In a city dominated by house music, San Francisco’s Auralism crew are championing techno on their own terms.
There is a musical renaissance happening out west as San Francisco moves from a house-dominated dance scene long to one influenced by the 21st century techno futurism of Detroit and Berlin. At the vanguard of this paradigm shift is the increasingly hard-to-find good guy record label carving out a unique sound that deftly merges the finest of both the German and domestic techno scenes. It is also rare to discover a collective of musicians that all conform to the ideals of a label’s sound, but that is indeed the case with the San Francisco-based techno label Auralism Records. Over the past four years the fast rising imprint has grown from just an idea in the minds of founders Jason Short and Marc Smith (aka production duo Coalition Of The Killing) into a like-minded family and an internationally recognized label.
Much of the reason for Auralism’s success has been a collective-based label management strategy, which is not uncommon on the West Coast.
San Francisco has always had an underground techno scene running parallel to its house one; however, it has always received less attention compared to the more commercially viable house domain. The Auralism camp is quick to explain that they were all connected to the Bay Area’s rich D.I.Y. techno tradition in some way before the label launched. They say names like Twerk, Kit Clayton and Jonah Sharp were important in the development of today’s techno scene.