2011 has marked the beginning of a new phase for the Stranjjur family. With the recent launching of our new vinyl and digital record label, the Stranjjur NYC sound has now reached the entire globe thanks to the successful debut release of the Miami Vices EP by Lula Circus. Pezzner's remix of 'Pumpin Groovin Moovin' reached the airwaves and ipods of millions of listeners after being included in Maya Jane Cole's highly acclaimed BBC Radio One Essential Mix earlier this year; while MANIK's remix of 'Miami Vice' soared up the Beatport charts, and the vinyl edition sold out in just a matter of weeks before topping at #2 on the decks.de House chart.
With many press outlets and DJs considering Stranjjur as one of the hot new labels to watch in 2012, and many more releases and music lined up from artists such as Kris Wadsworth, Marcin Czubala, Audio Soul Project, DJ Sneak and many more, we think it's high time we celebrated our new label's launch, in proper fashion.. amongst the company of our friends and supporters who have all helped make all of this possible!
On December 16th, we will celebrate life, love and the launch of Stranjjur Imprint! For this special occasion, we've enlisted the services of a few of our label's top acts: MANIK and Audio Soul Project will once again grace our decks, while we also welcome the highly sought after duo, Luna City Express from Berlin for their Stranjjur NYC debut and first time back here in quite some time. Opening the evening will be Stranjjur's founding father, Kev Obrien; followed up by Stranjjur Imprint co-owner and Smoke City's main main, Ab Logic.
About the artists.....
LUNA CITY EXPRESS (Moon Harbour - Germany):
Timelessness and innovation – both poles can be unified in house music. For 10 years now Norman Weber and Marco Resmann have been living out their love for house together both at the turntables and in the studio as Luna City Express.
Music and nightlife inspired both of them from early on. Norman often accompanied his father, a musician and DJ, on tour where absorbed a melting pot of party music, from Funk and Disco to HipHop and Acid Jazz. At 14 he heard his first Chicago House Mix on tape – a musical revelation and the beginning of his subsequent career.
For Marco discovering electronic music happened in the early 90’s in a friend's basement studio where he first started delving into drum machines and synthesizers. What followed was a rapid journey through producing all the imaginable variations of electronic music as they occurred in Berlin in the 90’s. In 1999 Marco set up his Audiogain studio and established himself as a producer, producing as a solo artist under the pseudonym Phage and also in projects like Pan/Pot or Phage & Daniel Dreier, releasing on labels like Mobilee, Klang Elektronik and Highgrade. In 2007 he founded the label Upon You with Marcus Meinhardt and Hawks Grunert.
At a millennium party in Italy Norman and Marco crossed paths for the first time and clicked immediately - two house nerds had found each other. When Norman moved from Jena to Berlin they began to play as a DJ team, organised own parties and produced their first tracks together, a mixture of Downbeat, TripHop and Deep House.
In 2004 for the 10 year anniversary of the legendary Thuringian club Muna, Norman and Marco for the first time produced under the name Luna City Express - and till this day still feel closely connected to the club as well as Sonne Mond Sterne festival where they continue to perform year after year. One year later they released two very succesful EPs on Moon Harbour – “Fresh” (6th in Groove Charts) and “White Russian”. Both tracks became club hits, laying a blueprint for how classic and contemporary house could sound in the new millennium.
Beside remixes and releasing on labels like Justified Cause and Enliven Music, Moon Harbour has truly become the home of Luna City Express, and at the same time they’ve played an essential part in developing the label’s sound. Together they mixed the second volume of the well-known “Moon Harbour Inhouse” compilation series, and release their debut artist album “Hello From Planet Earth” in autumn 2009. The album brings together 14 outstanding tracks – from techno to experimental, going from euphoric to quiet moments. It’s an eclectic album, not just for the club, and is all held together by the unique Luna City Express house vibe. And so it’s no surprise that every weekend they get to share that vibe to fans across Germany, Europe and the rest of the world.
M A N I K (Ovum, Hot Creations, Stranjjur - NYC):
Great things happen when opportunity and preparation come together at the same time. Summer 2011 has been just that moment for M A N I K (don’t forget those spaces between the letters) as his name and music exploded into the popular consciousness. Just over two years ago, Stranjjur NYC played host to his 'Park to the Slope' release party, for what would be his first ever appearance as M A N I K. Since that night, he has gone on to become one of the most sought-after new artists in the world.
Having arrived on the scene right at the point that a new wave of similarly talented east coast producers turned all our attention toward the United States, M A N I K proceeded to drop a tide of killer singles in the last few years (starting off with the aforementioned "Park to the Slope" EP on Ovum) before his debut album arrived on Ovum in May 2011. DJ Mag commented that he is “a purveyor of his own breed of out-of-the-box house” but this tells only part of the story as the hometown-inspired LP ‘Armies of the Night’ touches not only on house but funk, nu disco, acid and electronica - leaving a hard to categorise milestone of a record that stands the young New Yorker out as one of the breakthrough acts of the current era.
The album picked up plaudits across the board - DJ Mag “some of the best house we’ve heard in years.” iDJ noted its continued pertinence as “more than just a snapshot of the current dancefloor flavour of the month” and long-term admirers Mixmag put it more simply “hate to say we told you so”.
Equally huge strides were taken as a touring act, with M A N I K completing three fully-booked European club tours. Over 20 club dates were played across Europe alone, including the UK, Russia, mainland Spain, Germany, Ireland, Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Belgium and France. He also undertook his first performances in Ibiza at Space, Zoo Project and Sankeys as well as making inroads into the festival circuit with appearances at the huge Tomorrowland and Dance Valley events with the Ovum crew. People back home weren’t slow to catch on either as he criss-crossed the North American continent for the first time playing the likes of Electric Pickle, Miami; Verboten NYC, Smart Bar, Chicago; Life in Washington, D.C; the Standard rooftop in LA and many more besides. This ultimately brought in a nomination as one of the United States’ top DJs of 2011.
What next? Well proving that this current success is merely only a first step, and with barely time to draw breath, the remainder of this year looks set to catapult the 26 year-old further still. His next EPs arrive on two of the current labels du jour – with long-term collaborators and friends Culprit, as well as on Hot Creations plus a remix for DJ T will also arrive on Get Physical.
If his album title was a nod toward the nocturnal, let’s hope for now that M A N I K just finds some time to sleep…
AUDIO SOUL PROJECT (Fresh Meat, Stranjjur - Chicago):
A prolific producer, remixer and DJ, Mazi Namvar has appeared on over 200 records in 15 years time, creating music mainly as Audio Soul Project and working under a few other pseudonyms. A DJ for 18 years, Mazi has traveled the world over visiting clubs like Fabric in London, Crystal in Istanbul, Q in Zürich, Avalon in Los Angeles, Masai in Varna, Level in Bahrain, Red Light in Paris and Simoon in Tokyo. He continually works on remixes; including his forthcoming remix of Maiki's "Orange Sky" which will appear on Stranjjur's fourth release, as well as big ones such as Marc Romboy and Tyree Coopers Lost on Josh Winks Ovum Recordings, Nick and Danny Chatelains Sube Conmigo on NRK, and many more.
Currently most of his original music appears on Fresh Meat Records which he co-owns with partner Nathan Drew Larsen. Fresh Meat is mainly a platform for music by Nathan and Mazi with occasional releases by other like minded talent.
Original compositions by Audio Soul Project (or one of Mazi's other pseudonyms) have appeared on Systematic, Urbantorque, NRK, Circle Music, SAW and Dessous Recordings - just to name a few! His successful relationship with Steve Bug's Dessous label began in 2006. His first work for the label was a remix of DJ FEX's Mysterious Conversation. The remix was licensed to the Circo Loco Monday Morning Session double pack mixed by Loco Dice and Clive Henry. His second project for Dessous was the Reality Check EP. The title track was licensed by DJ T for his Body Language Vol. 2 compilation on Get Physical. Both records have long been repressed and sold out. His third release for the label was entitled Enter the Night and came out in February of 2007 to strong critical acclaim. Since then his music has appeared on two Dessous compilations. The latest track, Vincenzo's remix of Reality Check rose as high as number #8 in the Beatport tech-house chart.
The last time Mazi graced our decks was nearly two years ago when we brought him and Pezzner to Bar 13 .. and anyone who remembers that night can tell you that this man knows how to control a dancefloor like few in the business!