Ahead of their first December session this Sunday night, the WYS! residents caught up with their invited guest, the Echocord boss and Culture Box co-owner, Kenneth Christiansen. During their chat he reveals a few of his closest crew's upcoming plans and offers the world a sneak peak of his label partner, Mikkel Metal's forthcoming album with the track 'Monday'.
WYS: Echocord has existed since 2002… can you tell about the labels ethos and background and how/if it has changed over the years?
Kenneth Christiansen: I started Echocord in 2002 when I first met Mikkel Meldgaard (aka Mikkel Metal). When you look back almost 15 years after, the sound has changed on most of the releases. It’s still all about the dubby elements, but most of the releases now is focused and can be used for the dancefloor. It’s still deep but the sound mostly got more powerful over the years. There was a lot of releases in the beginning which was more ambient/listening stuff - there still is but that’s mostly on the full-length albums. Then the sub label Echocord Colour was born, which is more techno orientated.
You have an incredible array of artists who have released on the label over the years - are there any releases you really think stood out for you and helped define the label’s sound?
Uhh there are so many, but especially the Mikkel Metal album featuring Tikiman; that stands out and got extra attention, but also many of the EPs with Deadbeat, Fluxion, Luke Hess etc. The Vladislav Delay EP with remixes by Ricardo Villalobos and Max Loderbaur is also kinda special too.
Running a label whilst co-owning a club (CultureBox) in Copenhagen and dealing with a high number of international gigs must be tough. Has this affected the Echocord’s release output you think?
It always affects me to listen to new music and meeting artists around the world – I’m creating new contacts all the time. In the end it’s all about contacts, so I’m in a lucky position here I think. Combining all of these interests of course makes it all ‘stronger’.
As we just mentioned, you are the co-owner of the seminal Culture Box in Copenhagen. Tell us more about the reason to start and how the club and the clubbing landscape in Copenhagen, have changed over the last 13 years?
Before Culture Box I did a lot of other events with friends in Copenhagen which started way back in 1998 with warehouse parties and clubs in different venues. It got more and more difficult to find the right space and the sound we wanted to present. The cool underground warehouses got rebuilt into fancy offices or apartments mostly. My partner Loke and I wanted create a space for the music we believed in now 11 years ago, and then we found the spot we still have now and started to build it up. At that time there was not really a place here at all that was presenting underground electronic music, so for us it was the right time to start up a club. Our own place. Since then the scene has just been growing over the years and many things now happen in our ‘small’ city.
We are extremely proud and honoured to be able to give away a free track from Mikkel Metal’s new album. Can you tell us more about the album?
I have known Mikkel since the beginning and I’m very happy and proud to release his new album now 15 years later. What is amazing about Mikkel is that his sound develops all the time, but you can still hear that it’s him. The new album is much more Detroit influenced - most of the tracks are very powerful, full of melodies aqnd chords, deep and dubby.
What are your future plans for the label and the club?
EPs by Luke Hess and STL just got released and the new Roberto Clemti EP is coming up for this year. 2016 is gonna be another big year for Echocord; it turns 15, and we will do a lot of shows around that, all over Europe. Some interesting releases are already planned, with artists like Fluxion, Arovane, Brendon Moeller and the full length Mikkel Metal album.
We will keep the strong profile for Culture Box and continue make a lot of interesting bookings throughout the year. On the 16th January we celebrate 11 years of Culture Box!