Lately signed to the Denver-based label E.A.R./Vendetta-Music, the German Dark Electro act Object can already look back on a long career. The musically works of Andreas Malik have been often praised and compared with the US-based Electro-sound of the mid-90ies if someone remembers names like Inform‰tik, Mentallo & The Fixer, Pulse Legion or Necrofix. After a longer time-out, Andreas returns like Phoenix out of ashes with his new and third album “The Ethane Asylum”. We like to introduce you the man, mind and machinery behind Object…
Chain D.L.K.: Hey Andreas, I think we have to start this interview with something †like this: where the fuck have you been through the past 6 years? Why such a long time-out?
Object: There wasn’t really a time-out. In the past 6 years, I’ve produced new music nearly every day. The time-out was just the consequence out of the troubles with my old label.
Chain D.L.K.: The rumor that you would start a comeback came up already two years before and your current album “The Ethane Asylum” was at first intended to get released on your old label Broken Seal. What has happened that all of your hopes to collaborate once again got vanished? Oh, and we’re longing to read about nothing else than the †drama behind it…
Object: Back in 2004, Broken Seal gave me the “okay” to release “The Ethane Asylum”. So I started to produce the CD and I found people who contributed the artwork, mastering and guest vocals. The CD was finished at the end of 2005 and the wait for the release has started. Broken Seal told me in countless phone-calls that everything is okay, but nothing happened in a period of 2 long years. Only lame excuses, delays and so on. But I’m not really bad minded with Broken Seal, because they’ve treated me always fair and maybe I was too dumb to ask them for a new deal because I haven’t realized that the label was on hiatus. In spring 2007 I decided finally to leave Broken Seal and to start the search for a new label.
Chain D.L.K.: As far as I know you personally, I would say that you’re a man of wise and well-thought decisions. You prefer silence and actions above arrogant announcements and you keep yourself out of any drama in a special online forum. Now try to explain the sober reasons to sign with E.A.R./Vendetta-Music, whose label manager gets often flamed and has to defend himself too often in online dramas. Wasn’t this in any kind deterrent for you?
Object: In German we’re saying “Gegens‰tze ziehen sich an”… You’re right, I’m more a quiet and introverted person and Nader is maybe the opposite especially when you read his comments on that Side-Line forum. But it’s only some virtual space entertainment and I know Nader now long enough, that I can say that he’s a nice and reliable guy and he’s putting a lot of energy into his label. He asked me about a record deal back in 2006 I think and at least in spring 2007 I finally asked him to sign me. And he did! And I’m not unhappy with my decision so far…
Chain D.L.K.: While some other kids go to bed with their teddy-bears, you seem to prefer to use your beloved Roland XP-50 for this. What’s that special meaning of this synth workstation for you, that you seemingly can’t imagine to produce music without it?
Object: The XP50 is responsible for the sound of Object, that’s true! I really don’t know, why I love this old-fashioned synth that much…it has a tricky to program sequencer and it’s not very reliable. Most of my music is programmed more improvised than following a real plan. This is the result of its complex sequencer. I never know exactly the results of my programming when I putting some notes into it. But I love to get surprised so it’s the perfect way of making music for me. Also: I love its high-end sound-quality. I own some other synths like a K5000R or a Microwave 2, but the XP50 offers definitely the best sound-quality.
Chain D.L.K.: Since you’re member of the older generation I like to ask you for an essay on the current things regarding the Electro/Industrial scene. While to me currently a lot so-called old-school and veteran Electro acts start a comeback, it seems that the times for them couldn’t be any better. Can you mirror yourself in this evolution too? What do you †think how this scene will continue, since the format CD gets more and more into the background, while digital downloads grow immense?
Object: It seems that you’re right, when you say that the time is really good for old-school Electro/Industrial at the moment. I really can’t tell you why, but there must be a longing for more complex music in the scene. Maybe Futurepop and Hellektro are too one-dimensional music styles and after some years with these trends, the crowd maybe wants some more complicated arrangements…I don’t know…IMO it’s a good movement and it’s nice to discover some really good, new bands. Today the internet is IMO the most powerful media to promote music, especially for newcomers. I’m also searching every day for new, good music in the WWW, while I don’t check out illegal stuff but I really like the idea of creative commons and the net-label scene so everybody can make his music available for a wide public. The internet also opens my mind for other styles of music so I can’t say the internet is an evil thing…
Chain D.L.K.: Some words on the content featured on “The Ethane Asylum”, please. †A “Dreamer Without Dreams” can’t be called a dreamer, can he? Please †tell us a bit about the background of this track
Object: Well, there’re no real lyrics on “The Ethane Asylum”. I got a little bit tired with writing “thoughtful” lyrics. I just use my voice as another layer in my music so I’ve decided that it makes not that much sense to waste time with writing real lyrics. I just write down some thoughts or some random cryptic lines and then I place the words to the beats. I also use more and more distortion and some other techniques to modulate my voice so it’s quite hard to understand something… I was also quite often asked what the album-title means but it doesn’t means anything at all. I just think it sounds cool and “cryptic”…
Chain D.L.K.: The track “Existence On Trial” surprises with guest lyrics and vocals by Respirance. How did you come to the idea to watch out for such a collaboration? Oh, and how many times have you tried to sing this track on your own before? I hope you sing it only under a shower…
Object: Haha, I knew you would ask for this… I’ve tried to sing to “Existence On Trial” countless times and everything I’ve tried sounded totally awkward. I’ve tried to sing undistorted for example…but it was a complete disaster. I was really frustrated because it was the first time that I could write a ballad-like song and I just didn’t wanted to ruin it with a distorted cookie-monster voice or with crappy clear vocals by myself. So I decided to ask the guys from Respirance. We know each other for a long time and I really like their music and Jochen has an amazing voice so I asked them to do the complete thing: vocals, vocal-editing and the lyrics. And I think they’ve done a perfect job. The result has blown me away at the first listening. I’ve asked them for some guest-vocals on my next CD too. We will see if they will find time because they’re currently producing their debut-album for Klangdynamik Records at this moment.
Chain D.L.K.: You have a few times collaborated with Nick of MC1R on live gigs. So when it is about time for you to storm the stages and to spread the Object-music to your audience?
Object: I don’t like playing live that much. I’ve done 2 live performances back in 1995 and 2004. The first performance was quite funny with lots of blood, fog and we’ve broken a lot of things like old TV sets and car-parts on stage. You know, it was clichÈ-like but there hasn’t been the fitting audience for my concept. The audience at that evening expected some Punk bands on stage and they got shocked with a gory Electro/Industrial-performance… The second performance happened 2004 in Erfurt. It was a split-gig with MC1R and it was a nice gig but more of an unspectacular kind of nature than my first gig. Well, at this gig I’ve find out that my music isn’t that good for playing live. It’s hard to play it really live and it mostly turned out to be Karaoke. I think also that my beat-structures aren’t programmed to get people moving. So I decided to stop all live activities…I’m also a really shy guy and so I’ll always feel really uncomfortable on a stage… I just prefer to be in my small studio, sitting there and to program new songs.
Chain D.L.K.: Your daily life besides being a musician. Please fill in details, relations, hobbies, and further interests?
Object: My daily life besides the music isn’t very special. I work 8 hours a day as an CNC -machinist in a big factory in my area. You see, my job is also quite industrial… Besides the job and music I love to travel with my wife. Especially to Norway, I need that Industrial vs. pure nature contrast to relax. Then I like good food…especially the Asian and Italian cuisine. Watching a good movie like “Blade Runner” , “Lost in Translation” or some David Lynch movies are fine too.
Chain D.L.K.: Please let us know about your upcoming plans, some new releases †you like to confirm here?
Object: There will be a new Object-album in the near future. The music for it is nearly completed and soon I will start to work on the vocals. Maybe it will be released as an double-CD with some surprises. The main album will be a logical continuation of “The Ethane Asylum”. Maybe a little bit more complex structured this time.
Chain D.L.K.: Some final words to our readers to conclude this interview?
Object: I like to thank all peoples out there who’re enjoying my music and to Nader & E.A.R./Vendetta who have made “The Ethane Asylum” finally available and thank you, Marc, for the nice interview and your support all over the years!
Visit Object on the web at:
[interviewed by Marc Tater] [proofreading by Tommy T. Rapisardi]