Features: Oddisee & Good Compny

This Wednesday, March 15, we are opening doors for Oddisee & Good Compny. Rap music that has a message that goes deeper than the usual talk on the mainstream records these days. Who are these guys and what is their game plan? Let’s find out!

Amir Mohamed el Khalifa (age 32), better known by his stage name Oddisee, son of an African American mother and Sudanese father, a rapper and producer has an interesting life story to tell. Raised by his father and stepmother, who also is Sudanese, he spend the first years of his life in Silver Spring, a small town in Montgomery County, Maryland. Referring to previous interviews it must have been a peaceful time growing up in this affluent environment. Oddisee was originally influenced by his parents heritages, combined with a hip hop influence from his older cousins. His very first role models were Eric B. & Rakim, De La Soul and A Tribe Called Quest, he stated that these rappers don’t talk about drugs or murder, and he could relate more to their lyrics. In his song “You Grew Up” he is mentioning how he was trying to keep his Nikes clean when his best friend, who was white, was trying to scuff his Chucks up. This is where he first discovered the cultural differences between Caucasians and African Americans in the American society. From there they moved to Prince George’s County, one of the wealthiest African American counties in the nation but borders some of Washington D.C. area’s roughest parts. After high school he decided to move to Washington D.C. and work on his career as a musician. Continue reading “Oddisee & Good Compny”

Features: 20/20 LABELNIGHT

It is a cold early 2017 in Berlin but it is going to be a hot Saturday night, February 18, that’s a promise! The London based label 20/20 LDN is about to enter the Gretchen (again) to do what they do best .. make you dance. As usual Sabre, Stray and Halogenix, also known as Ivy Lab, the heads of the imprint, have put together an exciting Line-up.

There is Tim Parker, who is signed to 20/20 LDN, Tsuruda, the highly rated charismatic producer from Los Angeles, Chunky, who is mcing that night even though he’s so much more than just a host (we’ll get to that later), the Depth Range crew from Ulm, a collective of different young artists who are pretty much the rising stars of Germany’s Bass music scene, Werd, a Berlin based Hip Hop DJ and producer originally from San Jose, California, and our resident Soulmind, who’s music wise perfectly fitting into this Line-up. It is always a pleasure to welcome 20/20 LDN and guests at our club as they stand for what we personally love about music. An open minded sound that is free of any limitations or restrictions. Music that don’t need no definition. Influenced by the sound of Bass music, Drum’n’Bass, Future Beats and basically everything that is related to these genres, 20/20 LDN has found their own niche and they are not planning to leave this path. This label represents what club music is today, but each one of these acts has a very unique story to tell. Let’s take the time and see what they are about and what to expect on Saturday.

If you haven’t heard of 20/20 LDN yet, there is just one question .. Where have you been the last almost two years??? The story of the label is quite simple and be told fast. In 2012 the trio Ivy Lab, as mentioned before, formed by Sabre, Stray and Halogenix, has started to release several tunes on Critical Music which had unanimously positive reviews in the press, be it print or online media. In the beginning their main focus was laid on Drum’n’Bass, but it changed more and more to some kind of wonky Halfstep-Hip-Hop, a very unique sound with its own signature. This was a process that finally, suggested by Critical Music label owner Kasra, led to the decision to produce an entire album “20/20 Volume One” with their very own interpretation of 85 BPM music, half of the standard drum & bass tempo and in lock with a lot of instrumental Hip-Hop beats. A lot of their music pays homage to samples, a classical approach of producing Hip-Hop music. When the album was finished the question came to mind where to release it. Of course Critical Music was an option, but Ivy Lab had other plans. In 2015 they founded 20/20 LDN to release their long awaited LP. The label quickly gained a lot of international recognition. But the imprint was not just a quick idea to release this album, it was also meant to be a platform for other artists with similar visions and interests. Today 20/20 LDN releases music from acts such as Tim Parker, Jon 1st, Deft, Stray and lately Ivy Lab’s follow up LP “20/20 Volume Two” which featured tracks of many other great producers like Sinistarr, Phazz or Havelock for example. Continue reading “20/20 LABELNIGHT”


Stööki Sound is back at Gretchen, on February 4, to drop the bass. The duo, formed by DJ Lukey and the lead vocalist Jelacee, is known for their intense performances. Wherever they show up the crowd goes crazy like there is no tomorrow. But Stööki is more than just a Sound! Since its foundation in 2012 the two London boys have rapidly build a whole movement. According to their website the three keywords are Sound, Vision and Play and the collective’s mission is to Design, Produce and Curate. What exactly does this mean? Let’s find out.

London has always been a place for musical innovations, no other city in Europe has set so many trends during the last three decades. From Breakbeats to Jungle, Drum’n’Bass to Garage, Grime to UK Bass music and numerous sub genres, the creativity seems to have no limitations in the British capital. This is where Lukey and Jelacee grew up and into. They both started at a very young age to make music. Lukey (28) produced his first beats with only 13 years and Jelacee (23) started making music at the age of 14.

What must have brought them together might be their passion for Grime, Hip Hop, Trap and Bass, which is kind of what to expect when they enter the stage. This passion brought them all around the globe and back. Besides playing in the U.S. quite regularly they traveled to Australia, China and Southeast Asia with their sound and of course Stööki is a household name all over Europe. In 2016 they have launched their own indie record label Ö.N.E. Worldwide and have released the “Osiris” EP. Seven tracks that give you a feel of what Stööki stands for and Jelacee’s debut, proving he’s more than just a live MC. Continue reading “STÖÖKI SOUND”