BRCast #52 - BAHN Records Label Showcase
I am pleased to welcome you to the BRC Label showcase interview, your participation is greatly appreciated. We thank you for the mix and the time you have invested in preparing for everything that BRC requested. Let's begin the interview with an introduction of the key people of the label.
Hi BRC Team and audience I’m Toni Sánchez, co-founder and artistic director of BAHN·/BAHN· Records, and I’m gonna be representing all the collective/label in this interview but first let me introduce us a bit.
We are a collective/label founded and based in Barcelona and the active members are Diogo Lopes aka STNDRD (artist), Javier Sánchez aka Cyklos (artist), Leandro Rossi aka ASH (artist & mastering engineer), Beka Zakradze aka Petit Astronaute (artist), Marta Belev (photographer & graphic designer) and myself.
Thanks for inviting us to your platform and I hope that all people who read this interview will be able to know a bit more who we are and what we do.
What made you create this label? Why? What is the idea and inspiration behind it?
We are a collective founded in 2017 that we started organizing events since then and after 2 years of growing in Barcelona techno scene and having producers as members of the collective (ASH, Cyklos, STNDRD…) we were finally convinced that we should go for the next step that was to create our own label that illustrates what is the music concept of BAHN· and its label BAHN· Records.
How long had the idea of a label been on your minds before its official launch? What were the challenges running up to its launch?
Around autumn 2019 was the time we finally decided to launch the label that saw the light in the beginning of 2020, but the idea was in our minds since we founded the collective. The biggest challenge was to create exactly what we had in mind respecting our philosophy and staying true to the sounds that define us. To never follow trends despite the scene was changing to harder and fast paced sounds.
What is the inspiration behind the log and artwork?
As “bahn” among other terms means “way” or “path” in German, the main idea was to represent these somehow in the logo with shapes. Dynamism is also a basic concept in the artworks just as using textures, lights and shapes which recall a sensation of a trip through sounds to other dimensions. We wanted to show the A of BAHN as a “path/way” /\. [B/\HN· means for us our path/way into techno] Then we have the simplified logo [/\·].
What genre of music the label hosts and what do you look for specifically in a track that gives you that sense of belonging in a track to release it on your platform?
We release deep, hypnotic, dark and mental techno in 2 different series. Our main line of sound where we look for more intense mental/hypnotic and driving Techno on higher bpms. The Mind series is where we release deep hypnotic techno in many of its variants. The idea of our releases is always to induce you into a trip.
In terms of demos, how do you accept, review and reject from all the thousands you receive? What are the challenges in sifting through the boatload of demos you receive for releases and the communication you maintain with aspirants?
We receive many demos and we try to listen and answer to all demos we receive (not always possible), and we had some nice surprises with artists that we didn’t know before or basically new producers that reached us with their first works and we finally released some of their music on the label.
We like to discover new producers who deserve at least a space to show their first quality works and we are happy to give them this humble space but the idea is to keep programming the releases with the artists we really like and those we think they have a sound that fits with the sound of the label. But basically we look for quality hypnotic techno, no matter the names of the artists.
The communication with the aspirants change depending on the artists, we are not all the same so we can have a closer communication with some and less with others but always with all the respect for their works.
How many VA and compilations do you release in a year and what kind of tracks you choose? What kind of artists do you select for the VA? Basically what purpose does a VA serve to a label?
We are releasing around 3-4 VAs per year + 3-4 EPs. For the VAs we always have our residents of the label (ASH, Cyklos, STNDRD and Petit Astronaute) and then we choose carefully the artists we would like to have on board to complete the releases by listening to their current productions, then we invite them to participate (not always successful answers). And combined sometimes with proper demos we receive that fit with the releases we are preparing.
Which one has been a highlight release and why? (share artwork of the EP)
Well, I would say that our first vinyl release ‘Parallel Reality’ is probably the most important one until the date because basically it’s our first vinyl release and what it means for us, but all the releases of the label are very important for us to be honest.
What do you expect from new talent when you sign them? What makes you reject them from releasing on your label?
We don’t expect anything special, if we like their productions and fit into our line of sound and they are open to contribute to the label. We just expect to have a proper collaboration/relation.
From your country, which other label is pushing the same music as you are and how do you think everyone is helping push the local producers?
There are some great labels in Spain that have influenced us a lot like Semantica, Circular Limited, Non Series and Warm Up. I think there are many actors in the scene open to help local producers, some others not that much but at the end it’s a matter of quality I think. If the local artist is producing quality music then most of the path is done. Nowadays it’s pretty easy to connect with artists, labels, etc. Then it should be a matter of time to grow in the scene.
What kind of support do you look for from artists and other parties in promoting your music worldwide? What are the challenges in promoting music to corners of the world where you may not be as popular as in your home country.
We think that nowadays it’s much easier to reach corners of the world than it was years ago. With all the platforms and tools we have these days, it is easier for all. In our case, we can say that we are more ‘popular’ as label abroad than in our country.