Based in Berlin but originally from Detroit, Kris Wadsworth produces expertly-crafted techno which, in combination with his skill as a DJ, has him in demand at some of the best and most carefully selective venues in the world, including Berlin’s Panorama Bar and Fabric in London. His music often breathes an air of dark moodiness whilst simultaneously being subtly and seductively funky, and though Wadsworth clearly works relentlessly for his art, the quality of his productions seem effortless. This may be in part due to his uncompromising attitude towards his own creative process, placing honesty in that respect at the forefront of his work ahead of any kind of commercial success.
“I got this idea in my head that whatever you do for a living should be an exploitation of what you are naturally good at,” states Wadsworth. “This music, if nothing else, is the only thing I have ever stuck with or that has stuck with me. I have been making electronic music for 15 years as of September 2013. I also turned 29 years old in the same month. I have been at this thing for half my life and I’m still pretty young. I never gave a shit about the industry because I never knew it even existed, most likely because it didn’t in its current form when I was first getting into it. I still don’t really give a shit about the industry. I got into it because there was something I loved about it; something that felt right, something that made me feel human. That’s also why I stay. The audience thing is kind of a natural progression. My idea about popularity or fan base or respect from people is like: sooner or later, they will have to give a shit. Sooner or later, they will be forced to pay attention.”
People have certainly been paying attention to Wadsworth for some time. Having released no small number of critically acclaimed EPs and singles over the years through various labels, he was asked by Get Physical Music to produce an album: 2012’s Life And Death. This release will be followed by another album out on Hypercolour in November. The LP format provides the opportunity to showcase the expanse of Wadsworth’s abilities and influences in more comprehensive detail and has also allowed him to push his own creative process further.
“I looked at some of my favourite electronic music albums and thought: go for it. It was the right time, so I made a bunch of music. I have made all sorts of stuff that people have never heard. Some of my first tracks were like, weird tempos and all over the place. I remember how exciting it was to sit down and mess with sounds; I mean like, at age 14, 15 and 16 and so on. After doing however many records and just as many remixes though, it was like – and I don’t want to sound arrogant – but it was getting to be too easy. When stuff is easy, it’s time to change. So I wanted to tap back into that feeling I had when I was younger and just make a bunch of fun shit that would never be seen as some ‘club hits,’ or whatever people’s goals are with albums these days. I wanted to make music that was challenging to me and more or less representative of what else I can do. How many people can make a 4/4 dance music-based track, which is somewhat listenable these days? Too many, that’s how many. How many people can make a little world of music that has range as well as a signature sound throughout? Barely any, that’s how many.”
Kris Wadsworth will be at Open Studios in Vancouver on October 19th, 2013.
By Andy Soloman