Why did you move to Chile?
i found germany a bit boring to be honest. i felt like it didn't inspire me enough and was looking for a place to move to. before i actually moved to chile i was travelling a lot, checking out different cultures and vibes and because south america always fascinated me, i decided to move to the most stable country, chile. another reason was that i wanted to disconnect myself from the european scene my work was perceived in. i realized that in order to come up with an own musical language i have to disconnect from what is going on. in chile i can connect pretty well if i want to, to
what's going on in europe or the states, if i feel i need to. the chilean electronic music scene is pretty much NOT HAPPENING, which is perfect for me. i get very inspired by a lot of things which have absolutely nothing to do with european culture and can filter out interesting and hopefully unheard elements to develop my own sound.
Had you been associated with Bernd when you lived in Germany, before your joint tour of Australia?
not really. i had briefly met him when i onced played live in cologne where he is living. we talked about this and that and suddenly realized that we both travelled to melbourne the year before at the same time, without having met each other. further we both had plans to repeat this journey and the idea came up to play some shows together. then we met again in melbourne where we went on a small tour. from there on we were in steady contact. the interesting thing was that during our various encounters we talked a lot about musical concepts, without actually thinking about
collaborating. it was more like a sort of discourse exercise. when we finally worked together it was 100% clear what we had to do, without having to talk much about it from this point on.
Atom Heart and Drome were on the Australian compilation Beauty Forward, did the producers of that compilation have anything to do with your tour there?
yes, the guy who organized parts of our gigs there, david thrussell (aka Black Lung, Snog, Soma), ran the label.
When you toured together was it a collaborative set or two separate sets? Was it DJ'ing or live playing or a mix?
we played seperate sets. bernd played his mini-disc based set and i played with an mpc3000 only. no dj-ing involved.
Why did Bernd make a good collaborator? Did you both participate in the processing/editing/mixing?
bernd is one of the very few people/musicians who think about what they are doing. i have met many people which simply DO and of course get a result from that, but in an unreflected way. like bernd, i also think a lot before actually doing something. like i said before, we talked about what to do, the *how*...technical, aethetical, musical parameters and because we both shared similar ideas, a collaboration was sort of obvious. further bernd is a unique programmer, he has a special language and programming method, just like me, but in a completely different way. when we work together we are very efficient. his method and mine just merge perfectly. together we can do in one day what each of us alone could achieve in one week in terms of
Had you heard his Nonplace Urban Field releases Raum Fur Notizen/Golden Star?
Which I thought were, in places, similar to your Silver Sound release.
i heard it right after it came out i think, but never really related it to what i was doing. i had the feeling that bernd was pretty much in his own world.
I've been liking your jazz-techno stuff as Lisa Carbon and the Latin elements you added to it when you moved to South America (Senor Coconut). How did that become the acoustic jazz in Flanger?
bernd's perspective is that of *simulation*. simulate reality. his sound is acoustic while mine is much more artificial. the area he is working in, has never been really an important topic for me. i want to sound artificial, and rather use natural sound as a counter perspective. bernd is doing a similar thing, but with the emphasis on breaking up the natural with the artificial. i prefer to break up the artificial with the natural. it is sort of obvious to merge those perspectives. whenever *jazz* appeared in my solo stuff, or working with lisa, it was electronic jazz, digital jazz, whatever, but never *real* jazz. i found it fascinating to program real jazz at some point.
Flanger mixes the acoustic and the computer-derived beats and processing, seeming like a search for a new form in every track. What provides the continuity for you in outside funk tracks like "Music To Begin With"? Is the computer considered another player, or is all the music information on equal terms in the computer?
i think that's exactly the question we are asking the listener.
The press release says "the music blurs the borders between *real*, *fake* and *hyperreal* on their search for the ultimate organic, non-repetitive soundscape." Did you write that and can you elaborate?
i wrote that, yes. *flanger* in some parts sounds just like a band playing a very well rehearsed set, until the digital, programmed nature leaks through, etc. we are rather asking than answering: what is real? what is the difference between a programmed song which sounds exactly like played and a played song which sounds exactly like programmed? finally isn't it all the same? the *non-repetitive* aspect is an addition to that theme. bernd and myself both like to leave the 90's with it's loop fixation way behind and think that more complex, organic structures are the way...(one way amongst many, i have to say). these two aspects, the *organic* and the *simulation* are expressed in our work.
What do you mean by organic? Complex like biology? or acousticly derived? "Organic" is starting to be a buzz word (in the backlash against electronic music) which I don't like to use because no one is talking about recording their body sounds (like Neubauten, Aube etc). They are talking about playing instruments, most of which are plugged in.
i didn't know that *organic* was becoming popular. i've been using this word for years in order to describe musical structures which are developing, moving and changing in complex, non repetitive ways. *biology* or *nature* are definitely keywords too. to generate a flow of sound which seems natural...and even the connection with *playing instruments* is not that far away. to emulate the fuzzyness and steady unsteadyness of a human being playing an instrument. to make music which is a simple and as complex as the sound you hear sitting on a shore. *organic* is not the opposite to *electronic*...not at all.
Do the twists and turns of the digital, drill 'n bass-ish, sound represent errors or glitches to you, or a new kind of musical sound from a new instrument?
just like *acid* is an error of the tb-303 (because the machine was not intentionally designed for that) and the sound of *acid* results out of a programming incapacity of the user, i am trying to develop the same sort of aesthetic with digital equipment. analog sound (of the 90's) resulted to a big part out of errors which were cultivated until they became a musical sound, language, style. you are asking this question, because the digital error sounds new to you. we will find it normal in a couple of years. to me there is no difference between an error of a machine and the sounds i get when the machine is functioning *normal*. there is no normal, the malfunction is a part of the design, and represents the human inability to transfer an abstract concept (the computer, an algorithm) into a working physical product. it is human imperfection we hear constantly.
KK Records had your Pop Artificielle project announced since 1996, was there a problem between you and the label, or did you just take that long to complete the project?
there wasn't a problem, no. it just took me so long to get it programmed. meanwhile kk liked to announce it almost each 6 months although i told them that it wasn't ready.
What is on the way from your label, Rather Interesting?
i just released *dos tracks :)* which is a sort of last statement on *the track* before i will leave this territory behind forever. it contains very digital, very repetitive tracks, based on digital *errors* as you would say. after that i am planning to release a thing called *erik satin: light music* which will be sort of digital e-z
What collaborations do you have to be released?
none. after a couple of negative experiences with collaborators on my label, which just meant a hassle to me, i decided to restrict the output of *rather interesting* to my solo works. less headache, better friendship.
Any other collaborations or solo works that won't be on Rather Interesting?
i will be heading off this sunday to bologna where i will meet adamski...we are having plans to record something together. let's see where it will lead us to. it will for sure not be on *r.i.*.
Are there any remixes you did for others on the way?
nope. i find the remix business not too exiting these days. another 90's
Any remixes others did of your material?
Do you plan any more Flanger releases or work with Bernd?
we are scheduling right now the flanger follow up recording session, for some time early 2000. meanwhile we programmed a latin jazz simulation under the name *midnight sound* which will be released hopefully this year. details are still not sorted.
Will be you working again with Pete Namlook or with anybody else for Fax?
there are plans to work with pete, yes. this will probably happen, don't know when though. with anybody else on fax? unlikely...
Ninja Tune's Ntone label
Atom Heart Discography
Rather Interesting label
Bernd Friedmann site