Know Your Label: Perc Trax
Chances are, if you’re a techno fan, you’re familiar with Perc Trax. Since 2004, the label founded by Perc (AKA Ali Wells) has been releasing some of the most dynamic techno (and sometimes tech house) in the world. Its impressive catalog of over 120 releases includes bangers by mainstays such as DVs1, Matador, Ben Gibson, Sawf, and of course Perc himself.
As many great labels these days, Perc Trax mainly started as a place for Perc to release his own material. Starting in 2008, however, the label expanded its horizons and started growing its base of artists. The music has since expanded into a whole concept. New releases feature impressive artwork that coincide with the obviously industrial-influenced sound and the label has been throwing some serious parties.
Perc Trax Ltd. was the imprint’s first offshoot, launching in April as a home “for special one off projects, collaborations and reissues,” Wells told Resident Advisor, “and also projects that shamelessly aim directly for the dancefloor while avoiding the big room clichés that turn me off so much modern techno.” Its first release was Matt Whitehead’s tripped-out A is For Acid single which garnered fans like Paul Woolford and Tommy Four Seven. Second was Perc and Perc Trax mainstay Truss’s Spiker 12″ – a brutal slice of hardware-based techno gaining support by Len Faki, Luke Slater, and many more. The Ltd. branch has a focus on physical products, putting out each release on colored vinyl.
Second and “final” Perc Trax sub-label Submit just launched and is going to be specifically focused around experimental, noise, and industrial music. The first release will pair German pioneers Einstürzende Neubauten with Perc for their one-off Interpretations EP, four tracks from the band’s 1981 album Kollaps re-worked by Wells. The preview promises a raw, artistic collaboration to boot.
We cannot wait to hear what the Perc Trax family come out with next. From packing dancefloors to delighting collectors to finding new ways to fuse genres, the label has established its place in techno world. Here’s to 9 years of pushing the envelope and the many more ahead.