Moritz von Oswald
is one half of the Berlin techno legends Maurizio, Basic Channel and Rhythm & Sound with Mark Ernestus. His work has had a deeply significant effect on the development of techno and electronic music worldwide, setting it on a course that has influenced countless producers like Richie Hawtin, Thomas Brinkmann, Wolfgang Voigt, and Robert Henke
whose records were released on the equally influential Chain Reaction Records, helping establish the Detroit-Berlin techno axis.
A lynch pin in the Berlin scene that revolved around Tresor, Hardwax Records and Dubplates & Mastering since the late 80s, Von Oswald will tonight launch a new line-up with Vladislav Delay
and Max Loderbauer (Sun Electric, NSI).
In the 80s, von Oswald was a percussionist who worked on a number of Holger Hiller records, and was a member of Thomas Fehlmann’s Neue Deutsche Welle no-wave band Palais Schaumburg, playing variously keyboard, percussion and electronics. Von Oswald made the leap into electronic music production in the late 80s and early 90s working with Fehlmann as 3MB, the in-house production team at Berlin's Tresor Records.
While involved with Tresor, in 1993 Von Oswald and Fehlmann recorded an eponymous EP as 3MB with Detroit techno pioneer Juan Atkins. They teamed up again two years later when Von Oswald worked with Atkins on the debut Model 500 album, Sonic Sunset
. 3MB teamed up with another Detroit pioneer in the same year, Eddie "Flashin" Fowlkes, for the release of Technosoul
A year earlier in ’92, von Oswald began the collaborative partnership with Mark Ernestus that would lead to the Maurizio M-series. The first release, the Ploy
EP, featured a remix by Underground Resistance
on the B-side, and the words “UR - Thank you” were engraved in the run-out grooves. The epic M series of records are driven by a clean 4/4 beat with powerful dub-basslines, syncopated synth pads, and slow modulation. Together, von Oswald and Mark Ernestus launched Basic Channel Records, the parent label of Maurizio, and hub of what would become a sprawling stable of offshoots, a fabled empire of techno. Von Oswald also founded sub-labels including the imprint featuring other related artists, Chain Reaction, as well as Rhythm & Sound, Burial Mix and Imbalance, though he eventually turned over management of the latter to Robert Henke (aka Monolake). The nine Basic Channel records - each variation on a theme in tempo and mood – defined the dub-techno blueprint and have had a huge influence on what is loosely known as ‘minimal’.
Through Rhythm and Sound, von Oswald and Ernestus indulge their interests in dub reggae and techno even further. Their productions feature reggae vocalists like Cornel Campbell, Jennifer Lara, Love Joy or The Chosen Brothers (aka Lloyd 'Bullwackie' Barnes) and Paul St. Hilaire (formerly known as Tikiman).
The pair also founded the venerated Dubplates&Mastering vinyl-cutting studio connected with Hardwax, the record store set up by Mark Ernestus that became a meeting place and a portal for the music they were influenced by – Detroit techno, Chicago House, Dub, and more recently, Dubstep – and a central distribution point for their classic releases and those of related artists. Dubplates&Mastering, where von Oswald was a mastering and cutting engineer for a long time, became established as the best place in the world for the mastering and cutting of techno records, attracting artists from the US, the UK and Japan.
> Moritz von Oswald on Basic Channel
> CTM.08 > SILVER REVERB