Selected by Don Crispy
Photos courtesy of Creative Man Productions
Pioneering Japanese techno
DJ/producer Takkyu Ishino returns with Wire 00, the follow-up to last year' first Wire
that saw over 10,000 dance fiends cram Yokohama Arena. The dusk-till-dawn party will
feature Ishino's group Denki Groove as well as a host of Japanese and German techno
Launched last year by Ishino, Wire provides a showcase for Denki Groove's cunning brand of
electropop, as well as highlighting the Tokyo-Berlin techno connection. Early works of
Denki Groove such as 662 BPM in 1990 and UFO in 1991, for example, owe a
great debt to German techno pioneers like Kraftwerk-and the feeling is mutual. Denki
Groove is popular across Europe, and Ishino takes to the decks in front of millions at
Berlin's giant Love Parade on an annual basis.
Both Japan and Germany seem
to have an affinity for the brittle, minimalist strains of Detroit techno, so it is
fitting that Detroit DJ Claude Young is on the bill.
Leaders of the Japanese minimal techno scene including DJs Tasaka, Fumiya Tanaka, and
Kagami are also in the lineup, but perhaps the biggest stars are German.
Acknowledged as a key figure of the German techno scene, Westbam is credited with creating
the Love Parade, which kicked off in 1989 with less than 500 people. In a world that sees
DJs rise meteorically and fall to oblivion just as quickly, he has shown surprising
longevity. Recent Love Parade anthems recorded by Westbam "Sonic Empire" and
"Sunshine" have charted in the top ten, and the 1997 album We'll Never Stop
Living This Way entered the German top 40.
Also key to the German
techno and trance scenes is Sven Vath, a recent visitor to Japan who is also on the Wire
bill. Founding the pioneering Harthouse label in the early 90s, Vath was responsible
for defining the early trance sound on classics like Accident In Paradise, but
has recently moved on, experimenting with breakbeats and funky techno on 1998's Fusion.
Other figures on the talent-packed bill include German electro-futurist and highly
respected DJ Hell, who fuses Detroit's rigid minimalism and house's lush flow on tracks
like "Dans Le Parc". Performing live sets will be Thomas Schumacher (Bremen),
Zombie Nation (Munich) and Beroshima (Berlin).
Check out a sampling of Wire artists' tracks on the new CD Wire 00 Compilation,
just out on Sony/Ki/oon (see CD
Wire 00 takes place
at Yokohama Arena on 9/2. See Concert Listings for