SMASH TV with the HACKER , METHOD 11:11 , KENNY GLASGOW and BARBI at Sonic (270 Spadina), Friday (June 30). $18.50 advance, $25 before 1 am, $30 after. www.addevents.com.
For those into the edgy electro-informed side of modern dance music, Berlin's BPitch Control label is a key reference.
Created by Ellen Allien, it's provided a forum for many artists who are working with some of the ideas and sounds of techno but generally outside the narrow definition some purists are still holding on to.
From this stable of forward-thinking producers comes Smash TV (aka Holger Zilske), whose records are increasingly finding their way into peak-time DJ sets all over the world, and whose studio has helped give birth to several of Allien's own records.
As Zilske explains from his Berlin home, his connection with Allien developed out of the chemistry they felt when they first started making music together back in 1999. At that point, Zilske had a fair amount of experience with his equipment, but it was mainly doing commercial sound design work rather than underground dance records.
"I didn't really know her in the beginning. We met in the studio, and now we've become friends. It's not a situation where I'm producing for her; basically, she comes over to my studio and we work together. Making music can go quicker when you're working with someone else. I'm too much of a perfectionist, and will end up over-thinking things. How you hear music is very much affected by your mood; having someone else there stops you from deleting ideas too quickly when it doesn't sound as good the next day."
Smash TV was itself originally a collaborative project, made up of Zilske and his long-time friend Michael Schmidt. They learned how to make electronic music together and recorded most of Smash TV's releases jointly, but in recent years they decided to pare down the project to just Zilske.
"Mike has been my best friend for a long time. We grew up next door to each other, and he's kind of like my brother. We've always enjoyed making music together, but he was always more focused on the technical aspect than I am, and over the years decided that he wanted to put more into his day job.
"I wanted to become more professional at the music thing, and I wanted to be playing gigs every weekend, so we decided to make Smash TV a solo project. We're still best friends, and I'm sure we'll do music together again, but for now it's just me."