Ben Klock

Ben Klock: More Than One
Berghain is the ultimate techno club with a huge capacity, offering all weekend long clubbing as some of the clubs in mad Berlin style night life. Along with Marcel Detmann and Shed, Ben Klock is one of the few true techno players who continue polishing and evolving techno's real spirit.

Their sound is metallic, harsh and sometimes unhuman. But they always have the kind of a groove that imprisons you inside. Dark is always attractive and hides lots of content within. When you listen to a Ben Klock track, you will exactly get the feeling right up your ear and then to your soul and heart. This is real techno with a real attitude both technically and mentally. Ben Klock is the brightest star in the techno scene and has the newest debut just released from the best current techno output, Ostgut Tonträger.

While the label is about to welcome it's third mixtape instalment by Len Faki, here comes the biggest and best debut from Ben Klock, other than his Klockworks imprint and his alliance with BPitch Control, Ostgut Tonträger is his new homebase for his latest works. He has worked so much to unleash his sound. The album is great and will be one of the classic techno albums which will also be remembered and played over the years without loosing any meaning or sense. Here is the Ben Klock interview.

How long did it take you to conclude the album, are they all made up for the LP or a collection of your recent efforts?
I didn't just want to make a collection of club tracks. So the tracks are really all made for the album. It took quite a while. I wanted to have time to let the tracks grow from their first drafts to the final arrangements. I started in January and finished in September. In the end I had lots of tracks, way too many for an album, which was good. Because I could really choose the ones that were the best for the album.

The EP and the LP have the same name "One" and they only have one common track. Why you choose such a name for your debut LP and also the same for the EP?
There is a little mix up here: The album is called "One" but the EP is called "Before One". So the EP is leading into the direction of the LP but it also stands for itself. The EP has a few club tracks that didn't find their way on the album. I thought about many names for the album but in the end "One" was the one that felt right. It's just a very pure and beautiful name. Certainly it means that it's my first full length but you can also put more interpretations to it if you want to.

Especially annexing Marcel Dettmann and Shed in frame, you make Europe's freshest and most straight forward techno. It is pure and well defined as it should be. And yet dark. Are these only my opinions or is it a common sense now there in Berlin and Europe, what do you think?
I do think we stand for something only a few artists do at the moment. We try to push a sound forward that knows about it's past and transforms it into something fresh and forward thinking. And many people seam to appreciate this special raw and dark sound.

How you at Berghain define your sound? You are a resident for a long time and could you please tell us about this legendary club?
Basically the sound is bass driven Techno with a deep vibe and sexy, heavy grooves. The club is quite big, for about 2000 people. Most clubs with such size have kind of a commercial feeling. Berghain still has a very raw underground feeling, lots of steel and concrete and you can also find this in my productions. The club has a very unique and intense vibe and a great sound system.

Clubbing all night long term is not enough for Berlin. In Berlin, clubbing is weekend long. So what are your comments or thoughts about this?
I think it's great that there are places where you can really relax and go deeper into a vibe that you don't have in the every day life. I mean I also appreciate being back in the hotel before 6 a.m after playing a 2 hours set. But for me as a DJ playing 7 or 8 hours sets sometimes is something that I don't want to miss. It's really about going deeper into it than just scratching the surface of the night.

What do you think about techno music's progression in general?
I think it's on a good way right now. After years of so called "Minimal" I have the feeling it's becoming more open. More class and character is needed now than just using a few preset ‘klick’ and ‘klack’ sounds, throwing them together to have another track that sounds like thousand of others before. I'm always more interested in artists that have their own individual style and who care more about making good music than to follow a trend. There is always something timeless about good music.

Are you still bonded to BPC and Memo as well as Ostgut?
Right now I'm doing a remix for BPC again. So the connection is there. But Berghain and Ostgut is on first place, it's my home. And then of course there is my own label "Klockworks".

What about your current favourite labels and producers?
Sandwell District, Levon Vincent,  Martyn, of course my fellows Marcel Dettmann and Shed to name just a few.

What about your most favorite track from the EP or LP "One"? My favorites are  "Subzero" and “Grip”. Really very hard to decide!
Hard for me too. I can say that "Subzero" and "Grip" are the tracks that I play the most. But I don't really have a favorite track. I see the album as a hole.

You also collaborated with Elif Biçer on the track "OK". Could you please talk a little bit about that? Also your Turkish friends in Berlin?
I've known Elif for a few years now and the idea of working together for the album was born a while ago when I first heard her voice on a demo tape. It was a very relaxed process working with her because we are friends. There are two tracks on the album featuring Elif Biçer: "OK" and"Goodly Sin". Actually there is not a big difference if the people I know have a Turkish background or German or any other background. Berlin has many nationalities and I like that.

What do you remember about İstanbul and Turkey?
I’ve only been to İstanbul once when I played at Indigo two years ago or so. But I really liked İstanbul very much, the atmosphere of the city, the view over the Bosporus and all that is really beautiful! It's one of my very favorite cities in Europe.

When you gonna come for spinning your T++ and Dettmann vinyls?
I hope soon! Not sure yet but I think this summer.

And lastly your comments about vinyl vs. digital?
I use two turntables, two cd players and a loop machine in the DJ booth. I play as much vinyl as I can but also use a lot of CDs for the unreleased stuff. I'm not really interested in Serato, Scratch or something like that. I don't want to look on a small screen scrolling through MP3s without an image. I wouldn't say I would never use it but as long as I don't have to, I will stay with records.

Interview: Christopher Çolak
25 February 2009


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