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Introduction: There are very few artists that can genuinely say that they’re in the running to stage the next big EDM breakout. After a 36 month production whirlwind, which has thrust him squarely into the dance spotlight, Dennis Sheperd is very much one of them. The 23 year old from Essen in Germany has spent that short period of time delivering some of the freshest, most creative music dance-land has heard in years. In doing so he’s recorded and remixed for some of the scene’s most forward-thinking & eclectic labels, racking up formidable club-anthems along the way!
Productions 2007: Dennis started his studio career in 2004, but rather than rushing to release simply ‘ok’ compositions, he took his time to learn the craft before sending out his first production. In the first half of 2007 ‘Pressure’ was signed and released by MPFS Records and pulled in visibly cross-genre support from a wide range of DJs. Charged highly by its playlist success Dennis set to work on the follow up. The resulting track, ‘A Tribute To Life’, became Sheperd’s essential breakthrough record. The track created instantaneous buzz and left a lasting impression on the floors of Tisto, Ferry Corsten, Armin van Buuren, Paul van Dyk and Markus Schulz. It also brought him onto the radar of Kyau & Albert, who commented that “Dennis is Germany’s most promising newcomer in Progressive Trance right now!”
Productions 2008: Now in high gear and reaching more ears exponentially with every release, it became apparent to both observers and the fast-expanding fan-base that Dennis’ take on trance was both a unique and in-demand. Filtering the purer edges of progressive house and trance in a fashion not done before, he cross-pollinated them with minimal, electro and deeper house elements. This was no better demonstrated than the wider ranging remit of labels now aiming to release his records. ‘Infinity’ came out through Baroque’s devoutly progressive sub-label, Method in April of 2008. This was followed by his High Contrast debut ‘Prime Of Life’ and its follow-up ‘Not Too Late’ (which featured Cold Blue on co-production).
Late 2008 brought with it a new artist/label relationship with Kyau & Albert’s label Euphonic. With ‘Run Away’ came another flood of new DJ support, prompting Gareth Emery to comment: “Dennis has made some great records, particularly ‘Run Away’, which has been rocking my sets for over six months. He’s definitely a hot name to watch for the future”.
Into 2009: Remixed by Ronski Speed, ‘Black Sun’ quickly became Euphonic’s ‘Run Away’ follow-up. Its release proved to be Dennis’ most successful radio & club record to date. Armin van Buuren and Above & Beyond both spun it several times on ASOT & TATW, with it taking both the ‘Track of the Week’ and ‘Web Vote Winner’ titles on the latter show. It also picked up heavyweight support from Ferry Corsten, Markus Schulz, Gareth Emery and Kyau & Albert. Dennis is about to expand his label remit once again with a release on Armada (in collaboration with Australia’s No.1 DJ, tyDi).
Off the back of some hotly-received guest mixes (on shows including Tisto’s Club Life & Solarstone’s Solaris International), Dennis has also just stepped out from behind the mixing desk and is about to deliver his own productions, this time from behind the decks!