At midnight, on March 13th 1991, a basement door opened at Leipziger Strasse 126, Berlin. Through this door, many passed, on their way to defining new terrains in electronic music. There they found a dance floor in the vaults of a closed-down department store, with a unique sound bound to dense fog, building night after night a history that was also a vision of the future.
This history has seen in Jeff Mills’ first sets on three turntables, Underground Resistance's first live appearances in Europe, grandiose Tresor Park parties, to various chapters of the Loveparade with Sven Väth in the 90s and since then countless generation-spanning parties. These moments represent the highlights of infinite personal clubbing experiences. It is the manifestation of the Berlin spirit, emerging from its considerable strife. This history is not without its complications - from temporary closure by the authorities and several raids in the early years to closure and demolition of the old location in 2005. What followed was years of wandering in exile and, finally, resurrection in the new home in Kraftwerk Berlin.
These stories, conversations and shared experiences within our walls forge a resilience that drives towards a shared ideal, the Tresor sound: community, resistance, and the world to come. This was observed in the newly re-unified German youth, who danced and celebrated together from the club’s inception, and into the present day through ongoing community work in Detroit.
Tresor Records was founded in the same year and began to serve as a platform for exporting the new sounds associated with Tresor all around the world. Emergent musicians from Michigan, such as Juan Atkins, Underground Resistance and Drexciya, were pivotal in shaping these early years. Their visits to Berlin would kick-start dialogue between the youth movement in Europe and these musicians. This story is one of friendship and community-building, inextricably linked with cities like Detroit, Birmingham or Edinburgh, where like-minded friends built something truly special, where revelatory rhythms soundtrack decaying industry in corrupted metropoles.
Tresor Records has been the fertile soil for dozens upon dozens of creative minds, from the very luminaries of the scene who developed electronic music over the last three decades through to contemporary protagonists who are currently defining the sound of the future - A more than 300 strong catalogue displays an unmistakable identity - the Tresor spirit.
To those that have danced before, and to those that will dance in the future: the light at the end of the long Tresor tunnel is a signal. A flicker amidst the fog. This is our future. This is our place.
Tresor Records’s tracks