S ft ric iV e i / a v l a y ^ f l i f e
We just fell in love with Mr. Alan Vega. Don't be confused - he is
not Suzanne Vega's father, but the father of American techno. In
the beginning of the 70s he was driving the crowd crazy because
he didn't have any guitars or drums. His own band - Suicide is
considered to be one of the best New York bands of those years,
his fall Mute Records is releasing their first legendary album from
1977. Don't miss that! In the meantime Vega is ready to put out
his 15th album. And he just recorded 8 tracks together with
jjPanasonic. Alan Vega Forever! Check for yourself:
^^■P:How did you get into electronic music?
^^BV:Back then I was hanging out with Lamonte and Terry Riley, whose
[music I
always admired. So I got a primitive mixing table with only
two channels, it was in the end of the 60s, in the same time I met
[Martin Rev - a jazzman who wanted to change "the situation".
P:ln general your strategy was against rock'n'roll?
|V:Exactly.We knew for sure that we don't need guitars. But in the
beginning we did have a guitar player, but he left the band very
[soon, because he thought that in the band with such a violent
name something bad might happen to him. We were thinking
[about a drummer but then Martin bought a rhythm-box, some old
machine which previously used at the wedding ceremonies. So
[that's how all this got started - no guitars, no drums. People at the
i^ u ira r^ o arums, r
concerts were completely lost, because they saw two guys on
| stage, but didn't see any guitars. Our music was just crazy, and I
was always jumping on people, trying to scare them and get
some feedback. Our position was clear - 60s are over and so is
the rock'n'roll. The only thing that was interesting is what today is
called techno. It was an absoulutely psychedelic kind of music for
an absoulutely new kind of an atmosphere. People came from the
streets looking for entertainment, but with our help they were relo-
cated back to the streets - because we would do anything but to
Here it is, the third album by Bjork! Is just as sudden as it's been
long-awaited. For Bjork it is definitely a proof of her bright future,
we are in Ptuch also found a symbolic meaning of this: the first issue
of Ptuch came out in the same time with Iceland phenomena's first
album. Bjork was in our first issue, and here she is in our 20th
anniversary edition. This is an exclusive interview from Ptuch agents
in London.
It was supposed to be a big challenge for Bjork to get back in one
of the first placés in show-business. A lot of people thought that
she's going to fail.
We thought that we know everything about her: the first record was
made when she was 11 years old, endless list of bands, who she
was working with (Tappi Tikarras, Kukl, The Sugarcubes.
..), her
interest in jazz, Which was materialized in the very rare album from
1990 "Glin Glo", and her unlimited passion to the "new music".
But we know absolutely nothing about changes inside her, what she
thinks about herself and her work. Homogenic is so sudden, that
some explanations are required. Bjork doesn't need any time to
think about her answers:
- In September 1996, when I started working on this album, I was
thinking about Iceland a lot. Music in Homogenic is the clue to
lyrics. I realized that the violins and a computer are the two most
important units for me. Violins create some warm feelings inside us,
they are like the nervous system for the music. And the rhythm creat-
ed by computer is like the heartbeat and it stimulates the further
movement and the life of the entire music construction. And then
there is a voice, which is a celebration of meeting of these two ele-
ments, it is like an oxygen.
In the beginning of her career, she entrusted her image to the
French photographer J.-B. Mondino, now - with two famous experi-
mentators - Nick Knight and Alexander McQueen. The Homogenic
itself, which, based on all calculations, was going to be a commer-
cial creation, is going in completely different direction - a living
proof of the fact that Bjork still can go to the places, where nobody
expects to see her.
Dont Stop The Rock ?
Maybe you thought that we missed the two most notorious
albums of the last year - "Dig Your Own Hole" by The
Chemical Brothers and "The Fat Of The Land" by The
Prodigy? Hell no! We just decided to wait until this new
tendency completes its mutation. Now it's clear - this is the
victory of rock'n'roll!
1997 should be definitely called the year of the Big
Beats. Britain is going crazy over this line of breakbeat - a
nasty mixture of different styles. Some of the bands playing
a similar style belong to the English indy such as Skint,
Wall Of Sound and Concrete. Thanks to modern electron-
ica - that helped unite two styles: rock and rap, and creat-
ed an ultrp modern style, that will be able UK to win over
the conservative american music market .
Techno at its darkest and most twisted level? Cold, sophisticated, beautifi
electronic minimalism. Their music is kind of provocative, breaks the lines
between techno, industrial and ambient. It's absolutely new, and together
seems to go back to the roots of futurism. Let's head to the future with llpc
Vaisanen and Mika Vainio. They are the techno wise kids (Mika's answe
to Ptuch questions are as laconical as Panasonic music):
Ptuch: You originally come from Finland. Can we expect to find somethin;
specifically Finnish in it?
Mika: It's hard to. say so. In spite of our origins, our music just fits with soi
kind of universal standards. Something especially Finish or ethnical is vety
hard to decline.
P: Were there any changes in your music since Panasonic has «been create
M: Of course, we have new ideas, but everything got easier.
P: What do you think of the tremendous commercial success of bands sue
as The Prodigy or the Chemical Brothers?
M: It happens with every kind of music, from punk rock to industrial.
P: Do you think you do something radically different
from the rest of today's musicians?
M: There are a lot of styles, but in a way we just go on playing and wor
ing on the same kind of sixties musical experiments.
Our music might remind of French composer's Pierre Henry early works. (
some tracks from ABC Industrial. You could even find some links with
Throbbing Gristle, Psychic TV, early Cabaret Voltaire.
COLDCUT - The Main Idea
Is To Always Impress People
Ten years ago they put out their first record which consisted oT many sam
of other artists. Later they produced a few commercially succesful British
singers. But they didn't want to make their money this way, they lost their
huge fees, and started working on their own musical experiments. Their к
has become a sign of quality, and almost everyone envies their fabulous
remixes. Please meet Matt Black and Jonathon More, if you have not hec
about them yet, then now is the perfect time for an exclusive interview.
P: Are you all busy now, considering the fact that you are putting your ne
J: Yes, we have a lot of things going on right now. We were working oi
new show. We don't have enough time, and we need to do a lot. Our I
is starting soon.
P: By the way, how was your first live gig ever at the Sonar 97 in
J: Destructive for our nervous system. We only had two days to prepare tl
show. And then we somehow got through that. We used Playtime (a CD
Rom program that comes together with their new album) as a base, on
which me and Matt were mixing some samples and other records, plus A
was doing a live video mix over all that.
P: What do you think about the success of Prodigy and The Chemical
Brothers in the US?
J: I think their music is very easy, and most of the consumers will like it. It
kind of a sweet rave-rock that doesn't require a change in dress code, m
talify or your attitude towards music, and I think that allows americans to
understand this music. Plus they spent a lot of money on promotion. And
am not surprised, they can make it. But all this is not really cogl and defi-
nately is not nice.
P: Are you interested in this kind of success in the US?
J: We don't really need that. If it would happen then it is cool, but I don'
think it ever will, because we refused from most of the ways that lead to
kind of success. But we are happy that we'll get a chance to go there or
our next tour. So maybe it will happen someday.
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