Alpha Couple are two of the kindest, coolest people we know making music today. Comprised of former gallery owner Kristel Jax and Mark Wohlgemuth (also of the excellent Kram Ran), Alpha Couple make beautiful, psychedelic-influenced experiments that remind one of songs half-dreamed, half-remembered.
1. Biggest inspiration?
Kristel: Our relationship, then any place I find pieces of our relationship: Fassbinder flicks, people getting upset on Youtube, friends & relatives…
Mark: Depends on the given moment. The fact I just finished Anna Karenina makes Leo Tolstoy an inspiration, but only because of how I apply our relationship to his words.
2. Last album you loved?
Mark: I appreciated Winter Family‘s Red Sugar from last year a lot.
Kristel: ??? — ??????.
3. Raging or chilling out?
Kristel: Rage chilling – that’s how you get the most work done. I don’t party.
Mark: Wikipedia was blacked out in protest to the proposed SOPA bill, I just read an interview with Julian Assange who is in forced hiding. Supposedly the biggest crime is sharing information. I’m not chilling out.
4. One thing you could live without?
Mark: If I could live without awful, below minimum wage jobs that would be nice.
Kristel: Uncontrollable shyness.
5. Favorite place to create?
6. Describe your perfect instrument.
Kristel: I’m really into my transistor radio. It can do percussion, sampling, or noise… it’s unpredictable in one way yet in another way, in North America at least, you can always find a familiar Rihanna or Beyonce song or whatever.
Mark: A microphone.
7. Who would you most want to collaborate with?
Mark: A microphone.
Kristel: I’d like to do some collabs with other couples’ projects – if we can do that without making things nauseating, we’re onto something. So you just interviewed Crim3s actually, and there’s Winter Family, Love Cult, uh countless others really, I don’t like calling out other couple projects because maybe they broke up or are trying to be ambiguous about it. But we’re putting on a show in Toronto next month with a newer local couple band, pachamama, plus US Girls and Slim Twig are gonna DJ back and forth – they’re a thing, romantically – it’s cool how it all came together. We’re calling it ‘Last Valentine’s B4 the Apocalypse’, I think it will be creepy in ways that are only good.
8. Most interesting tour/show story?
Kristel: Until early 2011 Mark and I ran a DIY gallery/venue in central Canada (graced a few times by Daniel’s DJ mixes ?). We closed it down, sold all our stuff and for two months we lived out of our car, playing any show we could get.
Mark: Probably how we fight before or after 80% of our shows, and how everyone else in the crowd thinks we’re such a great couple, or at least they say they think that… even after we play all our dreary songs about fucked up relationships.
Kristel: Mark, I don’t know if people think or say that.
9. Biggest break so far?
Kristel: We Have No Zen! curated an EP of ours last summer. He’s released Love Cult, Simptom Pogremushki and Magical Unicellular Music. It meant a lot to me, I still get excited about it.
Mark: When always working one does not feel like they get any breaks.
10. Plans for 2012?
Kristel: Our covers EP is coming out on Already Dead Tapes in spring, it’s a split with a very special someone. Hopefully a short US tour in May and a long European tour in September/October. We need to visit some friends in Belarus.