As musicians turned DJs, Booka Shade represent the perfect synthesis of electronic and live music.
It has been a quarter of a century since Arno Kammermeier (drums) and Walter Merzieger (keys) first met in a school band, with the hope of gaining a foothold in the ‘90s pop industry. While their pop-stardom was short lived, the road to creating the Get Physical record label in Berlin alongside friends DJ T and Mandy has been an enduring one.
With an excess of studio gear, smash hit records and performances across the globe and deserved industry respect, Booka Shade have forged their own unique path to stand the test of time as innovators of dance music.
“We wondered how to promote our own music,” Arno recalls of Booka Shade’s beginnings. “The best way to do it was as musicians in live shows. Then we started DJing – there was not enough diversity in the music in our show at that time.
“The live show will always be the thing we love most, because we love the big shows and we love playing those instruments. But we found a way to make DJing interesting for us — it’s not only mixing two songs. We have a lot of synthesisers and effects boxes as well.”
And it looks like Booka Shade will be putting those effects boxes to good use, following the announcement the famed German techno duo are among the headliners for next year’s Summafieldayze.
”It will be the first time in three years since the last live show and it’s going to be a completely new production,” Arno reveals. “It will be a new world tour for the album for 2013. We’ll have loads of new songs that we haven’t played live, though we’ve played many of them in the DJ sets. We want to have even more live elements in this show.
“People know us and appreciate the fact that we put a lot of work into the live show. We’ll push it a level higher and have more instruments. And of course we’ll have a visual element. We’re thrilled. We’ve had a long break now from live playing, and it’s time for us to return with new songs.”
Booka Shade play Summafieldayze, at Doug Jennings Park, Saturday Jan. 5.