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Interview with Raoul R. of Noisex & S.alt of Ant-Zen - conducted by Kevin Congdon - Fenix, Seattle, WA - 9/4/97

Kevin: Where did you come up with the name Noisex?

Raoul: It's a combination of the words "noise" and "sex"; it's only a game with words, nothing more.

Kevin: How long have you been doing music?

Raoul: For about 6 years.

Kevin: What is the history of the band?

Raoul: My first project was TUTP, which eventually lead into Noisex. Our first material was more experimental/avant-garde.

S.alt: More like a noise collage.

Raoul: Then I moved the material more into a combination of rhythms and noise.

Kevin: What first got you interested in combining rhythms with noise?

Raoul: Some of it came from my influences, such as Nurse with Wound, Skinny Puppy, Esplendor Geometrico, Blackhouse, SPK.

Kevin: When kind of sounds do you look for when creating a song?

Raoul: Every song is different. Whether it starts with a sample or a drum line. I don't feel the need to create the same sound for each song or that I need to create songs in the same way each time.

Kevin: Are you trying to relay any messages in your music?

Raoul: No, I let the listeners create their own imagery.

S.alt It's just to be open-minded to other types of music or noises. It's to listen to the mixture of different sounds and noises; which may be the reason we use so many effects, like they are their own instruments.

Raoul: With "Out of Order", I was trying to create something like a book and build the song titles around that, like chapters in a book. And "Over and Out" is part 2.

S.alt But at the same time, "Over and Out" is like a completely different story. No release is the same as any others he has done.

Raoul: And each release is almost like a compilation; there are many different styles on one release.

S.alt Each song is its own separate part, like an individual chapter, with something different in each chapter.

Kevin: How did you first hook up with Rudy to do production work on your first album?

Raoul: I've known Rudy for a long time from parties and concerts.

S.alt The scene where we live is not very big, so we meet quite often.

Raoul: Rudy approached me and asked if I would be interested in him working with me on "Over and Out".

Kevin: Why was "Over and Out" released on Ant-zen, while "Out of Order" was on Beton Kopf Media?

S.alt Rudy was just very busy with his own project, that was the main reason.

Kevin: Have you received much exposure or feedback in Europe?

S.alt So far from what we have heard from the promotion people, the feedback has been very good. There is very little radio exposure in Germany, there are maybe five good radio stations in the country who play this music. The feedback from magazines has been very positive as well, and they have all noticed how this new album does not sound a lot like the old one. I think it's very bad when a band sounds the same with each album.

Raoul: There is no typical Noisex style; this is very important to me. That way I can make whatever type of music I want. I make the music for me first and don't go into making music thinking, "okay this must sound like Dive or :wumpscut:"

Kevin: Are you a perfectionist in the studio?

Raoul: Yes. For me, when I'm making the music, it's only the beginning.

S.alt But for the one's he has released, he has been very satisfied with them.

Kevin: Why did you decide to come over to America and do a tour?

S.alt We talked to Sage from Culture Shock and at first it was just a silly idea. And then Raoul called me and said we needed to go to America. So we just decided to try it and things were set up to do one.

Kevin: How has the reaction to your show been so far in the States?

S.alt It has been positive.

Kevin: What does your live set consist of?

Raoul: Some songs from "Out of Order" and some from "Over and Out".

Kevin: Could you describe your live side project Andsexion?

Raoul: It is a free improvisation at festivals. At the end of the festival all the members from each band play together and do a "jam" session. It brings a combination of all the styles from each band.

S.alt We had one in Germany in late May in Auchland with about 10 people on stage which we recorded live. And the fun thing is there is not one person who is the leader, we are just connected to the mixing board and go from there, but it's very noisy.

Raoul: It's very interesting to play in this project and to hear it, because each time there is something different.

S.alt But you can also hear the individual artists sounds in the project as well. One thing that helps in this project is that in Germany, a concert is usually in a big venue with many artists from different labels playing on stage. And there is usually very good communication between the artists while working on this project.

Kevin: Do you plan on releasing that?

S.alt We have already recorded one session and released it on vinyl and there is another one we recorded at a festival we did a week before this US tour that we will release.

Kevin: What kind of reaction have you received from the "Industrial" scene?

Raoul: We haven't received a lot of reaction from the German scene, but from other countries and the Internet, it has been very good. They seem to be more fanatic with the support of Noisex in other countries.

Kevin: I've got some questions for S.alt regarding your artwork and Ant-zen. How did you first get involved in doing artwork?

S.alt I first started with photography, specifically black & white photography. Then I started working with electronic equipment and computers, and then a combination of electronics and photography. From there I found my own style.

Kevin: How did you hook up with Ant-zen to do all their artwork?

S.alt A friend of mine, Alec from Munich, and myself started Ant-zen. We put out seven tape releases and then we started putting out vinyl releases and now we mainly release on vinyl. We came from the noise and experimental scene, and that's why we put things out on vinyl.

Kevin: With all your artwork have you thought about doing any exhibits.

S.alt Yes that would be something I would like to do. I've also done quite a few covers for music and other types magazines. I would also be interested in holding a workshop.

Raoul: An alternative workshop with many pictures and other artwork; and for people who are interested in the packaging side of releasing music, since that is such a big part of Ant-zen.

S.alt And early next year I'm going to release a book.

Kevin: Do you have your own vision of what to create regarding the image of a cover or do the musicians themselves give you a lot of input?

S.alt It's different every time. I just try and combine everything together effectively, but the musicians have the last word. But we have a dialogue with all the artists and we have a very close relationship with all the artists, more akin to a friendship.

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