco classics, but focused on new tunes from Chicago and Detroit, celebrated local scenes like the Netherlands and, most importantly, played music from the UK. Shed was hooked instantly.

His background is as classic as his music. Born in Frankfurt/Oder in 1975 – grown up in Schwedt/Oder, he was fascinated by the new music played on the radio in the early 90s – a very typical thing for anyone from this generation who grew up in Berlin or its surrounding counties. DJ’s as diverse as Marusha or Monika Dietl mixed styles and genres into a musical encyclopedia. While everybody around Shed focussed on HipHop, he himself was addicted to the sample-based sound of UK-hardcore. Then there was a quick liaison with Gabba and through the back catalogue of Djax Up, he finally discovered Chicago and then Detroit. Deep inside the ever-fascinating triangle of beats, breaks and samples, he today identifies 1996/97 as the most important time in Techno for him, although he hit the brakes straight afterwards. While the mainstream did what it could to commercialise the music, Shed closed the door on the Love Parade, cheesy? remixes and mega raves. Between 1998 and 2002 he did not buy a single record.

However, he never lost the love for the music which had changed his life. He used these years to focus his own productions. Around 2000, he had finished some tracks, which combined and contained everything close to his Techno heart, things which were almost extinct in the real world. “I’m a techno-kid, through and through”, he says and laughs. When he started shopping his demos around, the idea of his own label was already lurking behind the door. “I suddenly realised how important it was to really do it all by myself.”

What followed was not rocket science. His first EP [2003] on his own Soloaction imprint sold well, soon after that he recorded two EPs for the Amsterdam-based Delsin label, and the more he released, the clearer his musical vision became, culminating in his debut album “Shedding The Past” on Ostgut Ton [2008]. Followed by “The Traveller” [2010], also on the infamous Berghain label, and a lot of excursions into dance-music under his well known aliases like WAX, Equalized or Head High now his third attempt “The Killer” sees the light of the world on Modeselektors label 50 Weapons.

On this album, he melts and merges rough and demanding dancefloor skeletons with shockingly detailed melodies, harmonic structures, irresistible hooks and airy arrangements. A formula you also expose yourself to when attending one of his DJ or live gigs. -a never-ending climax of groove., like it was in the founding days of the music, which today is a part of our culture.

Shed is one of the few producers and DJs out there who know that you cannot write about the future without a nod to tradition.

Written by Stiftelsen Insomnia
  • Facebook
  • Twitter