Oliver Huntemann

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Oliver Huntemann


“I’ve been to Russia for the whole weekend. I had two gigs – one I was playing close to Moscow – a DJ gig and a live gig. It’s quite cold now in Russia, minus 16 celsius.”

Having released five albums that many critics regard as changing the face of techno, Huntemann explains that he can basically play what he wants in a set. However, he admits he would be a fool to believe he doesn’t ever have to refine his DJ sets for a particular audience.

“But that doesn’t mean I don’t look for the response on the dance floor to see what is happening. I can offer variety in my sound so sometimes the crowd might be in the mood to get a bit deeper and sometimes I’m more uplifting so each DJ set is different within my kind of music,” he tells.

Like many who rise to the top of an EDM genre, it is what Huntemann brings new to techno that makes him so revered. Huntemann explains that he uses a symbiosis of house, electro and techno to create his style of music. “I like to say that I play electronic music but that is so wide, and yeah, I think I’m kinda techno. Not really hard but not soft. I think I use more housey or slower beats with a techno attitude of the synthesizers and the sounds I use on top.”

On the topic of synthesizers, it is put to Huntemann that it is Germany’s proud history of electro and synth music that has led to artists like him and fellow German producer Alex Ridha [Boys Noize] using classic synthesizers in modern dance. He tackles this proposition carefully: “It’s not that I do it to be German. The vibe of German techno, I mean Boys Noize is doing totally different music than me but maybe there’s a similar vibe in our music? And maybe that’s the German vibe?” There is a muffled silence at the other end of the phone before Huntemann warily agrees, “That’s a tentative yes.”

Huntemann continues along the vein of what has influenced his music explaining his love affair with produced beats has been a long one. “I’ve always been into electronic music since I was a very young boy. My first records were from Kraftwerk and some electro prog, Depeche Mode and soon techno. Nowadays I am more interested in downbeat stuff like Massive Attack and Portishead and these are influencing me too.”

But despite these influences from different styles, techno is where Huntemann’s heart lies. He sounds almost like a proud father as he explains how he has seen techno grow in popularity in Australia. “I was in Australia, last time, two years ago, and dance music is growing. I was on the Future Music Festival lineup six years ago and since then the scene has grown a lot. The techno stages are getting bigger, the clubs are getting bigger, and it just really seems to be taking off there, catching up to the rest of the world.

“Germany and England were always big with techno but, like Australia, South America is growing a lot and the Eastern countries too. Asia it’s more housey but it changes all the time.”

Closing out the interview, Huntemann waxes lyrical about how pumped he is to be returning to Australia for Future Music Festival.

“I’m really excited to see what Jamie Jones will be playing. Jamie Jones just won the vote of Resident Advisor Top 100 DJs. He’s such a good DJ, I recently played with him in Budapest and I met him at Sonar; I really like his remix of Azari & III’s Hungry For Power, it has a really good dance floor sensibility to it. Also, I heard Skrillex is playing which I am very curious about because I have never seen him. Even if it’s not my music I still find it interesting to see if they are a good DJ or to see how they respond to the crowd,” explains the chuffed and intrigued techno genius.