âme f [ahm] soul
Nowadays, esteemed producers are often thrust behind the decks with little experience of the complexities of the craft; talented DJs are pressured into churning releases out without having mastered the ins and outs of the studio. In this respect Âme is a harmonious symbiosis: the bespectacled Frank Wiedemann, acclaimed studiowunder, the moustached Kristian Beyer, veteran selector. Together, they have conquered the world. As DJs, as producers and as Innervisions co founders.
Âme comes from the French for “soul”, a sentiment that penetrates their discography. Starting out back in 2003 on Jazzanova’s Sonar Kollektiv imprint, the duo spent years perfecting their craft, slowly but surely rising to acclaim. There has always been something unique in Âme’s productions: a dreamy melancholia breezing through a myriad of musical influences. This is perhaps best demonstrated by their seminal record “Rej”, an elaborately grandiose melody punched by kicks and a twotone bassline. “We were always kind of the underdogs,” Wiedemann told RA last April, “fighting for the harmonies and the melodies in the club.”
One from the vaults (circa 2007)
To find this harmonic and melodic struggle you need look no further than the duos highly acclaimed imprint. Together with Steffen Berkhahn, aka Dixon, the pair founded Innervisions in 2005. As Berkhahn has said in interview, “without Âme, Innervisions is kind of nothing.” The imprint is less of a label in the conventional sense and more of an auterist ethos. Quality trumps quantity, with six releases a year. The artwork variates around a different annual motif, and they even distribute all their releases inhouse through their shop, Muting the Noise, in order to fully realise their artistic vision.
This spirit is best embodied through the meticulous planning and minute curation of their Lost in a Moment series, hosted in fortresses, châteaus, woods across Europe, often proving to be a logistical headache for the label, to say the least. To maintain the high quality of these parties, they often also waive their own fee for playing in order to invest back into the location, the lighting, the sound, the overall experience. What keeps Âme going is the relentless commitment to their artistic vision and refusal to compromise.
So what can we expect from Âme at Junction 2? A record bag full of secret weapons, a set full of your new favourite songs. Beyer has a knack for setting the tone for the coming months, always impressively ahead of his peers. But, then again, that is because his label is continuously releasing the anthems of the summer: Howling, Scala, Gotham, Acamar, to name a few.
According to the grapevine of club culture, back in the days Larry Levan would sometimes play a new record several times throughout a set during his legendary Saturday mass at the Paradise Garage. By the end of the night, everyone was singing along. With Âme, you’ll be humming along to a track played just once that probably won’t be released for some months yet. But guaranteed, everyone will be scrambling to find out what it is.