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About Gesaffelstein

In the 2010s, underground techno opened up a pipeline to the highest echelons of pop music, and few artists better exemplify that journey than Gesaffelstein. The French electronic musician, real name Mike Lévy, was born in Lyon in 1987. By his early twenties, he was making darkly dramatic electro and techno, and in 2009, he became the first artist on The Hacker’s Zone Records, a label distinguished by its noir stylings and retro-futuristic panache. Despite his music’s shadowy cast, the spotlight found Gesaffelstein quickly: As early-2010s pop began flirting with darker moods, Lévy was recruited to contribute to Kanye’s boundary-breaking 2013 album, Yeezus, coproducing “Black Skinhead” and “Send It Up” alongside Daft Punk, Brodinski, and MIKE DEAN. The same year, on his debut LP, Aleph, Lévy laid out the wide-ranging expanse of his style, fusing elements of EBM, ballroom, trap, goth, and classic techno into a sensual, ominous style a world away from the main-stage EDM then in vogue. Since then, he has continued to bulldoze conventional genre categories, moving from a collaboration with progressive French electronic pioneer Jean-Michel Jarre to team ups with pop savants The Weeknd and Pharrell Williams, and pushing his production into increasingly experimental realms of soundscaping.

Lyon, France

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