Ben Champell on his new Tension EP and the German club scene

The latest production from Hamburg-based producer Ben Champell finds him take a big step up in quality. Having already put tracks on labels like BluFin and Soupherb, his new Tension EP adds Drumcomplex’s Complexed Records to his growing catalogue.

We caught up with the emerging German talent to chat about the new release, his thoughts on his country’s club scene and what other labels we might find him release with in the near future. Find the full discussion below.

Last month we saw you release your Tension EP with Drumcomplex’s Complexed Records, how did the tracks come together in the studio?

The idea for Tension came to me during a run in nature. The driving force that pulls you forward under tension. Every runner knows that. I wanted to express that feeling with this track.

In addition came Running, which developed immediately in the connection. So this EP is something very personal and reflects my emotions and challenges.

And the release includes a remix from Dino Maggiorana, how did you react upon first hearing the edit?

I’ve really loved Dino’s sound for a long time and have been using his tracks in my sets for years, so I was even happier that he took the time to do a remix for me. When I got the first version to listen to I was totally flashed and immediately called Arnd (Drumcomplex) and played the track to him on the phone with the words “listen to this board”. That was it then, there was no second version, the first was directly a direct hit and great work from Dino, whom I thank gladly here again for this unbelievable remix!

Among your other releases you’ve put tracks on Soupherb and BluFin, how do you typically approach a label when thinking about sending a demo?

After a lesson in my early days from Senso Sound’s legend Oliver Huntermann in how to send demos correctly, I carefully select the labels to which I send my tracks. I check the label’s releases, how the label’s EP’s are put together, which artists are releasing on the label, what’s the sound or style of the label, does my sound fit? If this all fits I send my demos by mail with a SoundCloud link and download.

And what labels might we see you on in the near future?

Currently planned are releases on Funk ‘n Deep, Amber, Complexed and Blufin. There will also be some remixes on other labels.

You’re German, a country with an elite club scene, what’s your favourite German club to play?

Here I really have to say that the legendary Hammerhalle des Sisyphos in Berlin was the most intense DJ experience for me so far, the vibe and the people there were really incredible.

And are there any clubs around the world you hope to play one day but haven’t had the chance yet?

Hmm, I think there are countless worldwide where I would love to be a guest. I spontaneously remember the clubs Boothaus in Cologne, Fabrik in Madrid, EGG London and Space Miami. It was always a dream to play at Space in Ibiza, unfortunately it won’t come true anymore.

If you could collaborate with any artist, alive or dead, who would you go into the studio with?

There are actually many artists with whom I would like to jam in the studio, for example here from Hamburg Kaiserdisco or Oliver Huntemann, I just love their sound. Other ones would be Stephan Bodzin or Jeff Mills. And last but not least with one of my greatest idols, Carl Cox, I don’t know him personally but we would have a good time in the studio.

Thanks for taking the time out to let us know what you have going on, is there anything else you want to mention before we go?

I have to thank you, what I still have to say: Keep your ears open, 2020 will be big. See you soon!

Ben Champell’s Tension EP is out now on Complexed Records.