Sound of Berghain and Sound of Panorama Bar are monthly Ostgut Ton label nights at Culture Box, showcasing the finest Berghain techno and Panorama Bar house DJs. This time the amazing Tama Sumo and Efdemin!Efdemin
aka. Phillip Sollmann has never been to CHICAGO...
After the huge success of his selftitled debut in 2007 CHICAGO is the second album of the Berlin-based Producer and DJ who releases his music under his moniker EFDEMIN with DIAL Records. While setting up his new studio – autumn turned into winter and berlin would soon be covered in snow. The outside world faded away, noises were muffled and Sollmann felt more and more like being in musical psychoanalysis with himself. A perfect starting point for the production of a new album.
Revealing his wide range of expressions EFDEMIN starts with a kind of jazz jam-session between himself and his studio environment. Playing the drummachines, a farfisa organ and the drumkit makes “cowbell” an artificial weird tune, yet it remains human. Following are the two deep dance tracks “shoeshine” and “nightrain” which reflect his love for house and deeper techno. They aren’t looking for cheap peaktimes or breakdowns but focus on subtle seduction through sound. ”Oh my god” brings back the obscure jazz of “cowbell” with a piano-loop in the main role, contrasting against noisy bubbles, vocal-flakes and a melody you won’t forget.
Next is the soulful “there will be singing” – a tune in the vein of detroit house with a long introduction followed by an impressive groove with a dark bass-line. “Le grand voyage” is a short but seductive study in dub-techno based on organchords and bass. From now on the heart lies more in the sound than in the melodies and the further the album develops, the more abstract and eccentric it becomes. In “round here” sound totally takes over and the beat takes a back seat. “Wonderland” is a long trip through sound and abstract layers of percussiongrooves – a somewhat psychotic piece of music which goes way beyond being music for clubs. CHICAGO comes to end with the reprise of the hearttouching melodie of “oh my god”, this time without the beat.
CHICAGO, EFDEMIN’s second contribution to urban blues, contains ten tracks as a result of Phillip Sollmann’s immersion into his own archives and experiences – may it be as a singer in a band years ago, composing theatre-music or playing as a DJ in clubs all over the globe. They deal with various influences, although always expressing his unique sense for deepness and his love for dance music. There is Jazz, there is house, there is techno and there are his instruments you can hear: Cello, Zither, Drums, Percussion, Organ, Synths, Drummachines and several small things like flutes and pipes appear here and there without ever walking into the trap of virtuosity.
Besides Techno itself, there are many important influences in EFDEMIN’s music from different sources and other times - a cosmos of music that has followed him for a long time and influenced his drifting and melancholic approach to producing electronic dance music. Be it the otherworldly music of chicago-based Sun Ra, minimalistic jazz /world-music-studies of don cherry, the enterprising tape music of basil kirchin or the microtonal instruments of Harry Partch to name a few of the influences that layed the groundwork leading up to the production of this album.
Is this a “chicago-house” record? No! But the windy city was the starting point to blow the cosmos with such abstract lovely music developed in a thousand directions. Arts, literature, architecture, jazz, american folkmusic, hip hop - CHICAGO seems to be the source of reference for so many important movements crossing EFDEMIN’s work. Finally CHICAGO is the title for an album rich in flavors and full of directions into contemporary dance music and the end of the world as we know it.
To quote his favourite pop-band Prefab Sprout: “there is no chicago urban blues” (Cruel, Swoon, 1984)
„Music is pure communication – stay in contact and follow your heart!“ - Tama Sumo
Heart, emotion and passion instead of pure functionality – these are Tama Sumo’s dj characteristics in a nutshell.
She started out in 1993 at the Drama bar in Berlin / Kreuzberg, one of the first bars to ever feature its own dj at the weekend and an important hang out for the scene before going to the clubs.
Besides, the Drama has been one of the few locations playing house music, when techno was dominating all the other clubs and bars at that time. Tama Sumo used to play a lot of New York style vocal house and quickly became a regular DJ behind the decks at the gay saturdays at Café Moskau.
In the beginning of 1994 she started playing regulariy at the legendary Techno-Club Globus/Tresor and became a resident DJ at this location for the following years. Here she began to integrate different electronic-music-genres into her house sets, a mixture, she conctantly improved over the years and which by now has become so sigificant for her long sets.
Since 2001 Tama Sumo also played regulariy at the „Dance With The Aliens“-Party at the old OstGut, the predecessor of Berghain, which eventually opened the door to a residency at the new Panoramabar & Berghain. In the meantime she developed a varied style ranging from House in all its colours, combined with reduced Techno, old Electro, Disco and Pop. Altogether her sets feature a lot of bass, sometimes melody, always deep, sexy, dirty, jacking, rough and funky.
„Music for me is something very subjective and I always attempt to approach it with my intuition,” Tama Sumo comments. „To be a DJ for me means to be in touch with the audience without speaking and to interact with the crowd and give them what they need while staying true to myself at the same time. It’s also fundamental to my work that I succeed at letting the music, the crowd and myself run freely. I have to turn off my head and go with the flow. I love to create and play with different moods and atmospheres. And I’m still fascinated by the fact that music can release a huge amount of energy and fun immediately. Music and bass in particular make people happy!“
At the beginning of 2008, she has finally released her first record. Both tracks, “Play Up” and “Brothers, Sisters”, have been produced in collaboration with Prosumer. They perfectly sum up Tama’s take on house music: two rough and funky tracks which made the DJ Top 50 of German Groove Magazin at first go.www.ostgut.de