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2013 should be a vintage year for Timo Maas. Over the next 12 months, he’ll release his long awaited new artist album, Lifer, featuring Mikill Pane, Placebo’s Brian Molko, U.N.K.L.E’s James Lavelle, Katie Cruel and more; he’ll celebrate 10 years as a resident at DC10 in Ibiza; welcome new artists to his Rockets & Ponies imprint, help Cocoon commemorate their 100th release and continue to reinforce his reputation as one of German electronic music’s most colourful characters.

For a small town in Lower Saxony, Bückeburg punches well above its weight. It’s home to a helicopter museum. It was also where Bach spent the greater part of his life and where one can find the beautiful Bückeburg Palace, where Prince Alexander of Schaumburg-Lippe still lives. It is also the hometown of our hero Timo Maas, who is – somewhat unsurprisingly – buddies with the prince.

Has it really been 14 years since Maas’ music burnt itself indelibly on our synapses with the all-conquering remix of Azzido Da Bass’ ‘Doom’s Night’? Indeed it is. Or, as Timo chuckles: “The spot on the ass of my career!”

He is, of course, joking. The Maas remix made him an international DJ celebrity and propelled the track into the pop charts in both Germany and the UK, leading to remix offers from Madonna, Depeche Mode, Fatboy Slim, Muse, Kelis and many more. Maas and then studio partner Martin Buttrich had returned from the Miami conference in 1999 inspired. “We were so motivated, we started writing music off the back of these amazing memories and produced a string of things in quick succession, including ‘Doom’s Night’. A few months later all the UK garage guys picked up on it and then all the other stuff we’d done in that short burst of activity came out too. But with the success of this fucking record on the garage scene it blew up. This record changed everything!”

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Long before he charmed the pants of dancefloors worldwide, he was DJing back in his native Bückeburg and nearby Hannover from the age of 13. He’s been at it for over 30 years now. “I went from music lover and tape recorder to DJ for local occasions to DJing in local discotheques at 15,” he recalls. “By the age of 17 I was playing in clubs.”

Timo was present when the eruptions that created fissures in the club scene arrived. He recalls hearing ‘Pump Up The Volume’ for the first time: “When M/A/R/R/S came out it was the initial explosion. What the fuck is that sound?! Then I bought Phuture’s ‘Acid Tracks’ from my local store. What kind of trippy, weird stuff are these guys doing?” But many Germans were simply not ready for this brave new world. “Trying to play this sort of stuff in the clubs was difficult because the people didn’t understand it. They’d say play something from the charts, but don’t play this weird shit.”

As the German rave scene gradually extended is borders to include Hannover and its environs, Timo was one of the primary architects. Alongside raves, Maas held down a residency at a mixed night in the fantastically-named Men Factory.
“The gay scene was still musically very upfront then,” explains Timo. “At the time gay clubs were dark and mysterious and I was playing things like Underground Resistance, Steve Poindexter, some really cool stuff.” When DJ Gary D heard him play in Hannover one evening, he invited him over to The Tunnel in Hamburg, then one of Germany’s leading clubs. “I went to Hamburg and drank Jagermeister with him,” he quips. “And the week after I was a resident with him there.”

The first stamp in Timo’s DJ passport came in 1995, with his debut appearance at the Lakota club in Bristol. ““I sent my first record out with a mixtape to promoters and two came back and invited me to play, one of them was the Lakota,” he recalls. “I had a residency there for three years through Leon Alexander who later became my manager. I was playing regularly with people like System 7 and Carl Cox and in the back room it was drum and bass guys like Reprazent.”

If ‘Doom’s Night’ blew up the spot, then his solo albums – and we are now on his third – are where he’s forged a reputation for brave collaborative choices and cinematic sounds. Although Maas has been widely described as a purveyor of techno, tech house or a whole load of other genre prescriptions, the striking thing about his music is the effortless ease with which it morphs chameleon-like from one style to another. His latest album, for example, runs from the almost Beatles-esque raga of ‘Visions’, which features the sitar work of fellow German Torsten de Winkel – the pair having been introduced by our old friend Prince Alexander of Schaumburg-Lippe.

For those that have followed the trajectory of Maas’ albums, Lifer contains yet more wildly divergent collaborators, from Brighton chanteuse Katie Cruel (now signed to his own Rockets & Ponies label), who weighs in with the haunting ‘Articulation’, the gritty rap delivered by Mikill Pane on ‘Grown-Up’, through to Placebo singer Brian Molko’s contribution to ‘College 84’, while James Lavelle delivers a primo vocal on the dramatic ‘The Hunted’. “This is the only vocal outside of U.N.K.L.E. he has ever done,” says Timo. “So I feel quite honoured. Out of everything on the album, I think it’s probably the nearest in sound to the old Timo Maas material, especially around the time of the Loud album. We’d never met each until recently when we played at a festival together and we realised we were mutual fans of each other’s work. Originally the idea was to produce a track together. But after he’d sent me something, I just said, ‘You know, I’d really like you to sing.’ And I absolutely love what he’s done. It’s perfect.”

This eclectic approach makes for a great listening experience, yet Maas insists he has also found room in his extensive club sets to play many of the tracks from his album. “Well, I do play certain tracks off my album, in fact I’ve played many already,” says Timo. “But it’s not just dance music, it’s also a way of expressing myself more with my production partner, Santos. I’ve never only produced dance music. It’s only my third full artist album, but I’ve always done this. I don’t pay too much attention about anything fitting into a genre. I love so many different styles of music and I try and interpret them in my own way. This is how it comes out.”

One sure measure of Maas’ studio success has been the vast array of games, movies and TV shows that have looked to his music to provide soundbeds and the appropriate atmosphere. “Well, we work with great sync-licensing people, but with all the albums it’s been the same situation. They are all relatively timeless and they have this cinematic quality. This is what the new album has in common with the first two. And, as a gamer myself, sometimes in the studio, you do think, ‘Wow this bit would sound amazing on a racing game!’”

Yet it is still his club work that informs and drives much of the desire in the studio. “I come from DJing,” he asserts. “For me it’s the connection to the world outside. It’s where I can experiment, where I hear about things, it’s just so important to what I do. How can you have a feeling for clubs when you are not going to them?”

Indeed. In clubs, as in the studio, there’s only one way to describe Timo Maas: lifer.

Bill Brewster

TIMO MAAS   Timo Maas, Hanover, Germany

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    1. 1. Premiere: Eric Volta 'Dreams Don't Turn To Dust' feat Monolitio by Mixmag 6.46 29003 plays
    2. 2. My Favorite Robot - Dead of the Dance by XLR8R 6.18 11562 plays
    3. 3. DJ Sossa Feat Kara Square - Consumer W (Garbant Wave Mix) by The Ransom Note 6.16 3071 plays
    4. 4. DisCerN & Signal Flow - Coarse Lanquage by My Favorite Robot Records 1.30 3309 plays
    5. 5. Igor Vicente - Ashes by My Favorite Robot Records 1.30 1032 plays
    6. 6. Tim Green - Pleanty Of Spiders - My Favorite Robot Records by Tim Green. 6.41 6365 plays
    7. 7. Full Premiere: Martin Buttrich - Bubble Heat [My Favorite Robot] by Deep House London 7.17 11883 plays
    8. 8. Timo Maas - Watching The Robots by My Favorite Robot Records 1.30 7275 plays
    9. 9. Villanova - Ola by My Favorite Robot Records 1.29 3248 plays
    10. 10. Pezzner - Exit (Sebastian Mullaert Remix) by My Favorite Robot Records 1.30 686 plays
    11. 11. Daniel Stefanik - Edge Of Motion - My Favorite Robot Records by Data Transmission 6.03 3081 plays
    12. 12. Chris Carrier - Wicked Night by My Favorite Robot Records 1.30 597 plays
    13. 13. Timo Maas & Santos - Z Panorama by My Favorite Robot Records 1.30 4877 plays
    14. 14. Premiere: Agoria - For One Hour (Villanova Remix) by i-D 8.00 47197 plays
    1. 1. Wolfgang Haffner - Melodia del Viento (Ricardo Villalobos & Max Loderbauer Remix) by XLR8R 18.31 18475 plays
    2. 2. Wolfgang Haffner - Bing (Ricardo Villalobos & Max Loderbauer Ging Bing Remix) / Rockets & Ponies by FACT mag 13.30 12659 plays
    3. 3. Wolfgang Haffner - Luna (Timo Maas Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2014 by TIMO MAAS 3.30 5356 plays
    4. 4. Wolfgang Haffner - Melodia Del Viento (Ricardo Villalobos & Max Loderbauer Meloopdia Remix) by Rockets & Ponies 11.38 3024 plays
    5. 5. Exclusive Premiere: Wolfgang Haffner - Bing (Acid Mondays Remix) by Data Transmission 10.02 5389 plays
  • Latest Releases 52 tracks, 3.29.40 TIMO MAAS on June 28, 2011 00:47

    1. 1. Morcheeba - Make Believer (Timo Maas Bitter Sweet Remix) /// PIAS 2014 by TIMO MAAS 8.52 13575 plays
    2. 2. Timo Maas - Watching The Robots by My Favorite Robot Records 1.30 7275 plays
    3. 3. Timo Maas & Santos - Z Panorama by My Favorite Robot Records 1.30 4877 plays
    4. 4. Wolfgang Haffner - Luna (Timo Maas Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2014 by TIMO MAAS 3.30 5356 plays
    5. 5. FREE DOWNLOAD: Timo Maas featuring James Lavelle - The Hunted (Livio & Roby Remix) by djmag 8.20 16068 plays
    6. 6. Timo Maas - Grown Up (Addison Groove Remix) by XLR8R 3.35 13406 plays
    7. 7. Track Premiere: Timo Maas ft. James Lavelle - The Hunted (Fur Coat Remix) by i-D 8.58 39465 plays
    8. 8. Timo Maas - Kick1 Kick 3, Maetriks Sexy RMX by Rockets & Ponies 2.04 1422 plays
    9. 9. Riva Starr - Columbine Sept Heures (Timo Maas Remix)/// Snatch! Records 2014 by TIMO MAAS 8.32 4323 plays
    10. 10. Timo Maas - Tantra (Tom Demac Remix) by XLR8R 5.55 28790 plays
    11. 11. Timo Maas - Tantra (James Teej Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 6.08 4690 plays
    12. 12. Timo Maas - Tantra (James Teej Vocal Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 6.08 5434 plays
    13. 13. Timo Maas - Tantra (Atelier Francesco) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 8.51 3882 plays
    14. 14. Timo Maas - Tantra (Wolfgang Haffner Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 8.41 4883 plays
    15. 15. Tim Green - Monomania (Timo Maas Remix) /// Disc Over Music 2013 by TIMO MAAS 7.41 5206 plays
    16. 16. Timo Maas feat. Brian Molko - College 84 (Riva Starr Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 4.15 13945 plays
    17. 17. Timo Maas feat. College 84 (Riva Starr Dub Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 4.15 10299 plays
    18. 18. Timo Maas feat. Brian Molko - College 84 (Butch Dub Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.22 8596 plays
    19. 19. Timo Maas feat. Brian Molko - College 84 (Butch Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.36 12663 plays
    20. 20. Timo Maas feat. Brian Molko - College 84 (Eric Volta Electric Bodies Mix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 4.09 4626 plays
    21. 21. Timo Maas feat. Brian Molko - College 84 (Patrick Chardronnet Ambient Mix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.38 5588 plays
    22. 22. Timo Maas - Pop A Bubble /// Cocoon Recordings 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.01 5798 plays
    23. 23. Timo Maas feat. Katie Cruel - Articulation /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.35 8054 plays
    24. 24. Timo Maas feat. Katie Cruel - Articulation (youANDme Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 4.18 4380 plays
    25. 25. Timo Maas feat. Katie Cruel - Articulation (Tim Green Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.38 6321 plays
    26. 26. Timo Maas feat. Katie Cruel - Articulation (Pezzner Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.54 6837 plays
    27. 27. Johnny Mikes feat. Michael B - Darkness Everyday (Timo Maas Remix) /// Lower East 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.09 8139 plays
    28. 28. Timo Maas - Dancing For My Pleasure /// My Favorite Robot Records by TIMO MAAS 2.22 9012 plays
    29. 29. Timo Maas - Vision /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.21 15786 plays
    30. 30. Timo Maas - Tantra /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.59 10767 plays
    31. 31. Timo Maas - Grown Up ft. Mikill Pane /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 1.58 10513 plays
    32. 32. Timo Maas - Kick1Kick3 /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 2.49 6121 plays
    33. 33. Timo Maas - Articulation ft. Katie Cruel /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.35 5876 plays
    34. 34. Timo Maas - Scope /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.03 4440 plays
    35. 35. Timo Maas - Train In My Kitchen /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.30 4208 plays
    36. 36. Timo Maas - Abundance /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 1.20 3786 plays
    37. 37. Timo Maas - Cash Johnny /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.02 4037 plays
    38. 38. Timo Maas - The Hunted ft. James Lavelle /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 2.33 4520 plays
    39. 39. Timo Maas - College 84 ft. Brian Molko /// Rockets & Ponies 2013 by TIMO MAAS 1.10 3637 plays
    40. 40. James Teej - Liking Your Disorder (Timo Maas Remix) /// Last Night On Earth by TIMO MAAS 3.47 7863 plays
    41. 41. Peter Plate - Wir Beide Sind Musik (Timo Maas Dub Mix) /// Universal Records 2013 by TIMO MAAS 3.05 5833 plays
    42. 42. Kramnik - Mongolium (Timo Maas Remix) /// Kram Records by TIMO MAAS 2.20 6750 plays
    43. 43. Prommer & Barck - Sleeping Beauty (Timo Maas & Santos Remix) /// Derwin Records by TIMO MAAS 3.25 12446 plays
    44. 44. Timo Maas ft. Brian Molko (Placebo) - College 84 (Original Mix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2011 by TIMO MAAS 1.10 12354 plays
    45. 45. Timo Maas ft. Brian Molko (Placebo) - College 84 (&ME Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2011 by TIMO MAAS 1.00 8166 plays
    46. 46. Timo Maas ft. Brian Molko (Placebo) - College 84 (Adam Port Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2011 by TIMO MAAS 1.02 7399 plays
    47. 47. Timo Maas ft. Brian Molko (Placebo) - College 84 (Sam Young Remix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2011 by TIMO MAAS 1.36 5424 plays
    48. 48. Timo Maas - Cash Johnny (Original Mix) /// Rockets & Ponies 2011 by TIMO MAAS 4.04 45348 plays
    49. 49. Noisettes - Ever Fallen In Love (Timo Maas Remix) by TIMO MAAS 4.59 9485 plays
    50. 50. Timo Maas - Clouds (balance 017 exclusive) by TIMO MAAS 5.04 6981 plays
    51. 51. Placebo - Ashtray Heart ( Timo Maas Remix) by TIMO MAAS 6.21 11175 plays
    52. 52. Timo Maas - Kick1 Kick3 /// Rockets & Ponies 2011 by TIMO MAAS 3.37 7101 plays
  • DJ Sets 11 tracks, 14.53.42 TIMO MAAS on June 28, 2011 00:53

    1. 1. Timo Maas: Music To... Keep You Warm by i-D 1.18.34 21073 plays
    2. 2. USED+ABUSED special by Timo Maas by peoplelikeus 1.00.29 26004 plays
    3. 3. Timo Maas - Soundwall Podcast #149 /// May 2013 by TIMO MAAS 1.00.15 10383 plays
    4. 4. Timo Maas @ Sirocco Beach, Ibiza /// 15 Dec 2012 by TIMO MAAS 3.22.49
    5. 5. Timo Maas - Circo Loco Closing Party /// DC10 Ibiza /// 08 Oct 2012 by TIMO MAAS 1.27.32 18792 plays
    6. 6. Timo Maas - Circoloco Opening Party /// DC10 Ibiza /// 28 May 2012 by TIMO MAAS 1.30.05 24473 plays
    7. 7. Timo Maas - Live @ Circoloco Closing Party 2011 - DC10, Ibiza /// October 2011 /// FREE DOWNLOAD by TIMO MAAS 1.36.09 24230 plays
    8. 8. Timo Maas - Live @ Circoloco - DC10 Ibiza /// August 2011 /// FREE DOWNLOAD by TIMO MAAS 1.40.37 8952 plays
    9. 9. Timo Maas - July 2011 /// 30Min MiniMix /// FREE DOWNLOAD by TIMO MAAS 30.18 7249 plays
    10. 10. Timo Maas - October 2010 Mix by TIMO MAAS 1.01.53 10389 plays
    11. 11. Timo Maas - Rockets & Ponies Night @ DC10 Ibiza by TIMO MAAS 24.58 6528 plays

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