The veteran producer, DJ and label owner talks techno.
Blueprint might not be run like a business, or even have the sort of expertly laid-out master plan its name suggests. But the label has proven that a labor of love can find immense success regardless. James Ruskin and his partner Richard Polson founded Blueprint during a mid-'90s bubbling-up in UK techno, and the label's sound—manifest in productions by Ruskin, Polson and fellow obsessive Oliver Ho—quickly found favor with the likes of Surgeon and Regis, not to mention heads in Germany, Spain and beyond. When Polson died suddenly in the mid-2000s, Ruskin took a step back from the label, unsure of how to proceed when such a big part of its soul had been lost. But in 2009, Blueprint emerged as strong as it had ever been, with new signings mingling with Ruskin's sturdy, driving techno sound. (We named it Label Of The Month in April 2010.) When Ruskin came through Berlin recently for one of Blueprint's annual Berghain showcases, we invited him by our office to give us the rundown on a life spent at the center of techno.
Photo credit: Lee Arucci