The drums and arrangements may have evolved around it, but melody has always remained central to Sascha Ring's craft. Cast an ear back to 2001's Multifunktionsebene and it's there wafting over the IDM-informed glitch; fast-forward to 2011's Devil's Walkand it's leading delicate songs you could hear on the radio. In the time between these two full-lengths Ring became one of Germany's preeminent electronic artists. 2006's Orchestra of Bubbles alongside fellow Berliner Ellen Allien hit as interest in the sounds of the city were reaching fever pitch. A similarly Berlin-centric project was conceived in 2009 with the release of Moderat, Ring's collaboration with Gernot Bronsert and Sebastian Szary of Modeselektor. His live solo material had by this point taken on the form of a band, set-up to tour his crossover full-length Walls. The show was expanded upon for last year's Devil's Walk, Ring's most introverted and traditionally structured offering yet.
As he showed on his excellent entry in the DJ-Kicks series, Ring knows his way around a mixer as well. We reckon RA.326 is equally as arresting…maybe even life changing. (Ring will explain below.)
What have you been up to recently?
We're in the last weeks of the band tour and we're still having a blast. We go to India tomorrow and after that I'll start working with Gernot and Szary from Modeselektor again. I guess this winter I can't escape to a nice and warm place—I'll be stuck in the studio...
How and where was the mix recorded?
I just recently got into dance music again. It takes a lot of patience to find good stuff but there is good music that's worth searching for. I've been DJing mostly a mix of noisy and some melodic techno but after playing a show with John Talabot I got into his stuff and I discovered all this "good mood music" which is pretty weird actually because for most of my life I've been into depressing music. I guess it means I'm in a good mood these days. I made the mix with Traktor, somewhere on the road I guess...
Can you tell us about the idea behind the mix?
Well, like I said before, I grew up with The Cure and kept on listening to mostly dark music for most of my life so the music I chose is a bit unusual...but it still appeals to my sense of melody and it brings back old '80s childhood memories. I guess this mix marks a real turning point in my life: I'll be a happy and optimistic person from now on. Forever.
You'd mentioned that you were a "gabba kid" in a recent interview. Who were some of the acts you were into?
I listened to cheesy Dutch gabba when I was 13. Euromasters and stuff. But I got into Bunker, Acidplanet and Reference quite soon after. It's not gabba but it really made sense as a next step. I was into hard techno for quite a while actually, until this dumb and loopy "schranz" stuff destroyed it for me. Anyone remember that?
What are you up to next?