The/Das is Fabian Fenk and Philipp Koeller, a German duo with a keen ear for emotive and emotionally rich sounds who is the latest addition to our family of artists and contribute the newest number in our Nocturama series. Morphing into various forms over the years, The/Das, which began as a four-man, instrumental band, has stripped down to a purely electronic duo, allowing room for improvisation and re-interpretation of existing material in their live sets, but always drawing inspiration from their releases on Life and Death
. Later this year, the duo will return to Life & Death with a much anticipated second album. Primarily operating as a live act, Philipp and Fabi take the opportunity to offer a taste of their DJ skills and selection for Nocturama 013, gently increasing the groove over the hour with dubby yet pulsating tracks from the likes of Truncate, Moomin and Roman Flügel. Enjoy.
Thanks to the following artists for their wonderful music!
S.Channel – Eva’s Groove (Third Try Records)
Kettenkarussell – Krusty Dreams (Giegling)
Julius Steinhoff & Moomin – Valley (Closer)
Grant – Vaudeville (Tape Recordings)
András – Hard Working Man (House Of Dad)
Truncate – Culture (Truncate)
Huerta & Youandewan – Apache Line (Amadeus Records)
Kornél Kovács – Space Jam (Smallville Records)
Leaves – Third Floor (777 Recordings)
Bruce Trail – Bridgework (Magicwire)
Roman Flügel – Too Hot To Sleep (Phonica Records)
Oussama K – Distant Melody Version 2 (Tunnyl Records)
Dj Heure – First Hour (Lobster Theremin)
Nature Boy Gold – Eternal (Retrograde)
Hymns – Route Acid (Salt Mines)
Hi Fabian and Philipp! What do you imagine is the perfect scenario to listen to this mix?
When you're riding the bus on your way to work and the bus-driver turns up the volume real loud so you start feeling like it's already after work – that is if you live in the countryside of course…
If you could have any one person (dead, living, musician or not) listen to the mix who would that be?
That would have to be John Brent whose introduction to the mix we borrowed from the classic How to Speak Hip. Curious if our overall sonic language, track selection, and mixing techniques meet his standards of the hip.
If you had to write a short story inspired by this mix, tell us what the story line would be.
It would be about a part-time burglar pursuing her lifelong dream. By day a rather inconspicuous person, at night she skillfully ropes down into luxury stores – only to give her loot to charity. To land the perfect coup she travels to the motherland of Robin Hood with the plan to steal the Crown Jewels. After weeks of preparation, she finally gets into the Tower of London inside a warden’s horse (don’t ask…), only to discover that the jewels are actually replicas. Almost getting caught, she still manages to take a selfie wearing all the crowns on top of each other – at least something to remember apart from the wild chase through London similar to the Scotland Yard board game. Not really satisfied with the outcome of her trip and with nothing tangible to give back to the community, she decides to print the selfie (edition of 10), write a ground-breaking manifesto and anonymously sell these to a few wealthy art collectors.
Do you happen to remember the first time you met? Did you think during that first encounter that you would be making music together?
We probably first met on a parking lot where the cool kids hang. It wasn’t about music back then, more about trying to impress each other with huge gum bubbles. They popped but our dreams lived on.
When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?
: At the age of 5, I decided to become a decent human being.
: At the age of 5, of course, my dream was to become a race car driver.
What was the last concert you went to as a fan?
: Last year I went to a Julia Holter concert during Jazzfest Berlin. She played the opening set for an audience probably three times her age and apparently not really interested. During her show, one old man actually walked out of the concert hall yelling: »That’s not jazz«. Sad!
: My last concert was András Schiff at the Philharmonie. "Tremendous!"
What did you do for Summer Vacations growing up?
: What I enjoyed most was occasionally staying on the lake island in Liepnitzsee with friends.
: Excessive bike tours with mom, or friends… for a short while also stealing or burning things, of course sculpturing and lots of basketball, playing noisy guitar in our school's rehearsal room and finally, at the age of 17 I think, working on very weird electronic music with the help of a like-minded friend and an Atari and Sampler and Nordlead and Oberheim Xpander – ouhhweeee! fancy friends, back then!
Best vegan meal that you've ever had while on the road?
Definitely, the most interesting meal that was tickling our palates had cuitlacoche mushrooms in it. While even the most simple dish can become the best meal you’ve ever had, we like the idea of something rotten becoming a delicacy.
Bubbly or still water?
: Still water – bubbly only when it gets really crazy.
: I love bubbly water!
Poker or Black Jack?
The one Sam Rothstein in Casino would play for fun. Also, our good friend Konstantin Tschechow loves a jacking beat if I'm not mistaken. Sending picture postcard greetings from Chinguetti, Mauretania and the answer is: yes!
Aphex Twin or Kraftwerk (and don't say Kraftwerk just because you're German :P)
Definitely Aphex Twin – Come To Daddy is one of the records I have almost religious feelings about, not so much because of the title track – only listened to that death-metal track for a couple of times… But then again, back then it might have been a perfect way for me to let go of hardcore and noise-music. But yeah, I guess it's a personal thing, just like with religion, when you listen to something for 1000 times then it becomes very, very, very important. And I have to admit in 1998 I was listening to those 5 tracks almost nonstop on headphones for about 3 months or so… It also was my first encounter with the almost meditative effect of bleeps and loops… One of the reasons why making music is such an addiction I guess – the state of flow endless repetitions cause intuitive actions, ahh, you know what I mean!