Coresect

Technology is a Sacrifice
 
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The Future Sound of London

By admin (when...  07/06/2009 @ 09:57:54, Where Interviews, linked 1542 times)
Phone Interview

Roma.
June 9, 1995

THE ISDN EXPERIENCE; TELL ME HOW IT ALL WORKED, IN LESS THAN FIVE MINUTES

Well, you are limiting me to five minutes. I.m not sure if I can take that. I might have to give you a ten minute answer now.

OK. TAKE AS MUCH TIME AS YOU WANT

Well, have you heard about me or something? Why did you try to limit me to five minutes?

NO, NO. I'M ONLY LIMITING YOU TO FIVE MINUTES BECAUSE I KNOW IT IS A COMPLICATED SUBJECT AND YOU COULD SPEND DAYS TRYING TO EXPLAIN THE INS AND OUTS.

Oh, alright. OK. How did it work? ISDN is digital phonelines, are you interested in artistic reasons or technical.

A BIT OF BOTH.

Basically we got lines set up, digital lines like you would get any normal line in the studio, we had to get three so that it could get the full dynamic sound, which is ten K. Then you get an encoder at our end which encodes the signal coming out of the mixing desk. Whoever we are sending it to needs a decoder and two lines. So they take the line signal and decode the signal which then goes through any audio equipment. That is the technical. It is quite common place in fact.

AT THE OTHER END YOU NEED JUST A STANDARD DECODER?

That is right, there are only a couple of different kinds.

SO FOR THE PERFORMANCES YOU SIT DOWN IN YOUR STUDIO...

What do we do? Well, different performances with different things. We viewed them as not really a performance. We view them as transmissions. I think, doing a performance to radio, like a rock and roll gig, assuming that's good radio is wrong. So what we did was, we tried to include the excitement of certain live sections of music whereby it would be random and hopefully convey some kind of excitement. We tried to combine that kind of sensibility with the knowledge that good radio is maybe sometimes a radio play, maybe sometimes is some kind of philosophical spoken word thing, so we tried to take into consideration the history of that medium, and not just being musicians who are bastardising it for their own promotion. So we definately tried to do a transmission. So for Radio 1 we got the rock and roll element, which was us jamming with Robert Fripp in the studio. So we went into bits of free flow where we were improvising musically, but then we went into very definate bolted sections within the transmission where there was a voice within the environments which were, hopefully, as Orson Welles and War of the Worlds type stuff.

WHY AT THE BEGINNING OF THE ALBUM DOES THE VOICE GO, "STOP FLASHING THE FUCKING LIGHTS!"?

That's a different performance. That's in New York at The Kitchen.

BUT DID YOU PLAY ON A STAGE?

No no no. We just played through whatever rig was sat there and sent images. The person flashing the lights was at our end. We just basically had that as a weird introduction, because we realised that maybe we should speak, to create a weird sort of illusion about what was happening there. We didn't want it to be muzak. We didn't want it to be just the sound coming through at a very tastefull level. We had heard that it was an art gallery, and that it might be a bit respectfull so we thought we would shake it up a bit.

WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS? ARTISTIC EXPRESSION, EXPLORING A NEW MEDIUM OR TO AVOID CLICHED LIVE PERFORMANCES?

We are trying to work towards a new dynamic form of entertainment. We believe that lies within a kind of merger of applying our philosophies to television broadcasting, which we are now moving into. We've got a new television show called "Teachings From The Electronic Brain" which is applying the same philosophy. If you view our music as being an electronic soup, it is basically us reinterpreting the history of music through our equipment, through samplers, technology, whatever. However we can do it, we do it. Whether that is as musicians, or whatever. It doesn't conviniently ignore the history of music, in fact it reinterprets it, and we bring it all in to the soup. We are now applying that philosophy to television broadcasting, as we have been doing for radio broadcasting. It is us trying to learn, technically and artistically towards a leaning of a new kind of merger of entertainment. We believe that we can hit millions of people world wide without going the rock-est route and that purely is by doing good broadcast, and approaching it from a new set of criteria.

AND FROM THE COMFORT OF YOUR OWN HOME.

Yeah. To a certain degree anyway.

IS IT NOW POSSIBLE TO DO MULTIPLE LINKS?

It is possible technically, but as I think I put in the liner notes on ISDN, it is politically that is the problem. Because most of these station don't want to converse with each other and don't want to have to deal with each other. Which is quite funny. This is one of our strong points really, we use any station we can and we don't feel that we particularly have to be owned by a station. In terms of our radio we did a thing called free-programing which is a bit of an anathema these days. To do free work is incredible. We did work and then we moved on, we were rather like a promiscuous partner {laughs}. We sort of move on with free love. Which is kind of like anything that's the kind of notion of ambience that I was always disappointed with. I found that most of the people that advocated this ambient free cosmos kind of thinking were incredibly het up about things, and I always found it really amazing that at the end of all this creativity, if that is what it's supposed to be, the end product was a CD or a piece of vinyl. So we what we have gone now, into the realms of, is producing free transmissions, free broadcasts, music that is only made for transmission and broadcast and a lot of the music never actually comes out. I think that is a good way to be, because we are foraging, we are trying to find something that is more dynamic than our music. Or we are assuming that our music isn't good enough in a way, because A) although we have been very successfull in this country now I still look at a lot of bands that are using a very traditional mechanism without even thinking, being very lazy, and they are doing far better. It is not that I want to achieve for the sheer hell of achieving, I want to achieve a modern piece of entertainment, and I think our mode of thinking could do that.
 

Apoptygma Berzerk Interview

By admin (when...  09/08/2008 @ 00:04:37, Where Interviews, linked 1744 times)
Saturday 19 February 2000
Circolo Degli Artisti
Rome

I’m sure we all know who Apoptygma Berzerk are, or should that be is? But for those of you new to this game than APB is pretty much down to one Stephan Groth, born in Denmark in 1971. APB are at the moment one of the most popular bands in a genre you could feasibly call Synth-Pop-EBM, maybe. To get an idea of where he and his music is coming from you have to look at his past and his influences: His parents were hippies, one of his favourite bands is Kraftwerk and his favourite record labels of all time are Mute and 4AD. He also spent over a year caring for people with down syndrome and drug addicts as part of his civil service (after 3 court appearances when he refused to do military service).
At the start of our interview, just before they were due on stage here in Roma he was talking to other band members in Norwegian. I was thinking how strange a language it sounded when all of a sudden Stephan said something that sounded a lot like “Ritchie Hawtin” so I asked him whether he really meant the seminal techno-meister also known as Plastikman...

I did.

Do you like him?

Brilliant. Do you have the latest album? The mix album with the Nitzer Ebb track in the middle? When I heard it I went totally off my head, I almost started to cry. Suddenly I understood that our backgrounds are the same, the only difference is that he grew up in Canada and I in good old Norway. It is very important for me as an artist to know that my favourite artists have the same backgrounds. We play that album before our concerts but last night I’m not sure the Italians were so much into it. It seems that the Italian scene is much more guitar orientated than the rest of Europe, I think.

Who are you welcoming to earth?

Welcome To Earth is about welcoming something to this planet that can change our lives, a positive change that I am looking forward to. That could be the second coming of Jesus, it could be aliens, it could be this CD that will bring positive change to your life, my life, whatever. I hope some nice little green men show up next week! No, I’m just looking for a change. The whole idea came from when we made the Eclipse single... With the “We Want To Believe” cover... Yeah, we nicked that from X-Files.
[and he coughs...]
The whole idea of that song is when something totally extraordinary happens, like for example the eclipse or if a UFO suddenly shows up. Like at a football match and your favourite team scores, that feeling that a lot of people are concentrating on one thing. There’s a whole lot of positive energy released in the second that something happens. Like when we were watching the eclipse, so many people were concentrating on the same thing and I could feel the vibration, people were forgetting about their ordinary lives and just concentrating on that. The day a UFO is just standing there, or say God or whatever, something happens that draws all the attention of all the people on the planet in one moment...
[he clicks his fingers for dramatic effect]
then we have magic. That in a way is what the whole album is about. 2 or 3 years ago I went to a lot of techno rave parties and that was one of the things that fascinated me: all the people were really doing something together... ..in harmony. Everyone was connected. My parents were hippies so the whole Woodstock vibe probably lives in me
[Laughs].

Going back to one of your first influences, what do you think of the new Kraftwerk single?

To be honest I’m not really that impressed. I hoped they’d get someone younger to produce it. They still have good ideas but I think they are maybe a little bit too old to really make it interesting. If they had someone like Moby or Ritchie Hawtin to mix it then you would really have something interesting. Still, it is very important to remember your roots, they have shaped you and made you what you are today. Kraftwerk have done so many important things for the whole electronic scene, they are the grandfathers and they should always be respected for that. No matter what they do, I still totally adore them. They are one of the only bands that could make a crap album and I would still adore them!

Tell us what happened with the Military service.

I was born in Denmark in ’71 and my parents were not married. In Denmark if your parents are not married you automatically have the same nationality as your mother, in my case, Danish. But they had a rule in Norway that no matter if your parents are married or not if your father is Norwegian then you are Norwegian. This rule only existed for 2 years: ’70 and ’71. That is the worst luck ever. I had living hell for that. I had to go to court 3 times to prove to the court that I didn’t want to kill anyone. I had to explain all my pacifist views. In the end you had to do civil service for 14 months, what did they have you do? For the first period I looked after drug addicts and prostitutes in Oslo, so now every prostitute in Norway knows me! This seems like a complicated excuse for why you know all the prostitutes in Norway!
[He laughs]
If you ever go to Norway and you want to find a prostitute, just call me!
[he laughs again]
After that I had a break for 3 or 4 months and then I moved to another city where I worked with brain-damaged people and people with down syndrome. Actually I liked that as it gave me something. I became an important person in their lives and that is the best thing you can do as a human being: be important to other people. It was a very hard mental work, when I was through at 5.00 I went home and straight to sleep. I don’t regret that I was there.

Where did the name come from?

It was something we made up. Berzerk is an old Viking term, to go berserk...
[crazy or on the rampage].
We just wanted a weird name for a weird music. How important are the clubs for your music? I love club music and I love going clubbing. It is a tool to reach people, really. All the stuff that I buy these days I’ve heard in clubs, radio is not what it used to be.

Where would you like people to listen to your music, are clubs the ideal environment? In bed?

It depends on the track. Some of the tracks, like Eclipse, are, well... You won’t listen to that one in bed. That is a club tune.

It depends what you do in bed...

Exactly. You know what I mean. A lot of my songs are very personal. I would like the listener to be alone listening to it because there are a lot of feelings I try to send through, but other tracks, like Eclipse, are more ‘we are all together’.

Are the electronic instruments you use merely tools to produce your ideas or are they more important than that?

I’ve always worked on electronic equipment and they have a lot of advantages over acoustic instruments. The fact you can run everything through your computer and when you rehearse you actually rehearse with machines. They never sing out of key, they never play out of time, everything is totally perfect, that is very nice. You can play them whenevr you want to. It is not just a tool, I’m totally in love with the sound of electronic instruments. I don’t know why, must be something from my youth, my genes, my hippy genes!
[Laughs]

Which is your favourite synth, the one you couldn’t do without?

My Roland Super Jupiter, MKS 80, and I’ve got a Nord Lead which is perfect, but the most important tool is my Macintosh. On the new album about 90% of everything has been processed in the machine. I’ve also brought a powerbook on the tour, the next tattoo I get will be the apple! This last album took about 8 months in all to make and I recorded everything at home in my own studio and that gave me a lot of oportunities and a totally new flexibility. Usually when you go to a big studio you are paying a lot of cash by the hour, you’re constantly looking at your watch going, “Oh shit! Another 500 krone.” But this album, half of the vocals I’ve done in my underwear sitting in there smoking!

It sounds well produced though.

You like the production?

Yeah.

Thanks. We spent a lot of cash on the mastering because it is so important. It is a bit sad that a lot of bands, I won’t name any but you can listen to a lot of records that are being put out at the moment and I can clearly hear that if they just spent about 200 krone more in mastering it would be totally on another level.

The APB symbol looks a lot like a crop circle (strange patterns formed in fields, supposedly made by aliens), is that continuing the Welcome To Earth and ‘I want to believe’ concept?

Yes. It’s not actually a real crop circle but the guy that did the drawing was inspired by the crop circles. In the UK they came up with this theory that they are hoaxes made by the 2 guys... Yeah, those 2 old guys! The thing is they tested a lot of crop circles and when you are sitting in the middle they have diverse electric polarities and you can hear a sound. Of course there are a lot of hoaxes, but...

..at least one of them must be unexplainable.

Exactly, and if there is just one then that is enough for me.
 

Plastikman

By admin (when...  08/08/2008 @ 23:46:49, Where Interviews, linked 1210 times)
Interview Roma phone interview 14 March 1995

WHAT ARE YOU DOING IN ENGLAND.?
Just hanging out, doing some dj-ing dates, stuff like that. All over the place but I have been in London for the past couple of days, just as a base, you know what I mean..? Staying with some friends.

DO YOU LIKE DJ-ING IN ENGLAND..? Yeah, it's cool. I am over here quite a lot actually, I have got a lot of friends here and I do a lot of gigs here. Most of them are pretty good and pretty fun, I do tend to be here quite a bit. This time I am here for about a week.
HOW DID YOU GET INTO MUSIC..?
I got into making music late '89, early 1990, actually making my own, I guess mid '89. Before that, like during the mid eighties I was really into music like electronic stuff, like New Order, Kraftwerk, Severed Heads, Skinny Puppy, that kind of stuff. That kind of slowly evolved into more Americanized dance music, like Chicago acid house. Later on in the eighties I started to hear more of the Chicago acid house and Detroit techno, and I really got heavily into that and that is when the whole music thing really kind of bit me. I found this music that I was really into. I slowly started to DJ and that all evolved slowly into making music.
SO THE DJ-ING CAME FIRST..?
Yeah the DJ-ing I started in mid '87, I just kind of messed around by myself at my house and I slowly got in to clubs during '88 and '89, and it just came one step at a time basically.
SO WHICH DO YOU PREFER DOING NOW..?
Err. It's hard, I like both of them [laughs]. I guess if I had to only do one... It is such a hard decision, I really like making music, I guess that is probably my main choice, but sometimes I will go through phases where I will make a lot of music and then other times I won't. During the times I am not making music it is good to DJ as it keeps me in touch with things and it keeps my head moving. There are good and bad things with both, so...
SO WHY DID YOU CHOOSE ELECTRONIC INSTRUMENTATION?
Well, I never ever had any thoughts of making music myself, it wasn't like I was actually trained for music. I took saxophone in high school and all that, but, you know, things that everyone a like forced to do. I was always around a lot of like electronics, my dad is into electronics and was always building little kits and he got me into that at an early age. Then I really got into computers in the mid eighties, so it all worked together. I was really into electronics, computers and then into this music, the stuff that I liked the most seemed to be based 90% on electronics. When it came time to actually think about making music, finding out you could do it all with computers it was no, well of course it was hard and I had to learn a lot, but it was no big deal, you know what I mean..? I was used to using that kind of technology, so it was the perfect thing for me.
YOUR MUSIC SEEMS TO BE PREDOMINANTLY ANALOGUE. DO YOU DO MUCH DIGITAL?
Well, there is some stuff. I am not really like "digital phobic" like some people are. I just tend to use what I like, or what sounds good. The last album I did is about 70% analogue, 30% digital. The new stuff I am working on is a lot more digital. The kind of sound that I looking for is right in-between, I think. A lot of people like analogue because it is round, fat, and I like that, I like the warmth. But I also like the hardness and clearness of digital. So I am trying to look for a happy medium, I guess.
HOW ARE YOU ACTUALLY MAKING THE MUSIC, SYNCHING ANALOGUE STUFF TOGETHER, OR USING MIDI..?
I do have a computer running Cubase, but but I only use that for loops. I never really plan out my songs. A lot of the time that is just running loops, or just running the machines and keeping them all together. A lot of the time it is all old analogue stuff and control voltage and control voltage, CV gate stuff and/or just triggered off drum machines and stuff like that. I do use midi, I use it all, but not so I can plan it all out perfectly. A lot of the time it is just used so that a lot of different things can be brought together and synched together. Some people use things to sequence, and I guess I use things to sync.
HOW IMPORTANT IS IT THAT YOU KNOW YOUR TOOLS..?
I think it is definitely the most important thing, there are so many people doing this kind of music, in some aspects it is very easy to make this kind of music. It is very easy to go out and buy electronic things, plug them together and get them to make noises. I think that the people that I have always liked, like musically, and the people who I think are like at the forefront now, the really cutting edge are the people who have taken a few pieces of gear and have really like torn them apart so they know them inside out in their heads. They know how to make sounds, and they know how to make it sound a little different to other people. In that aspect I think it is very important. I have a lot of gear, but there are a handful of pieces that I always use, that I like to use. I know those inside out, I know how to get what I want.
WHAT IS THE PIECE OF GEAR YOU COULDN'T DO WITHOUT..?
Well, in the past, in all my albums, it has always been a 303 of course, but that is slowly changing because I know that machine inside out and there is going to be a point where I have taken it to a level where I cannot take it any further. Then I shall have to start looking for new things. I am kind of in that process now, I have got a few new things that I am really playing with a lot, and the one or two things that I really get into I will probably use a lot more on the next album.
MAYBE IT IS TIME FOR YOU TO GET THE SAXOPHONE BACK OUT..?
There you go [laughs]. I don't know about that [laughs].
AFFINITIES..?
Well, there's people like, there's a lot of people from Detroit, friends of mine, people like Deion Bell who has done a lot of minimal stuff. He has only got four or five pieces of gear and he knows them inside out. There are people like Robin Hood and ? from Detroit. There are people like The Aphex Twin and Pete Nanlock. People like that who really know how to do what they do, do you know what I mean?
DO YOU KNOW MUCH ABOUT THE AUSTRALIAN TECHNO SCENE?
I know the Juice guys really well, that is about all I know from down there, they have some really amazing stuff. You should try and look into that.
WHAT DEFINES THE DETROIT SOUND FOR YOU..?
The only way to define it is, no matter what comes out of Detroit, not everything [yawns], excuse me...
LATE NIGHT..?
Yeah [laughs]. The large majority of stuff from Detroit, whether it is house or techno, or just electronic based music, there's some kind of overlapping thing in there. I guess a lot of the Detroit artists try to put some funkiness and soul into it. Some kind of... I don't know what it is, those are the kind of words that come into my head, or even originality. A lot of other places you go to, you have your New York sound, and your techno sound of England, whereas maybe it is a lot of similar sounds. In Detroit I find a lot of the music that comes from there, err, there is a tinge to it that makes it Detroit. One of the things about it is that everyone is really original, really different. No-one tries to sound like each other, and because of that it comes off sounding together, do you know..? People thrive on, kid X may be inspired by kid Y but he is going to want to take that sound and add his own sound, so there is sound X and Y, and B and C, but they all have that certain tinge of Detroit but they all have their separate identities. Whereas I think in a lot of other places, as soon as someone gets on to something, some kind of sound, you get X to the power of one through to ten, do you know what I mean.
AND PERHAPS THAT IS WHY YOU DON'T LIKE GIVING OUT EQUIPMENT LISTS IN INTERVIEWS..?
Yeah.
I WAS THINKING WE COULD MAKE UP AN INSTRUMENT, IF YOU WANTED...
[laughs]
WE COULD MAKE UP A PIECE OF EQUIPMENT AND SEE IF PEOPLE TRIED TO FIND IT TO GET THAT ELUSIVE "PLASTIKMAN SOUND".
[laughs]. That would be good. Cool!
YOU HAVE BEEN QUOTED AS SAYING THAT THE ENGLISH ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE SCENE SOUNDS TOO SICKLY AND CLEAN.
Yeah, well, a lot of British, and European stuff sounds like it is over-produced. Different people, different things, but some of those people just seem to be thriving for the clean, having everything clean, and everything pre-determined, all sequenced out and perfect. It is just not where my heads at. I know a lot of people who would love to be in a nice studio with all the most high-tech gear, press the start on the sequencer and the song plays with all the modulation on and all that stuff and it just seems to have lost something when it gets to that stage.
APART FROM TECHNO, WHAT MUSIC DO YOU LISTEN TO..?
Not too much, some earlier seventies stuff like Tangerine Dream but that is all electronic based pretty much. You know my life is so wrapped up in this stuff, it is very hard at times to listen to other things. I am definitely open for other things, I was really into The Sundays and things like that a few years ago, but I haven't really had time to go back and listen to new stuff by them, or by any other people, so...
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE TO CREATE "MUSIK", WRITING AND RECORDING..?
It was spread out over a long period of time but the actual time period was pretty small, there was probably 3 or 4 different sessions of a few days each. If you pushed it all together it would be about a week or so. I have periods when I write a lot, and then I take some time off. There was probably about 6 or 7 hours worth of material for the album, and then I just picked out my favourite stuff.
HOW AND WHERE WAS IT RECORDED..?
I have my own studio in the basement of my house. I just record whenever I feel like it, whenever I don't, I don't. I record quite a bit, straight on to DAT. A lot of the time my tracks end up, I end up recording very long versions of each track. Most of my favourite track turn out to be about an hour long, and then I usually just cut out parts from the middle to make a shorter version.
WHO ELSE GETS TO LISTEN TO THE LONG VERSIONS..?
No-one, my brother maybe, but usually most people, I would say about 99% of people just get to hear the finished version.
HOW PLANNED ARE THE TRACKS..?
It is always different. I can go in with a certain idea that I want to portray and it can come out just like that, or it can mutate and end up nothing like it but just a really good track. So I guess it is experimentation every time, because it is always different. I can go in with a planned thing, and twist the wrong knob and accidentally come up with a different sound and then take that somewhere else. I guess it is always some kind of experimentation.
NEW DIRECTIONS..?
I don't know, just...
ARE WE GOING TO SEE A REALLY BIG CHANGE?
Yeah I think there will probably be, probably not as big a change as I would want for the next album, because I don't want to have people get into the first album, this album and then give 'em a third album which they scratch their heads to, but I definitely want to give them something a little different. The stuff I am working on now is a lot different, I have a few different machines I am using. So there are similarities, but there is definitely a new life into it, in my opinion. When I release something I want there to be some kind of continuity. We will see where I go, I guess [laughs].
COLLABORATIONS, PAST AND FUTURE.
I don't collaborate too much. I have a lot of ideas and I like to do things myself, but once in a while I do something when it feel right. So last year I did a thing with Pete Nemloch(?), who is from Fax(?) records in Germany and just before that I did something with LFO, LFO versus Fuse. That is about it really, Pete and I are going to work again together this year.
ANYONE YOU WOULD LIKE TO WORK WITH..?
Not really, no. If things come up then it is cool, but there are not really any plans. The only plan for this year is probably a friend of mine who is on my label, is Speedy J. We may do something together, it is kind of like we are going to hang out together and if something happens it does, do you know what I mean?
HOW WAS YOUR LABEL, PLUS 8 FORMED..?
That was formed in 1990, my partner John and I got together to mess around in the studio. We did some tracks and then we had to figure how to put them out, so we started a label. Now, because there was no-one who wanted to help us when we started we have always tried to help other people. That is why Plus 8 grew. We signed other people, and helped other people so they wouldn't have to go through the same kind of thing that we did. All our own material is released through Plus 8, and then on to other people.
THAT WAY YOU GET TO KEEP MORE CONTROL OVER YOUR MATERIAL..?
Exactly, anything we do with Plus 8 we pretty much put it out first and then let other people look after it and take it to an other level. That way we have full control over the music and what is on the album, the artwork and all that kind of stuff.
REMIXING..?
Again, it is like, I don't like to do too many remixes, but the last few months I have done a few. I took some time off writing my own stuff, I just wanted a break so I kept my "studio habits" moving by doing some mixing. We did some remixes for Mo-Wax, Bomb The Bass, System 7 and New Order. Now as soon as I get back home I will be setting up a new studio and then I get back to work on my own stuff, and leave everyone else to their own things [laughs].
NEW INSTRUMENTS..? OR STICKING WITH THE OLD ANALOGUE STUFF? THE RECENT RESURGENCE OF NEW INSTRUMENTS THAT HAVE THE OLD ANALOGUE SOUND?
I have played with the Novation Bass Station, I think it was a good thing that they are made. It gives a lot of people opportunity to get that kind of sound, but I would rather find something which does it's own thing, that doesn't imitate a 303 or something. For myself I think that is a bit useless. So I am looking at some other old, obscure stuff, and some really new stuff too. I have some new things and I will probably go out and buy another couple of new pieces and see what happens from there. I am not into having all the new stuff, or all the old stuff, but just a few choice pieces. It is very easy to overload and over-burden yourself with too much technology and too much stuff.
WITH TOO MUCH GEAR YOU NEVER GET TO FIGURE OUT COMPLETELY ANY ONE PIECE.
Exactly, the easiest thing to do is have everything, the hardest thing to do is to learn one or two of them really well.
I have some modifications on my 303, and the guy that did it calls it the Devilfish, I guess just list my favourite thing as being the devilfish.
 

Les Rhythmes Digitales

By admin (when...  08/08/2008 @ 23:33:26, Where Interviews, linked 990 times)
Les Rhythmes Digitales
Interview
2000
Rome

Even though you may have been led to believe that Les Rythmes Digitales is one of those chic groups coming out of Paris and riding on the wave of French electro bands, all is not as it seems. Jaques Lu Cont was born in France, but only because his English parents were there on holiday. Technically French, but only just. It was enough, early interviews required the presence of a French translator and his first album had the French flag on it’s spine. The press releases were littered with strange and colourful facts about his past. Surely there was some mistake? A face on a faceless electronic artist...

My idea was to take the piss out of how every band’s biography is normally all bullshit. I just exaggerated loads of facts of my life. The fact I was born in Paris, I was born in Paris but I said I still lived there. When I was young I went to a clinic because I was depressed, so in the biography that became a mental asylum. I wanted to create a haze around the album that would make it a bit more interesting. I’ve always wanted to know what the music looks like, when you listen to it you get an idea of what’s behind it, I really don’t like faceless music. I got into pop music really late in my life, my parents made me listen to classical music till I was about 13. When I did get into pop music the thing that fascinated me about it was the fact that the image was as important as the music. I decided from that day that whatever I did musically would have some kind of image to go with it, even if it had to be an anti-image.



So that is the history, after his debut “LIBERATION” record which saw Jaques take the lead in the Big Beat race in ’96, his new album “DARKDANCER” changed direction. Jaques discovered the eighties, and Nik Kershaw. Who is the “Darkdancer”?

You’re not supposed to visualise a person or a character. It was an insight to what the album was supposed to be about: the light and dark side of the music I make. The name actually came from a t-shirt I had that said “Darkdancer” on it. The word just fit in with my whole scheme of thinking.

If you had the chance would you have prefered it you could have had that album come out in the eighties?

I’m definitely a kid of the nineties, this is the perfect time for me. I don’t think it is an eighties album. There is too much “90’s” on it. The whole concept of me being retrospective about the eighties is 90’s by its very nature. It is better to be able live in the nineties and look back at what the eighties were, rather than trying to live it and discover things as they occured. I like the nineties, the late nineties.

Do you worry that you may be labeled a novelty act seeing as how this album doesn’t hide it’s influences? The cover of the album is very ‘80s, complete with Ford XR3i.

I’m completely fascinated by public opinion, it is a vital part of what I do. The fact that I provoke a reaction is an achievement for me in the first place, as it means people listen to what you do and make a decision on it there and then. It is better than when people go, “yeah, its alright” because when you are “yeah, they’re alright” you become one of the, “yeah, they’re alright” bands whereas if you get the opportunity to provoke people it puts you on a different plane. People could consider what I’ve made a novelty record because of the way I’ve been so blatant, so “pop” about the whole thing and I completely understand why. I would just like to say to those people though that there is a lot more to it than that, but the only way I can prove it is by hanging around and doing my bit. If you still see me doing this in five years time then...

You were right...

...then I was right and it wasn’t just a novelty thing.


Do you feel any affinity to the “intelligent electro” crowd that is so in vogue at the moment?

I guess I do because I have a similar interest in being anally obsessive in the studio. I love noodling in the studio, its just that I love getting up on stage and performing as well. I think a lot of that electronic scene is left behind because it stops at the studio door in a baggy t-shirt and jeans. You get the impression that the people that are producing this music probably really hate what I do because I’ve tried to bring some sort of face to it, or a sense of humour even and these are words that these kind of people don’t like, but so what? Eighties is a word that they don't like, so...

In fact LRD present a real show, complete with guitar players, drummers, costumes and a large dose of fun, but don’t worry about this adversely effecting their sound.

Performance wise it is more akin to a rock show than a dance show. I really want to take that same energy. It’s so fucking boring watching two guys behind a mixing desk on stage with loads of equipment going, “Oooh, twiddling knobs, isn’t this good?”. I wanted to have a really synthetic sounding, studio-produced album with no live musicians on it, contrasted with a really live organic performance. And...

Dramatic pause...

..I think I’ve done it. [laughs] The mixture of electronic sound and acoustic sound is something that often grates me to be quite honest. I’m not the kind of person that likes hearing techno and then someone comes along and plays percussion or guitar over it. The two sounds just grate. All our instruments on stage are live but they are electronic. The drummer uses an electronic Simmons kit, the guitar that Jo plays is a midi guitar so she’s triggering electronic sounds. You get that beautiful electronic pulse but it is being created there and then and you don’t get that horrible pub band sound over a DAT player.


And now some more rumours about LRD which may, or may not, be true: The looping voice sample at the beginning of “Hypnotise” was recorded in a Korean restuarant in Japan and means, “Do you want mixed salad with that”. “Hypnotise” is in reality a tribute to Eurythmic’s “Sweet Dreams Are Made Of These”. For the Matrix-inspired video of “Jacques Your Body” Jaques’ stuntman was the same stuntman that Jean Claude Van Damme uses. The suicidal teddy bear in the video of “Sometimes” represents Nik Kershaw (who sings on the track) and a terrible accident he once had falling off a cupboard. Well, maybe I made up that last bit.

 

Adi Newton: Clock DVA 1992

By admin (when...  08/08/2008 @ 23:21:50, Where Interviews, linked 5645 times)
Adi Newton - CLOCKDVA
Interview
circa 1992

WHAT DOES CLOCKDVA ACTUALLY MEAN, WHERE DID YOU GET THE NAME FROM?

Right, it means quite a few things to me. Originally it was conceived by myself and another guy, Steven James Turner, when we first got together and started doing things, just the two of us. We were thinking about names, we kind of liked the idea of the clock because of the time thing, the surrealist idea, the symbolism and so on; and then the two is from russian. Dva roughly means two in russian. Clock Two was this kind of second clock and clock in to (two) work and whatever work does to you, a surrealist kind of idea, and so really that was it. ClockDva is one word, it was supposed to be abstracted anyway, so it wouldn't tie us down to any particular one thing.

WHY DOES CLOCKDVA EXIST?

Why????
Well, primarily to express an individual need to create. For us it's the doing of the act, that is the most important thing.

WHAT MUSIC DID YOU LISTEN TO AT THE BEGINNING, AND WHAT DO YOU LISTEN TO NOW?

In the beginning I used to like Kraftwerk. When the first album came out, the very experimental one to me it was very much like the Throbbing Gristle stuff. There was a lot of the early electronic experimental stuff that I liked. That was the first big influence on me, and I still listen to them now. I still find something interesting in them which is a good sign, the longevity.
Obviously then the first things came through like Throbbing Gristle, then The Normal with "Warm Leatherette" and stuff like that, SPK. Now, I quite like the last Kraftwerk album, and I quite like Harold Budd, more of his obscure things, "Plateau of Mirrors". It is kind of easy listening, but it is very emotive I think, very simple. I can relax. It is nice, listening to relaxing music like that. I mean working with music which is more [hammers table in a fast steady beat] all the time.

WHO'S CLOCKDVA NOW?

Well there's myself, with a guy called Robert Baker and then a guy called Dean Dennis, and there's just the three of us, and we've been working like that. There was another guy called Paul Browse who puts a bit in there. We sort of reformed in '87, we put out Thirst in '88 and then with Paul a lot of things happened, they didn't really work out.

ARE YOU STILL BASED IN SHEFFIELD NOW?

Yes.

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN GOING?

Well we started originally in about 1977. I was running a fanzine from about 1977 onwards. I was involved with the Human League before they became Human League, with people called "The Future" at that point. It was just me , Martin Ware and Ian Craig Marsh; just exclusively using synthesizers and electronics sort of idea, with the name obviously The Future. It didn't work out 'cause I was really interested in other things, not just pure electronics, I wanted to incorporate other elements which went beyond electronics, more electro acoustic, but things didn't fit in or gel. So I decided I'd just do my own thing.

SO DO YOU THINK YOU HAVE COME FULL CIRCLE?

Yeah really.

BECAUSE THE LAST STUFF IS REALLY VERY ELECTRONIC.

Yeah, very much so. The very early stuff, the DVA stuff that has never been released, though it will be released at some point this year maybe, or next year, the archive stuff, is very electronic, so really it has in a way gone full circle. It started off like that, and then it moved, I took it away. It still retained some of the electronic ideas, more to do with treatment than technique, applied to conventional instruments. And then, to come right back, to come full circle. I think all things do in the end, you start somewhere and then you go back to it.

MUSIC TECHNOLOGY RECENTLY HAS REALLY TAKEN OFF, ANYBODY CAN REALLY DO A LOT OF THINGS IF THEY GO OUT AND BUY AN INEXPENSIVE COMPUTER LIKE THE ATARI, SOME SOFTWARE AND A KEYBOARD, HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THAT?

I think it is a good thing, the monopoly on the large studio environments has always been a restriction for a lot of people, I think it was good with punk in '77 where there was this atmosphere and attitude that anyone could do anything, just get up and do it and it doesn't matter. Even with the basic amount of equipment people could do something. I think that attitude is important, and now especially with the advent of cheap electronic equipment like computer midi systems, digital recording, etc... The prices of those coming down means that a lot of people can get hold of the stuff, get their parents to buy it or whatever, I don't know, and actually be able to do something without having to go into a goddamn multi-track studio and pay ridiculous prices. So I think it is good, it's good for creativity really and it is also breaking monopolies down. Which I think is important, its been too long like that and I think it needs to change, dramatically. This is the way forward I think. It also allows for a great deal more experimentation as well, because there is no restriction on time. There is no problem when you go into a studio and always have to look at the clock, you always find when you do something that then two weeks later you listen to it and think "oh god, I could have done that a lot better", or "this sounds awful, I want to change that bit" and it's too late because you've laid it all down on to twenty-four track tape. You have to scrap it all. So it's good because it is all "soft", you don't have to print it until finally you are ready. We decided back in '88 that was the way it works. We'd had it with working in the studios, we thought we needed a lot of time to develop what we were doing, techniques, sound, concepts. The only way to do it was to buy the actual equipment and set up our own studio, with a digital facility, and that is what we did. And we are still doing it now. We are still buying stuff and adding and always improving it.

SO YOU HAVE YOUR OWN STUDIO?

Yeah, it allows us a lot of freedom to be able to work as long as we want, or as much as we want. Usually that is more or less every day, and quite a lot of the day, but we are doing the stuff we love to do. It's good, you can call your own shots and decide how long you want to do it, take a long time. If it takes time to do then it doesn't matter, you just do it. There's not someone breathing down your neck, or time ticking away. I think the experimenting as well takes time itself, developing technique. Sometimes you will find quick ways of doing something and something will happen. Other things can be more laborious and take a little bit more time, programing or whatever to get a particular sound. So it is good to have the options, and the time.

MUCH BETTER TO SUIT YOUR MOOD AS WELL.

Yeah, if you work at night, sometimes in the day you don't want to do anything, just get on with something else, like the evening atmosphere is more conscious, to do a mix, or compose.

WHAT KIND OF EQUIPMENT DO YOU HAVE IN THE STUDIO?

We use Macintosh systems primarily for the music applications. The we have an Amiga B2000 for the visual side, but it is mainly Macintosh, they are very good. I like them anyway because they are very intuitive computers. They are icon driven and so on, and it is very intuitive. The environment to work in is not so hard and not so complicated. It's not like a typed command line interface that is just words, it's very boring if you are sitting typing just looking at words all the time. They are a good system to use, once you get used to them you do things automatically without thinking about it. A lot of computers you need a lot of commands typed, followed by this kind of exact...

AND THEN YOU FORGET WHAT YOU WANTED TO DO.

Yeah, with things like that it takes ages sometimes. Some of the things are slow [on the Macintosh], obviously it depends on the co-processor; the faster the processor of the computer the faster it will do the work. The good thing about the Mac is you can always add new boards, so you can always improve it in different ways, because the architecture is open. It allows you to design a system that is specific to what you want to do. You are not tied down or limited. It is flexible. I think it will be good for the next couple of years, the NeXT System is supposed to be much better. When I was in Austria last year doing the R S Electronica on Virtual Realities Symposium they had people from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and from NASA, they had all the gear, headsets and everything. We went over there to do a show and some things on cybernetics. I was talking to a guy from Santa Fe, New Mexico, he was working on mapping the brain, neuro networks of the mind. He was saying that they had changed to the NeXT system and how good it was to work with, and he was asking what system we used and so on. Their prices are coming down and all the American universities are using them now, they all changed over from Mac to NeXT. Obviously there will always be something new coming along that will be better, but I thing the Mac will be good for a couple of years.

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT V.R. AND ALL THE PRESS IT HAS BEEN GETTING
RECENTLY..?

Well, I think the idea is good, the concept is interesting in a lot of ways, but the actual implementation, especially on the graphics side, has been very poor and that puts a lot of people off when it looks like a computer game. Perhaps what is more interesting is the recent developments, the new stuff that is being done is very, very good. Very much like reality, it has a
very real feel when you see it, it looks a lot better. So I think that is the problem, people that are put off by the computer arcade game look at it and think it is some kind of game and it is true. A lot of that stuff is just that, it just looks crap, it wouldn't fool anybody. The more realness it gets, the more the brain will work in with it. I think it is interesting, and that the problem with it at the moment is that a lot of it is in the hands of scientists and a lot of commercial artists who work with big companies who just do crap. But when it gets into the hands of some guy who has an intuitive ability with computer graphics, who has ideas and so on, then we shall see some brilliant things being made. But until then it's going to take a few years against this. Technology at the moment, that kind of high end graphic application is really expensive, but gradually it will get cheaper. Like samplers, originally there was the Fairlight and it cost like thirty grand [30,000 pounds], and two years later they were worth three and you could buy a little box that would do the same things and sound better. It is just technology at the forefront that is expensive, but then gradually it gets cheaper. So it is just time, I think, before we see some interesting things being done, on a visual line anyway.

HOW DO YOU THINK THAT THIS TECHNOLOGY HAS INFLUENCED OR CHANGED YOUR MUSIC..?

Changed the music? It's good for doing things in a very precise way, if you want to you have the ability to do it. Also you have the ability to do it in another way as well. It depends how you interface yourself with it. I mean you could sit down and just program it, very exact, but then again you could play it, just by feel, you know, just do it. There is that way, or the exact way. So if you merge both ways you get the best of both worlds. You still get the human improvisational quality, which is an accidental thing which is felt. You play along, whatever, it could be a keyboard, it could be a bass, it could be an alto sax. It is exactly the same as playing an instrument, you are doing the same things. There is the same feeling, so it is the soul that you put in it. So you can merge the two together to get the best of both worlds. You can get the precision, the computer editing and so on, and then you can just get the interest in the accidentalness of improvisation, the human spontaneity or psychic-autonomism, or whatever you want to call it. You get both, and I don't see any problem. I don't think it is like people say; it is "too machine-like", it's "too this" or it is "too that". It depends what it is, I mean it could be like that. It could be like that for some specific purpose I guess, but I like to feel we kind of blend it. We have some elements that have a raw edge, a bit of human-ness, some frailty. Like, sometimes slightly out of time sounds good, you know what I mean? The tuning might not be exact, but the overall effect sounds good. Try not to discriminate so much, it limits yourself.

I KNOW WHAT YOU MEAN, I ONCE SAW AN ARTICLE THAT CLAIMED YOUR MUSIC WAS "AGGRESSIVE"!

[LAUGHS] As I was saying, you know? I think "aggressive" implies violence, and I don't think that is the right term to use. "Aggressive", I mean if he'd have said precise or hard, that would have been better. The beat is quite precise and quite heavy I guess. It is hard for me to say. For me it is just what it is, I don't think of it as aggressive or like this, or that. Maybe it is? [LAUGHS]. No I think aggressive is not the right word to use as it implies a kind of violence and we are not about violence. I mean, I've never been tempted to go out and kill somebody, or cut anybody up. We'd never say anything like that. It's only people's minds that make things up. I was doing an interview with this guy in London for a magazine called "Fear" that specializes in horror, and he was asking us some questions about violence and if we advocated violence against women! So I said we never advocated anything, against anybody. We never said anything about doing anything against anyone's will. I mean, in fact "Buried Dreams" is not about a man, it's about a woman. It is exactly not what are you telling me. That was about a sixteenth century woman who did this. It was not a man it was a woman that did this. Not that men are incapable of crimes against people or whatever. It's people's minds that are conditioned to think about this. It is like The Act, people thought that was advocating some kind of paedophilia! It is in fact nothing to do with that. It is more to do with Thelema, and the idea that love is a very powerful emotive thing. I used symbolism, analogies in the lyrics, and so a knife penetrating an artery is just a symbol. Not a real knife, not a pointy piece of metal, it's a feeling of that penetration. Nothing to do with knives being stuck into people, so I explained that to him. It's just how people interpret things. Like The Act again, I have a newspaper article about these kids, eight year old kids who raped a sixty year old woman. It is not always an older person raping a young person. There is a reverse of everything, not everything is exactly as it seems. There aren't certainties. There is always a counter, something different, something gone wrong.

WHAT IMPRESSED AND INFLUENCED YOU SO MUCH ABOUT THE FILM "DR JEKYLL ET LES FEMMES" OF WALERIAN BOROCZYK..?

I just really liked the idea of it. This old theme of Jekyll and Hyde, the old black and white films, but this one had more sexuality to it. It really conveyed what the ideas of it were. The hidden sexuality, the suppression of desires. I think it is not all just horror in there, there is a beauty in that horror as well, which I think comes over in Boroczyk's film.

JUST THAT EPISODE OR THE ENTIRE FOUR PARTS OF THE FILM..?

Oh no, you are talking about a different film, another film by Boroczyk, I think it is called "The Crimes of Passion", which is four films. I haven't seen that one. The one I really like of Boroczyk is called "Dr Jekyll et les Femmes" which is the bloodbath of Dr Jekyll.

AS TIME GOES ON IT SEEMS THE LIMIT OF TRANSGRESSION AND PROVOCATION IS REACHING A DEAD-END. HOW MUCH SPACE DO YOU THINK WE HAVE LEFT TO TRANSGRESS WITHOUT RESORTING TO REPETITION? WHAT CAN BE DONE THAT HASN'T BEEN DONE BEFORE..? WHAT IS THERE LEFT THAT CAN STILL SHOCK..?

I don't really know about Italy, but I know that England there is still very much a restriction on the availability of certain things; films and so on, and there is a lot of censorship. So I would disagree, OK maybe it is being made, but you don't see the half of it anyway. There are a lot of things that are made in America which you just won't see. But in England they are quite restrictive on videos and things, they had a law a while ago that banned certain kinds of films and they just took them all off the shelves and you cannot find them any more. In all sorts of areas they have cracked down, so in England it isn't so good. I don't know about any where else. In Holland it is completely different and you can get whatever you want.

IS IT ONE OF YOUR AIMS TO TRY TO BREAK THIS CONTROL OR TO BRING IT TO THE ATTENTION OF PEOPLE..?

Well "Buried Dreams" wasn't really about that, but I guess it was about control in one sense. I think to censor is a limit, it is a moral thing, like saying "we judge you and we judge what you can see, what you can think, what you can get" and so on. I think that is wrong, it is difficult because you can get to certain points and look at yourself and say "well, that is too much for me". When you are talking about peoples lives there are certain points where I would say "I wouldn't like to see that".

YOU WOULD PREFER THOSE THINGS NOT TO EXIST.

Well I think that when it gets to children, real extreme pedophilia and things like that, then I think that is very, very bad. Again I think it is to do with will. I think anything is permissible, if it is between two or between thirty people as long as they understand what they are doing. If that is what they want to do, they can do whatever they like. If it means, well, whatever, that is up to you. But when it comes down to something that someone doesn't understand, who doesn't know what is going on, cannot condemn or see that then it is being forced upon them, because it is not a clear decision. It is not a choice any more. So I think that anything that goes against that is wrong.

CAN YOU SUPPORT YOURSELF WITH THE MUSIC..?

More or less yes, but we were a bit stupid and we put a lot of money back into equipment and instruments, and we had left ourselves a bit short. But we are working things out, to get more investment. So it does get a bit odd sometimes, we have put a lot of money back into equipment, but it was a conscious decision.

AND THE ANTI GROUP..?

It is a different deal with them, Testones was our last official album and overall it is very different to the new DVA stuff we have been working on. There are cross-over points which is inevitable really; the experimenting for one thing, the techniques in finding a kind of sound. In that context there will always be a cross-over, but I don't think we are so similar that we sound the
same.

SO ARE YOU WORKING ON NEW ANTI GROUP MATERIAL..?

Yeah we have a number of things set up, one of them is to put out a CD of a soundtrack that we have worked on for quite a number of years, and have done quite a few different versions of in the last couple of years.

WHEN DID THE ANTI GROUP START..?

About '85.

WHAT MOVED YOU TO FORMING THAT GROUP..?

It was after DVA split for a while in '84 I think it was. After "Advantage". It was whilst we were doing some dates in Europe, things weren't working out so we called it a day and I left to think about things for a while. I had certain ideas in my head that went right back to the end of '78, so I had all this time and I got round to doing it. I thought "now it is time, I'm not doing DVA anymore so this is the ideal time, I want to do something that I wanted to do". It took a while to do because I worked with a lot of people. It didn't matter anyway because The Anti Group wasn't a group, it didn't matter if it was one or two hundred people, as long as what came out at the end of it was interesting. It depended what it was, what kind of idea at that particular point in time. It was about '85 when there was a kind of group of us that were working in a particular area and we started working on this. It changed as it went along as well. Now it is just Robert Baker, Paul Browse and myself. We work with another couple of people but not on a permanent full-time basis.

YOU HAVE AN INTEREST IN OCCULTISM AND MAGIC.

Oh yes, for quite a few years really. Reading about it and researching things. But it like everything else, your interest develops into more specialized areas. So now I am not interested so much in magic in a general sense, but I have gone further into certain aspects, yes. I believe in it, I think it happens any way and it has always been there in one form or another. It is how you interpret it, you cannot see it but it is certainly going on. It is out there happening in different ways. It is a very interesting area, and a very complex one as well. One that is difficult to go into at any one point, where does it start? Because it is so complex it is difficult to put a handle on it, it is hard to define it. In fact it is impossible. Magic is energy tending to change, so by it's very nature it is changing, it is esoteric and yet esoteric simultaneously. That is why it was always passed on in code, because it was hard to talk about it had to be put down in symbolic form, the magical formulae and so on. So you had to have a certain amount of knowledge to be able to understand it. Only initiates really passed it on to each other. It was never allowed to come out in society in general because it was too dangerous. Even now it would be too much for society. I have read a lot of stuff by a guy called Kenneth Grant, I really like him, he is a good authority. He formed his own magical system and released a number of books called the "Triconium Trilogy". He hasn't written anything for ages. He also did a lot of stuff on the Crowley stuff. His books are very extreme, he has access to information that is quite unbelievable. When you read read them you can see what was happening and why it became the way it did. It goes right from the ancient primal african cults right through to Egypt. So how it was genital manipulated and how female worship was changed into a masculine form. And then the division of society into masculine and female, because it started as a mother deity, not a male. That is why we are this way now and why Christians worship a man. Actually it should be more female, in a way it is both, hermaphrodite, both things merged into one. Society has changed it around, the egyptians were originally a saviour cult, and then they turned into a Draconian one. Except they didn't have any sex, that was all outlawed and the temples were all destroyed, as were all the texts. It is very strange as though certain people just decided that was how it was going to be. The hierarchies of the religious dynasties at that time just decided that they wanted it this way. The other way was old and they didn't want it anymore. It has caused a lot of problems. I mean, western religion was taken from the eastern religion and written down for western consumption. With Christ and all that, there was a guy, but there were loads of them. There were many christs. Apparently they have discovered the name of one of them, I read it somewhere. It's is something like Pajrow, a real guy. There is a society call the Sacred Blood of Christ, or something like that; the direct descendants of Christ. A family tied by blood. Cocteau was the head of it. A very strange, secretive sect.

WHAT DOES THE NUMBER 23 MEAN TO YOU?

[LAUGHS]. Well I guess apart from earlier stuff like with Burroughs, I don't know. It is a number that crops up a lot. I think numbers tend to be conjured up by yourself in a way. If you are thinking about a particular number it will crop up in different ways. Like 23, if you are aware of it, it starts to crop up everywhere. It is like any other number, the coincidence rate tends to go up. On the other hand it does tend to crop up a lot, mostly in connections, I guess Burroughs invents some stuff like that, but it crops up in other things as well. It is a number that keeps reoccurring. I suppose magically it is a strange number anyway. Two has always been connected to the adversary, the double or the shadow. Historically it has always been the one that has deviated from 1. Two is a kind of master number, it is 1 and 1, which is eleven which is energy tending to change. It is indivisible, it cannot be broken down any further than that. Three has always been the number of dispersion, so 2 and 3 together is quite a powerful combination. Dispersion and adversary. Three is connected to chromosomes, and that is quite a heavy connotation. That is to do with knowledge. I guess the combination of 2 and 3 is quite a combination really. Certain numbers mean different things, the combination of different numbers, magically, has effect. Because mathematics really is in all things. To me, it has the two elements there, combined into one. In a nutshell that is what it symbolizes for me anyway. It is a number that does crop up a lot. But I say that numbers are like anything else, you tend to become more aware of things when you are thinking about them. It is like this morphic resonance that Sheldware talks about. I don't know if you know anything about that. He wrote a book called "Independence of the Past", he did a lot of research on it and he came up with this theory of Morphic Resonance. Basically what it is is he says that memories are not really kept within the head but actually outside in a Morphic Field, and that awareness is all connected, there is a kind of "consciousness". It is a bit like
Jung in a way, but it is not collective consciousness, it is a bit different. They did a lot of experiments, he did a program on english TV quite a number of years ago. They showed pictures made up of little dots, there was actually something there, but it was very difficult to know what it was. The vast majority of people just didn't know what the hell it was. Then a week later they showed the picture again and told everyone what it was, and then they could see it. Then they repeated the experiment in Japan a week later and everyone knew what the picture was, without being told. They just knew, everybody knew. Then he did experiments with rats, and they taught them to do certain things, and then they bread a whole new generation in a different place, nothing to do with the first group. These new rats automatically knew how to do the things the first rats had to be taught. So what he is saying is; as soon as anyone is aware of some information or knowledge, somebody else is aware of it. If I think this, whatever it is, then somebody else is going to know about it. It is very interesting, he did a lot of experiments and tests and he did prove conclusively that it is at work. There is no doubt. You teach animals to do something and then bread a whole new generation of animals and they do it automatically, how do you answer that? They knew already. It was already there in the "consciousness", it was already known. I think it happens, I have found it anyway. When you start working on an idea or something, and you come to it yourself and then you start to see other things, and you start to hear about other things. Is it coincidence or is it morphic resonance at work? Is that information there because everything is connected in a vibratory spectrum. Information travels around, instantly, because it is probably of an organic radio and what they call, well, the fastest thing known is organic radio transmission. Animals do it, plants do it and we do it. It is faster than light, it takes now time at all to travel from this point to that point. It is like telepathy. I forget the exact term for it now. We did a lot of research on this stuff when we were doing "Digiteria" for TAG. Like the Dogon tribe in Africa who know about the sirius star planet, I don't know if you have seen "Digitaria" but it explains it all, it tells about their knowledge. There is no real explanation for it, apart from the fact that there has been some kind of connection with some kind of extraterrestrial influence. When we were doing this research we found out about this guy called L. George Lawrence. He was a professor at the Ecola Institute in California. In the early sixties he did experiments on plants to do with Biological Radio Signals. He did a lot of experiments on cacti and plants like that, and he made this instrument that could decode and record biological radio information. They got cacti to switch things on and they found out they were emitting radio signals. The interesting thing was when they were out during one of these experiments they set up this machine to record the information from the cactus and he left it for a bit of time. When he returned he discovered the machine pointing at the sky, the machine had been running and had been recording information. It was actually picking up biological radio signals. The only thing that can send them is organic, living, sentient material. So he was completely confounded by it He took the data back and analysed it and he worked out it had been picking up some series of signals from the region of space known as Epsilon Boutess, which contains Ursa Major and Sirius, a star within Ursa Major. Ursa Major is like the mother and seven daughters, the seven stars, and Set was the invisible one, the dark star or sun that was symbolized in Dogon mythology as Digitaria, and also Sirius B. Sirius B is an invisible planet that cannot be seen with the human eye, it was only discovered fairly recently. With the advent of radio astronomy when they finally located it. But the Dogon already knew about it, and Lawrence had been picking up stuff from this exact same region. So it is a lot of coincidences, but a lot of the information ties up, it makes you think, there's something out there. [laughs] This archaic knowledge seems to be there right from the very beginning, it is very hard to dismiss it and be sceptical. Two french anthropologists went out and studied the Dogon tribe for about thirty years, they lived with them and everything, and they didn't come up with any sort of real conclusion about it. They said this knowledge could have come from Egypt or something like that, but then again, where did the egyptians get it from? They knew about Isis and Sirius because they built temples that were actually conceived to channel the light from the star onto an altar at an exact moment, they called them dog days in Egypt I think. A certain time when Sirius rises and the light from it is at it's strongest. It is obviously some information that is quite astounding. We got in touch with the Smithsonian Institute to get hold of these recording made by Lawrence, because he said they were important historical recordings of real contact with some kind of extra terrestrial intelligence. We got a letter back saying they didn't exist, Charles never existed and they had never heard of these recordings. Very strange, I kind of expected it. Then we wrote again saying we know it exists, so we got another letter back because we'd sent it to another department at the institute saying they didn't exist.

WHERE DO YOU FIND THE MAJORITY OF YOUR MATERIAL..?

There are guys I know who live in Los Angeles who run a store called Amok.

YEAH WE KNOW ABOUT THAT ONE.

They are complete book-philes or whatever you call them. They can probably get any book.

THEIR CATALOGUE, "THE FOURTH DISPATCH" IS PROBABLY AN INFORMATION
BIBLE FOR MANY PEOPLE. MY PROBLEM IS I WANT TO ORDER ALL THE
BOOKS!

Yeah I know, it is difficult. There is so much that the catalogue itself will take you a while to read through. It is just a question of looking around, I guess. There are a lot of specialist book-sellers who can get stuff if you want it. It just costs sometimes. Often by chance you can come across things. People I know help me track things down, but it does take a while. I mean, researching itself is a long drawn-out process. It takes years, we have built up a lot of information about a lot of things. We want to put it out, we got some computer stuff to do desk-top publishing and we should get some stuff out.

THAT WILL BE IN THE FORM OF A BOOK?

Yeah, a piece of reference work that can be used for years. We have a lot of stuff on all different areas that all connect to each other in a way. We did a lot of general research before we specialized in one thing. We wanted to do a book on sound itself, sonology, and we started going into that in detail. We built up a vast amount of information and found some amazing things. We have an idea of doing volumes on different subjects, a bit like the french Labliques catalogues which are amazingly good. I think they have stopped doing them now but they used to produce catalogues that were like telephone directories and each was full of the most amazing things I have ever seen. Each volume was specialized in one subject, things like De Sade and Artaud. They are full of things that you have never seen before. It would take years to put these things together, amazing books. As big as a telephone directory.

IN FRENCH PRESUMABLY...

Yes, in french. But they are worth getting just for the pictures inside, there is a lot of visual stuff in there; obscure photographs, original artwork, amazing things. So something like that would be great, not as extensive, but getting some books somewhere near that would be my idea. But then again there is the cost of printing, but Amok said they would help out and print stuff, because they do a lot of stuff themselves. They print quite a few books and documents themselves. Good publications that they do for other people. We just have to get it together really, finding time. It takes ages to do. You just need to take time out to do it, but I can't. I have got to keep other things going. But we will do it. I think anything that is worth-while and good takes time and it doesn't matter if it comes out in two years. The information that it will contain will be good anyway. On the sound thing there are so many things that sound is connected to, it is such a big field, an enormous field that it is amazing when you start to look at it. People are just not aware of it, they just hear things and they don't get it further than that. But actually it really affects you in so many amazing ways. You start to realize when you begin to look at it, the affects of sound, what it can do. I mean it can be very beneficial to actually listen to music, we found out about this french guy called Tomatis who did a lot of work on the hearing system. He began as a ear, nose and throat specialist, but the he got totally involved with sound and he was working on long frequencies and how they physically affect the system. He found a way to re-build the base of the nerve hairs, which is supposedly impossible because when we are born we have a hearing range of, let's say, 20 Hz to maybe 20 kHz and that gradually just decreases. That just happens over a period of time. But he found that by using certain frequencies he could actually stimulate the inner ear to re-grow the hairs that gradually get worn down by noise pollution and time. People also get a disease called tinnitus, which causes a constant ringing in the ear, you might have got it sometimes. I get it now and then, it is a high frequency that comes in your ear...

LIKE A WHISTLE...

Yeah, and then it's gone, but imagine that four hours a day. The only thing they can do at the moment is mask it by these strange things they put on the ears that mask it, but they don't stop it. They don't quite understand it, and they don't know how to completely deal with it. But Tomatis says he has actually found a way to treat it. He works in a private clinic, and he is
expensive, but the science world is very sceptical about it. I think there is a lot in what he is saying about it, and according to things I have read, reports and things, it does work. He has really found a cure that will treat tinnitus completely, and also restore hearing back to it's full capacity, and it is using a series of tapes done at very high frequencies that you listen to over a period of time. As you listen to them it is like a kind of massage, restoring a revitalizing. Interesting stuff, he built a special machine that filters the sound off, a series of filters that take out certain frequencies and boost other ones and so on. The tape is treated through this machine, then the resulting copy is listened to. That is all it is, you just listen. It is the sound itself that cures, there is music therapy anyway, but this is a developed form of music therapy. It is called Audio-Psycho-Phonology.

PART II

TECHNOLOGY AND ART HAVE ALWAYS BEEN TREATED AS OPPOSITE FACTIONS IN A LIFELONG STRUGGLE, YET DVA SEEM TO COMBINE THE TWO. HOW IMPORTANT IS THE RECONCILIATION OF THESE TWO SUBJECTS?

I think the Konstruktivists were one of the first to apply it in a way, and also the Futurists combined technology and art. They really saw it as something very special that needed to be acknowledged and to be harnessed and used. If you look at konstruktivism and futurism you will see in that that combination of art and so is so strong I mean it is still modern now. The work from that period seems to get that element together, technogeist and spirit combined. I think it does come through very well.

WHERE ARE TOOLS GOING TO LEAD MAN IN THE NEAR FUTURE, WILL THE MAN MACHINE SYMBIOSIS BE ALWAYS ONE THAT IS BENEFICIAL TO MANKIND..?

Well, I guess like anything it has it's good and bad points. It is a system in exchange, we are always exchanging one thing for another, and in the process we lose something and we gain something. If you think about it, in times gone by people have exchanged one thing for another, by using technology we do in a way negate some of the ability that we had. If you look at evolution over long periods of time you can see it, the system of exchange that occurs. Sometimes it will be beneficial, and others detrimental. There is no real way of solving that, though possibly in the future I don't know.

HOW FAR AWAY IS THE FINAL PROGRAM..?

The final program? Well they are working on machines now that can design systems. The problem is heuristics and the way the mind works is very complex. It is very simple for us because we think automatically in this way. We think in paradox, and we think with ideas that are not axiomatic, in the sense that they are not like a serial kind of idea. It is not just one, and then something else, in a straight line. It is many connections being made simultaneously. We have no problem in doing this, it is automatic. It is just the way we are. If you try to think about how you apply that, how you understand that, that is the interesting thing. That is the keystone. It sounds, and it is very simple, but actually, where do you begin? This happened years ago when artificial intelligence first raised these kind of ideas, machines thinking and thinking machines. People like Turing did the processing of data that would lead to this but then it was all abandoned because it doesn't work like that. It is not just a matter of having information available. It does to a certain degree, that method is used now and it is effective but it doesn't help with things like creativity. Such as a system that bypasses things and finds short-cuts by intuition, and feelings you know. Someone could think of something that seems to be off-the-wall but then it works. Machines don't think like that. When that happens, when they can do that, well things will start to get very interesting. They have those Neural Networks which learn by memorizing, building up the residual memory with information and connections, and they start to make new connections, that is interesting. They start to think, draw things together, actually create things themselves. It is hard to say how far off we are. It always seems like it is a thousand years away, but then in ten years time it is not so far away. It is like science fiction. People thought something wasn't possible but now it is. I guess anything you thing of could possibly be. You could even make it by thinking about it. Like the Morphic Resonance, people think of things and then other people begin to think the same. Once consciousness is engaged into one idea then many people have that idea, and then those ideas become possibilities.

MAN AMPLIFIED HAS SEVERAL TRACKS TAKEN FROM "TRANSITIONAL VOICES"...

They were versions that we wanted to finish. When "Transitional Voices" was recorded they were still in their very early stages and they weren't completed. So we decided we wanted to complete them, put the final touches to them that we intended to do anyway. So we went ahead and did that, rather than abandoning them and writing new material. We has ideas to take through and that is what we did.

HOW IMPORTANT ARE YOUR LIVE PERFORMANCES?

I think it is good to do live because it is a generation of live sound, now matter that ok some stuff is on whatever, machine or tape. We are also creating live information on top of that which is being played by us. I don't think it really matters in the end how you do it, what it is is how it all sounds and looks and feels.

THE EMOTIONS YOU CREATE...

Yeah. I think the live situation does give rise to a kind of feedback, an input output kind of thing. You tend to do a little bit more as it puts you on an edge as such, it is not like working in a studio where you haven't got that kind of reaction. It is very calmed down. Although saying that, you do have the chance of accidents that do occur that are interesting, but it is a very
controlled situation where anything could happen.
WHAT IS THE ANTERIOR RESEARCH STATION, AND WHAT IS YOUR LATEST AREA OF RESEARCH?

Well at the moment we have got some publications to be released. The first one will be a document on sound; based on the applications, technology, history, sonology and all it's various forms. We are going to release various other publications. It is quite a big task really, we need time to develop it all, research and collate it. It takes time.


ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU ARE PLAYING...

When you are working on material, and trying to do everything else. We see it as a way of expanding what we are doing on the audio-visual side, as a way of presenting ideas. I like the written word, text, publications. There is something solid that can remain in time that you can always refer to. Especially a good research document, you can always go to it and find something. especially if it is a broad area, you have a lot of information you can put use to.

WHEN WE TALKED SOME MONTHS AGO THERE WAS TALK OF COLLABORATION WITH COIL AND JOHN BALANCE.

There is a good possibility, again it is just time. They are really busy, and we are really busy. It is just getting together really. I know John, he wanted me to do some stuff on their last album.

THE FIRST ISSUE OF THE "TOTAL" MAGAZINE AND CD HAS A SPECIALLY REMIXED TRACK BY THE ANTI GROUP. HOW DID THAT COME ABOUT, AND CAN WE HOPE TO SEE NEW MATERIAL RELEASED BY THE ANTI GROUP..?

Yes sure. That was ages ago, it has taken years to come out. It should have come out about two years ago but it has taken ages for one reason or another, he had a lot of problems with distribution. Finally it has come out and it is quite a nice document. As far as TAG is concerned there was the release of "Testones" on CD.

 
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