Artist Interviews

 

The Green ManThe Green Man (TGM) is Heiner Kruse from Cologne. He is founder of Basswerk Records (German Label of the Year 2006/ Future-Music Awards) and has also released an album on Combination Records ("You Decide"). His current 12-inch is "Hardcore Junglist" with German MC Dragoon plus the hypnotic, dubby "Slavery Planned" on Basswerk 25 vinyl. His most played classic anthems were "Infinity" (reached MTV Dance Charts Top 20, 3 weeks Nr. 1 in German Club Charts), "Illegal" (Rmx of Michael Rose), "Damn Wire," "Feb21st," "Ragtime" and "Easy" (feat. MC Chevy & Dragoon, voted German D&B Tune of the year in 2004, FM4 Charts). "Illegal" was later licensed for "CSI Miami." Another hot tune is "Chainsmoker" - together with "Silence" it came out on Big Bud's UK Label "Soundtrax" in 2006. In 2007 Green Man did Rmx's of CirKus (Neneh Cherry's band, "Is What It Is") and Big Bud ("Soundtrax").

His label Basswerk released an album of Neurofunk -Pioneers N.phect & Dizplay including a Phace cooperation and a rmx of TGM's "Damn Wire." Basswerk 27 features a State Of Mind Rmx + a 2007 Special Version of that "Damn Wire Rmx" as well as dubby tunes from Big Bud & Subz & Matik on Basswerk 26. On Basswerk 28 coming this summer, he remixed the Shut Up & Dance classic anthem "The Green Man" into a new fresh and easy D&B version and put a very special Breakbeat-Oldschool-Futuresound track on the flip. Expect him to play a deep and bassy variety when he shows up as a DJ.

You're an artist, producer and the founder of Basswerk Records - what's your story?

The Green ManI have always dreamt of making my own sound. I played piano from the age of 7 years on, yet it still took me quite awhile to take music as a profession seriously. I studied product design but also made some music for small films and ads plus had more and more good DJ gigs. In 1995 I DJ'd after a band called Transglobal Underground and played some of my favorite Breakbeat and Jungle tunes, and I never expected how people would freak out. That motivated me to do parties with my friend who also loved this sound, DJ Cheetah. We were both experienced DJ's and knew how to lead a crowd into those new sound adventures. To fit in my own tracks, I had to learn a lot of engineering stuff, 'cause as a DJ you need your tunes to sound at least as good as the rest. When I finally had a tune done, I didn't want to wait until someone would want to release it. It was different than other stuff anyway and I didn't know where to go with it in Germany. I eventually found an English distributor for the vinyl, which I released as "Junglegrowers Rec," and from then on I didn't need to contact people anymore - they started contacting me and that was very motivating. Later on, Cheetah and I realized that Basswerk would be a better name for the party and label project, as people in Germany thought of Jungle as only Raggajungle. Both of us liked and still play Raggajungle, but neither of our own stuff sounded like that, nor did we get any demos in that direction.

You are a long time E-MU Sampler user - what was your first Emulator and what first drew you to it?

One of the first guys releasing on Basswerk was Thilo Goldschmitz (a.k.a. Basztart) and he was very deep into sound design and electronic Jungle sound. He blew me away with what he did on his old ESI32 back in 1996, so I decided to work together with him. We bought an E-MU E4X together and shared the costs. My first tools (Akai S1100 and Korg M1) didn't have filters with resonance, so the E-MU really blew me away and changed my sound and way of working. From that point on most of my tunes were dominated by the E4X - some tunes were even made completely with it. I find it the most versatile tool of them all for tweaking and achieving a certain sound that I have in mind when I'm working on a track.

How are you using Emulator X2 in your productions and what do find most compelling about it?

The Green ManI am using both Emulator X2 and my E4 Ultra. The EX2 is great as it continues to use the unique E4 architecture, but adds more routing flexibility and filters. It's the only true Software Sampler out there, not just a sample player. I love SynthSwipe, TwistaLoop and all those modulation options that now also integrate effects. I am a long-time Logic user, so I have to use it as an external device on a separate PC. Both EX2 and the E4 are connected via ADAT with the sequencing computer so I can have total recall. The most outstanding thing about E-MU Samplers is their sound quality. Plus they allow you to be so much more creative than all those sample players that are mostly made for playing back given content.

D&B has evolved and splintered in so many ways since the early Jungle days, where do you see it going into the future?

It is the most energetic music people dance to. And it is and will always be searching for innovation. Currently Neurofunk proves this again. This sound would technically hardly have been possible to realize some years ago, it is Future Funk. But there is Raggajungle for the heart too and also Liquid Funk as a more elegant version - plus a lot of space in between for people like me. D&B is a worldwide language and very strong. Sometimes it needs some very good crossover tunes that open the way to bigger audiences, especially in times when good tunes are copied again and again as everybody is so electrified by certain sounds and the feeling of a heavy bass. It is not easy to market and the press often writes a lot of nonsense about it, but it leads its own life in the underground done by people that really love this sound. I truly believe in its energy, vibes and potential to embed all kinds of musical styles.

Any upcoming projects you'd like to mention that we should be on the look out for?

I have been working on my second album for a long time now and expect to release it this year. There will also be another Basswerk compilation. Plus, I am very happy about my Shut Up & Dance Remix of one of my favorite tracks ever, "The Green Man," coming on Basswerk 28 Vinyl this summer. And the Basswerk Sound Department is currently working on a fat D&B sound library for E-MU.

Click on the MP3 links below to taste The Green Man's tracks:

Chainsmoker
Easy
Infinity

Basswerk Records
Check www.basswerk.de, Basswerk on Beatport or www.thegreenman.de.