“Ahmad suggested the name Black Dont Crack,” the group’s producer, Sebastian Kreis, explains. But he also seemed amused by the German word ‘schwarz.’ So that’s what stuck. Several years later, it’s the name the duo are releasing their debut album, called No Hard Feelings under.
A 12-track release that runs the gamut of pulsating and dark electronica, trans-global R&B hooks, and the sort of 1990s soul music that deserves to be blasted from a moon-lit convertible as it streams down an open freeway with the windows down, the group’s debut album is the product of several years worth of evolution. So where did it all start?
On paper, the two couldn’t be more different. While Ahmad grew up working within fashion and enjoys Berlin’s nightlife, Sebastian is not really into clubbing and used to play in a rock band, having been inspired by the Rolling Stones, Beatles and Led Zeppelin records his dadwould play to him as a child. But that environment quickly got boring, he says. So what brought the two together? A shared love for popular R&B; or as Sebastian says “The 2006/2007 time with all the Timbaland records.”
From here, the pair released an EP with the iconic French label Kitsune in 2013. A self-titled EP followed up in 2015. But No Hard Feelings is their first full-length release. “We kind of have this love-hate relationship. It’s always constantly changing. So I thought ‘No Hard Feelings’ summed it up,” says Sebastian. “It’s also a great title for an album because it has an old-school feeling to it,” adds Ahmad.
With No Hard Feelings, Schwarz Dont Crack’s mission is clear: to shift the Berlin sound into something that’s worthy of the world stage.