Telekom Electronic Beats

Electronic Beats Magazine °30: a look inside

Electronic Beats Magazine °30: a look inside New Order on Afrika Bambaataa; Afrika Bambaataa on Kraftwerk; Kraftwerk and German Romanticism; German Romanticism and Wolfgang Voigt; Wolfgang Voigt and Stefan Betke; Gudrun Gut on Terre Thaemlitz; anti-religiousness and Marilyn Manson; Marilyn Manson and Grimes; Andre Vida on the shortcomings of Bitches Brew; CAN and The Lost Tapes; Simon Le Bon and lost time; Klaus Biesenbach and the next big (art) thing; Actress; Death Grips; Spiritualized; Squarepusher; Steven Levy on what’s NEU . . .


This one’s all about pioneers. Electronic Beats Magazine Summer 2012—get it while it lasts.

But don’t just take our word for it . . .

New Order’s Bernard Sumner on choosing band names:
“So many people thought we were Nazis because of the name Joy Division. At a certain point, we were sick of hearing the same questions over and over again. So we were really eager to look for a new name that was completely neutral and didn’t have any Nazi connotations whatsoever. We all came up with loads of names but they were all rubbish. Then one day our then manager Rob Gretton came to the rehearsals and waved a copy of The Guardian above his head. He started to read to us an article about the rise and fall of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia and how the defeat of Prince Sihanouk gave way to a ‘new order’. He read the ‘new order’ phrase again and said: ‘Here we have it.’ What we liked most about it was that it sounded so neutral.”

Grimes on being an outcast Mansonite:
Marilyn Manson was what got me thinking about art and music seriously. Before that, I had been very into ballet and other ‘normal’ things. And then when I was thirteen, I was like, ‘Fuck it.’ I shaved my head and that was the beginning of a decade of being completely ostracized. In school, pretty much everyone hated me and were like, ‘Claire’s a freak.’ I got locked in lockers and thrown in garbage cans. People wrote ‘Whore!’ and ‘Bitch!’ all over my stuff. It defined my social engagement with the world. I recognize that it’s silly, but Manson is how I learned that it’s OK to be an outcast; it’s what gave me faith in the things that I was doing artistically. My ability to ignore bad reviews is strongly connected to that.”

Juan Atkins on Kraftwerk’s influence on Detroit techno:
“When I first heard Kraftwerk, I automatically Knew I had to tighten up what I was doing; I had to make it cleaner and better—though not necessarily more minimal because what I was doing was pretty minimal for the time. A lot of people think that I was copying Kraftwerk directly, but that’s absolutely not the case. For me, they weren’t any more of an influence than, say, funk—P-Funk especially. I actually had a chance to talk to Florian [Schneider] when we played Tribal Gathering together a few years back. We met up behind the Detroit stage and chatted a bit, and I was really surprised to learn that Kraftwerk were hugely influenced by James Brown. Of course, P-Funk was made up of at least half the JB’s first line-up, so somehow Detroit techno was a very natural, even ‘fated’ progression. You could go to an all black club in Detroit and when they put on ‘Pocket Calculator’, everybody just went totally crazy. And I went to the Man-Machine show at the MoMA retrospective, I could definitely hear the way they combined the machine-driven syncopations with a more human take on improvisation.”

Andre Vida on magical realism and Mati Klarwein’s record covers:
“Magic realism is one of my least favorite styles of storytelling. The exaggerated childlike tone wherein anything is possible as long as it’s fantastic usually makes me want to puke—but I never do because gravity might not need to exist. There are of course a few exceptions, like One Hundred Years of Solitude, some Almodóvar stuff and Emir Kusturica. Also I’m a fan of Borges’ fiction, and I firmly believe you can’t blame Borges for, say, Amélie. Similarly, I think you can’t blame Mati Klarwein for bad stoner poster art, and to be honest, since I’ve been reading and thinking about Mati & the Music, I’ve kind of revised my ideas about the function and value of record covers.”

Squarepusher on radios and live transmissions:
“I was always intrigued by tuning the radio, as well as switching it on and off. I suppose the radio was the first musical instrument I played. I used to just go through the bands and listen, less to specific songs and more to the range—that is, where I was being connected to. Especially with shortwave, where you can find stations in Siberia and Asia and all over the world, with all the foreign languages and distorted sounds. That I could flip in no time from a song being played in Gibraltar to another in Moscow strongly influenced my listening habits.”

Published July 02, 2012.