Labels We Love: Diynamic

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Every day this month we're rolling out a new feature on XLR8R's Labels We Love of 2009. Whether it's the eye-catching aesthetics of Type or the model-for-the-future approach of Interdependent Media, these cut-making selections of the best in underground electronic, indie, hip-hop, and experimental imprints punch way above their weight. Feast your eyes on the features and then download many of the labels' related podcasts here.

Beefy house from a do-it-yourself Hamburger haven.

Alongside Hamburg-based peers such as Liebe*Detail, Smallville, and Dial, Adriano Trolio’s and Mladen Solomun’s Diynamic label reiterates that Germany’s second city is really where it's at. The imprint’s coterie of deep-house producers forges a distinctive and consistent sound: Sometimes somber and often understated, Diynamic tracks generally benefit from a few plays before they miraculously transform into ohrwurmer. As if to stress the D.I.Y. nature of the label’s moniker, Diynamic has tended to eschew remixes (though Jackmate, Anja Schneider, and Jerome Sydenham have reworked tracks), preferring instead serial collaborations that involve various permutations of Solomun, H.O.S.H, Stimming, Gebruder Ton, and Einmusik hooking up in the studio. Highlights of the label’s first two years or so were collected last year on the Solomun-mixed Saturday, I’m In Love compilation. Here’s a sampling of our favorite Diynamic offerings.

Solomun & Stimming “Eiszauber”
Bosnian-born Mladen Solomun has previously stated his love for the “old songs” of his homeland and the “deepness, pain, and sorrow” that cuts through them. Appropriately enough, this collaboration with Stimming seems saturated in such melancholy ambiance. “Eiszauber” sounds like dolefulness converted into deep-house form. Unusually for the seemingly hermetic label, Diynamic commissioned remixes of the track from Simple’s Motorcity Soul and Lawrence. Actually, the atmospheric house of “Eiszauber” wouldn’t sound out of place on the latter’s Dial imprint, its packaging bearing a faded image of a long lost love.

Stimming “For a Friend”
Martin Stimming’s debut long-player, Reflections, was apparently recorded during the after-shock of the end of a half-decade long relationship—while it’s not exactly maudlin, it is nevertheless littered with clues (for example, a track entitled “The Loneliness”) that suggest that the producer might not have exactly been in the party zone. “For a Friend,” an exclusive track on the label’s Saturday, I’m In Love compilation, continues this vague sense of melancholia, capturing the producer at his most wearied and beautiful.

Solomun & H.O.S.H “Sonnenbrand”
Diynamic seems to thrive on collaborations, and “Sonnenbrand” finds label head Solomun in the studio with Holger Behn (a.k.a. H.O.S.H, Stil Vor Talent, and Kindisch). The German-language title of Diynamic 03 might translate as “sunburn,” but think seductive warmth rather than scorching heat. “Sonnenbrand” is Diynamic at its most functional and efficient: Not much really happens, but it happens gloriously.

Solomun & Gebruder Ton “Tagesschau (Jackmate Mix)”
Translated as “view of the day,” Tagesschau is the most watched news program on German TV. This doesn’t offer any clues as to why this collaboration between Solumun and Gebruder Ton’s Martin Stimming and Alexander Kubler is so very lovely. Jackmate’s remix abstains from beats for the first minute and a half in favor of emotive plucked strings that have seduced the likes of Chloe and Matias Aguayo.

Ost & Kjex “Sicksnack”
“Sicksnack” is a genuine Diynamic oddity, and not just because it sounds so totally joyful. Petter Haavik and Tore “Jazztobakk” Gjedrem’s band name translates as “Cheese and Biscuit,” and the title of the Norwegian duo’s first album proclaimed Some, But Not All, Cheese Comes From the Moon. Ecstatic in mood and subject matter, “Sicksnack” recalls taking “a potion that told me, baby, to moooooooooooooove.” The duo has previously asserted a love for “cheesy handbag house” and “fucked-up electronic sounds,” and this tune finds a mid-point between these aesthetics.

Check out more from our interview with Diynamic below.

Sebo K on Diynamic

What's your favorite track on the label, and why?
It's hard to tell. There are so many great tracks on the label, but spontaneously I would say Stimming & H.O.S.H's "Radar" is one of my favorites. It starts very groovy and quite inconspicuous until the appearance of this great surprising organ break. The build-up is fantastic. I love that one, but, as I said, this is just one of my favorites. There are so many other great records on that label!

What does Diynamic mean to you?
I really like the versatility of the label. They don't fear using melodies, which gives the label a unique standing these days where everybody is doing percussion house tools which all sound the same. It's a great job, what Solomun and Adriano are doing, and I'm happy to tell you that I'm going to remix one of Solomun's album tracks, which is going to be released later this year.

Solomun on Diynamic

What are you trying to do with Diynamic?
Solomun: For Adriano and me, it was the next step and dream to have our own label. We started the label in a time when the bad times begun and everybody was crying that that the good times were gone. But we don’t care about that, because the chance to have our own label, our own baby was stronger than everything. From the beginning, H.O.S.H, Stimming, and myself were the center of Diynamic and together we are responsible for the way Diynamic is. We want to release music that we like—that is the basic aim. By now, Diynamic represents our regular club night in Hamburg and we have partnered with the open air Grünanlage Festival in Wittstock, between Hamburg and Berlin.

Could you describe the label aesthetic?
It always has to be funky and groovy in a way. It doesn't matter if it's more techno or house. We are very open-minded and we don't have a very strict philosophy. When we get the demos, and if we are, after one minute, into it, that is always a good sign. Sometimes it clicks after a few seconds. But also one point is that we aren't afraid of harmony. Perhaps also the point is that we are trying to release something different, always trying to go new ways. But I can’t tell you what will come next.

What are you influences, musical or otherwise?
I grew up with lot of different music, from funk, soul, hip-hop to disco and Balkan music. Music has so many different colors. Of course, I became more and more in contact with house and techno but in the end. I'm an ’80s child.