Rewind: Klaus Stockhausen über “Party Boys”

Posted: November 29th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Artikel | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

Im Gespräch mit Klaus Stockhausen über “Party Boys” von Foxy (1980).

Wie bist Du auf „Party Boys“ gekommen? Beim Plattenkaufen für DJ-Gigs? Du hattest ja 1980 schon mit Auflegen angefangen, als die Platte rauskam.

Die Platte ist, denke ich, von 1979, aber es war wohl 1980. Angefangen habe ich drei Jahre vorher. Ehrlich gesagt war ich in Amsterdam in einem Plattenladen, Rhythm Import, und es war der Nachfolger von „Get Off“, und „Get Off“ ging relativ gut ab. Ich habe in drei Clubs gearbeitet zu dieser Zeit. Donnerstags/Freitags in Frankfurt in so einem Armee-Schwuchtelladen, der hieß No Name. Da waren nur stationierte Soldaten, sehr amerikanisch. Samstag/Sonntag Coconut in Köln, und Montag in Amsterdam im Flora Palace, was hundert Jahre später zum It-Club wurde. Und du hattest drei verschiedene Musikrichtungen. In Köln war es diese Hi-NRG-Nummer mit sonntags Schwuchtel-Tea-Dance, Poppers etc., bei den Amis hattest du funky to Disco, und Amsterdam war britisch angehaucht. Diese Fusion war ganz gut.

Wie hat sich denn das Britische in der Musik in Amsterdam manifestiert?

Es war soulig, Hi-NRG, aber später auch so etwas wie Loose Ends. Es waren Elemente von Rare Groove drin. Und bei „Party Boys“ fand ich einfach diesen Hook so toll, der eben wesentlich eleganter war als zum Beispiel „Cruisin’ The Streets“ von der Boystown Gang. Eigentlich könnte man diese beiden Platten übereinander legen, es funktioniert perfekt. Und diese schrägen Stimmen. Ich mag Stimmen gerne, und wenn sie slightly off sind, mag ich sie noch viel viel lieber. Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Eric D. Clark on “Atmosphere”

Posted: November 22nd, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Features | Tags: , , , , | 3 Comments »

In discussion with Eric D. Clark on “Atmosphere” by Funkadelic (1975).

How were you initiated to the Funkadelic world?

That’s rather hard to say; I believe I first heard Funkadelic… early 70’s? Seems as though I remember hearing “Maggot Brain” as my introduction to their music? And it would most probably have been at a party; maybe a cousin’s house or on a military base at a function? Don’t really know. However I seem to remember that piece first: I certainly had no idea what or who it was? At the time I thought the label art was somehow the band’s responsibility, therefore I would buy records according to the artwork; if I was at a friend’s house and they had something I liked I would go to the record store, usually with my father, and look for the same artwork and buy the record (we’re talking 7″ singles here). Needless to say it was often not what I was looking for. However, rarely did I return anything! This is how I ended up finding out about Led Zeppelin at age 5 or 6. I was looking for Rare Earth. When I finally witnessed Funkadelic’s artwork first-hand it cemented my high regard for their overall “thang”!

Was it a part of your childhood and youth in California?

There was a very strong and rich musical culture in our house. Every morning before school we were allowed to listen to music (no TV, only on Saturday mornings) that we selected from an extensive record collection procurred over previous decades and life in Kansas, Philadelphia, St. Louis and Poplar Bluff Missouri, Osaka, and wherever else our parents had been on their journeys with the military. This included 78 rpm shellac discs and 7″ children’s records recorded at 16 rpm. Father always loved Jazz and has an extensive collection of Blue Note recordings from the label’s inception until around 1970 something. Errol Garner was a big favourite, Booker T. & the MG’s. I did not really get into Jazz though until much later, though I liked Errol Garner! The rest was boring to me then. “Shotgun” and “Green Onions” I liked a lot but until this day I can’t stand James Brown for example?! Only one song that I can’t remember the title of, from around 1958. Mother was into Gospel and female vocal performers such as Morgana King, Dinah Washington, Mahalia Jackson, Dakota Stanton, Aretha of course, also some guys like Major Lance and Joe Simon both of whom I still love today. This collection still exists, excerpts of which you can hear in a set I uploaded to under the moniker “The OZ Effect”. When I’d go looking for what I liked and tried to share it with them it was not met well. They tried to form me with classical which I found to be very little of a challenge, especially as I could trick the teachers by learning pieces twice or even three times as fast by listening to them on vinyl (my component stereo system was right on top of the piano next to my father’s AKAI reel-to-reel, which he bought in Osaka three years before I was born and I adopted; when I am at our house in Sacramento I still use this machine!). Funkadelic were strictly off-limits (very enticing) but I kept the records anyway, even though they were considered to be devil music by Mom and Dad. I was still under ten? Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Hardrock Striker on “I’m A Cult Hero”

Posted: November 15th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Features | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

In discussion with Hardrock Striker on “I’m A Cult Hero” (1989).

Do you have a past acquainted with this music? Is this the compilation that nailed down musical preferences you already had, or did you have a different background and were you just looking for something in that direction?

This is clearly the music I was listening to as a kid. Back then, my biggest dream was to be in a rock’n’roll band, no way I wanted to become a DJ (“what a joke I could have thought”) as this meant nothing to me, imagine playing guitar and being on stage screaming in front of a crazy crowd or mixing records, even a monkey could do it! Obviously, it’s only when I started DJing that I understood the power of it and realized my immaturity.

I chose this compilation because even if it looks like a pure rock record, many of the bands inside are using electronic, though I had no clue about it while I was listening to them. I discovered house in Los Angeles in the late 90’s, I went there to form a heavy rock band but I ended up going out with some friends who were doing house, especially Peter Black who introduced me to Doc Martin, the Wax connection, DJ Harvey. We started being friends, speaking about art, music and I discovered that he was also into New Order, Front 242, Ministry, Echo and the Bunnymen, Joy Division and that he was doing house too, so I thought this music finally wasn’t that bad! I started digging, to sum it up, New Order leads me to italo, italo to chicago, chicago to techno. We did a record company called Parisonic / Square Roots where I was doing reissues (already in 2003) of obscure stuff such as It Ain’t Chicago’s “Ride The Rhythm”, Mickey Oliver “In-Ten-Si-t”, Ralphi Rosario “In The Night” etc. I educated myself through the records I was putting out.

“I’m A Cult Hero” is a bootleg compilation with 80’s dark synth pop music, originally released in 1989. Why do you think such a record was released at a time when acid house ruled the clubs? Was this a reminder to what was going on a few years before, or even a counter-reaction to what followed? What might have been the motivation of the label to do this record?

I think that even if house and acid were blowing up at that time, dark synth-pop and minimal wave were still huge. Remember in 1989, Depeche Mode was also on the verge of getting the biggest rock stars in the world with the 101 Rose Bowl concert and the release of one of the best trio of singles of the 80’s: “Strangelove”, “Behind The Wheel” (Mmmh, the Shep Pettibone Mix!) and “Personal Jesus” which was a combination of rock guitars and electronic so it makes totally sense.

The motivation of these guys was primarily cash I guess but I honestly think they did an amazing job! There are two categories of bootleggers: the creative ones and the thieves, I guess they belong to the first one. Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Tim Lawrence on “Go Bang #5″

Posted: November 8th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Features | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments »

In discussion with Tim Lawrence on “Go Bang #5″ by Dinosaur L (1982).

The work on your book on Arthur Russell, “Hold On To Your Dreams”, has probably made you quite an expert on his works, but when was actually the first time you heard “Go Bang! #5″? Was it the song as a single, or did you hear it in the context of the whole “24 – 24 Music” album?

I first heard François Kevorkian’s remix of “Go Bang! #5” when I bought the “Spaced Out: Ten Original Disco Funk Grooves” back in 1997. I was living in New York at the time, and being a bit of a house head, had been quite resistant to buying so-called “disco classics”. By then I had already heard Todd Terry’s sampling of Lola Blank’s crazed-girl-on-helium rendition of the “Go Bang” lyric, which appeared on “Bango (To The Batmobile),” a 1988 house track. I only got to hear the version that appears on the “24 → 24 Music” album – which is titled “#5 Go Bang!” – later on.

Arthur Russell was responsible for a whole lot of outstanding music. Why did you choose “Go Bang! #5″ over other of his songs? What makes it so important for you?

The first thing I should probably say is that “#5 Go Bang!” appeared on an album by Dinosaur L, not an album by Arthur Russell. Of course Arthur (if I can call him by his first name; at times I feel as though I know him, even though we never met) was the key figure behind Dinosaur L, and pulled all of the appearing musicians together. But Arthur was dead-set on the idea of collaboration, and believed that the relationships he formed with other musicians were meaningful, so he introduced different names for the different line-ups he formed.

Why is “Go Bang” so important? That’s the record that I’ve always thought his most complete, inasmuch as it seemed to capture Arthur’s utopian desire to combine the various sounds of downtown New York – disco, punk/new wave, loft jazz, and the post-minimalist form of compositional music known as new music – in a single piece of music. The record also combines complexity and simplicity; it contains scores of ideas, yet never relinquishes the centrality of the groove. I like all sorts of music, but I particularly like music that manages to combine these elements. I could have also opted instead for “Kiss Me Again”, “Platform On The Ocean”, the “World of Echo” album, “This Is How We Walk On the Moon”. “World of Echo” is an extraordinary piece of work, “Kiss Me Again” gets better by the listen. But “Go Bang” is the one that stands out, especially in terms of dance floor dynamics, plus Arthur was happy with the “Go Bang” turned out, whereas he hated the final mix of “Kiss Me Again” and seemed to feel awkward about the obscure quality of “World of Echo”. Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Oliver Ho on “Psychick Rhythms Vol. 1″

Posted: November 1st, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Features | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments »

In discussion with Oliver Ho on “Psychick Rhythms Vol. 1” (1993).

Were you already familiar with the Psychick Warriors Ov Gaia, or was “Psychick Rhythms Vol. 1″ your first encounter with their music?

I was already familiar with their music, I think the first thing I had heard was the album, “Ov Biospheres and Sacred Grooves”. The thing on that album that really struck me was “Linkage”. The way they sampled Egyptian rhythms, and the fact that the track was purely made up of rhythms in a very stripped back way, that were also at a slow bpm. It had a purity and a different edge, very tribal, not techno or house in style at all.

Why did you choose this particular release out of their back catalogue? What made, or still makes, it so special for you? Is it a blueprint for aspects that interest you in electronic music?

The thing about this release that struck me at the time and what continues to be relevant to me is the is the purity of intention. It was an attitude towards music as ‘magick’ that was inspirational. The idea that a particular rhythm is like a spell, something that isn’t just about entertainment, but is operating on a more powerful level. There is a message on the record sleeve artwork that reads: “Warning! This object has nothing to do with art or artificial intelligence. This double package (12″ version) was designed for mixing, for breaks, for possession, for collectors.” This seemed to articulate that there were was something inside the music, that was waiting to released, some kind of energy, that had been placed there by the makers… Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Marcel Dettmann über “Ich und die Wirklichkeit”

Posted: October 25th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Artikel | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments »

Im Gespräch mit Marcel Dettmann über “Ich und die Wirklichkeit” von Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft (1981).

Die entscheidende Frage zuerst, wie bist Du zu DAF gekommen?

Ich komme aus dem Ostteil Deutschlands, und nachdem man zu DDR-Zeiten nur Depeche Mode, Madonna oder Prince hatte, die richtig dicken Pop-Acts, kam kurz nach der Wende ein ganzer Schwall von Musik, wie z. B. auch DAF, Throbbing Gristle oder Front 242, später auch Nitzer Ebb. Der Bruder eines Freundes von mir hat uns ständig mit CDs ausgerüstet, da war ich 12, und habe das erste Mal DAF gehört und fand das total verrückt.

Du hattest vorher nie von ihnen gehört?

Nein. Ich hatte vorher Ultravox, Erasure oder Depeche Mode gehört. Poppige Sachen. Und dann kamen DAF oder auch Nitzer Ebb, was ja artverwandt ist, sie waren ja quasi die englische Version von DAF. Wir hörten „Der Räuber und der Prinz“ und „Der Mussolini“ auch im Jugendclub, der von vier Uhr nachmittags bis abends um zehn offen hatte. Dort wurde in Runden gespielt, eine Runde für die Hip-Hopper, eine Runde für die Elektronikleute usw. Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Fantastikoi Hxoi on “The White Room”

Posted: October 18th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Features | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments »

In discussion with Fantastikoi Hxoi on “The White Room” by The KLF (1991).

What introduced you to the KLF? Were you already familiar with their previous incarnations as Justified Ancients Of Mu Mu or The Timelords, or did it start with their period from KLF onwards?

Well, I was something like twelve years old when “The White Room” broke internationally. I remember the “Last Train To Trancentral” video coming on after Paula Abdul on TV. I was like “ok, this is different”. It was a bit spooky to my young mind to be honest, all that faux-ritualistic imagery – and the music was equally gripping. Some years later I discovered The Orb and re-discovered the KLF and all their previous incarnations. Slowly I started to realise what they were really about.

Considering that “What Time Is Love?” was already released in 1988, would you say that The KLF introduced rave to dance music with all the according signals, stadium noises and such, or did they pick up on developments that were already there? Did they actually relate to a timeline in dance music?

As far as I can tell, they are one of the first underground rave acts that brought this kind of music (or elements of it) to the mainstream, complete with conceptual visual imagery and a certain philosophy. And ‘mainstream’ of course, is not 20.000 punters in a field in the UK. It’s a 12-year-old in Greece, on telly. Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Ralf Schmidt über “Songs Of Leonard Cohen”

Posted: October 11th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Artikel | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments »

Im Gespräch mit Ralf Schmidt über “Songs Of Leonard Cohen” von Leonard Cohen (1967).

In jüngeren Jahren kannte ich Leonard Cohen weitestgehend aus dem Radio, meine Mutter hatte zwar Platten von ihm, die ich aber lange Zeit ignoriert habe. War es bei Dir auch so eine Inspiration aus der elterlichen Plattensammlung?

Definitiv, das war eine der ersten Sachen mit denen ich musikalisch in Berührung kam, schon als sehr kleines Kind. Vor allem meine Mutter hörte und hört immer noch gerne seine Musik. Diese frühe Prägung ist sicherlich einer der Gründe, weshalb mich die Musik von Leonard Cohen so berührt. Natürlich hatten meine Eltern auch noch andere Platten im Schrank stehen, die mir nicht so sehr ans Herz gewachsen sind – es gibt also noch andere Gründe, aus denen ich mich für Cohen so begeistern kann. Welche das sind – ich kann es nicht genau sagen. Ich glaube auch, wenn ich es genau wüsste, wäre die Begeisterung nicht so groß. Die wirkliche Beschäftigung mit Cohen kam auch erst, nachdem ich schon lange von zu Hause ausgezogen war. Damals gab es für mich eigentlich nur HipHop, Soul & Funk und elektronische Musik.

Auch wenn man sich anfänglich nicht für Leonard Cohen interessiert, wenn man ihn einmal gehört hat, erkennt man ihn sicherlich immer wieder. Seine Stimme, und seine Art Songs zu schreiben sind schon sehr eigen. Was macht ihn für Dich so besonders? Sind es bestimmte Einzelteile, oder ist es ein Gesamtbild?

Rein musikalisch ist es natürlich als aller erstes seine Stimme, die einen hohen Wiedererkennungswert hat – eigentlich keine im traditionellen Sinne besonders “schöne” Singstimme. Es ist oft eher eine Art Sprechgesang, nicht immer genau im Takt, manchmal fast schon brüchig. Zudem ist seine Art und Weise, mit Melodien und Harmonien umzugehen sehr eigen. Besonders in der Anfangsphase waren seine Arrangements auf den ersten Blick sehr minimalistisch, nur wenige Elemente, meist Akustikgitarre, Streicher, Frauenchöre und sparsam eingesetzte Rhythmuselemente, die jedoch in ihrem Zusammenspiel eine unheimliche Dichte erzeugen. Bei genauerem Hinhören kann man dann jedoch in beinahe jedem dieser Stücke versteckte Schichten freilegen, Effekte, leise Geräusche, teilweise sogar synthetisch anmutende Klänge. Was ihn zudem für mich einzigartig macht, ist seine Fähigkeit, seine Texte, obwohl voll von Metaphern und Bildern, dennoch sehr offen zu halten und dem Hörer die Möglichkeit zu geben, sein eigenes Leben in die Lieder hineinzulegen – ohne dabei beliebig zu wirken. Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Luke Howard on “Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band”

Posted: October 4th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Features | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments »

In discussion with Luke Howard on “Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band” by Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band (1976).

I first fell in love with Kid Creole & The Coconuts in the 80s and then discovered “Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band” a few years later because August Darnell was involved with it. How was your first time with the band and album?

I came quite late to the album. It was 1991. I was talking with two older friends about our favourite disco artists and they mentioned Dr. Buzzard’s and I hadn’t heard of them, so I quickly found myself a copy. I had known of Kid Creole and Coati Mundi (August Darnell and Andy Hernandez) much earlier, as my sister had been to New York in 1981 and brought back copies of the ZE Records compilation Seize The Beat and the second Kid Creole & The Coconuts album. Also, Kid Creole and the Coconuts went on to be really commercially successful in the UK and they did loads of touring here in the 1980’s. But I’d never heard of Doctor Buzzard until much later.

“Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band” had a few songs that became notable single successes, but somehow I always thought they worked best being listened to in the context of the whole album. Can you separate the songs from one another? Are there ups and downs?

I think you can separate the songs from each other, yes. They’re all standout songs in my opinion – there’s no fillers on the album. “Sunshower” was big on the Balearic scene in the 90’s, “I’ll Play The Fool” and “We Got It Made” were big on the two-step soul scene in the mid 80’s and “Lemon In The Honey” and “Cherchez La Femme” are disco classics. However, I think it works wonderfully well as a whole album. It’s only seven songs and I think it’s perfect as an album. It’s in my top three favourite albums of all time (I’m not quite sure what the other two are). Read the rest of this entry »

Rewind: Boris Dlugosch über “Dance To The Music”

Posted: September 27th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Artikel | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Im Gespräch mit Boris Dlugosch über “Dance To The Music” von Junior Byron (1983).

Hast Du Junior Byrons “Dance To The Music” zum ersten Mal gehört, als Du anfingst ins Front zu gehen?

Ich glaube, ich hatte den Titel zuerst auf einer Front-Cassette, die ich von einem Freund bekommen hatte. Also nicht ‘live’ im Front.

Du warst ja damals noch ziemlich jung. Wie bist Du eigentlich darauf gekommen dort hinzugehen? Hattest Du von Freunden gehört, dass man dort Musik zelebrierte, die Dir gefiel?

Also es war 1984, ich war 16 und die Schwester meines besten Freundes kannte den Kassierer des Front, Boris Breit. Er gab uns Front-Cassetten und hatte zwei Plattenspieler und ein Mischpult. Bei ihm zuhause verbrachten wir dann die Nachmittage nach der Schule und versuchten uns an seinen Plattenspielern und dem Mischpult. Er hatte vor allem Disco-Platten, kaufte aber auch fleißig aktuelleres Zeug bei Tractor-Schallplatten, dem damals besten Laden in Hamburg für Dance-Musik. Er hatte also die Musik, die im Front lief, bei ihm hörte ich die Sachen zuerst und dann wollte ich natürlich unbedingt einmal dorthin. Read the rest of this entry »