Mark Henning – The ‘Wednesday Alternative’ Ransom Note Mix
As London becomes more untenable and unrealistic as a home for those without a Lordship or a livery, many seem to be escaping our smoke and exploring elsewhere. An early escapee was Mark Henning, a former UK inhabitant who left for Berlin over 8 years ago, the official pilgrimage of the aspiring electronic musician – to the holy land! Where the landscape is affordable and community is burgeoning. He's just about to re-release his track 'Trojan', (the original release of which goes for silly money on Discogs now) on his own label Swing Recordings, and he's assembled an intelligent, informed and tightly woven mix for us here;
Please introduce yourself…
Who are you, where are you and what are you?
Hello, my name is Mark Henning, I'm currently at home in Berlin. I produce house and techno music. I’m also a DJ and I play said music in clubs round the place.
How did you get your break in the industry?
I wouldn’t say I’ve ever had a break as such… I’ve just been plugging away for a long while (since about 1998).
If your sound was a visual thing, what would it look like?
Intense, exploding blues and blacks with the odd smashed red and white splatter.
What was the music of your teenage rebellion?
Afghan Whigs, Pavement, Nirvana.
What's the most techno thing you've ever done?
Going to Helter Skelter in 1998.
What are you obsessed with at the moment?
What's your answer to everything?
Make sure everyone pays their taxes.
If you had to send one record into space, to introduce extra terrestrials to human music, what record would you choose?
Beach House – Teen Dream.
If you weren’t making music, what would you be doing?
What’s the next big thing?
More guitars and synths in film soundtracks.
How do you like your meat cooked?
What is the sound of silence?
I have no idea – unfortunately my ears have been ringing 24/7 for the last 15 years.
What would your message to someone first getting into music be? Whose advice should they listen to and what should they do?
You know nothing. Listen to as much as possible. Be prepared to spend a lot of time. Have fun. Fuck what everyone else does.
Onto the mix…
Where was the mix recorded?
In my home studio in Berlin.
What would be the ideal setting to listen to the mix?
Getting ready to go out raving.
What should we be wearing?
Which track in the mix is your current favourite?
Martyn – Don’t Block The Box
If you could go back to back with any DJ from throughout history, who would it be and why?
Richie Hawtin circa 1999 (Decks, FX & 909 time) – to watch those skills (3 decks and a 909, no stupid computer).
What was your first DJ set up at home and what is it now?
Then: Crappy belt drive turntables, really crap Numark mixer.
Now: 2 Technics 1210s, 2 Pioneer CDJ 2000 Nexus, Eclar Mixer.
What’s more important, the track you start on or the track you end on?
What were the first and last records you bought?
First: George Harrison – Cloud 9
Last: Deerhunter – Fading Frontier
If this mix was an edible thing, what would it taste like?
If it was an animal what would it be?
One record in your collection that is impossible to mix into anything?
Excellent question! Without spending a day looking through my records I’d say that I have plenty of great Analogue Cops records that are just so distorted, that I can’t really play them out as people just stop and look at each other, thinking the sound system is broken and usually the sound engineer rushes over in panic.
Upcoming in the world of Mark Henning?
I’ve just released an EP on my own label Swing.
There’ll be another one out early next year.
I’m thinking about recording an album after that.
Trojan/Sin City is out now via Swing Recordings. Find out more about Mark Henning here.