Interview with Paul Kalkbrenner

Lead role and composer of the film score

What it's about is a much more universal story than techno and club life. Basically, Ickarus, the lead figure, could also have made a different kind of music. He has the problems of many artists: genius - madness, not understanding things, not watching out for himself, and then falling flat on his nose.

Berlin Calling - a film about the techno scene or a film about the artist Paul Kalkbrenner?

Neither one. It's a portrait. A portrait of our time. It's a feature film. The themes of techno and drugs are only the brush with which we paint a picture. What it's about is a much more universal story than techno and club life. Basically, Ickarus, the lead figure, could also have made a different kind of music. He has the problems of many artists: genius - madness, not understanding things, not watching out for himself, and then falling flat on his nose. It's a story that keeps happening all the time to lots of people, and not one about me or the milieu.

But aren't you still afraid that people who don't know you will think that here we're seeing Paul Kalkbrenner's life and not a fictional one?

The character is very close to me. I even feel that it's closer to me than Hannes thinks. He thinks that Ickarus is totally different from Paul Kalkbrenner. I would say that the borders are flowing, and that's what makes it exciting. It's essentially a fictitious story where such crazy things happen that people will soon realize that it's not a biography of my life.

Do you identify with Ickarus?

More or less. Well, I always say I know Ickarus very well because he's like the person I didn't want to become. He's my own demon, but also one who wants to go where Paul Kalkbrenner maybe is today.

As to the music: did you write the entire soundtrack?

There's a guest track by Sascha Funke, otherwise the entire music is mine.