Sten, aka Lawrence, is also known as Peter M. Kersten, a Hamburgian of increasing renown in club circles. He is co-founder of Dial records, a consistently brilliant label known for deep grooves and haunting atmospheres; every release is bittersweet perfection from the sound signatures to the sleeve art. In his Lawrence guise Kersten is an in-demand producer, DJ and remixer, Sten is his less visible, more down-to-earth alter-ego.
Sten has kept a straighter, more aggressively beat-oriented construction than his more romantic counterpart (though recently Lawrence has become a bit of an all-rounder). But, whether making music as Lawrence or Sten, the result is always classic and deep.
Kersten started playing the computer and machines in 1997, a few years before his first release on dial as Lawrence, Shoes/i> (dial000). The first Sten 12”, TV, appeared in 2002, followed by another, Eccentric, the next year, and the acclaimed album, Leaving the Frantic, in 2004. He made his Sender debut on the Receiving Data compilation with the track Faces and went on to release two 12"s on the Berlin (nee Cologne) label in 2004, Restless and Stalker.
Sten appeared to lay low for some time after that, dropping only remixes (for Pokerflat's Lihmacon, DK7, Pantha du Prince) and with some tracks appearing on compilations of Tobias Thomas, Cocoon and Michael Mayer’s Immer2. He returned to Dial with a new ep in 2006. The title track, Take me to the Fridge, combines nonsensical Chicago style vocals (Take me to the fridge…?) and solid beats with percussive antics.
Kersten launched Dial with his flatmate and dj friend David Lieske (aka Carsten Jost) in 2000 and it has been going from strength to strength ever since, already past the 30 release mark. There was a stomping Dial label night at Berlin’s panorama bar in Dec 2006, and an all-nighter soon after at London’s Süd Yuletide, organised by Alan Abrahams aka Portable.
2006 was a busy year for Kersten with appearances at the 2006 DEMF festival (Ghostly International Party), a live set at MUTEK 06, and in Jerusalem at the c.sides festival in the summer. He also opened a record store and label in Hamburg called Smallville, and its first shimmering release, We Are Smallville, featuring Sten, DJ Swap and Steinhoff & Hammouda, was out in late 2006.
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