Label Services Focus: sinnmusik* | Features | MN2S

In the first of our label services spotlights, we profile the London-Lisbon-Barcelona deep and tech house conglomerate sinnmusik*. It’s an acclaimed imprint that has released music by the likes of Frits Wentink, Jamie Trench and Rico Casazza amongst others, with a real diversity in style – everything from garagey rollers to quirky deepness.

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What’s the story behind your label? How did it come into existence?

sinnmusik* has three founders: Clemens, Thomas and Kaleigh. We all grew up together in Lisbon and shared a bi-monthly DJ and live act residency at Op-Art, which at the time (over a decade ago) was one of the most prestigious underground venues in the city. Guests such as DJ Koze, Ellen Allien, Michael Mayer and Paul Kalkbrenner were amongst the few names making their first steps in the international scene through there.

From 2001 to 2005, Clemens owned a vinyl-only electro label called Electrik Bass where everyone was involved as artists and with releases by DJ Quiz, Clé K, Gater (now Allies For Everyone) and Marky Star. Over the years formats have changed (CDJs, digital, live with laptop), new tools became available (Soundcloud, Beatport, streaming services) and the overall music industry had gone through a radical transformation. This new industry landscape gave the trio the right push to restart where they left off, and so sinnmusik* was born in the summer of 2012.

How was the name chosen?

Weoriginally wanted to name the label ‘Loud Noises’, but soon realised there was a lot of competition for the name and it was not strong enough to stand out in online searches. After multiple brainstorm session we came up with sinnmusik*. ‘Sinn’ has a twofold meaning as “sin” in English and “sense” in German making the name playful and interchangeable. We sometimes even call our followers and artists sinners, which we love!

What is the label’s ethos, and has it been that way from the start?

It has always been about passion for the music and having fun. It has been like that since we started playing together over a decade ago and we still feel the same way today. The label really develops it’s own identity with every release and artist and this is something we find very important. The mainstay artists of the label such as Adrian, Georgi Barrel, Fasika and Roman Mühlschlegel helped us shape sinnmusik* as we know it today. We know artists evolve and taste buds change so we embrace change with an open-mind as we don’t like to pigeonhole ourselves so we can be prepared for what is next.

How did you go about sourcing and choosing your first few releases?
We mainly called up old friends we used to work with and started from there. Once the first release was locked in, sourcing the next one sort of came naturally.

What have been your most successful releases?

It is very difficult to identify our most successful releases, as we don’t see sales being the only measure – but those that manage to gain strong exposure for both label and artist and resonate longer than the usual 2-3 weeks post release date. These are just a few that managed strong milestones: ‘Push Up’ by Adrian, ‘Ghetto Dinner’ and ‘Late Nite Foray’ by Georgi Barrel and lastly ‘Still Need It’ by Jamie Trench.

What do you think the most important elements of running a label successfully are? What advice would you give someone setting up a label of their own?

Be prepared for frustrations, setbacks and empty promises. Most importantly, a label is a business like any other and you need to run it like a business. If you start from zero, you need to create a platform and community, which takes a lot of time and from this you, can build the labels identity.

Ensure to have enough funding for the label until it supports itself and until it makes money which you need to live. This can take years!

Which other labels do you really admire and why?

There are many labels we admire but we take our hats off to Defected Records for over 17 years of endless devotion to the industry.

Which artists would you love to have on the label?

This question is too difficult to answer!

What’s the benefit for you of working with MN2S’ label services team?

MN2S are an incredible company who really have helped us growing in terms of sales and recognition. They have excellent connections to the online stores and enable our releases to get featured alongside other big names.

What’s coming up on the label?

We look forward to new EPs by Georgi Barrel and Adrian and we are also excited about our next 12“ vinyl release which we are planning to crowdfund to create a special and unique product.

Click to enquire about MN2S label services.

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