Germany’s masters of electronic music, Stefan Darbruck and Frank Klein, tell James Wilkinson about lingerie, loud music and making Chinese history.
This is your first trip here as DJs; what have you heard about Dubai and what are your expectations?
Frank: I’ve heard a lot from other DJs; they all were impressed by the richness of the country, the hotels, the weather and last but not least, by the clubbing crowds.
Stefan: We expect a memorable party night with cheerful people and also heavy sunburn.
What can Time Out’s readers expect from you at the Gorgeous Dubai night?
Frank: We will do what made us successful over the last few years; we will create a mixture of all varieties of house and it will be pumping, uplifting and energetic.
Stefan: We play for the crowd and we play with the crowd, we try to build a vibe and most of the times it works! And to tell you a secret: we will play some tracks never heard before anywhere else in the world. So keep your ears wide open.
You’ve been working together for nine years; is it hard to keep your working relationship fresh?
Frank: Sometimes, especially on long journeys, we feel like an old married couple. There is kind of routine, but in a very positive way. We know exactly our strengths and weaknesses and can easily compensate whenever it becomes necessary.
What is your most memorable moment from playing abroad?
Frank: The most memorable gig was definitely a lingerie party on a boat in the Vancouver Bay in Canada. I felt like I was in paradise!
Stefan: We played in Tsintao/China for Motorola’s Motorokr festival, the biggest rock festival in China. Our promoter was very excited when he told us there would be 6,000 people there, and we thought, ‘What’s that special about playing for 6,000?’ We had done it often before at festivals in Germany and it was of course memorable, but not special enough to speak about again and again. As we had no soundcheck, we entered the stage just minutes before our gig and saw the crowd: there were not 6,000, but 60,000 Chinese rock fans who had never heard electronic music at this festival! Now we were excited, too! But after 10 minutes we got them and that was really memorable – our promoter told us later that we were the first electronic artists to ever play for such a big crowd there. So we kind of made Chinese clubbing history!
You also run Superstar Records in Germany; what was your aim when you started it?
Frank: Our main focus always was on the music. With this attitude, we were successful from the start; we discovered artists like The Boogie Pimps, Axwell, Steve Angello and Sebastian Ingrosso and wrote music history with the worldwide signing of the Indian artist Panjabi MC.
How has the label progressed since then?
Stefan: Today it is one of the few global players in electronic music. We still search for new talent and work with well-known names.
What are your future plans for the label and yourselves?
Frank: After making so many artists really successful, we now have our focus on ourselves. We were in the top 10 at Beatport for nearly three months with our remix for Axwell’s ‘It’s True’ and spent more than two weeks at number one with our remix of Noel Sinners’ ‘Pullover’.
Stefan: In the future we will continue working on our own career, but will also go fast-forward on the label side and build a new label which will be more globally oriented than Superstar ever was. So watch out and keep an eye on Dabruck & Klein!
Darbruck & Klein play Gorgeous Dubai at The RoofTop on Thursday May 15 from 9pm-3am, Dhs150.