Wednesday, October 31, 2007

TAPEd Conversation: Rune Lindbaek (Noid / Paper)

He might not be as widely-acclaimed as Prins Thomas, Hans-Peter Lindstrom or Terje Olsen, but Oslo’s Rune Lindbaek has been every bit as influential on the city’s cosmic/dub disco scene… if not more so. Before he set off for a short trip to the UK – which culminates in an appearance at the TAPE-affiliated best before: party this coming Friday – Rune took time out of his hectic schedule to chat with our old pal Sell By Dave...

So Rune, we’ve heard a lot about you and enjoyed a number of your productions, but we don’t know much about you. How and when did you first start your production career?

“I started with Bjorn Torske in 1991/1992. Bjorn was producing before me – I was just playing records, but I got dragged in by him and suddenly we had a record out.”

The first productions we heard of yours were deep house tracks on Paper under the ‘Those Norwegians’ moniker...

“It’s 10 years since Blair won the election. It was the night after we mastered the ‘Those Norwegians’ album – everyone was very hung over!”

It seems strange thinking back that for many years you were considered a house producer. Is that fair?

"We tried in a way to make not house as such. We loved Paper, but we’re inspired in a lot of ways by DJ Harvey. Things with rhythm but with something else. We contacted Paper because we were neighbours in Manchester. They called straight back and said ‘we want to use this’. We thought ‘fucking hell, Paper’!”

So, what are you up to musically now?

“I’m doing a lot of differernt things – three albums this year. The first came out in the spring, ‘Klub Kebbab’ edits on Noid. Klubb Kebbab is a night I did for three years in a basement – it was packed! It was our disco not disco night, at a place called Head On, which is a legendary Oslo club. I’m a bit of an ambient fan, and I’ve got an ambient album coming out. Then something called Preshenga. I was born on the Russian border. I did it with a friend of mine up there. That’s finished and mastered, so will be out later in the year. We have a label called Pushenga to put it out on. I’ve also been working with the Idjut Boys on an album for Noid which should come out in 2008.”

We’ve heard quite a few remixes of yours lately. Is that something you like doing?

“I don’t have much of a business plan, so friends here ask me to do remixes. So I have a lot of remixes to do for Norwegian artists. Norwegians are shit at business – horrible. Shit at getting things done, shit at pressing things up, shit at promotion. There used to be two pressing plants here, but they didn’t survive. A lot of mixes I’ve done for Norwegian artists I’ve put together on a mix CD for a label called Beatservice. They’re based in my home town, about two rows from my mum. They have some old neighbours of mine on the label. Fenomenon are on there too. That CD is out now.”

For those of outside Norway there seems to be a lot happening in Oslo right now, what with the likes of Prins Thomas, Lindstrom and Todd Terje ripping it up. Do you think it’s fair to say the Norwegian scene is hot right now?

“I think it’s fair to say there is a lot happening. I’m glad, because I think one of the biggest mistakes I did was to adpot a Swedish name as a pisstake. It was because of the Eurovision ‘nul points’ and the bad way people think of Norwegian music. The whole Norway thing for me and Bjorn started 10 years ago, but now there are all these new guys who are doing brilliant stuff, and they work really hard. Hans-Peter is in the same building as me and he works really hard – he’s very professional and dedicated.”

One of the things we noticed from our trip to Oslo earlier in the year was the real ‘community’ feel and camaradarie between the DJs and producers. Is that real?

“Oh yes. None of us make any money, so there’s no competition. There are so many nice people – everyone’s nice – so it’s more just about fun. And really looking out for good records that are inspiring. Just good people.”

We’ve always wondered why Norwegian disco productions – and yours especially – are so dubby and spacious. Care to shed any light on it for us?

“I think if you have a bit of delay, a nice melody, a good bassline and a good rhythm, then you have a good foundation. You can tell why the Idjut Boys, Dan and Conrad, are a very very big influence. Their production technicques... we don’t all use the same, but they were on to something a long time ago.”

Is there something about Oslo as a place that makes people go for dubby, spaced-out disco? All the clubs we’ve been in out there seem to play the stuff by the barrowload... For those of us used to rarely hearing those records in UK clubs it’s pretty inspiring...

“The people who influence us in Norway, the big names are dub disco DJs. You have people who are popular around the world, the big names, but they are not popular here. Me and Bjorn [Torske] and Pal [Nyhus, AKA DJ Strangefruit] and [Prins] Thomas, we are the ones who like the dub disco thing. This is going to sound… well, it is a fact that people come to our nights, and have done for many years. That’s the thing we play. You can have big name DJs, but that’s not what they play, they are not influential.”

Why are they not that influential in Oslo? In the UK club nights struggle unless they book ‘big name’ guests...

“I don’t know. The good places to go clubbing here have always been smaller venues. In Oslo they tried to have bigger places – they tried and tried and tried, again and again and again, but they were not popular. Backroom music is the main room music here. There is a place you should check out where I do my monthly, called Nomaden... you’d love it. Friends of mine are running it. All those good records, they work. So many times I’ve thought ‘I’ll see how this goes’, and the crowd are like ‘yeah!’. It’s inspirational to me.”

Here at TAPE towers we’re big fans of parties in small venues. Intimacy is good when it comes to raving, we reckon – that’s why our best before: night is in a pub!

“Sounds good – I’m very much looking forward to coming and playing in Bristol. Size is important – you can’t have 600 or 800 people dancing to disco. You need smaller venues so you can get in the heads.”

Do you think the lack of drugs in Oslo has a bearing on the party scene and people’s love of slower music?

“Maybe. In Oslo it’s all about weed and beer.”

We hear you’re pretty familar with England, having lived here in the past. How do you feel about our fair isle?

“I love England to bits, and since I was 14 I’ve been going back and forth, record shopping in London, living in Darlington for a year.”

You lived in Darlington? We bet that was pretty strange for a Norwegian!

“It was!”

So, going back to the whole Norwegian scene for a moment, do you think the success you, Bjorn, Thomas and Hans-Peter Lindstrom have had opens things up for a new wave of producers to kick on?

“Yeah, definitely, and I think it’s good. As long as it’s good people doing good releases, then that’s brilliant. I don’t know whether you’re getting an impression of it, but people round here are shit at selling. We don’t have that culture here. In Norway, compared to the Swedes. If someone from Norway goes to Sweden on a business meeting, the people from Sweden will be in suits, and the people from Norway won’t be. The first thing the Norwegians will say is ‘where are we going after?’, the Swedes will want to know how they can sell something!”

Having met a fair few Norwegians from our time in Oslo, you do seem to be a laidback race who love to party. Is that a fair assement?

“Yeah, we love the fun. I feel so lucky living here. I’ve travelled a lot, and we don’t have any social problems. The social system takes care of everything. Norwegians like to have fun. Without the oil we would be a wasteland. Hooray for the oil!”

Right, we’ll see you at best before: on November 2nd...

“I’m looking forward to it. I like the sound of a Bristol booze-up! Just make sure you get me to Heathrow the next day!”

As if you needed reminding, Rune Lindbaek plays best beFour:, the best before: 4th birthday bash at The Bank Tavern in Bristol on Friday 2nd November. Entry is free all night, beards are optional. Us best before: lot are also playing at Timbuk2 on Saturday in Switch's back room, and also taking over The Park on Sunday to round the weekend off. I'm assured that there will be drinks deals on the Sunday, so pop on down for a boogie with music from my good self, and eternally entertaining Kelly Twins.

We should also have an interview with Steve Bug concerning his forthcoming Fabric mix for you very soon, so hold tight for that one.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

TAPE is back!

I haven't got long to tell you this as I'm busy at work, but I can finally reveal who'll be kicking off TAPE's return to a more regular position on Bristol's clubbing calendar. We're back to a bi-monthly slot at the 200 capacity Native venue, and our first guest will be none other than Andrew Weatherall. Yes, that's right. Weatherall in a 200 capacity sweatbox. Don't we spoil you? Friday 16th November - get the date in your diary. Here are the full details:

Friday November 16th
Native, Small St, Bristol

With Special Guests:
Andy Clarkson (Payback Hi-Fi)

& Residents:
Puffin Jack & Richard Carnage

£8 adv, £9 NUS, £10 OTD
Tickets available from Bristol Ticket Shop (

You lucky TAPE readers have an advance heads up on tickets until Monday, so make sure that you make the most of this time as we're fairly confident of our ticket allocation selling out. Click the link above if you live outside of Bristol and you can book them online from the Bristol Ticket Shop website. I'll be back later this week with more info, so hold tight for that.

Take Three Drops

Whilst doing my usual scoot round the internet this morning I got a pleasant surprise in the form of our mate October's first techno 12" peering out at me from the Boomkat new releases. Those who follow the blog will know that we have been waiting for this moment for some time. After a couple of false starts October, pictured above with Carnage and myself at the last Mutant Pop, now has his only label Caravan which we have mentioned here before. The label springs forth from the the same stable that bought you Tectonic and those fantastic Emptyset 12"s.
The first release on the label is the rather mighty 'Three Drops' which you might not be surprised to hear is so called because it is built around three dance floor drops, that have had discerning ravers going crazy here in Bristol. The track is one of my personal favourites and has had some serious rotation in my CD player. Sounding not dis-similar to the vibe that the Innervisions releases have, but with a gritty techno sharpness that sets it apart from the pack. It has a certain low slung wonky grooviness, with a throbbing glitchy pulse that propels the track forwards. On the flip comes the excellent 'Homosapiens' which has been doing the business round these parts for some time. The track is built around a wiry, intricate beat with indistinguishable vocal snippets that brings to mind the best of Someone Else's work. It has that bubbling techno funkiness that only the best producers on the minimal scene can attain.
The future certainly looks bright for October and Caravan, with a healthy release schedule stretching out to next year, expect big things. Look out for future releases from Emptyset (now exclusive to Caravan) and TG, as well as October's ode to this 'ere blog the 10 minute and counting epic that is 'TAPE'. I'm sure we'll be on hand to keep you informed so watch this space! I should just say that the tracks mentioned are currently available at Boomkat and also over at Beatport, where October has also done a chart. I should expect you'll find them a few more places in the next couple of days. To finish things off here is a current chart form me:

1) Substance & Vanqueur - Libration/Resonance // Scion Versions
2) The Bug - Skeng (Kode 9 rmx) // Hyperdub
3) October - Three Drops // Caravan
4) 2562 - Channel Two/Circulate // Tectonic
5) 2562 - Kameleon/Channel One // Tectonic
6) Emptyset - Isokon/Seclusion // Future Days
7) Coki - Songebob // DMZ
8) Microworld - This is my Friend // Styrax Leaves
9) Bass Clef - Zamyatin Tapes Vol. 1 // Blank Tapes
10) Art Bleek - Antichambre // Rush Hour

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Hype Gripe

Unfortunately my computer's still done in at the moment, so apologies for the lack of updates. I just thought that I'd pop on here to make light of one of the recent Resident Advisor reviews of Dubfire's 'Ribcage'. The first release on Martin Buttrich and Loco Dice's Desolat label has been hugely hyped and charted loads of people of late, so I was quite excited to get my ears around it. Once I did, I found myself replaying it again and again - not because it excited me - the polar opposite is unfortunately the case. Just WHY have people been getting excited about this track? It's just boring proggy nonsense that has no appeal to me at all. Steer clear of this at all costs. It's yet another lesson that whatever the hype is surrounding a record, you could always give it the once over before blindly buying it just because of others charting it. Whatever happened to interesting, engaging 'minimal' tracks that stand up on their own accord rather than having the excuse of being a mixing tool? Come on bandwagon jumpers - surely you can do better than this lazy load of drivel!

Check Todd Burns' totally on point review of it over at RA here.

For people wanting to listen to something different to all the usual gubbins that's about at the moment, why not look to the past instead? I've been getting some serious play from Shit Robot's mix over at Beats In Space (scroll down to the June shows) that, thankfully, steers away from everyone else's 'oh I'll just do a conceited disco mix' attitude on the show. Packed full of chunky old school house joints and UK rave anthems, it's been a breath of fresh of air for me on my walks to and from work. Yes, that's right, I've finally got round to getting myself an mp3 player that works. Living on the edge of technological advancement, as usual! I've been getting my ears round a few mixes at the moment whilst on my wanders - other recent recommendations would be the Prosumer and Crowdpleaser mixes over at Resident Advisor, and also the ones over at the Warm agency's blog. Ones of note would be the Trickski and Gerd mixes. Hours of audio enjoyment for you there - should be enough to tide you over until I get my computer fixed next week (should be Thursday, but don't count on it!).

I'll also be back with news of the guest for our TAPE relaunch at Native on November 16th (along with ticket details, which you blog readers will get an advance heads up on). It's a secret at the moment, but let's just say that come rain or shine, we're sure he'll smash it out...

Friday, October 05, 2007

The Miller's Tale

Wotcha, Puffin Jack here, with the details of this weekends clubbing activity in Bristol. I have been tasked with this role as comrade Carnage's computer is on the blink, so here goes...

Right first off most importantly this Friday, today in fact, sees the return of our beloved 'Best Before:' party. Regular readers of the blog may remember us banging on about it, it was the one we used to do in a pub, the Bank, until it closed down. Well low and behold the pub has re-opened under the management of one the ex-bar staff! Great news for us as he was keen to welcome us back, having experienced the sheer hedonistic joy of a whole pub dancing on tables to 12" mixes of Fleetwood Mac! We were overjoyed to hear the bank was reopening as I can honestly say, and speak for Richard as well when I say it is the best boozer in town. I have lost many a Friday night and Saturday afternoon in there and don't regret a second. So what do we have in store tonight then? Having previously put on the likes of Chris Duckenfield and Mudd, the nights overlord, Sell by Dave decided to keep it local for the first one. That basically means us and our mates playing, keep it in the family eh?! Step up then The Kelly Twins, Andy Clarkson, Legendary Tone and Matt Oldham. Expect the usual heady mix of disco in its many forms, a dose of hip house, some random rock and lots of other gubbins. To recap then:

Best Before: @ The Bank
Friday 5th October
7pm - late

Next up it is my duty to tell you about our friends under_score party this Saturday. A few weeks back they put on an excellent party at the 'world famous' Blue Mountain club here in Bristol. Although unfortunately rather under attended it was one of the best nights musically this year. Babyford and Oliver Ho absolutely rocked it. Ho in particular played a fantastic set of stripped back, and at times almost industrial techno which had me dancing and whooping like a mad thing! This Saturday sees the under_score crew return to the basement vibes they are famed for as they take over the tube with special guest Dave Miller. The last time Dave played for the guys was down at Cosies, about two years ago. It has to rank as one of my favourite parties the crew have put on. For those unaware of Miller's work, he has been repeatedly compared to Jan Jelinek, although it has to be said most producers who make glitch based music end up being compared to the mighty Jelinek at one time or another! For me though Miller's work has the added advantage of a real love for low slung, rumbling bass, something which we here in Bristol love. When he played Cosies, which is an intimate cellar bar that more normally plays host to reggae or dubwise flavours, his slow skanking, glitchy bass sounds sat perfectly with the ambiance of the place as toothless Rastas and nerdy Caucasians head nodded along in a stoned approval. This was two years ago now, and apparently Miller has moved his sound on a little to encompass a more clubby vibe, i'll pass over to Duncan 'undeniable magic' George, under_score's lynchpin to tell you more:

"Since he last played for us Dave has moved from Perth, Australia, to Bethnal Green and has been soaking up inspiration from his new surroundings. He is also fresh from some fruitful collaborations with key players in the Australian music scene; Triosk and Pivot. As Roam The Hello Clouds they explore the intersection of live jazz and electronics on their album 'Near Misses' for the influential German label ~scape. With fellow countryman Fiam he released an album of glowing downtempo electronics 'A Modern Romance' on UK imprint Expanding Records.
His solo work takes in the fractured low end shuffle of dubstep, the shifted jazz keys and soulful rhythms of house legend Theo Parrish, and the detailed interference of Jan Jelinek, effortlessly leaping the divide between the dancefloor and the outer limits. Never afraid to take it slo-mo, he defies the 'faster/harder' brigade with deft and determined broken beats and a melodic approach which is at once humanistic and totally alien. It is beautiful, mutated funk music that you feel with your head, heart and feet, and it has won him fans the world over."

Well that pretty much says it all. Here are details of the show:

under_score @ the tube
w/ Dave Miller
Saturday 6th October
10pm - 4am

Dave has sent us a cheeky edit he has done of a certain US indie band, which would have been nice to put up here today, but due to my technical ineptitude I will have to pass it on to Carnage to post sometime next week!

All that is left for me to say is have a good weekend, and oh yeah if your in blighty SUPPORT THE STRIKING POSTIES!

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