Posts Tagged ‘hardcore’

In early 1999 I had one of life’s more bizarre experiences when visiting Nightbreed Records in Nottingham. I was having a general chat with label owner Trev Bamford and checking out their new recording studio. The tour got round top their retail stock room where Trev pointed to a magazine on the wall and said something along the lines of “I wander who that bloke is!” I did a bit of a double take, the second time around realising that it was a stock photo of me. I’d only had a few front covers, but I kept my surprise and jubilation to myself, saving my little money for beer instead of buying a copy – normally big press pieces would be passed on to me, but somehow this had slipped below the radar. I was also rather embarrassed that I didn’t know about it, which is quite sweet in retrospect.

The magazine was Sideline, a European music magazine, still very popular in it’s online iteration nowadays. I was signed to Earache Records and every few months Sarah (their fantastic press officer at the time) would hand me a few sheets of questions to answer for smaller UK publications and European media that I almost invariably hadn’t heard of.

The alternative to the written question format was phone interviews which I’d always struggled with. The language gap was a main problem – my first attempt had been in 1993 when calling a German number on a bad line – it turned out that the interviewer wasn’t the journalist, he was just reading out preset questions, of the ilk (and I’ve remember this one like it was yesterday) “which is your bigger idea of hell – hardcore techno or the prison of a Gameboy!” When I tried to veer from the format he repeatedly told me “but I do not like industrial techno – I only like grindcore and death!” and the knockout blow “I am doing this interview for my friend because he does not speak your English!”

But I’d never fared well with UK phoners either – the year before Dan from the label had brilliantly set me up with a half page in Loaded magazine, but the interview had not gone well and I felt I had misrepresented myself, and the journalist gave an accurate transcript of my making little sense. I dreaded sitting on the phone making a fool of myself and managed to avoid the situation almost completely after that. Conversely, in person to person interviews journalists normally “got” me –  I had a wacky and self-deprecating sense of humour but I was serious about my music and could emote about it quite well when prodded.

But my favourite interview format was – and still is – the written Q&A format as it allowed me to give proper thought to anything raised and come up with an informative and/or entertaining response. That’s exactly how I prepare my music – alone and in my own time. The Sideline interview is a very accurate insight into how I saw my music at the time – the images are hi res so click on the pages to give them a read. A couple of times it’s a little unclear that I’m being ironic, and one comment is pretty offensive, as I haven’t added a proper context – please ask in the comments box if you spot it and are interested.

Thanks to Sideline magazine and Earache Records for this brilliant little memory – I’m far from being a nostalgic person, but my albums, a select few gigs and a few other bits and pieces make me very happy to look back on. Having finally tracked down a copy of on eBay after 13 years, Sideline #25 is one of those things.


Posted: January 31, 2012 in Music
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Blowing the Ultraviolence speakers lately…

Neophyte  Mainiak

Stunning gabber production from Dutch mastersn bbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbb –  the cat have liked it so much he just ran up to the speakers and  across my keyboard…Neophyte’s usual mix of 909 and hoover sounds is perfected here with an expert build up of fist pumping noise over the 4.5 mins. I heard this on Radio 1 of all places when I got up at 4 in the morning the other night, and I ordered the album from HMV – maybe Neophyte will eventually get the huge profile they enjoy in Europe over here sometime. The last time I bought a Neophyte album I had to import from Holland for a small fortune and when it finally arrived they’d used one of my vocal samples on the first track, The Hardest Remake. I don’t mind the sampling but at least I could have got a freebie, eh, EH?

Motorhead Motorhead

No Sleep ‘Til Hammersmith has got to be the greatest live album ever made, so by extension this has to be the best live track ever recorded…or maybe Overkill from the same album…or possibly Neophyte’s Always Hardcore, which doesn’t, um ,appear on a live album! I’ve been going through music by some my childhood sweetheart metal bands lately – Motorhead still rule for sure, you can truly feel the energy and sincerity in the music, and that never dates. Around ten years ago I was lucky enough to meet Lemmy and he was unlucky enough to meet me…I made a total knob of myself but I’m sure he’s forgotten by now and so should I. But it’s hard. I wrote a whole blog piece about it but it was so fucking miserable I had to ditch it.

Harrison Birtwistle &  David Harsent The Minotaur

OK this is an opera, but it must also be the most truly hardcore music I’ll be looking at today. No CD or download available, you’ll have to sit through all 2.5 hours on DVD or Blu Ray…not such a chore when the stark, monolithic like sets with teutonic lighting are beautifully shot and featuring scenes of cannibalism and rape as the Minotaur contemplates his own dual nature…the monstrous bull and the more monstrous human that lurks inside him, whilst his duplicitous assailants fuck each other over whilst innocents get gored to bits! The atmosphere is almost as crushingly miserable as when I think about the day I met Lemmy.

Ultraviolence vs Beyonce Violent Single Ladies

This unofficial mash-up was on YouTube a while back but got scooped up in the Great Music Purges of 2011. An inspired idea, you will notice from superb production sound wasn’t done in hour on Traktor LE. In fact it is the work of Graeme Norgate, well known as soundtrack composer on multi-zillion seller N64 game Goldeneye and more recently for the audio design of multi zillion selling Crysis 2. I was lucky enough to go for a bite to eat with Graeme lately. He had a,um, Lemmy burger. Download the track here…


Download exclusive new track Ti Head here


Film remakes often aren’t as bad as you’d think, for every crappy Wicker Man there’s often the irreverent fun of Dawn of the Dead. I preferred Werner Herzog’s Nosferatu to the original, as well as Rob Zombie’s Halloween – apart from the musical score. Even away from films, music almost invariably fares badly at remakes, and I can’t think of a single instance when an artist or band has re-recorded a track over a decade later for it to be superior to the original – it’s a stupid idea.

A bit thick…

So, while I’m learning the new equipment in my studio I’ve decided to rework some old tunes. First up is I, Destructor which was my first single for Earache Records in 1993. It subsequently remixed and retitled I am Destructor for the album Life of Destructor, upon which this version is based. I haven’t fucked with the arrangement much, but I made mostly new sounds and used all new toys for the mix. Was it really a stupid idea, or is the only thick in the kick? Click below to find out…

Ultraviolence – I, Destructor Redux


I’ve been back to it a month later and made some improvements, resulting in a clearer and louder mix, especially the percussion which was a little floaty in the first version. I used Twisted Lemon‘s fantastic Sidekick plug to tighten it up a bit – this really is a super-bargain plug at a tenner, and far better than the bundled Cubase sidechainer.  See how the bass kicks now…

Ultraviolence – I, Destructor Redux v1.1