Hi Matt! Congratulations on your recent work, "Radiate-
Thank you. I'm very proud of what Jo and I achieved with rasp. Initially we just played a gig together, both on the bill, at a concert I set up in Sheffield, my home town. We both thought it would be lovely to do a project together, but both are busy with our own commitments. So I hatched the plan to do everything; write; perform and record the album in two days!
You worked together with Jo Quail. When did you meet her for the first time?
We met twice in the space of two weeks; a small concert in Birmingham, then both playing our solo shows at WGT in the Centraltheater. Loved her music, and her approach to music, from then on.
How would you describe Jo? What are the characteristics you like most about her?
She's a lovely person and musician; earnest in what she wants to do artistically, always keen to improve and develop what she does. And open; open to new ideas and trying new things. We felt like a perfect match; and often whilst playing the rasp I would go to a really odd note, only to find she had already gone to the same one.
Although this an album which has been recorded within two days, you certainly had to take some preliminary lead time, didn't you?
Nope, not really! She prepared a couple of simple loops; as did I, and a couple of lyrics, or starting points for lyrics; and it all just flowed from there, in just two days and three sessions! In the first we had a live writing session, and sketched out the basic of ten 'songs', with an audience in the room and on the net. That evening we played the material and our first rasp show, after both doing solo sets as well. the next day we recorded the album in a beautiful space, at Sheffield's Club 60 Recording Studio, again in front of an invited, live audience.
Which experiences did you take with you after this collaboration?
It was a rush from start to finish! Obviously there were many practical things to sort in putting on effectively three concerts in two days, all of which were recorded. The oddest things was the live writing session: I am not used to 'baring my soul' in public; my writing is always done in a secluded place away from people. Although we were engrossed in the writing, we still managed to chat a little with the audience there, to let them know what we were doing. For instance, we'd often play the same song, or portions of the same song three times over, making adjustments each time. The audience seemed to enjoy seeing 'the background' to a musician's work.
The rasp documentary captures some precious moments from the recording sessions. What was it like for you to record on two locations, as the club 60 certainly has an atmosphere of its own which differs completely from the one in the theatre?
Indeed. In the end, we're both experienced performers, and although we had 'blank pages' -
There are some songs with sampled spoken words such in "Psychic Experience" or "Rain Falls". Where are those text fragments from?
Ah, these were prepared also. One was a friend from Germany, who recorded and sent me an account of his 'psychic experience'; another was a Trinidadian DJ whom I know, with a sweet melifluous voice and a lovely manner to him. Instantly i thought both of these would fit the rasp 'vibe' and Jo and I both enjoyed fitting loops and lines behind these spoken word passages, which I simply triggered from an ipad.
You recorded this album in front of an audience. Did they talk to you after it? How did they react, and what did they say when the experiment was over?
The funniest thing was after the first song. We stopped. Then people looked around, knowing that the recording was taking place; unsure as to whether they were supposed/allowed to clap. A beautiful few pregnant seconds of kinetic silence. Then a real release of feelings. it was great! Also, we were recording to good old-
To you, what was more fun: Writing or recording sessions?
Recording! Writing sessions are private and furtive. Actually so is my recording, generally! But writing is the more painful, and requires a different headspace to recording. Though sometimes I do both at the same time; writing, whilst recording the results and manipulating them.
How important was the presence of the audience, the "live energy", to you?
They were vital -
So "Radiate Power Words" holds on a work-
Yep, but I've 'got over' that feeling, something I used to cling to desperately. I'm an old dog, and made many an album, and have come to think of them more as 'snapshots in time' -
Will rasp remain a unique event, or will we hear more from you and Jo in the future?
It will be occasional 'unique' events, we think. When the time is right, we'll do it again, and the next concert will be the next album! It may well be in another country, possibly in conjunction with an organisation or college there. We'd write music specific for the location and the event, as well as allowing ourselves to 'carry over' three songs from the rasp repertoire to make the second disk, too, in their new form. Would be interesting to chart how these ones change and develop, contort to fit the new surroundings and audience. Or rasp may take place in another shape and form. I will let fate decide that. I simply know that it won't be a 'band' that plays on this or that line-
|| INTERVIEW: DANIEL DRESSLER | DATE: 12/01/14 | CONTACT || [READ IN GERMAN] ||
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