John Maus interview shot by Smetnjak at the Wastelands Festival in Ghent on 11th of August 2012.
Zakaj o osebi (ad hominem) namesto o stvari (ad rem)?
Kako ločiti prvo od druge? Smo v razmerah, kjer se od vsakogar pričakuje, da goji, zaliva svoj mini kult osebnosti v upanju, da bi ta postal maksi kult osebnosti. Kako naj torej ne bi bili osebni? Hkrati vse to fleširanje osebnosti, vse to “me, me, me!” gomazenje ni drugega kot krinka, podpis popolne brezosebnosti. Ad hominem je ad rem, kajti osebno je reč, fetiš, blago. Te in takšne in vsakršne osebnosti so povsem zamenljive, na njih ni nič singularnega, zato se tudi Smetnjak na njih sklicuje zgolj kot na simptome, imena brezimnosti.
Toda mar preimenovanje ni nekaj osebnega?
Ne, ko gre za apropriacijo priimka (vsaj formalne) št. 3 nacistične Nemčije – Rudolfa Hessa. Čeprav priznamo, da nas vsaj delno zabava ironija, da je šlo ravno za ministra brez listnice oz. “without portfolio”, ki mu ni nihče priznaval avtoritete in je hotel skleniti zavezništvo z Veliko Britanijo, torej za nekakšnega dobrovoljčkastega nacista. Ne vemo, ali je do tega es-estetskega posega od Hesa do Hessa privedla ignoranca ali drža, ki se ji od Žižka/NSK naprej reče nadidentifikacija. Kar se tiče slednje, trdimo, da že od samega začetka sloni na povsem preprosti fascinaciji: ko pička zagleda uniformo (naj bo nacistična ali katera druga), se pač navlaži. Nazi porn. Že samo ime Cirkus sugerira samorajcajoče flirtanje s flamboyant ekspresionizmom, ki je po Kracauerju tlakoval autobahn do Tretjega rajha.
Prevladuje vtis, da ima Smetnjak nekaj proti umetnosti oziroma umetnikom.
Ni nam najbolj jasno, kaj naj bi umetnost bila, a vemo, da se jo zamenjuje z esteticizmom, v najslabšem primeru z dekorativnostjo. Esteticizem je šopirjenje z lastnim okusom, ki ni niti lasten, saj je determiniran s premenami mode. Esteticizem je poglavitna ideologija okolja, v katerem skuša živeti in preživeti tudi Smetnjak. Esteticizem ni sposoben sproducirati nobenega nelagodja, kar naj bi vsaj nekdaj bila naloga umetnosti, a to še ne pomeni, da ne čutimo zadrege spričo njegove omejenosti ali nezmožnosti doseganja etičnega minimuma.
Ko smo že ravno pri etiki, Cirkus premore manifest, ki naj bi definiral njegovo delovanje.
Manifesti so kliše avantgardizma, avantgardizem je kliše esteticizma. Visokoleteče, eterične, “sublimne” fraze, kakršna je “Spodbuja intelektualno drznost, produktivnost in kreativnost ter skepso do družbenih, sistemskih in estetskih samoumevnosti”, so tu vselej zato, da sterilizirajo (in s tem razkrivajo) “umazano” logistiko poslovanja. Kot pravi Ernst Bloch: velike in plemenite besede, s katerimi se cinično prikriva interese, ki se jih ne sme izrekati naglas, ja, “diskurz” lepih, estetskih, estetizirajočih duš. Saj je menda vsakomur znano, na kakšni bazi se te duše pasejo in razpasejo: malo morje dolžnikov, kakšna bivša žena, ki rihta naročnike, (avantgardistično) zganjanje elitizma/snobizma prek parazitiranja tako na “državi” kot “zasebnem kapitalu” … Vse je še preveč transparentno, Smetnjak pa si dovoli vztrajati na tem, da more in mora obstajati kakšna druga metodologija. Skratka, oni o visoki umetnosti in visokem oglaševanju, mi o nizkotnosti takih vnebovzetij, takega delovanja, takega reda stvari. Oni o Listniku, mi o RitoListniku.
Zvenite nekam prezirljivo.
Če že v ničemer ne moremo biti odkriti, bodimo vsaj v preziru, v tem je osnova fair pleja.
Hey Today! need little introduction on this blog, since we’ve spent the last few days talking about how awesome they are and harassing them with questions. Being the nice guys that they are, they’ve agreed to answer even more of our questions. Here’s what they had to say.
Hey Hey Today!! Thank you for your time. How’s it going?
On your MySpace page you describe your music as “e-rockabilly”. What do you think are some of the similarities between rockabilly and your style of electro?
Rob: Rockabilly is (a type of) dance music which focuses on movement. Like rock & roll, but with more “roll”. Just listen to Psychobilly Freakout by Reverend Horton Heat and you’ll know what I mean. It’s great to dance to and, well, just freak out. These are the main similarities we want to show in our music.
You are a relatively new name on the scene but have already remixed some established artists such as Zombie Nation and Digitalism. How did this come about? Did it help that they are also German?
Raik: They asked us to do a remix. We think they are both great producers and musicians as well, so we did it. We also remixed Shazam and Empire of the Sun. These two acts are also cool, popular and lovely musicians. And they are from Australia.
You also did a rework of Armand Van Helden’s classic track Necessary Evil. Do you happen to know if he liked it?
Raik: I don´t know if he knows about the edit. We grew up with songs like Witch Docktor, Psychic Bounty Killaz and Spark da Meth. He´s a pioneer to us and has earned a lot of (our) respect. We did the edit of Necessary Evil initially to play it in our DJ sets. Then it got a lot of support from our friends like Zombie Nation, Digitalism, Bang Gang DJs and many others.
We have seen a lot of German talent emerge onto the electro scene in the last few years. Is the German club scene still dominated by minimal or is electro becoming the new music of choice for the majority of club-goers?
Raik: The electronic music scene has been a huge part of German culture for many years. You are right when you say that there was a lot of hype about the word “minimal” in the last days. But I guess the scene in Germany is getting more open minded. More crossover, not only one-way. That’s (a) good (thing).
On a global level the whole electro scene has become popular beyond belief. We realize that predicting the future is a tricky thing, but still – do you think the scene will grow and grow until it ends up eating itself?
Rob: Who knows? But I think electronic music is on the edge of time and it will last a while. I think a strong relationship with science and the ability to connect with any other style of music is a great foundation for evolving into the future.
How long have you guys been working together? Before Hey Today! you produced under the name of Trashtalk, but that’s pretty much all we know. Could you shed some light on your origins?
Raik: We’ve been making music together for 5 years now. (It’s) a short and simple story. We’ve shared some friends so we would meet from time to time. We’ve had a lot of liking for each other since the beginning. We liked each other’s skills and points of view, so we went to the studio and made music. And that’s how the story started.
As Trashtalk you released a song called Tank Girl. Are you fans of comics? Or do you just have a thing for women and heavy artillery?
Rob: It simply sounded like that. Like a mad girl on a fat tank in a third world war.
Has music making & DJ-ing now become your full time job or do you still have regular day time jobs? Do your mothers know what you do?
Rob: Our moms support us. It took some time for them to start trusting in our ways. But, to be honest, they had to because they had no other option.
By looking at your pictures, we happened to notice that one of you doesn’t have a lot of hair on his head. Mr. Oizo says he hates bald people. Do you feel threatened? Why is he such a hater?
Raik: I don´t feel threatened. Is Mr. Oizo a hater? I´m not interested in this (sort of thing). He´s a good producer and DJ. You know, I think it’s better to know what you like instead of what you hate.
We’re sure a lot of young producers out there would like to know how you approach making a song. Would you mind discussing some technical aspects of your production?
Rob: Electronic music is ruled by technology, methods and craft. But (it’s) also (like) you are a cook, an architect and a director (at the same time). To be idealistic, for me it needs to be deeper than taking a 4/4 beat and a fat bassline, adding a huge breakdown, then compressing and sidechaining the hell out of it. Music needs a soul. An idea, a vision or a dream, which (…) grows into a little world of its own.
If you could choose to remix any song in history of music, which one would that be? If you could hand out the remixing duties for a song of yours to any artist, living or dead, who would that be?
Raik: David Bowie’s Look Back in Anger. And maybe some songs from the Motown repertoire could be very interesting. Yeah, and it would also be interesting (to hear) The Funk Brothers (the studio band of Motown) play one of our songs, like If I was Wonderman or Walkthrough. With live Instruments… that could be really amazing.
Rob: I would like to have the solo tracks of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana and half a year off to get deep into my own interpretation of Miss Fortune. But that can wait until I’m sixty and in the mood for such serious stuff. For now, Michael Jackson’s Don’t Stop ’til You Get Enough would be nice.
Do you have any shout outs to Slovenian clubbers? Any words of warning to all those thinking of coming to your gig?
Let’s play: “Who does the best party ever at K4?” You can win first prizes in the categories Marathon Dancer, Loudest Shouter after Croaky and a bonus prize for the pogo guys. The prizes are sponsored by the cool guys of K4 ;)
Thanks again and we’re looking forward to rocking out with you!
Ko na Smetnjaku odštevamo dneve do petkove galame, nekje v Nottinghamu Roger Watson ali DJ Hal, multi-instrumentalist in varovanec založb kot so Intec, 10Kilo, Niche ali Reinassance, nič hudega sluteč srka čaj in vanj namaka magdalenice. Mož, ki bo v petek smetil na malem plesišču je odgovarjal na štirkinih Sweet 13.
1. Od kod prihajaš in kako si se začel ukvarjati z glasbo?
Iz Velike Britanije, bobne sem začel igrati pri šestih letih, kitaro pri osmih, v bendih sem začel igrati pri petnajstih.
2. Kje in kako živiš zdaj in ali se tvoje okolje (mesto, država) odraža v tvoji glasbi?
Živim v Nottinghamu, od koder prihaja moja družina, ampak do zdaj sem živel že povsod okrog po VB in ZDA, v Vancouvru, Bremnu in Amsterdamu.
3. Ali si šolan glasbenik?
Učil sem se igrati klasično špansko kitaro.
4. So te starši podprli, ko si začenjal z glasbeno potjo?
Ja, konec koncev sem s svojim prvim singlom prišel na BBC Radio 1.
5. Ali slediš trendom (glasba, moda …) in ali se v tvojem glasbenem stilu odražajo trenutni trendi?
Ja, sledim novostim. Poskušam ostati moderen, ne da bi pri tem izgubil svoj stil in individualnost.
6. Katera država oziroma glasbena scena je, po tvojem mnenju, trenutno najbolj kreativna?
Velika Britanija, seveda! Vse poti vodijo sem… Tudi če izbruhne neka scena oziroma zvok v Franciji ali Nemčiji, lahko v njem najdeš vplive nečesa, kar se je že prej pojavilo v VB. Nekaj je takšnih mest, ki oblikujejo globalne glasbene trende, in London je na vrhu te piramide v vsakem pogledu.
7. Najljubši album vseh časov?
Massive Attack – Blue Lines.
8. Zakaj je/so tvoj/i najboljši prijatelj/i tvoji najboljši prijatelj/i?
Ker so pristni.
9. Najljubša računalniška igrica?
Ne se hecat…preveč trdo delam za kaj takega.
10. Najboljša hrana za zajtrk in najboljša hrana za takrat, ko si pijan ob štirih zjutraj?
Zajtrk – jajca s slanino, paradižnik, gobice, toast in skodelica čaja. Ob 4. zjutraj…karkoli!
11. Če ne bi bilo nobenih omejitev (prostor, čas, ogrožene živalske vrste …) – katero žival bi si najbolj želel za domačega ljubljenčka?
“A Sprite” (pravljično bitje, kot palček ali vila, op.p.)
12. Na kaj v življenju si najbolj ponosen?
Na 1. mesto na svetovni techno lestvici maja 2004.
13. Zadnje besede…
Z ljudmi delaj tako, kot želiš, da oni delajo s tabo.
Še čisto svež Halov tehno mix:
DJ Hal – For Modern Techno Heads
Še 3 dni do pustne pralince. Matt odgovarja na srednjedolgočasnih 4kinih sladkih 13. Ponovno preleni za prevod.
1. Where do you come from and how did you get involved with music?
I come from a small place in the north east of England called Durham. Its lovely there but very boring, so I got out of there by pretending to do a degree in Nottingham. That’s where I started DJing. I was already into dance music through my brother who went to uni in Manchester and used to bring back tech house records and other stuff which I found very exciting when I was about 15 in Durham, so started buying my own and DJing in my bedroom.
2. Where and how do you live now, does the place (city, country) somewhat reflect in your music?
I live in London now which is great for DJ gigs and going out as there is so much going on and lots of variety, however I haven’t being here very long so London hasn’t yet had much of an influence over my music. We’ll see.
3. Do you have some classic music training?
I have no musical training at all.
4. Were your parents supportive when you started your production/DJ career?
Yes they were. Although it took them a while to realise you could actually make a living from it, so at first I kept being ask when I was going to get a ‘proper job’. Actually I still get asked that now.
5. Do you follow trends (music, fashion,…) and does your current music style reflect what’s trendy right now?
At first I did, when electro was really exciting a few years ago. When I was first doing gigs in Nottingham I was obsessed. I’m moving on now though and trying to do my own thing. I’m really into a much deeper sound and disco now, which seems to be getting quite trendy now but not exactly mainstream like electro has become.
6. Which country/music scene has the most creativity in musical output right now?
Disco producers and labels like DFA in New York are making some amazing stuff at the moment. There isn’t a huge amount of it but the quality is really high which is the most important thing. In London everyone is having a go but there’s a lot of rubbish around.
7. Favourite album of all times?
Power, Corruption and Lies by New Order.
8. Why is/are you best friend/s your best friend/s?
You can rely on them to have a good time and make you laugh and stay up late drinking and act like idiots.
9. Favourite computer game?
Final Fantasy VII.
10. Best breakfast food, best »I’m drunk and it’s 4 in the morning« snack?
Bacon sandwhich for breakfast, fried chicken or Zinger Tower Burger when I’m drunk.
11. If there were no limits (space, time, endangered spieces…) – what pet would you most love to have?
A Jack Russell called ‘Geoff 200’. A dog will always be the ultimate pet. Was I supposed to say T Rex or something?
12. What are you most proud of in your life?
DJing in my bedroom and thinking one day I’ll do it for a living, then going out and doing it.
13. Words to live by…
Don’t drink and dial.