Diego Krause is a DJ/producer who was born in Berlin’s eastern districts. Growing up in the 90′s, he was a direct witness to the golden era of hip-hop and spent years producing hip-hop beats before finally making the switch to house-music.
He is Co-Owner of the Beste Modus imprint and runs his own label Unison Wax as a self-release outfit. Diego’s sound is influenced by funk and soul, garage and deep house and everything in between that is both underground and raw. He has taken his sounds all over Europe and beyond – playing at clubs like Watergate, Concrete, About Blank and many others. His DJ-sets are powered by driving basslines with a raw 90’s texture and a tech-ish approach while always retaining a groovy, jacking feeling. He shared some interesting things about his career with us.
Make sure to check his latest 2x12" LP on Rawax HERE.
Ola, Diego. How’s life treating you? What keeps you occupied these days?
Life’s pretty exciting at the moment because I’m in the process of moving to Paris. Other than that I’m spending a lot of time in the studio working on new music and some collaborations as well.
It’s been quite a while since the last release on Unison Wax. Could you tell us a few words about the upcoming EP? Also, what made you start this imprint in the first place?
Yea, I always take time for the Unison Wax releases. Trying to bring together all the new influences and experiences I’ve gathered to express in an EP. I started the label for exactly that, having absolute artistic freedom and being able to independently put out my own music.
You’re also a part of Beste Modus collective. How did this project start? Since there are five people involved in this record label, how do you agree on the music that you’d like to release?
We formed Beste Modus back in 2012 when Ed, Stevo and I met Cinthie at a party. We had the same vision of stripped-down House music that is both soulful and dance floor orientated. Our procedure of selecting music is pretty democratic, there was never a lot of disagreement as we’re trying to keep the records versatile as well.
You’ll also release a double LP via Rawax at the beginning of the summer. Can you take us through these two vinyl records? What was the inspiration behind this project?
The plan was to do a follow-up-EP for the Pale-Blue record that I released on Rawax last year. I put together some tracks for Robert to choose from but he liked them all and suggested we do an LP. I really liked the idea, since these tracks were produced within a short amount of time and all had the same approach and vibe to them.
That’s also how I came up with the title, ‘State Of Flow’. The tracks are a bit more experimental than my usual stuff I would say. Some of them are a bit more hard-hitting as well.
As a native Berliner, how do you see the city and its music scene? We normally get an opinion from people who moved to Berlin at one stage but I guess growing up there gives you a totally different point of view.
I’ve spent all my life in Berlin but I started going out to clubs fairly late. I was mostly in the Hip Hop Scene until I was 24 or so and then slowly made the transition to House music. What I really liked was the support and collaboration between artists / DJs. I think to this day there is a great feeling of community.
Where can we hear you in the following months? Any special shows aligned ahead?
Yea, I’m doing my Ibiza debut at Benimussa Park next month, which I’m super excited about. Also, I’m playing at Fabric, London for the first time. In August I’m doing a Unison Wax night at Golden Gate club in Berlin. It’s going to be a very intimate vibe with a lot of friends.
Your music holds a strong groove mixed with a kind of 90’s vibe and it’s normally club-orientated. What were some of your early influences in music? Would you say that you’ve managed to create your own unique sound?
I like to believe that, yes. My first influences were the electronic music my dad was listening to, stuff like Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream. Later I discovered Hip-hop and the scene around it, which formed my music tastes the most I would say. I also always liked Soul and Funk, so that definitely has its place in my musical development.
Speaking about your sound, could you take us through your studio? What are some of the toys that you’ve been using lately?
I was mainly working in the box for the most part. I was sampling a lot as we did in the hip-hop days.
Now I’ve bought an Analog Rytm and it totally changed my workflow. I like to fool around with sounds and synthesis a lot more now. I love using Reaktor to come up with some new ideas and go crazy with FX to create something unique.
Collabs are really popular within the electronic music world but looking through your discography, you mostly have solo releases. Do you prefer working alone or is that just a coincidence?
I guess I always had a pretty specific idea of what I wanted to create so working alone enabled me to do it straight-forward without any compromises. But right now I find it very refreshing to work with other artists. There are some interesting projects coming up.
What are your plans for the rest of the year? Any special projects ahead?
A big project is going to be my move to Paris and I have a new label that I’m starting, but I will share some more information about that in the near future. Also, I have two EPs coming up after the summer. One on Mulen Records and one on Eastenderz. So stay tuned for that.