Did you really initiate the renaissance of deep house? Why do people say this?
I can’t say that. Maybe because ‘Rej’ was a track between all styles so that many people listen to us and our DJ sets where we play a lot deep house. But there are many others who helped deep house to come back: our label mate Dixon for example.
How has being from Karlsruhe affected your music? Does the town sound like anything in particular?
No, but it’s kind of silent there [grins] Honestly we really appreciate the calm way of living there as the opposite of cities like Berlin where everyday you ‘have to go there’. We travel a lot at the moment and it’s good to have kind of a home base.
You met your partner Kristian at record shop ‘Plattentasche’ (what does that mean?). Which record were you looking at at the time?
‘Plattentasche’ is simply the German word for ‘record bag’. I really can’t remember which record I was searching but it definitely wasn’t a house or techno record. At those times I was more into downbeat stuff or jazzy things from the likes of Jazzanova.
Give us five of your top musical influences.
That’s always difficult but I try to name a few. Joe Zawinul as keyboard player, composer and everything else he does. Stevie Wonder for his soul and songs. Miles Davis for leading a band and looking into the future. Manuel Göttsching or Klaus Schulze for their experiments in electronica. And Carl Craig for his variety in electronic music.
Your name ‘Âme’ means soul. What does your soul sound like?
I think that soul needs to be in every track from us. And that also every (in my opinion) really good track, even if it’s the hardest techno, has soul into it. It maybe just means ‘warmth’ or it’s some certain feeling... it’s hard to describe.
What would you sell your soul for?
One day on the top of the Mount Everest. (which has nothing to do with music but with silence [laughs])
What’s ‘Rej’ about – why do you think it was so successful?
Like I said before: Rej is kind of a hybrid track between many styles. So many different people listened to it: the house guys, the techno heads and even jazz or classical people asked me about it.
You’ve designed Star Wars and Back To The Future t-shirts. If you were a character from an 80s cult sci-fi film who would you be?
Scotty from Star Trek [laughs]. Because I’ve always liked that: fixing things – musically, technically in our studio, maybe mentally ...
You’ve got some very great artists on your label, Inner City Visions. Who would be your dream signing?
Some tracks with Róisín Murphy maybe, but that’s a hard question, too. We’re really happy with the artists at the moment as they are all doing great music and are good friends, too. Maybe it would be great to have one of the old idols on Innervisions with a great track. But it’s not about the names – it’s about the music.
What’s the five-year plan for Frank? And for Âme?
At the moment we work with Dixon and Henrik Schwarz on the Innervisions Orchestra which should be a lot of work for the next few months, or even years. Personally I try to make interesting music as long as I can and to develop myself. And for sure: life is nothing without love.
Âme play at the relaunch of Lush Radio at Submarine on Friday February 22. Tickets cost Dhs100 and you can find out more information at www.lushdxb.com.