As a teen equally transfixed by Mojo, Wizard cassettes and Minor Threat 7”s, Plaslaiko followed the beats from his hometown 20 miles south of Detroit to the epicenter of Detroit techno.
Many DJs have reputations defined by a certain place and time. Not so for Derek
Plaslaiko, whose 20-year career behind the decks has seen him gather a loyal fan
base wherever and whenever he may be.
Some will know Derek as a favorite of the mid-90s Detroit warehouse scene, which lead to a personal invite from Carl Craig to appear at the inaugural Detroit Electronic Music Festival in 2000. Others recognize him from his near decade-long residency at The Bunker New York parties, during which time he was named “Best Techno Party DJ” by the Village Voice in 2006. Then there was the summer of 2011 spent behind the decks at Berlin’s infamous Club der Visionaere, as an honorary resident at the weekly Visionquest nights—a worthy introduction to the city he now calls home.
Of late, there is a new generation of party people who will know Plaslaiko from his extended sets (up to 12 hours) in New York, Paris, Seattle, Los Angeles and Philadelphia, or his regular appearances at clubs like Tresor, Hot Mass, Beta, Output, Smart Bar and Berghain, and festivals like Decibel, Communikey and Movement. Or some who caught his name on the flier for the No Way Back series of parties put on by Interdimensional Transmissions, the Detroit imprint that has put out several of Plaslaiko’s rare original releases, along with Perc Trax and Minus.