Kenneth Christiansen chats with us about the legacy behind his 17-year-old record label.
The tradition of delivering quality music to people has been Danish DJ Kenneth Christiansen’s life work since the days of working at a record store in Copenhagen. Kenneth was always inspired by the music coming out of Berlin and the Hardwax camp like Basic Channel and Chain Reaction. “At that time I had been thinking about starting a label for a while, but when I met Mikkel Meldgaard AKA Mikkel Metal for the first time and heard his demos, I decided to do it,” says Kenneth Christiansen. Stimulated by the idea of sharing good music, Christiansen got in touch with Wolfgang Voigt and Michael Mayer of Kompakt, the Cologne-based electronic music record label and distributor, to make the distribution deal. “I already had a good contact at Kompakt in Cologne, and they supported me from the beginning,” adds Kenneth. This arrangement officially resulted in the foundation of Echocord Records.
It all began in 2001, the year Echocord was officially established and with it came some of the finest electronic music productions coming out of Scandinavia. “After the first releases, I suddenly got contacted by other respected artists, like Rod Modell, Quantec, Thomas Fehlmann, and more. They were all into doing some releases and remixes. It slowly grew, and suddenly I had a lot of good demos.” said Kenneth. To this day, the label has hosted projects from dozens of artists who keep coming back for the high quality. The label continues to deliver electronic music varying from electronica, dub techno and house. Known for releasing deep and dubby electronica, Kenneth has never relied on trends but rather on his true passion and vision for the label, a virtue that laid the foundation for the label’s longevity and status within the electronic scene.
Echocord is something of a staple in the second wave of dub techno, always delivering solid dub techno sounds. “The deep and dubby sound. Quality electronic music for home listening and the clubs. Mostly you can hear if it’s an Echocord Records production—trying to stick to the sound.” adds the label head. Although, Christiansen is somewhat sceptical about the nowadays electronic music scene, expressing that “I think it’s all too much about hype at the moment and not about music quality.” In Copenhagen, Christiansen and friends made an ode to techno with their own venue called the Culture Box, a small place to intimately share their love of the genre along with those hip to the scene in the city.