Over the past year there’s been some deep sounds coming out of Cologne due to the work of George Beridze and his Rough House Rosie label. Although the label is only 4 releases young, George has managed to forge out a sound and an aesthetic that is recognisably and undeniably Rough House Rosie’s.
The Rough House Rosie visual aesthetic has its roots in silent films from the first part of the last century. The vinyl print is a rendering of Clara Bow‘s face, the title actress in the 1929 film Rough House Rosie, which has forever been lost with only a trailer remaining.
“I think the 1920s were the best times to be around. And I also love cinema from that era. I have seen many of Clara Bow’s silent movies and this particular one was interesting to me because it is lost. I really wanted to have seen this movie, the plot seems nice and the title also.”
Talking to George, it soon becomes clear that the Rough House Rosie project is a labour of love for him, born out of a desire to introduce new artists and sounds to the house music community.
“In late 2012 I moved from Munich to Cologne and I was in my new empty flat. I had no internet and no bed, nothing, so I listened to my whole music collection on my laptop. And I thought I have here some nice tracks from HVL produced a while ago, so why not start a label, no one wants to release them anyway.”
Although there’s plenty of imprints releasing deeper house inspired sounds, George doesn’t see Rough House Rosie as just another one of them. He counts Udacha, Firecracker Recordings, Mathematics, Minuendo, Deep Explorer, Workshop and Leleka among his influences but he sees his label’s music as a variation on the kinds of sounds that these labels are known for rather than as a direct tribute.
I think the kind of music I release doesn’t exist for such a long time…I mean it is not typical deep house I wouldn’t say. I’ve been into this music ever since artists like Vakula, Pjotr, Alex Danilov and A5 emerged.
Originally from Georgia, George moved from there in 2007 as a student, living in cities including Amsterdam, Lyon and Munich before settling in Cologne.
“Cologne has several places where one could hear quality house music, notable house and techno names visit this city. Also it is located quite nicely for travelling to Netherlands or any other place, so basically good music is all around.”
Although George lives in Cologne, none of the artists whose music he’s released do.
“None of my artists are Cologne based. HVL is Georgian as am I, so we know each other from there. Although at the moment he also lives in Germany in Stuttgart. Alex Danilov is Russian and since I speak Russian I talked to him through soundcloud about doing a release with RHR, since I am a big fan of his music. All of us like the same kind of sound I guess.”
I ask him if he sees this as an obstacle to working together and releasing music, but he doesn’t see it as a difficulty or an inconvenience.
“Ok, so I live in Cologne but none of my artists do. But I don’t think the city is important, only the music is, the label could be based in Greenland, it doesn’t really matter. I call the label a family because we share a love of the same music and sound. Also, with Russian, Georgian and Ukrainian artists I personally share a Soviet past and childhood, so we sort of get each other.”
In fact, he’s gearing up to release a VA featuring artists with whom he doesn’t even share a country, past or language, just similar musical ideas.
“The Rough House Rosie family will be definitely increasing although mostly with new faces, with people who have had 1-2 releases or none at all. I don’t see the point in re-releasing the same thing over and over again. In the future RHR will be paying homage to Japan and Japanese music lovers with a special VA. Of course, HVL will also be back sometime in the future and we will also see some other artists return who have already collaborated with RHR.”
I tried to push George for a hint as to who’s appearing on the Japanese VA, but he was having none of it. Next out on the label is Silent Movie Sounds Vol. II featuring a few of our favourite artists: Pjotr, A5, Laak and Gamayun. Be quick!