DJ Hell | Kern Vol. 2 | CD | Kern.2


Hot on the heels of DJ Deep’s inaugural Kern mix for Tresor comes ‘Kern Vol.2’, selected and mixed by Gigolos boss DJ Hell. Hell has a track record of releasing benchmark mixes, most notably the wildly eclectic mix for Belgian club FUSE in 2000, and 1995’s ‘X-Mix 5: Wildstyle’, whose concept he feels is ‘not far away from Kern Vol.2’.

For ‘Kern Vol.2’, the Munich / Berlin machine dug deep into his vast collection to unite early House and Techno with the new wave. To start the process, he searched in the most obvious place: his basement.

“I was finding records I didn’t know that I still owned,” he explains, adding that there are “so many stories behind each track. It’s not just the music – after 20 years there are so many memories that come back”.

Detroit minimalism is represented by Robert Hood’s ‘Sleep Cycles’, originally released in 1994 on the limited Minimal Nation EP, and Daniel Bell, who appears with an unreleased “Chicago Style” version of his evergreen 1992 track ‘Blip’. Kenny Larkin’s epic “War of the Worlds” also features. It’s an old favourite of Hell’s and he describes it as ‘very emotional’. He also points out that its influence lingers on. “This record was important for a lot of Berlin producers, they were inspired by this track and mixed it up with minimal techno,” he says.

Meanwhile New York’s Joey Beltram makes an appearance as Code 6 with ‘Quad 1’, an irresistibly dark slice of Nu Groove house “‘Quad 1’ is one of my favourite records ever. I still play it and it can change the whole mood of a party,” Hell says. But ‘Kern Vol.2’ isn’t just about the old school and Hell has included tracks from new producers like Recondite and Jonas Kopp. Hell’s background in harder-edge sounds predates the launch of Gigolos in the late 90s, and he welcomes its resurgence. “There are new talents like Jonas Kopp and Recondite, who is also from Bavaria” he says, they connect history with future in a very innovative way, very cutting edge.

‘Kern Vol.2’ also showcases some tracks that didn’t get recognition first time round. The churning, throbbing bass of Literon’s 2006’s ‘Machine 1’ is one such track, one of the many projects of Dutch producer Gerd. “I didn’t know it was him. He has so many different projects but if he released all of his music under his own name, he’d be a superhero,” Hell believes.

Another obscurity is the Afro-acid groove of No Smoke’s ‘Koro Koro’. Hell spent a lot of time trying to trace the artist behind the project and offers the following observation: “They are from London and this was released between 1988 and 1989, but I am not sure of their identity,” he says.

Hell feels that ‘Kern Vol.2’ is a product of crate digging and vinyl culture, but rather than keeping it to himself, he wants to share it with as many people as possible: “This music is very powerful & timeless and had a huge influence on me. I have been DJing since the late 1970s and playing house since 1985 - this is my life.”

As autobiographies go, ‘Kern Vol.2’ makes for a compelling opening chapter.

Additional Information

Artist No
Title No
Cat.No No
Release No
Soundcloud URL
Round image? No