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Michael Mayer

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The only point of criticism with Michael Mayer was that he didn't release enough of his own productions. One of the key figures of Cologne, Germany's electronic music scene, Mayer also had durable reputations as a remixer, DJ, and producer, and released a handful of his own singles on Kompakt -- a label he helped run with founder Wolfgang Voigt -- and Kompakt-related labels like New Trance Atlantic (NTA) and Kreisel 99. His own productions, whether dabbling in house or techno, tended to be minimal with dubby flourishes -- and no two sounded alike. Kompakt Köln Präsentiert Michael Mayer, a mix album of tracks from the likes of Sanasol, Herbert, OM1, and the Modernist, was released in 1998 by Neuhouse. Four years later, Kompakt issued Immer, another mix album; tracing the developments made in microhouse/tech-house since Mayer's previous mix, the disc featured material from Carsten Jost, Akufen, Selway, and A Rocket in Dub, and it showcased an unrivaled knack for selecting and sequencing. At this point, Mayer became something of a poster boy for Cologne techno. In 2003, he released a pair of mixes. The first was based on the first several releases in Kompakt's Speicher series, while the second -- a more playful and melodic affair -- was commissioned by London's Fabric series. The following year, Mayer released a second Speicher mix and finally delivered his long-promised debut album of productions, Touch. During the next few years, as he continued to operate Kompakt, he put together Immer 2 and Immer 3, as well as his second and third overview mixes of the Speicher releases. He also collaborated with Superpitcher as SuperMayer, which released an album on Kompakt in 2007. His follow-up to Touch didn't arrive until 2012. That album, Mantasy, was released in October. [See also: Forever Sweet; Zimt.] ~ Andy Kellman

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11 December 1971 in Black Forest, Germany

Years Active:

'90s, '00s, '10s