Munich | Germany
The following does not seek to lionise, rather it wishes to tell the amusing tale of a carnivorous, Kung Fu-loving Munich man who just happens to have that certain uuuhhh…factor. Dario Zenker, natural-born dancer and Mowgli-like wild boy was raised in Germany’s Deep South on a diet of Wu Tang, Gangstarr, Michael Jackson and sweet mustard. His childhood habitat allowed for much adventuring, moving from the heart of Munich to the Bavarian wilderness at the age of 12, but always having the liberty to roam freely and explore his surroundings. At weekends, wandering off back to the southern capital, he would stay at his stepdad’s flat, encountering many techno warriors from far and wide. Here, they would find their refuge after a night behind the helm at the infamous Ultraschall, founded and run in ‘94 by Dario’s stepaunt, Dorle and her man DJ Upstart, among others. After turning 15 he got his paws on a mixer and a set of Gemini turntables. Subsequently, his passion for playing music (and disturbing the peace) took flight. As the young cub matured, his nocturnal nature lead him to goa trance gatherings and other such tribal ceremonies. Coming home to meet mystical gurus like L.A. Williams, Jay Denham and Shake Shakir served only to ignite his burning curiosity for underground electronic music. After receiving his first techno record from Shake at 16, (having woken to him listening to his stepdad’s Beatles records in the living room) his techno quest began.
At 18, the valiant young technoid was deemed dexterous enough to man the controls at Ultraschall, flying high for the first time alongside Acid Maria and the Hacker. When the notorious techno temple closed in 2003, the Ultraschall tribe seperated and founded new settlements in the years that followed, today Harry Klein and Rote Sonne. Adopted by the Harry Klein family who couldn’t resist his untamed charm, Dario found his second home, with a residency there since 2006. The club became his creative force field, a place to experiment with his productions and further cultivate his individual groove. Known for rambling in subterranean techno territory, he never fails to surface from the deep with a soulful house record to keep you in check. Whether playing a live or a mixed set, he is evidently in his element melding movement and music and moving with the crowd. Just watch that rapturous grin when a record triggers a howl of approval from the hungry natives at the back of the room…
2006 saw his first vinyl debut and since then he has produced releases, remixes and his own unique brand of house and techno on labels such as Vakant, Frozen Border and Time to Express, to name but a few. Today, apart from gourmet cooking and Kung Fu wrestling his compadres, the Munich maverick channels his energy into two projects in particular. Founded by him, his brother and partner in crime Marco and longtime sidekick Mueller, Ilian Tape is their homegrown label, nurtured with much tender love since 2007. His inspiration? Life, love and dancing.
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