mercoledì 20 aprile 2016

Sounds from underground/File N°037

A couple <<t.b. OR NOT t.b>> is this kind of underground project that we like mostly. This time they offer us a dark, experimental Ep <Ghostly>. Four wonderful tracks of romantic expression. To follow also other releases like <Baby Bunny Box> in limited wooden tape box edition.

0. name of the band
t.b. OR NOT t.b. That’s a wordplay - because we are Torstn and Bea (t. and b.) – or maybe we are not.
1. where are you from?
We’re from Offenbach/Main in Germany – that’s the city next to Frankfurt am Main.
2. what kind of instruments/equipment you use? do you use some particular record technique? which is your method of composition?
We use a lot of small electronic noise generators, most of them custom made (by friends who know how to build them, because we don’t), the korg monotron (all three models), an akai rhythm wolf, sometimes electric guitar or bass and a lot of (mostly african) percussion instruments. and a cello!
We’re recording on a digital Tascam 8 Track Recorder - in the old “home recording style” that Torstn is practicing since the eighties. The computer is only used for mixing and mastering.
Most of our songs start with the lyrics written by Bea, Torstn tries then to build an electronic soundscapes that fits with the mood of the words. Then we add a lot of other instruments to these sound. Others are composed after melodies that Bea makes up and Torstn then tries to find the right chords for an arrangement.
3. what do you think about the music context nowadays and how you place yourself in? do you feel a part of any scene?
We do not feel particular to a special scene. But just to give the child a name and to help people to imagine what kind of sound we make, we call our style “Dark Electronic Romanticism”. Through the Internet, you can find interesting music everywhere. This is a good thing on the one hand – on the other hand there is too much of everything to listen to. We love tools like facebook, bandcamp, soundcloud etc. to promote the stuff we make, but we still know most of our fans personally and don’t think that you can reach a bigger group of interested people without professional promoting… but it’s always nice to receive emails like yours as a proof that sometimes there really are some people from all over the world who listen to your stuff.
4. do you think that nowadays has still sense talking about "underground"?
We have a vivid musical experimental scene going on here and Torstn is running an underground club in Offenbach ( , where all these bands and projects play live – plus a lot of acts from all over the world who come to play live there, too – so we’re in the lucky situation to say: of course it makes sense – because we ARE the underground!
5. do you play live? how public react to your music?
We’ve played about 10 gigs since 2013 but all in our area, some of them even in Torstn’s club. People are always fascinated by the minimal electronic set up and by the stage acting. We love to play live but in the moment there’s a little break because we have a baby since February! But we’re already working on a small Germany tour in autumn or winter of this year. We started making music together in 2013 after a lyric project Bea did with a friend and Torstn was doing the sounds for it. We played some Live-Gigs since that time and released 3 CD-Rs/tapes. The last one was an extremely limited tape-box we dedicated to our son who was born in Feb. 2016.
6. Genesis P-Orridge said "Our records were documents of attitudes and experiences and observations by us and other determinedly individual outsiders. Fashion was an enemy, style irrelevant.". What do your records represent to you?
Our music is inspired by our feelings and the situations we went through. While Torstn provides most of the sounds, the lyrics are written by Bea and are often inspired by books she has read or journeys she made. We love working together and inspire each other and so the development of our music is always very personal and reflects our whole relationship and our own different musical preferences. In that sense we can agree with Mrs P-Orridge: Fashion is not necessarily an enemy - but completely irrelevant to us…
To us our recordings are like a diary, conserving a lot of happy or unhappy memories - and to some of them you can even dance! 

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