Austen van der Bleek
youANDme is deeply engrained in the German electronic music world and especially the international Berlin club scene. Not only are they in the heart of the bohemian capital for techno, they also serve a greater role as its artery, pumping blood through its veins with their labels as the valves. This has made them international transplants, playing gigs and festivals around the world in cultural hubs like New York, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Moscow, Tel Aviv, Singapore, Shanghai, Kuala Lumpur and Seoul. They have been in demand by top brands such as Space Ibiza, Sonar Festival in Barcelona, KaZantip Festival in Crimea, Panorama Bar / Berghain in Berlin, D-Edge in Sao Paulo and many more.
As the owners of Rotary Cocktail Recordings, Polymorph, CUTZ.ME, and three other mysterious imprints, they provide a steady flow of music and talent from Germany to the rest of the world. As DJs and producers, their music runs inherently deep, with a raw and kicking signature. The ideas of funk and soul serve as its backbone across styles like house, techno, dub, and electronica. Some of today's most recognized labels have taken note, with youANDme releases making their way onto Cocoon, Rekids, Pokerflat, Compost, Rebirth, and more bespoke efforts like Ornaments. Apart from original productions, they're also well known for their remixes and edits, having done official work for original house music heroes like Moodymann, Robert Owens, and Paul Johnson or contemporary powerhouses such as Radio Slave, Seth Troxler, Steve Bug, and Lawrence. 2015 currently holds another release for Cocoon and a new outing on Desolat with a remix from the label boss himself, Loco Dice.
Pulling highlights from such a sincere body of work is no easy task, but 2008 saw youANDme and Mark Broom's "Bournewood" included in Loco Dice's BBC Radio1 Essential Mix. youANDme's edit of "Mind/Feeling" was licensed to Cocoon by Sven Väth for the 10th edition of his The Sound Of The Season compilation series in 2009, proving the pair's sound viable even when set in the flashiness of Ibiza. The following year, youANDme put out their own first official mix CD for Ornaments, receiving accolades from the worldwide press. They gained even more credit from publications for a busy 2011 and youANDme's remix of Timo Maas featuring UK pop diva Katie Cruel was the best sold track of Timo's label Rockets & Ponies in 2013, a massive year for Martin as it also saw the release of his debut album. Under the moniker of youAND:THEMACHINES, Behind was received with tremendous appreciation from all over the world by critics, DJs, and fans alike, a laudable achievement in brooding and physical machine music with Chicago's 5 Magazine stating that "it made a significant dent in the music landscape." Revisiting the record in 2014 with a diverse cast of Matthew Herbert, Steve Bug, Boo Williams, Luke Hess, and others, the stuff of any serious house and techno head's dreams.
Whether through their productions, labels, or gigs, youANDme have proven that, with a little bit of heart, and a lot of soul, doors will open, crowds will come, dance floors will fill, and the speakers will pound for these ambassadors of their city, country, and the music as a whole.