12.08.10 - 11:01pm
Some nice Nochexxx infiltration here, for uh, Spanish net radio, is that?
A mix and an interview, which goes like this:
First of all, why Nochexxx?
The name was struck upon initially as a joke. I was washing dishes, dreaming up personas, keeping myself amused during a crap task. Once the concept unravelled, I felt there was a sincere parable to Nochex(xx). This unsuccessful ‘electronic’ payment method was comparable to my own fate! I believed my future as an electronic music artist, was in fact a failed career move (here I was washing up after all). The tragicomedy aspect of Nochexxx appealed to my selfdeprecating humour, added to which, reclaiming brandownership, by dismantling the products original intention and tossing it into the universe as something new was pleasing.
Where are you from?
I’m half English/Chinese but feel rootless from having grown up in a few opposite corners of the world. Currently residing in Arbury, the most underrated part of Cambridge!
What kind of music do you use to hear when you were younger?
Music was my forbidden fruit because at the time classical was the only music tolerated in my household. I didn’t have older siblings with hip music taste or liberal parents with extensive music collections. A few classical tapes hidden inside draws, was all. One cassette contained Flight of the Bumblebee by Rimsky Korsakov. This piece illustrated music could be tactile and three dimensional, far greaterthan notes on a score. Korsakov produced a musical swarm. This epiphany has remained with me ever since. Outside the house, it was whatever my ears could find.
When did you start your musical activity?
From around the age of ten I’ve been tinkering. First efforts were random audio collages dubbed onto cassettes. During my teenage years, I discovered for $10 Malaysian I could hire a fully furnished rehearsal space. These ‘jam’ studios provided a direct line into KL’s local independent scene and I would jam at least once a week with mates. To cut a long story short I arrived back in the UK and was in total culture shock. Everything was so accessible. Nochexxx began circa 2008, prior to that I had been producing abroad range of experimental computer electronic music as Ascoltare, as well as badly managing a record label called Tripel. Many of these early releases reside under my desk.Haha.
Within the current musical diversity, the incessant new revisions of older material and all the new electronic trends, where would you situate your style as a producer?
I’m not sure. I try not to think about it. It certainly does not come to mind when I’m producing. I will remain fervent lyon the outside. I’m fairly old fashioned and inspired by the oldschool, but I don’t feel I’m purposely aping the past in order to qualify as a Hauntologist. Hopefully my music contains more than just stylistic nods towards past or future musical genres, but we all copy stuff innit. Hypnagogic Techno anyone? LOL
Your first 12” was published in one of the most respected labels at the moment, Werk Discs, how was the first meeting with this brand?
Thankfully my music and online persona was enough to get me signed to Werk. Sadly I have yet to meet Actress or Lukid face to face. Big up Werk!
In “Smashing Your System”, you collaborated with the legendary Sensational, how did it arise? Tell us something about this meeting…
I first met Sensational after a gig in Rotterdam. I drunkenly approached him and said, “Loaded With Power is the greatest Rap record!” That same night Pete UM rolled joints on request, effectively becoming Sensational’s weed caddy. Being fans of his music, we were well aware of Sensational’s inability to roll blunts. There’s a Youtube video about it, haha. Later that year I contacted him and asked him to collaborate. The rest is history. Best material since Heavyweighter, imo!
Talking about your influences, which artists or styles have contributed to Nochexxx music?
It’s difficult narrowing influences down to anyone specific.Over the years I have gravitated towards so much music that it’s hard to pinpoint one in particular. At a push I wouldsay Ron Hardy plays close to my heart, such excellent taste. I relate to the way he shifts energy about the room. It’s important I find out where musical ideas originally derive from. I’m always looking to discover that proto (insert genre name here) record. Believing music needs time tosettle before it can be properly evaluated, I’m often looking backwards in order to go forwards. Consuming art from different decades makes for exciting travelling, so I try to learn sounds as I hear them and hope to be able to inject these exotic and alien textures into my own productions. I should point out that music is only one part of my inspiration; films, UFO’s, cooking, gambling, just about anything inmy daily life can influence my work. I should also give honourable mentions to living artists who I deeply admire, namely (Gaeoudjiparl, Harco Pront, Felix Kubin, Sensational, Pete UM, Xper Xr).
Precisely, in your songs there is parallelism with Actress material, do you think so?
I’ve never met Darren but I’ve read his interviews and feel we share similar opinions. For example, my comment about Korsakov’s “musical swarm” is key. We both like our music to be visceral and smelly. We both suffer for our art (music is not fun for us!). I admire the way he holds back on his productions, I sometimes feel with my own work it can beto schizo for its own good. But yeah, for sure there are parallels.
Your second twelve-inch “Ritalin Love/Timepiece” with Ramp Recordings shows a pronounced inclination for thetechniques and textures of a faster Chicago House…
I always switch up, try not to stay to still. Of course I love my Chi-town jack.
What can you tell us about your digital release “Greatest Record” with Tripel Records in 2008? What did you tried to express with this mixtape?
The underlying theme was to celebrate record collectors, those who strive to have that unobtainable ‘greatest record’. I also thought it would be funny if people asked about the “Greatest Record”. It was supposed to be a block-partystyle mixtape, sampling whatever was around (telephone messages, TV dialogue, vinyl etc). I wanted to produce a fun mix, using first wave Nochexxx. It also marked the death of my label Tripel.
In Youtube, we can find some unreleased Nochexxx material: Do you have in mind to edit a LP with this material?
I’m busy refixing many of these tracks, trying to get them as solid as possible. RAMP are helping me towards releasing an album. I just hope my work can sustain enough interest, sot hat it’s economically viable for RAMP to release.
How do you produce your tracks? Which kind of machines and techniques do you use? Do you use sampler? What kind of discs do you use to search and cut for your productions?
At the moment I produce everything on an Akai MPC. I use a few synths, some outboard effects and my vinyl collection (which is like a synthesizer to me). I master onto tape and love using analogue equipment. All this has become annoyingly fashionable but I feel they are the best tools for the job. Rob Gordon is right, we are being sonically robbed, I’m campaigning for real sounds. Lol. Of course I realise good music does not develop from the gear alone, but it helps.
Usually, your work unleashes a stream of tags, do you feel comfortable with that?
Whether I mind or not is largely dependent on the level of journalism. Blanket statements are often made, some of which can be wholly inaccurate (as if the journalist hasn’t bothered to actually listen). I have trouble explaining what I do myself, so I am sympathetic to anyone who writes about it. Personally, I don’t think about music in terms of genres and agree with Theo Parrish; “categorising and the over programming of music leads to dangerous consequences”. I’ll leave any such ‘tags’ to others.
Tell us about your Concepto Radio MIX?
With so many records at my disposal I became paralysed with the amount of options available. I decided to use Eno’s oblique strategy method to narrow the choice. I wrote out a few options and chose one at random. ‘select one record and compile a mix’ is what I did.
Finally, how will evolve Nochexxx on his next releases? What can we expect?
RAMP is continuing to support my output. The next RAM-AIR 12” will be “Vapour Cruz/Mitsubishi”. I have also contributed to a Xylitol remix compilation featuring Nocturnal Emissions, Woebot, Orchestra Intangible ’73, Pete UM, Strange Attractor and Sculpture amongst many others. Hopefully I will continue to progress and decent tunes. Try not to suck, basically.
Entrevista por Concepto Radio. Traducción de Gabriela Shutter.