If success is magnetic by nature, this year’s outlook promises to be nothing short of spectacular for burgeoning DJ and Producer Kramnik. As a genuine dance music devotee, master mixologist, and a figurehead within the international electronic scene, it’s no surprise he's already locked down support from the industries’ most respected voices, such as DJ Mag (“Top Pick”) or Future Music (“Album of the Month), to name just a few.

“Kramnik has already established quite a following in Europe, and with productions like these, it’s easy to see why he’s so respected.”
iDJ (Jon Stones) ‘One to Watch’

No stranger to the music business, several years served at Sony BMG gave Kramnik a solid grounding and an affirmation to his cause, working with bands as different as Garbage, Eurythmics, Foo Fighters, Westlife, Christina Aguilera, or even Five! However, the corporate game wasn’t without its frustrations and he soon jumped ship to the EDM industry, following his true passion.

Kramnik began promoting and booking acts under Static Sound System at a famous a ArtDeco palace in Madrid (Círculo de Bellas Artes). It was here he inherited an insatiable thirst for DJ storytelling, accredited as a frequent bystander to people like John Digweed, Dimitri (Amsterdam), Kevin Saunderson, Derrick May, Derrditteraum and many more. A quiet study of their iconic mixing techniques and crowd manipulation gave further ambition to his tireless quest of “Perfection”, as David Atkinson from M-Audio describes Kramnik’s mixing.

“I haven’t heard such a large slice of quality dark progressive tech energy since 2003”
Simon Hart (Pioneer)

After posting his first free public 90-min LIVE-album-mix back in 2009, ‘The Zen Zong’, a press snowstorm ensued. With the mix featured live on Total Kiss FM, it quickly garnered worldwide plaudits and clinched an acclaimed "Top Pick" from DJ Mag. Then came another 90-minute LIVE sensation, ‘The K Song’, followed by ‘The Blue Song’ and, eventually, his acclaimed “Invisible Radio Show”, which has reached 40 million listeners.

“A well-programmed and thoroughly cohesive trip through the finest tech cuts of the moment. Bubbling with deep progressive ambience and swirling bass-driven energy, it jumped out at us”
DJ Mag (‘Top Pick’)

Kramnik has since never looked back and is still delivering intelligent shades of techno and progressive into further LIVE mixes through his radio show, which has been featured in radio stations around the globe, including “Mix of the Week” on DSI/Mixmag or “Artist of the Month” on Proton Radio. Other stations that regularly air the “Invisible Radio Show” include Ibiza Global Radio, Ibiza Sonica, Klubbers FM, AMDJs Radio Show, Club Lounge Radio, Play FM Russia, Insomnia FM, Dance Radio Canada, Ceoltronic Radio, Ministry of Sound, Paris One Radio, Berlin FM, Total Kiss or Sirius XM, to name just a few, in addition to more than 55.000 online fans (10.500 on Soundcloud alone including Kram Records: Kramnik’s own label and also ‘one to watch’ in the future!).

“Nice and trippy” Mixmag

But this is just the start… After establishing himself as a master mixologist, Kramnik turned his attention to producing his own tracks with no previous production experience whatsoever. So the man put DJing aside, took some production courses, locked himself in the studio for two years, and the result is called ‘Dark Matters’. According to Amplify & Destroy magazine: ‘Unbeatable genius.” And according to Future Music: ‘Album of the Month’ in December 2012. (The album can be heard right here: www.kramnik.dj/music).

"One of the most distinctive and original albums of the year, with a unique and unaffected sound, discovering and exploring new and uncharted territory. 'Dark Matters' is a highly atmospheric record that bristles with energy, tension and brooding darkness. It builds with a subtle drive that takes the listener from expansive, eerie sound textures to slabs of bassdriven, tough tech. At times it’s pulsating, at others it laments and stews in its own emotions. Trippy, druggy and rich in thick, intoxicating layers, this intense album sucks you deep into Kramnik’s often-twisted world. A truly singular artist, clearly more interested in his output than the fame it could yield, Kramnik could well be bending our minds for years and decades to come."
Future Music
‘Album of the Month’ (Dec 2012)

If there were charts in this type of eclectic music, you could say Kramnik’s debut album made it right to the top of the pops, as Future Music is arguably the most respected magazine in electronic music production. Whereas it normally takes years or even decades to enjoy this type of praise from such respectred media (which most will never see), Kramnik has surprisingly been able to achieve such a feat within just two years into his production career! And not just that, ‘Dark Matters’ also comes in a hefty and exploratory LIVE-mix format (which no one else seems to be doing, it must be said…).

As a preview to his debut album, the man released a few EPs in 2010, and this is what the international press had to say about his very first few tracks:

“The best EP we've listened to this year. Because of its complexity, because of its sound, because of its harmonies, because of its mixture of impossible elements, because of its artistic approach to electronic music, because of its courage and because of its bold and daring sound. All I can say is that this is simply unbeatable. A real piece of jewelry that everyone should listen to and see there’s is still hope in this thing called electronic music."

Whereas most producers take years to produce an entire album, Kramnik has managed to complete his debut LP in just two years into the production business! Quite amazing indeed, Kramnik’s debut album not only demonstrates his ability to produce different types of electronic, ranging from deep to sci-fi, from techno to progressive, from minimal to experimental but, more importantly, his ability to put them together in a coherent journey. Highly revered within the EDM community, Kramnik effortlessly combines flawless production skills with a fearless approach to sampling throughout ‘Dark Matters.’ From recordings of whale sounds in ‘Flex,’ to the hypnotic drone of Mongolian throat singing in ‘Mongolium’, to a real harmonica in ‘Harmuk’, or violins in ‘Viclone’, or even bagpipes generating warping sounds in ‘Dlython’, Kramnik certainly knows how to keep things out-of-the-box. His choices are often organic, natural sounds that give his music genuine warmth. A rare treat in electronic music indeed.

Most DJs don’t ever manage to produce an entire album, let alone have the courage to mix it LIVE. As Kramnik explains in an interview with Ibiza Voice: “I wanted to make an album that worked as tracks and mix at the same time, because it seemed no one else is doing that. That’s why many of the racks were never conceived as dancefloor sensations, because I like mixes with different moods, so the album was conceived as a tory.”

‘Dark Matters’ is an uncompromising and intensely cerebral work, music for the true techno connoisseur. As powerful and mysterious as dark matter itself, Kramnik has produced the kind of record that shapes and defines electronic music for future generations.

What followed was a snow storm of international support, not only from the world’s most respected media, but also from the industry’s biggest heavyweight DJs. The list of world-renowned producers that agreed to remix Kramnik’s album speaks for itself: Ben Sims, Gabriel Ananda, Timo Maas, Hernan Cattaneo & Martin Garcia, Nick Warren, SQL, Hans Bouffmyhre, Franco Bianco & Mike Wall. And that was just in 2012, with more big names already confirmed for 2013! So stay tuned. Most producers will take years before they can dream with these kind of remixes, let alone in such a short period of time…

As expected, the interviews from the most respected international magazines just started pouring in, such as Ibiza Voice, DataTransmission, Tillate, BigShot, They Make Music, Ddance, Inhale, Ihouseu, VMM, Guerrilla Sounds, DMC, My Beat Fix, DSI, or Defected, to name a few (www.kramnik.dj/reviews). Kramnik’s album has also been featured and highlighted in the industry’s most established music shops, such as Beatport, Juno, TrackitDown, iTunes or DJ Downloads (which is not easy feat). Most importantly, the list of international DJ-superstars playing Kramnik’s spectacular tracks all around the world: Luciano, Seth Troxler, Sasha, Digweed, Randall Jones, Maceo Plex, M.A.N.D.Y. Oliver Deutschman, Henry Saiz, Darin Epsilon, Kessey Vorn, Guy J, Bodzin, Misstress Barbara, Danny Tenaglia, Paul van Dyk, Magda, Sander Kleinenberg, Sven Vath, Danny Howlles, Wally Lopez, Nic Fanciulli, Cevin Fischer, Alex Niggerman, Lee Curtis, Joseph Capriati, Cari Lekebush, Henri Saiz and hundreds more. In addition to all this support, Kramnik’s online remix competitions have also been sponsored by M-Audio and LoopMasters.

As for gigs, Kramnik has taken somewhat of a break in the last years in order to produce ‘Dark Matters’ and learn production skills. But that hasn’t stopped the man from some recent praise-riddled stages around the world, such as Sao Paulo, Washington DC, Miami WMC, Birmingham, Madrid, Puerto Rico or Berlin (where Kramnik is now based). Clearly, the buzz is starting to surround this original artist around the globe.

Even though Kramnik’s debut album is mostly underground and experimental, in the future we’re going to hear from the man with some authentic Cuban remixes, completely different to the album. And eventually he plans on returning to the idea behind his first ever track, ‘BPM Blues’, in which he remixed an old blues recording from 1954 by Howlin’ Wolf. As a man of such talent, maturity, and discipline to his cause, we can only speculate the heights of success lying in wait. One thing’s for sure: an artist as versatile and diligent as Kramnik will be keeping everyone on their toes until he acknowledges satisfaction. Which prompts the question: what could ever stop a true artist?

Make sure to follow the Kramnik buzz online, and definitely don’t forget to check out his out-of-this-world animation ‘Dark Matters’ VIDEO! www.kramnik.dj/video

Kramnik   Berlin, Germany

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