Chain D.L.K.: Hi Martin, your new studio album “Dormicum” is out now since a few months. Like with your predecessor “Humanophobia”, you’ve at least decided to release it completely on your own. But initially it was supposed to be signed to the German Klangdynamik Records. What has happened that this hasn’t worked out for you?
Fix8:Sed8: I wish I could give you a spectacular and hip answer like: “The financial crisis destroyed this promising label.” Or: “My label-boss was shot in a drive-by-shooting”. Or: “I had too often sex with my label-boss’ wife.” The truth is, that the promising idea to support bands making music outside the commercial club-orientated line failed due to financial reasons. The label-boss has just loaded too much weight on his shoulders until it crushed him. He was so kind to let me out of my contract, otherwise there was no way to release “Dormicum” any time soon. So, as it often does, money played a big role. That and the wife-thing….oh wait, he isn’t even married. But if he HAD a wife, I’m sure it would have been a reason. I’m kind of irresistible.
Chain D.L.K.: Since you could score intense with “Humanophobia”, there was a real hunt after your project by more or lesser known labels and you had surely enough offers to get signed. But “Humanophobia” is an extremely successful example to question the meaning of labels in the current uncertain times. I’m sure you’re the right person to ask for an essay on this often heard debate. What guideline would you recommend young newcomer acts to promote themselves successfully? What kind of conditions and which kind of work has a label to offer, that you would call it fair and reliable?
Fix8:Sed8: Learn to dance and to sing. Being loose helps. If you’re not handsome – forget it. If you like tothink – forget it. If you have “your own style” – don’t even bother. I think that’s why the Backstreet Boys and Britney have become famous.Of course it differs from label to label. The big ones definitely have a firm grip on the artist and interfere a lot, which is totally out of question for me. The freedom to choose about the way my music will be sound in the end is holy to me, no matter, how big the number is written on the check being waved at me. Not that anybody has ever waved with a check at me. On the other side, those big labels know the business and definitely can push your band to the maximum. You get full promotion in all music magazines and webzines, the DJs spin your music and your CD’s are available in every bakery. That doesn’t mean you’ll become rich. Here in Germany the standard amount you get for each sold copy is about 1,50 Euro, with US-labels it seems to be 2 $, no matter, how big the label is. Small labels often give you all the freedom you need as an artist, but they don’t have the financial background to fully support your album. Or they think to take a risk and they do so, but go finally bankrupt. In my experience there is no such thing, which can be called “the perfect label”. The contract I got with Klangdynamik Records was as close to perfect as it gets. It is really a shame that it didn’t work out. So the only option seems to be to work without a label or to found your own label. And since founding your own label is more paper work than music work, I simply decided to work all alone. The benefits are plentiful: I can sleep in late, I don’t have to rap only because it is popular these days and I can keep the million bucks coming in now for myself. And also for the chicks, of course! Of course my promotion is limited to a few webzines and occasionally a music magazine and pretty much I have to contact the people, inviting them to check out my songs since they wouldn’t come to me, not even know that I exist. But there is no room for self-respect in the music-business. And let’s not forget the million bucks! And the chicks!!
Chain D.L.K.: Let’s continue with the fact, that sales of CD’s have slowed down and the lack of it screws especially the young newcomer or unsigned and self-releasing acts in this music scene. The prices for any thinkable promotional efforts haven’t become cheaper during the last years, so how much effect has this evolution on you? What do you expect from the future, in which kind and format will this kind of music continue?
Fix8:Sed8: I’m pretty sure that the CD as an audio-medium will disappear as well as the LP did. It will be stillmanufactured in tiny numbers for those, who see some nostalgic value in it, but I don’t doubt, that the digital market will completely take over soon. I grew up with CD’s and couldn’t care less for LPs, these days kids grow up with MP3’s, why should they be interested in CD’s anymore? Add those, who used to buy CD’s but found out, that downloading illegally is much cheaper and the CD’s end is sealed. But that isn’t what bothers me. In my opinion the main problem can be found in the pressure on the labels, who desperately have to make money. In order to do so, they either push their bands to make commercial, popular music or they only sign bands, who already produce this kind of music. That’s why we get swamped with hundreds of same-sounding Terror-/Harsh-EBM bands, which totally dominate the club-scene. I really wonder how long it takes, that people get sick of this. I mean how much fun can it be, to listen to basically the same song for 6 hours?
Chain D.L.K.: Returning to “Dormicum”, which has been released in two different formats. So here’s the space for you to introduce this new album and to inform us about all promotional efforts from your side to take the United States by storm…
Fix8:Sed8: I’m so happy with “Dormicum”. It features everything how I wanted it to be: melodic, aggressive, straight-forward, dark, atmospheric, angry and haunting. All 11 songs are forming one unit, which won’t leave any Dark Electro-interested listener disappointed. The production is crystal-clear, the mastering is superb, the artwork fantastic. I improved my vocals and my songwriting since “Humanophobia” and I think you can tell us the difference, if you listen carefully. If you are into old Skinny Puppy and Velvet Acid Christ, you will love “Dormicum”. The opener “Guillotine Gratitude” is my all-time favorite. It gives me Goosebumps whenever I listen to it. I apologize if I sound too immodest, but this happens only, because I am really so excited about it. It is a great feeling to have your visions realized 100% the way you wanted it! It would be great to share my enthusiasm with as many people as possible! I also had a to 100 exemplars limited edition made, which is sold out by now. It contained a bonus track and tons of extras, no one will ever need. Still it is cool to own it. It is like with girlfriends.
Chain D.L.K.: “Dormicum”, as being the title, sounds quite religious-inspired, and the same seems to fit with the track “Hiob”. Which meaning hides behind and what do you like to explore through them?
Fix8:Sed8: Nothing. These titles sound cool, are easy to remember and fit to the music and the artwork. No deeper meaning or messages are hidden in my lyrics. I’m glad that my English skills are good enough to write in English, because I can’t imagine of anything more horrible than to write/sing in German.
Chain D.L.K.: A word to your lyrical content generally. By picking out your bonus track “Homicide In Heaven”, which is only available on your limited edition of “Dormicum”, I tend to interpret just another religious background behind it. Can an interpretation turn into the direction of being a more drastically report of the biblical first part between Adam and Eve, but without snake and apple? Which themes else do have your preferences and with which of them do you feel comfortable to write and compose about?
Fix8:Sed8: One might think I’ve just answered this question, but apparently you weren’t satisfied with theanswer…;-)
Chain D.L.K.: It’s because, that I personally don’t believe in artists’ answers like: “My lyrics mean nothing, I think on nothing when I write lyrics and I have hard to manage, not to forget to breathe”. Boring, right? So we like to hear the whole drama behind it…
Fix8:Sed8: So here is a more exciting version: My parents are hardcore Satanists and raised me to becomea devil-worshipper with each cell of my body. I also got molested by priests when I was a little kid – and by Satanists, too. And later they molested each other and made me watch. To cut a long story short: there was a lot of molesting going on and since that, I have a rather twisted relation to religion – and to goats, too. And my lyrics have no message and no deeper meaning. They solely are supposed to support the atmosphere of the music.(Dear FBI, CIA, NSA and PETA, all comments made about satanic rituals are purely ironical and subject to fiction. Please don’t bug my phone and please don’t invade my home in the middle of the night. And as much as I’ve enjoyed it the first time, I’m getting sick of the full body cavities searches each time I land in LAX. And now off you go, don’t you have some terrorists to catch?)
Chain D.L.K.: Uuhmmm, someone please remind me next time, not to hunt after those dramas again…Relatively conspicuous seems to be your usage to integrate voice samples taken out of reality and TV reports into your tracks. That horror/splatter genre presented through uncountable movie samples seems to has lost inspiration on you, hasn’t it?
Fix8:Sed8: Generally I don’t care, where the samples are from as long as they support the songs’ atmosphere.Actually only “Quarantine” has samples from a report (about the usage of white phosphorus in Iraq), all the other samples are from movies. I try not to pick the blockbuster movies, which everybody knows. And the samples shouldn’t be too dumb and too perverted. But those are pretty much the only restrictions I give myself.
Chain D.L.K.: You’ve also decided to invite with Barmherziger and Boris Posavec additional help for the production of “Dormicum”, Barmherziger also is responsible for the mastering. Could you try to describe the importance of their input on your work? Let’s hope, that you haven’t become a beta-tester of Boris’ games out of his company…
Fix8:Sed8: I really suck when it comes to do the post-production and mastering of an album, just unlike to Boris and Barmherziger. They are masters in exactly that requirement. Plus they are my friends and offered their help. No sexual favors included. And whoever likes cold, straight-forward Electro a la Covenant shouldStart to get excited, because the new BLAME-album is going to be a KILLER!!!
Chain D.L.K.: How is it with live gigs? I guess it’s difficult for a one-man act to work out a satisfying live performance. Any plans to storm some stages soon?
Fix8:Sed8: There are plans to play my very first shows in early 2010. 2-3 shows in Germany and maybe a few in Eastern Europe together with MC1R, Blame and Nordschlacht. We might play in Bratislava and Belgrade. What I hear is, that East European people are very devoted and appreciative since not many bands come to play at those places. Right now I have no idea what a show will look like though. Most likely a rather theatrical performance in a Skinny Puppy-manner. I really don’t know yet. Maybe I won’t be playing at all until I have a few CD’s out. I can’t tell you now. As for shows in the U.S.A., I doubt this will happen any time soon. Let’s not kidding ourselves, my music may or may not attracts let’s say 200 people living all across your unnecessary huge country, my good looks another 50. Unless all of them are willing to come to one show for instance in LA or Chicago, there is no point for me in playing there. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to do, I just doubt there is demand.
Chain D.L.K.: Your daily life besides being a musician. Please fill in details, relations, hobbies, and further interests…
Fix8:Sed8: Most of the time I’m busy with saving whales, stopping the global warming, joining Brad Pitt-look alike-contests and giving wannabe funny interviews. Besides this, I am taking care of my female fans in an appropriate form. I also love to travel. In November we’re going to Argentina and Chile. I always wanted to do that. I also play online-poker, which is a fun way to loose all the millions I make with music.
Chain D.L.K.: Please let us know about your upcoming plans, some new works or maybe a new release you like to confirm here?
Fix8:Sed8: Of course the ultimate goal is world domination. Until then, I hope I will release a few more albums. Working on “Dormicum” didn’t allow me to focus on anything else and now I feel the urge to work on new material. I have also made my very first (and most likely for a long time last) remix for Mister Johan Suicide Commando van Roy himself! It will appear on the limited edition of his upcoming album. But now the focus lies on promoting “Dormicum”, working on new songs and preparing a live-set. I also need to repair the light in our bathroom. Considering my technical skills, this seems to be most likely a long-term-project too. Most likely my wife will do it anyway.
Chain D.L.K.: Some final words to our readers to conclude this interview, Mr. Comedian?
Fix8:Sed8: So, if you are tired of the current EBM/Electro-scene, if you are missing the “good old days” when Puppy, Mentallo, FLA and Numb dominated the clubs, long before anyone could imagine of Harsh- and Terror-EBM has turned the musically landscape into a wasteland, I have to tell you: Move on, those times ain’t coming back. BUT: since I am missing those times myself, “Dormicum” is something you people might like. It is dark and old-school and 100% harsh-free. Please feel free to check out a few tracks under www.myspace.com/fix8sed8music.Any comment is appreciated! Thanx a lot!
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[interviewed by Marc Tater] [proofreading by Darrel Hughes ]