Sven von Thülen
Sven von Thülen has contributed in innumerable ways to the rise of what we today call “club culture." As a promoter, writer, producer and especially DJ, he has witnessed the emergence of Berlin as a world capital of electronic music and been an integral part of its growth.
Von Thülen was initially hooked as much by the first bleeps and clonks from England and the emerging jungle scene as he was by the futuristic sounds emanating from Detroit, immersing himself and championing these genres through committed writing and DJing. As former editor of De:Bug and in-demand DJ, he has been a Berlin club fixture since the early noughties, holding residencies at famed locations throughout the city and playing regularly at Panorama Bar since its inception.
Von Thülen's diverse DJing skills reflect those years of experience, drawing on a lifetime of musical immersion. His track selections are carefully considered but never staid or predictable, refusing to conform to various genre confines. This adaptability and admirable flexibility is increasingly rare, and makes for consistently impressive sets, that combine everything from brooding techno to jacking house and from rugged breakbeat-steppers to uplifting disco.
Beyond DJing, he has had a significant intellectual impact on the Berlin scene through his analysis of its earliest beginnings, co-authoring an oral history on the rise of Berlin techno called “Der Klang die Familie: Berlin, Techno, und die Wende” (published in March 2012 to great acclaim by the prestigious German publisher Suhrkamp). He's also directed the documentary “Wendeklang,” which examines the first merging of German youth cultures from the East and West via techno after the Berlin Wall fell and aired on French-German television channel ARTE. After a French translation was published by Edition Allia in October 2013, the English translation of “Der Klang die Familie” will be available in November 2014.
Von Thülen's will to create goes beyond the party or the written word. As a producer, his recent releases on Work Them Records display an aptitude for combining dancefloor functionality with memorable musicality, showcasing efficient production techniques without sacrificing the layers of detail that make his tracks so versatile and effective on the dancefloor.
With Sweat Inc., a bimonthly club night, that he started in early 2013, he found an ideal outlet to showcase diverse musical tastes. Sweat Inc. attempts to blur the fine lines between house and techno and has boasted bookings such as Prosumer, Xosar, Linkwood, Trus'me, XDB, Newworldaquarium, October, Abdulla Rashim, Vainqueur, Vril, Trevino and Move D. It serves as a sibling to the harder Grounded Theory nights, a connection solidified when von Thülen signed with Grounded Theory booking at the beginning of 2014.
Whether churning out quality tunes for Work Them Records, driving a crowd wild DJing, growing his own night Sweat Inc., or asserting the historical significance of Berlin techno, Sven von Thülen is as important as anyone in the city's creative ascendance.