samedi 27 février 2010

interview : Oneida


Oneida is a rock band from New York. As children of Krautrock they share a fascination for improvised and repetitive music and with Preteen Weaponry and Rated O they have made two of the greatest albums of these last years... they also have shaved their beards and answered our questions.

1. Your first musical memories?
My first record-memory is definitely a Fisher-Price baby turntable that played these thick plastic waffle-discs with bumps, like a simple music box, and mine played “Camptown Races”. My first live music memory is a band at Disney World playing “The Heat Is On” by Glenn Frey, and it was so loud, it really freaked me out – loud sounds scared the shit out of me when I was a child. That’s why Oneida has such a hold on me.

2. The best record you received as a present? / The worse one?
I don’t really do “best” and “worst,” but a memorable one would be my girlfriend giving me the original Tribe LP of “The Best of the Sir Douglas Quintet” – a moment of total joy for me, having looked for a copy of that record forever (this is before ebay was really known to me, and besides I couldn’t afford what that record would have cost online).

3. The first record that you lost?
Cool question. I’m not sure what the first one I lost was, but I remember my discovery that my 45 rpm single of “Stayin’ Alive” was irreparably scratched – I was probably 6 or 7 years old and that was my first “real” record (my parents gave it to me – my brother got “A Fifth of Beethoven”), and I played the shit out of it; at some point, I must have dropped it or put something on it, and when I discovered it was fucked up, it was just an earth-shaking loss for me.

4. The name of your imaginary band?
Oneida.

5. In which environment do you like to record music?
Any environment that is stressful in some way seems to be a great way to record – freezing cold, filthy dirty, broken equipment; whenever the universe keeps reminding me that I’m not in charge of reality, that’s a powerful environment. Nice studios that are kept attractively clean and comfortable don’t seem to have the same results.

6. What will music sound like in 50 years / 5000 years?
50 years: quiet, as I go deaf.
5000 years: I will be dust, so there will be no sound.

7. Which underrated album will start a new musical genre?
There are no genres created by music. Genres, for better or worse, are only imposed from without, so there’s no possible answer to this. A better way of thinking is “who will people pay attention to in order to create the next genre classification, and how does that individual or group organize his/her/their taste?)

8. Which album should never have been made?
I don’t have an answer for this – I have no understanding of the position from which it’s asked. Possibly whichever one most depleted the available store of natural resources from which it’s manufactured? So that would be something that’s sold a lot of copies, like Thriller or Rumours or whatever, but those are great albums, so I’m caught in a conundrum.

9. Your favourite album to have a drink?
Just one drink? Could be anything. A lot of drinks? Let’s say Run-DMC “King of Rock.”

10. Your dream collaboration?
I got a lot of dreams. How about Bo Hansson. That would be fun.

11. The record that freaks you out?
Music isn’t really freaking me out right now – possibility and flexibility of thought is at a premium for me today, so I don’t see anything freaking me out, if you mean that in the sense of disturbing me on an existential level. I’m kind of looking at things through a distant perspective, not dialled in on an emotional level to the point where I feel like I could be unshipped by music. Maybe Bach, if I really plumbed the depths and started considering the intersection of his faith and the wellspring of his tonalities. But I’m not that religious a guy right now.

12 .The record you would like to listen to right now?
Cluster 71 at extreme volume, but I’m surrounded by civilized people.

13. The film that tickles your creativity?
Point Break is pretty good. Anything that’s awesome can get my blood flowing a little bit.

14. The little-known track that everyone should have heard of?
“Should have” is maybe not a phrase that I’m comfortable responding to, but a great song that people don’t know and might enjoy exploring is Gene Clark’s recording of “Tears of Rage” – I really love that, and it’s not necessarily on a lot of people’s radar at the moment.

15. An album or an artist you wouldn’t want to be?
Well, that’s pretty loaded, and assumes my empathy is maybe more highly developed than it is. I’m trying to be reasonably egoless these days, in the hopes that some psychic benefit might be derived from that, so I can’t really come up with a useful answer, other than people who have had horribly tragic things happen to them – but again, I can’t judge their level of fulfilment from where I’m standing right now. Sorry to be so nonconfrontational….sometimes I’m way more of an asshole, but I’m just kind of in a place right now where I’m not judging my fellow man – I take that inspiration from Link Wray, who sang nobly about his fellow man and not being one of the Ice People, if you know what that’s about.

16. The cover version you would love to do?
17. The mashup you would love to do?
These two questions imply that I’m somehow limited, and can’t do the things I want. But I can. So how about a couple of the last few covers that Oneida has played/recorded: Funkadelic “Hit It and Quit It” and Throbbing Gristle “Discipline”.

18. The text you would like to produce a soundtrack for?
John Brunner’s novel “Stand On Zanzibar”, hands down. Second choice would be Moby Dick.

19. Have you ever had auditory hallucinations?
Yeah, sometimes I hear voices, but I’m not sure if they’re hallucinations or if I’m just tuning in at a deep level from time to time, like my psyche is only able to decode transmissions once in a while from something I don’t understand. They don’t tell me to do stuff, so don’t get too worried.

20. How would you like to die?
Is that a threat? That sounds like a threat, or a James Bond movie.




Listen to Oneida's music on myspace, go to their website Enemy Hogs and read their biography on wikipedia.

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