Known for his high-quality house sets, Daniel Faulwasser, aka Dan Drastic, is a firm fixture in Germany’s club scene. In addition to his DJing skills, his work as a producer is also impressive. Furthermore, he has managed to build an international fan base as Moon Harbour label manager and presenter/producer of the monthly Moon Harbour Radio Show.
Few labels have established themselves as solidly and definitively as Matthias Tanzmann and André Quaas’ Moon Harbour. Since the turn of the millennium it has been a bastion of deep and tech house quality that has not moved with the times, but has defined them ahead of trend. Through a carefully curated series of EPs and LPs, the label has fomented its own close-knit family that expands and contracts with careful consideration.
Now celebrating their 100th vinyl release I caught up with Dan for an overview of some of the key artists on the label, Dan’s tips on what makes a good radio show, future releases to look out for and Dan’s label feature guest mix.
Hi Dan thanks for joining us. It’s been a great journey since your first EP ‘Slice Of Life’ was released on the label in 2008 to now being label manager of Moon Harbour. Was it a comfortable transition to the role?
I started working for Moon Harbour in 2006. I basically still do the same job as then, although the label manager title came a bit later as I was starting doing that I do the main load of the day to day work. So you could say the transition was a comfortable one.
Moon Harbour is a go to label for many fans and DJ’s for house/tech house music. As a label manager how do you ensure maximum quality control?
What we always tried to do is keeping a certain timelessness, not jumping on every trend that comes around. Also Matthias is still the main decider when it comes to new releases on the label, so you can be sure every track is tested thoroughly before it gets released.
You are also the presenter and producer of the monthly Moon Harbour Radio Show. If you could give any tips or advice on how a radio show should be correctly produced what would they be?
The idea with the radio show always was to do more than the usual 60 Minutes DJ Mix by a guest. So we decided that somebody needs at least host the show in some way. It’s kinda funny that in around 60 shows I did until now, nobody really complaint about my horrible pronunciation of my guests names.
My tips: make the show available easily available on a lot of platforms – especially make it downloadable, learn how to make it a podcast. Make it look nice: a good artwork goes a long way. Also don’t make it a morning radio show with bad jokes and fart noises.
The big news at Moon Harbour is celebrating your 100th vinyl release. Have vinyl releases been on the increase for the label? How would you say they compare to digital download sales?
To be honest there was a short period a couple of years back when we really weren’t sure if we ever will do vinyl again. Our distributor just went bankrupt and luckily we were always good on the digital sales front. Now we work with deejay.de / vinylfuture.com and they are really good partners. A lot of people want vinyl to keep their collections going, and we don’t want to stay in the way of this. Vinyl is definitely not exactly a source of big income anymore.
Celebrating the milestone there will be a label night ‘Moon Harbour 100’ at Egg London 27th May. What’s in store for the event?
We have Moon Harbour nights at Egg for a couple of years now and it’s one of our favourite Clubs in London for sure. For that night Matthias Tanzmann and Luna City Express have invited our long-time friend Davide Squillace.
We’ve received the promo for Moon Harbour 101 coming from Sidney Charles. 3 brilliant slices of chunky house and tech. Can you tell us about the release?
It was about time Sidney released an EP on Moon Harbour after doing one of the best-selling tracks of last year (House Is All I Need). I really like Sidney’s sound and how he’s often surprises you with certain tracks that sound completely different that the sound he’s known for. ‘Make Me Moove’ is such a track.
There are many firmly established names on the Moon Harbour roster but could you pick out a few artists whose careers have been nurtured by the label?
First of all there are the names you will find on the Moon Harbour 100 release. Namely Luna City Express, Daniel Stefanik, Sven Tasnadi, me and of course Matthias. I don’t think Moon Harbour would where we are without any of those guys.
I’d like to mention Sven Tasnadi, he has been an integral and loyal artist to the label. Can you tell us what you think makes him such a great producer, as you have collaborated with him many times now?
Sven is a true working bee, I don’t know many people who are in their studio pretty much every day. He is also a great studio partner, who kicked my lazy ass a couple of times to finish some good tracks.
Matthias Tanzmann has selected 17 defining tracks on Moon Harbour. As label manager what would be some of your own any why?
One track I always found amazing is Krüger & Manowski’s ‘Turned Page’. It’s one of those tracks that I just love for its timelessness. And there is my track ‘The One Who Knocks’ which is in my opinion one of my most complex productions.
Can you talk us through your feature mix for Decoded Radio? Many tracks to choose from with just an hour available.
As so often with mixes I just started Traktor and “winged it” kinda trying to play some rather forgotten older tracks in the first part and then some of our current and upcoming tracks in the second half.
Before we bring the interview to an end. Which artists are next up for release on Moon Harbour after 101 for us to look out for?
There is some really great stuff coming before the summer. A new Ninetoes EP, a Hot Since 82 single, 2 remix EPs for Matthias Tanzmann’s ‘Momentum’ album, and one of the most anticipated Daniel Stefanik tracks.
Great work to all the team and artists involved with the milestone. Is there is anything you would like to add?
I actually just hope everyone keeps staying along for the ride for the next 100 releases.
Decoded Radio hosted by Ian Dillon presents Moon Harbour with Dan Drastic.
Decoded Hot Picks Chart Countdown
#4 Bonaca – Ode To Eternal Youth (Original Mix) [A must have]
#3 Lonya – Righteousness (Wally Lopez Remix) [Asymmetric Recordings]
#2 Circle of Life – Sunday Morning (Tripswitch Remix) [Beat Boutique]
#1 Quivver – Wait For You (Smash TV Remix) – [Selador]
01. Michael A – A Long Moment (Original Mix) [Bad Pony Records]
02. James Gill – Supermoon (Original Mix) [Sudbeat Music]
03. Nishan Lee – Bushwaka [3rd Avenue]
04. Andre Sobota – Altitude (Dmitry Molosh Remix) [ICONYC]
05. SEQU3L – Still Moments In Everyday Life (Ziger Remix) – [Juicebox Music]
01. Luna City Express – Heaven’s Gate
02. Matthias Tanzmann – Laika
03. ONNO – Paragroove (Dyed Soundorom Remix)
04. Zohki & Roozlee – Dreams
05. Dan Drastic, Sven Tasnadi – Wrong Answer
06. Sabb, Cuartero – Don’t Kill My Vibe (Chris Wood & Meat Remix)
07. Sven Tasnadi – Drunk Daddy
08. Daniel Stefanik – Resurrection
09. Luna City Express – Saturday
10. Sidney Charles – Make Me Moove feat. Lady Vale
11. Dan Drastic, Sven Tasnadi – Tastic
12. Matthias Tanzmann – Mahoney Baloney
15/04: Midnight Express FM: 10pm-12am CST (GMT-6) www.midnightexpressfm.com
16/04: Tempo Radio (Red Stream): 10pm-12am CST (GMT-6) www.tempo-radio.com
17/04: Mio Radio: 3pm-5pm UTC (GMT+2) www.mioradio.net
18/04: Studio Lux FM: 11pm-1am CEST (GMT+1) www.studioluxfm.com
18/04: Global Mixx Radio: 10pm-12am EDT (GMT-4) www.globalmixxradio.com
19/04: Nube Music: 4pm-6pm ART (GMT-3) www.nube-music.com
20/04: Casafonda: 10pm-12am GMT www.casafondaradio.com
20/04: Radio Bondi FM: 1pm AEDT (GMT+11) www.bondifm.com.au
20/04: Tenzi FM: 8pm-10pm IST (GMT+5.5) www.tenzi.fm
20/04: Radio Ettlingen: 2pm-4pm (GMT+1) www.radioettlingen.de
20/04: Krafted Radio: 10pm-12am GMT www.krafted.co.uk/radio
21/04: DNA: 10pm-12am ART (GMT-3) www.dnaradiofm.com
22/04: STROM:KRAFT radio (Electronic Channel): 11pm-1am CET (GMT+1) www.stromkraftradio.fm
22/04: Deep London: TBA www.deeplondon.org
26/04: Soundtrip: www.soundtrip.gr
27/04: Casafonda: 10pm-12am GMT www.casafondaradio.com
27/04: Radio Bondi FM: 1pm AEDT (GMT+11) www.bondifm.com.au
27/04: Krafted Radio: 10pm-12am GMT www.krafted.co.uk/radio
30/04: Safe House Radio: 10pm-12am GMT www.safehouseradio.co.uk
On rotation: Inside My House Radio www.insidemyhouseradio.com