Peter Kersten on Dial Records / Hamburg

June 30, 2015

Dial Records is a music label founded in 1999 in Hamburg by Peter Kersten and David Lieske. On the occasion of the release of All, a compilation curated by Carsten Jost and Bianca Hauser to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the label, Flash Art talked with Peter Kersten.

How have the more radical transformations of clubbing culture affected the label?

Throughout the years Dial Records has always been a nonconformist label seeking a particular variety of club music — ambient, piano works, suicidal guitar drones — whatever seems to be interesting and relevant for us. With the appearance of James K, DJ Richard and Dawn Mok in the compilation All we are happy to continue our approach. Stefan Tcherepnin contributed with the United Brothers theme “I Want To Be Art,” which serves also as a link to the program of our gallery Mathew, based in Berlin and New York.

Does the fact that you are based in Germany, specifically in Hamburg, affect your programming in any way?

Dial is and has always been an international imprint. We never regarded the label as being German or American, just because we work and live in New York City, Berlin and Hamburg. We’ve never even had a proper office in these cities. That is maybe one reason why the label never got stuck inside a certain scene or genre.

The past few months have been marked by two releases of your solo project Lawrence: A Day in the Life for Mule Musiq, and Manhattan for Smallville. How do you deal with your dual role of owning and directing a record label and being a music producer yourself?

Plus touring as a DJ, having the band Sky Walking and running two galleries in New York and Berlin? It is just amazing to be part of so many influential projects. I can’t complain about boredom in my life — it has always been a bit too exciting.

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