It’s all dimensions and grooves in Elmar Strathe’s techno numbers
Elmar Strathe’s description on his Facebook page looks straight out of a science fiction book. It says — “We cannot be confined to the three dimensions of space. As music is timeless, so is our collective, a creative consciousness that is endless in the fourth dimension.” This train of complex thought runs into the name of his label too — 5D.records — which the German techno DJ founded along with his friend and fellow musician, Floral Frings. He went on to release his first album, living.LIFE, in 2012, and since then has consistently released pacy techno tracks that are layered with synth and acoustic sounds. His second album, called EXISTED.live, was launched in 2016. Promising songs from these EPs and other tracks too, Elmar will perform in Chennai for the first time, at The Park’s Twilight Music Festival this week.
Elmar recalls his first performance in a small club in Siegen, Germany, where he played for some of his friends. But one of his most memorable moments in the early days of his career happened when Richie Hawtin (aka Plastikman), an acclaimed British-born Canadian DJ and a three-time winner at the DJ Awards, played two of Elmar’s songs — Sun and Shine — at the Time Warp festival in Germany. “It was the first time I could listen to my own songs played by another DJ. A few months later, Richie released them on his Minus album, which was another big moment,” he says.
Describing his music as a mix of various genres and styles, Elmar says, “For me it’s just techno. Kind of minimalist and grooving and maybe a little bit dark techno. Over the years, my music evolved with a more acoustic approach. There are tracks on my computer that can be played by bands as well.” He further reveals that he does not plan his live sets. “I just start and continue playing until I know it is the right time,” he says, adding that besides Richie, he also likes to listen to the “funk from Red Hot Chilli Peppers and the energetic songs by Rage Against the Machine”.
As for his debut in Chennai, fans have much to thank Jalebee Cartel guys DJs Ash Roy and Calm Chor (Ashvin Mani Sharma), whose international artiste management company Soupherb Records convinced Elmar to come down here. “Without them, I wouldn’t be here, and I can feel at home,” says Elmar, who is kicked to play on his latest asset, a new-age analogue mixer by PLAYdifferently called Model 1. “It is one of my best investments ever,” he admits.
At The Park. February 24. 9 pm onwards. Entry at Rs. 1,000 (including cover charges).
Spilling the beans at The Park
Besides Elmar’s performance, there is a host of other musicians that attendees will be keen to listen to, namely DJs Akbar Sami, Sam Shroff, Vishwa, Karty and Akash, plus Grammy nominated rapper Raja Kumari.
For something beyond music, you can catch up with rebel rapper Sofia Ashraf, who will share the stage with musician Amrit Rao and stand-up Shyam Renganathan of Rascalas, as they talk about love in the age of Tinder. Throw in a few pick-up lines and a round of the Never Have I Ever game, and you have the perfect recipe for a fun-filled chit-chat. Today. Entry at Rs. 500