syrenomelia interviewed by mindaugas peleckis
Q: Can you tell me in short what the main ideas are behind your music? Could you name your favorite compositions / albums?
A: My music is always a marriage of melodies and experimental sounds. Cinematic music and sounds from nature (animals, weather...) always inspire me the most. My all-time fave is the piece from Picnic At Hanging Rock which is often called the “Ascent Music”. The mix of the heavenly chorals with the screams and animal noises from the film, it sounds so intense and disturbing, left a lasting impression on me. When it comes to using samples and soundscapes, the film The Innocents (Jack Clayton) has always been a great example to me.
Q: What is and what is not "Sound Art"?
A: Just mixing some drones without much creativity, that to me is definitely not “sound art”. You can take a sample and just insert it into the mix, that can sound great, but I don’t find that very creative and not really “sound art”. On the other hand, if you manipulate that same sample by putting effects on it, turn buttons to give it texture and even a kind of melody, and/or mix it with other sounds/samples, then it becomes a true creation and therefore “sound art”. It’s a thin line...just depends on how much time and passion you put into it.
Q: What do you think about relations between the old art and computer art? Are they compatible?
A: It is of course all about creativity and not about the tools you use. I use both and mix real instruments like guitar, piano, cello with computer synths and effects, and that combination pretty much shapes our sound. I adore processing real instruments via computer, sometimes transforming them beyond recognition: low piano notes that become like thunder rumble, high guitar notes like ethereal voices... To do such things with analogue equipment it would quickly costs me a small fortune. So probably a computer is the not only the most versatile but also the most democratic music tool ever invented. It gives low-budget projects access to stuff that before only rich and famous bands could afford.
Q: What do you think about the thousands of neofolk/industrial/ambient/avantgarde bands/projects? Is it a kind of trend, or just a tendency forwards better music?
A: There is currently a certain saturation in underground music. You hear too many things that sound the same and styles that have been around too long, music that is too much the result of musicians copying each other, and for whom avantgarde is nothing more than a way to be hip. If it leads to better music... I think it is always a big challenge to innovate and be contemporary, but meanwhile avoiding trendiness. To be innovating and timeless at the same time. And that’s for me going forwards to better music.