Chain D.L.K.: Hello EMA3, please introduce yourself!
EMA3: Dennis: Hi! I am Dennis.
Fred: And I’m Fred M.
Chain D.L.K.: How did you guys get started? Tell us your music stories from childhood!
EMA3: Fred: How did we get started with music?
Dennis: I started playing drums in a band with highschool friends around the age of fourteen.
Fred: I’ve always been interested in music, especiallyelectronic music. I wanted a synth from the second Ifound out what one was. But back then, they cost asmuch as a car so I got a guitar instead.
Chain D.L.K.: What are your major influences? What kind of sound are you trying to achieve?
EMA3: Dennis: We are influenced by everything that camebefore in rock and electronic music, and the intensecuriosity to see what comes next. It’s very difficultget past all of the clichés in rock (and for sure,electronic) and try to create an original sound.
Fred: Another thing that always comes up is the movieBlade Runner. We go back to that for inspiration allthe time. We want to make music for the people of2019, which isn’t that far away…
Dennis: I do my best, follow my instincts as opposedtotrying to sound like someone I admire. But all of yourheroes are always on the sidelines cheerleading. Asfar as a sound, I think we are going for somethingthat sounds like you would have dreamed rock musicwould sound like in the year 2005 and not as much 1975or 1985 or 1995, which sounded like 1975 to me, so isurehope 2005 doesn’t sound like 1985.
Fred: Yeah… We try to take what we liked and what wefelt was original about synth bands from the 70s, 80s,and 90′s and combine that with what was interestingsonically with techno and place that in a traditionalpop/rock format.
Chain D.L.K.: What are your major non-influences (music you hate)?
EMA3: Dennis: The music I hate these days are those stupidringtones of classic rock songs or answering machinemusic. It’s bad enough hearing all that stuff in everycar commercial on television.
Fred: I HATE ZYDECO! That crap drives me crazy!
Chain D.L.K.: Projects for the future? New releases?
EMA3: Dennis: We are constantly writing and recording andare currently getting ready to release our firstfull-length CD on Mattress Records, an independentlabel out of Los Angeles. The label is owned andoperated by Dan and Smith of Babyland. It’s a verygrassroots organization– maybe a few inches belowgrassroot, more like a topsoil organization. We hope for that to be outbefore summer ’05. It’s 12 songs recorded at varioustimes and locations throughout 2004. We are hoping tomake up for lost time by picking up the frequency ofour releases in the coming years.
Chain D.L.K.: How do you see the future of music after the 80s?Do you think the 80s will be back? Are they are backalready? Do you think there will be a new renaissanceof music? What do you think of the music scene today?
EMA3: Fred: When they stopped playing Human League videosand started playing REM, I thought the world was over.
Dennis: I blame R.E.M. and Guns n’ Roses for ruiningthe forward momentum of rock music when they set thewayback machine to the sixties and seventies. Nirvanaand Pearl Jam weren’t far behind, and then came GreenDay to cement the whole process.
Fred: But I liked Nirvana.
Dennis: 70s mountain hippie guitar rock… I’ve hadenough, time to move on.
Fred: But I liked Nirvana.
Dennis: About the 80s coming back: I hope there willbe something new, something fresh. We’re trying to doour part.
Fred: I like stripes… I like skinny ties… Ifpeople are bored with the 60s or the 70s then I guessthe 80s are next. Stop the train at 1983. Please, forGod’s sake, or I’ll jump. I lived through it once andthat was enough… Let’s do our own thing, people…Ug.
Dennis: I agree for the most part. I liked a bunch ofthe early 80s synth stuff because it was new andfresh for that time period. But now that it’s 2005, ifI see another girl in one of those stupid Pat Benatarhead band leg warmer aerobics outfits, I think I’llpuke.
Fred: I like leg warmers– they’re HOT! But I thinkthe most important thing about the early 80s was themindset– it was the beginning of the future and weforgot, and started to go backwards. If you reallywant to start and eighties band, then do something newand different. There’s no point in playingmake-believe when you can do something real.
Dennis: A big part of what made that music so cool andoriginal was the technology that was emerging fromJapan and Europe that enabled those artists to forgenew ground and create new sounds. We try to use newtechnology as much as possible in the creation of ourmusic, like soft-synths and laptop computers. It freesyou up to move things forward. I do love all thoseold synths and great sounds from the 80s, though.
Fred: Yeah, but that time in music is where ourinterest in electronic music began, so of course we’regoing to be influenced by the 80s, but what we wantedfrom the onset of this project was to pick up wherethe 80s synth pop scene left off, and hopefully that’swhat we’re doing.
Dennis: About the scene now, I think the music scenetoday here in Los Angeles is getting better for bandslike us. In the early years, the only clubs that wereopen-minded enough to book bands like us were Al’s Bar(R.I.P.), a really amazing place in downtown LA, andMr. T’s Bowl, another great club, but we were alwayssandwiched between guitar bands and we were always theweirdo act feeling a little uncomfortable performingin front of people who were not altogether into thetype of music we were playing. Now there are somereallyenthusiastic and important clubs starting in LA likeDataAge in Chinatown and Microwave 2.0 in Hollywoodthat are booking live electronic acts with songs and singing. These clubs are still once amonth, though, and if you don’t time things correctly,it takes months to see a show there or book one aswell. We are hoping for a day when you can go out anyday of the week and see a great electronic band in LosAngeles.
Fred: There’s a lot of great new stuff going on; Ithink this year is going to be better than the past.I find new electronic pop bands on the interneteveryday. I think the scene is starting to cometogether, the bands are out there and definitelypeople who want to hear them. Clubs like DataAge arereally doing something new and I hope more clubs willfollow suit.
Dennis: That’s just in Los Angeles… We hope to findclubs like that all over the world and meet peopleinterested in new music and new sounds and newapproaches, making music and performing it live.
Fred: Time for something new.
Chain D.L.K.: What is the most important thing in your life and the least important? (Each of you answer separately!)
EMA3: Dennis: The most important thing in my life is familyand friends… (just like the cel phone plan). Theleast would be just about anything else… That’s atough question.
Fred: Fast cars, fast women and Booze ! Just kidding.But not far from the truth. Well, actually, I guess itis true… The least important thing in my life is thecrap this society forces me to do to be a part of it. TCB MO FO!
Chain D.L.K.: Suggestions/messages for our readers?
EMA3: Dennis: Invest in electric cars!
Fred: Ooh, thats a good one, Dennis. Hmmm… Invest innatural gas, hydrogen, Honda, Toyota, and robotics ingeneral. Also, get a good job and work hard and makeenough money to buy back our country. : )
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[interviewed by AntiQuark] [proofreading by Maren]