Well this has been a LONG time coming for me to be honest Christian. I have wanted to interview you for almost two decades now since the first time I supported you on your first tour to Australia at Brown Alley in 2005.
But as the saying goes…
All good things come to those who wait….
With a DJ career spanning a few decades, D-Nox is an Internationally recognised and renowned artist, respected by all within the industry for his eclectic, driving and innovative sets.
Never one to stick to the one genre, his music takes his audience through a spectrum of sounds, varying from progressive through to tech house whilst throwing in a little trance and techno just to keep everybody on their toes.
A firm favourite in Australia, especially here in Melbourne, has seen him headline the infamous Rainbow Serpent Festival numerous times as well as some of the biggest festivals in the world including; Boom, Universo Paralello and Voov. His highly in demand club sets have also seen him jet set around the globe to play anywhere from Tel Aviv to London, Toyko to Barcelona and Buenos Aires to Zurich.
Aside from DJing D-Nox is also head honcho of Sprout and Plastic Park, two German record Labels which are distributed worldwide by Intergroove and supported by the likes of John Digweed, Pete Tong and a pleathora of other majorly respected DJs globally.
Here we talk all this past, present and future with one of the world’s hottest DJs on the planet…. D-NOX
Full Name : Christian Wedekind Nationality: German Occupation: DJ/Producer/ Label Manager Labels: Sprout, Plastic Park, Selador, Sudbeat, Parquet, Suara, Heinz, Baroque Current Releases: ‘FUSION’ on Einmusik
Hi Christian! How are you today?
I am very good, thanks! Even with the current situation of not being able to DJ due all the Covid-19 restrictions.
Tell our readers a little bit about yourself?
Well I am a 44 years old bald German who discovered the love of music from a very young age. I’ve been a professional level DJ since I was 16. Music is my life and I breath and live for music 24 hours 7 days a week.
What are some of your earliest musical memories and what or who were your greatest influences?
My first contact from something out of the radio was actually AC/DC. My older cousin loved them and he wrote those 4 letters everywhere he could and that made me curious. I started to copy him by writing the band name everywhere and also started to listen to their music. I was around 11.
I also remember my first electronic music moment when Lil Louise – French Kiss was played on the radio, as well S- Express and Mars. My first disco moments I had a little later when I was around 13, there was a club in my town which opened for teenagers (Saturday from 4pm to 8pm). This is where I first saw a DJ. Two guys behind their tape machines playing all sorts of 80’s music and controlling the dance floor. I wanted to be those guys. From that moment on there was no return. I put all of my career dreams on this card and have played this game ever since.
What was the first album or piece of music you bought for yourself, and what was the medium? How old were you?
I think my first album I ever bought must have been the ‘Razors Edge’ by AC/DC plus all their albums right after.
My first techno single I ever bought was from the members of Mayday 1992, the mayday hymn. And my first compilation was a sample of the biggest techno tracks at that time, Quadrophonia.
So you mentioned above that you got into electronic music quite early and was already professionally DJing at 16. Tell us a little more about this time….
I was already a DJ before I started to play techno. I was playing 80’s music after I saw those DJ’s in that club that I mentioned before. I used to record music on the radio and play out my tapes at school parties but only for a short time because my parents decided to escape East Germany for a better life in West Germany. Once we made it to West Germany it took us a bit of time to get settled. I had a similar experience in a club in my new home town Dusseldorf when I was around 15 and again it was the DJ who had everyone dancing. And that was when I heard techno music for the first time. That was around 1991/ 1992. The next day I ran to the record store and got hooked on the sound I still play today.
Do you remember your first rave? What was it called and who was playing? Tell us about it.
Yes of course! My first rave was called Akira Rave in my new home town Dusseldorf. I remember seeing Cosmic Baby live for the first time and also Kid Paul and some others. It was such a great night. I even remember it wasn't easy for me to get in because I was only 16 at the time but I did manage to get in somehow and well what a time it was to be alive. This new music, this new sound, this new way of clothing, dancing, being, enjoying. No violence, no uniforms, no rules. It was all so amazing!
Where was your first gig? Where you nervous?
How did it go?
My first DJ gigs as a techno DJ must have been at the end of 1992 in a club called Amnesia in a city nearby. We got there by train with my record case, I had no turntables at that time so the resident DJ who became a friend of mine taught me how to mix, the formula (how to count the beat), how to cue a record and how to pitch the tempo. I was only doing the warm up, not many people in the club so it was all good but I found out very quickly how it all worked.
Your style of music is a mixture of different genres, which in my opinion means your musical tastes are quite open…. this also makes it a lot more interesting as a dancer because it’s not the same sound throughout the entire set. How would you describe your approach to building a set and trying to push new sounds to your audience?
After so many years of collecting music I’ve heard a lot of different styles and with them came many years of great dance floor moments. I have a memory of each one of those moments and a special tune that came out at the time. All of these factors together make me play the way I play.
When you think of the 90’s what do you most remember? Anything at all? Haha…
1989 was a benchmark in German history because the wall came down but the 90’s were a decade of change and electronic music was the hymn of this decade. Rave culture was massive and there was no weekend without raving or clubbing. The music was still new and revolutionary, the parties were wilder and longer. Many times we went straight from the last Sunday club to work on Monday. There was no internet, no social media, few DJs but better ones and less fake ones. You had to have real DJ skills such as mixing on a turntable. We would go to the record store and spend hours listening to the newest vinyl that came out. Go back home, mix tapes. Be friends with as many people as possible and work your way into the DJ business.
Your back catalogue of production credits is quite impressive (and a lot of these are with Frank Beckers). Can you tell us how you got into production and your relationship with Frank?
Frank and I had friends in common, we started to get to know each other around 2000/2001. I knew he was producing music under a different moniker (Space Safari) and I knew that for me it was about time to get my first releases done. So I asked him and he agreed. That was in 2004. Frank is my best friend and in my opinion one of the best musicians in the electronic dance scene. He is so skilled. It’s impressive when he starts to play the keyboard. The harmonies he comes up with. I have huge respect for him.
D-NOX & BECKERS
What is your favourite D-Nox or D-Nox & Beckers release to date and why?
For me that would be Cala a Boca, because we made a unique track with unique sounds that we were never able to make again. But I also really like Serenade, Skylab, some of our remixes and well if I really start to dig now we will be sitting here for 3 days.
Do you have any producers that you would love to collaborate with in future and why?
Yes, I have and I am using this corona lockdown time to do that. I have done some cool tracks with Gai Barone who I admire and again with Budakid. I’ve also been working with another great talented artist Emi Galvan from Argentina. I like to pre-produce tracks, find ideas and then take it to someone and finish it together. It’s amazing to see where the other artists can take my music and listen to the results.
As a father, how do you balance your music & touring with other obligations – family etc?
Well, nowadays it is easier since all the DJs are staying home and waiting out these Corona lockdowns but normally it is very challenging. My daughter lives with her mother in Argentina and I never see her more than a couple of days per month. Now I can’t see her at all since there are no flights to Argentina. So I was a better father when I was able to DJ. I miss her a lot and it is not easy to be away from your child. (I’m sure you a fantastic dad as a touring DJ and now…. *Hugs)
Name one track that makes you ‘emotional’?
Yotto’s remix of RUFUS DU SOL’S ‘Like An Animal’ (Great choice!)
What track can you count on to always kick-start a dance floor?
Depends a bit on where you are but in Brazil it would be Tigas – Mind Dimension.
You are a firm favourite at our legendary Rainbow Serpent Festival here in Victoria. How many times have you played the festival to date? Are you paying Frank to play instead of getting paid or what? (Hahaha *joke ;)
Hehehe, it seems like it but that is not the case. I have played at Rainbow Serpent Festival 7 times and feel a part of the festival’s rich history. There is no better festival on earth. The whole thing just feels right and so so good. I hope Rainbow will be back and I also hope that one day I can be back too.
D-NOX destroying the Market Stage at the best festival in the world RAINBOW SERPENT FESTIVAL on Mad Monday
What is your favourite country to play in and name the best party you’ve ever played at and why?
Australia is at the top of my list followed by Argentina, Israel and Brazil. Festivals like Rainbow make all the difference. It’s more the crowd for me that matters, and in those countries mentioned above I always receive so much love and support that I always love to return. I even moved to Brazil because I like it so much. I’ve played at so many great parties all over the world, also in countries I didn't mention above so I don't want to limit it to just a few since there have been many.
Fun fact, there have been many times after I finished playing an emotional set where I felt that everything was just right that I’ve told the promoter that this was the best party I’ve ever played at. I have said this so many times now that remembering them all makes me laugh as I’ve had way TOO many fantastic parties.
Do you have any up&coming DJs our readers should keep an eye out for which you feel deserve the attention?
Right now I wish for all the DJs out there that things will get back to normal very soon. I have no current favourite at the moment since I haven’t been to a party in almost 4 months.
Lastly, how has 2020 & this whole pandemic changed your views to how the dance scene will recover? Do you think live DJ streams are here to stay?
Live streams will stay, we had them before, people like this format but it will never replace a party. Loud music, good sound system, all your friends, drinks & Co. These are all things that you just don't have at home. Also, for us DJs it is not very entertaining to play in front of a camera with no people on the floor. For me it is essential and I cant wait to have my parties back again.
To end our interview today Christian, I usually finish off by asking a few silly questions which you may or may not choose to answer….
Do you believe in love at first sight?
Pick 5 people you would like to have dinner with and why?
My daughter because I haven’t see her since March 7th
Dave Gahan because he is the front man of the best band ever, Depeche Mode
Dalai Lama, to talk about past, present & future
The Brazilian president to make him understand that he has to save the rainforest
My wife because I love her and I love to enjoy a good meal with her.
What would be your last meal on earth?
What track do you wish you wrote?
Depeche Mode – Enjoy the Silence
Your house is burning down (don’t worry… your family is safe) & you have 2 minutes to grab ONE record….. What is it?
My laptop (I’ve got most of my music in there!)
The Beatles or The Rolling Stones?
Led Zeppelin (Excellent choice! I would have picked the same ;)
So that concludes our Interview this month with D-NOX. For all up&coming news on what’s coming up for him please follow him below: