20 years of techno
During this time a new movement of techno began manifesting itself in the German underground, mostly online at first, but it quickly spread into the clubs. Amok released some 20 vinyls in 1 year (counting remixes and compilations), among them Hardtechno classics like his infamous "Nightmare EP" on Artillery and the crazy "Bongo Dynamics EP" on label Kne'Deep, both of which have been played by countless DJs in clubs all over the world. With his Nightmare release Amok founded his first label Artillery Records, which has in one year become a houshold name among hardtechno djs. Lately Amok has started newcomer label Crowbar Recordings to keep the vibe in the scene fresh and took over old cult label Gigamusic. Amok's DJ performances reflect the furiosity with which he works on his projects. In his first year Amok has played in countrys all over europe, in both small basement clubs and on big festivals with thousands of people. His style is aggressive and hard as hell, but there is always rhythm and structure in what he spins and how he spins - he knows how to get his crowd moving. And although it may not seem so to those who cannot cope with it´s hard edge, Amok's style is complex and diverse; it is deep and dark, sometimes melancholic, sometimes angry or even funky, it follows no rules except those of the dancefloor (and even those it bends). There is no genre for him yet, but if you look for that thin line between techno and modern hardcore,... that is where you will find DJ Amok. Benjamin Arend, born 1981 in San Francisco, has always had his very own taste in music. Back when his classmates still sang along the Disney soundtracks, he listened to the works of Wagner and Beethoven and even learned how to play the violin. Unfortunately he had to give this up, in favor of his schoolwork. It wasn`t until he had reached the age of 14, that he discovered pop which quickly lead him to trance and rave. At the age of 18 he began visiting the local techno clubs in Frankfurt and a few months later, after a tragic turn of events in his life, DJ Amok was born. This idea was all he had left, he had no money, no home, but the will to turn his crappy life to the complete opposite, to climb all the way from rock bottom to the very top. In the year that followed he started producing his first tracks and spreading them across the internet, where they where very successful on places like mp3.com. Now motivated to go all the way with this, he started creating his very own impression of techno and the sound his is known for today: extremely hard, agressive and thundering techno, dedicated to making the people go wild. As a DJ, he tries to explore the limits of just how far he can take the audience, and always tries to push the limits. Pushing the limits was also the goal of his first release on Giga-music and since it did very well, it helped open the doors for hardtechno to the labels and the market. In 2003, after the mark had been made, a whole new hardtechno scene emerged seemingly out of nowhere and has proven to be far more than just a hype. In the same year DJ Amok founded two labels: Artillery, best known for Amok's infamous Nightmare EP and Crowbar Recordings, which gives newcomers a chance to prove themselves.