Cover Mark Reeder


Label: Factory Records
Format: CD
Released: 19/05/2014
Style: House


Crystal Mark Reeder: A Journey of Musical Creativity

The year was 1997 when I first produced the rough instrumental part of a track called “Crystal.” It marked a significant milestone for me as it was the first track I had ever fully completed. At that time, my knowledge of music production was still limited, drawing primarily from my experiences as a DJ and my understanding of how club music should sound. With “Crystal,” my intention was to create an atmosphere that evoked a feeling of being lost in an endless space—a sense of melancholic desire and infiniteness.

During this period, I was actively DJ-ing and organizing parties in the southern Czech Republic alongside DJ Michael Burian. It was through him that I was introduced to the world of DJ-ing with turntables. To expand our horizons, we began promoting our own events and inviting interesting DJs and artists to join us. This experience opened up a new dimension of DJ-ing and event promotion, significantly influencing my music. The Berlin club sound, particularly the records from MFS (Masterminded For Success), had a deep impact on my musical style during this time.

Founded by Mark Reeder in 1990, MFS utilized the infrastructure of the former East German state-run record label AMIGA, which was a part of “Deutsche Schallplatten.” Reeder’s goal for the label was to support young Eastern European artists and provide them with a platform to showcase their talents. Notably, MFS played a pivotal role in nurturing talents such as Paul van Dyk, who emerged as an influential figure in the electronic music scene. Reeder supported van Dyk and released his first hit, “For an Angel,” as part of the “45RPM” album in 1994. Alongside van Dyk, artists including Cosmic Baby, Neutron9000, Marco Zafferano, Mijk van Dijk, Ellen Allien, and Johnny Klimek were also part of the label, contributing to its diverse music catalog. Inviting some of these artists to perform at our parties provided invaluable inspiration and knowledge, pushing us toward producing our own music.

Impressed by the sound of my tracks, I sent them to Mark Reeder, which grabbed his attention. Later, after relocating to Berlin in 1998, I had the privilege to work alongside him. This collaboration came at a time of significant transformation for the label, as Paul van Dyk had recently departed from MFS to pursue a global career. Reeder was eager to embark on a fresh new direction, and I eagerly contributed my creativity to his MFS project. Under his mentorship, I gained exposure to new ideas, found inspiration, and developed my unique sound and style. Our collaboration encompassed creating singles, albums, tracks, DJ compilations, and even venturing into art and artworks. We organized bookings, events, and performed worldwide, immersing ourselves fully in the music scene.

One fateful day, Bernard Sumner, a close friend of Reeder’s from early Joy Division days and the singer of New Order, sent him his recorded vocals for a track that would eventually be named “Crystal.” Bernard’s gesture of support during this challenging time for Reeder, after van Dyk’s departure, was heartfelt. Reeder shared the fantastic vocal parts with me, and when I combined them with the memories track just for fun, the results were astounding. The vocals and the instrumental were a perfect match, as if they were destined to be together. We were both astounded by the outcome and played it for Mark, solidifying our belief in its potential.

Mark sent the mix to Bernard, who wholeheartedly loved it. However, Bernard then sent it to the New Order A&R at London Records—Pete Tong. Shortly after, Mark received a desperate call from Tong pleading, “You can’t release this track! It is the best New Order track since Blue Monday!” Tong urged Reeder to convince Bernard to record it as a New Order track instead. However, a new obstacle surfaced—New Order had not been in communication for three years and were effectively on the brink of breaking up. Despite the challenges, Reeder informed Tong that Bernard had recorded the song expressly for him as a gift. Tong persisted, emphasizing that the song deserved better than what he called “a shabby little demo.” In the end, Reeder kindly agreed to Tong’s request, resulting in the track remaining unfinished and unreleased.

The story of “Crystal” showcases the twists and turns that can occur in the music industry. It serves as a testament to the creative process, the power of collaboration, and the challenges faced along the way. Although the New Order version never materialized, the journey of creating “Crystal” with Mark Reeder remains a rich and remarkable chapter in my musical career.

Overall, the experience with MFS and Mark Reeder profoundly influenced my artistic evolution, shaping my musical style and cementing the importance of creative freedom and collaboration. As I continue my musical journey, I carry with me the valuable lessons learned and the unwavering passion to create music that resonates with audiences worldwide. Crystal Mark Reeder will forever serve as a testament to the boundless possibilities and magic that can be born from collaboration and artistic expression.


Marks 5.1 project:

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