When and why did you decide that it is about time to do a collaboration?
Joey: I think with us both getting into doing techno it seemed like a natural thing. We had both done releases on Sonic Groove, one of my personal favourite labels, and Adam was up for the idea so we went for it.
Rhys: We have known each other for a while now and are always talking gear and music, and have also hung out in each other’s studios so it seemed like something I am surprised we didn’t get to sooner. Joey had also contributed to some projects I had worked on, and I did a little bit on one track of his last album so there was already a base of familiarity there.
What was it like working together, both of you as distinguished experts of synthesizers? How did your approach to music/ your method of working harmonise?
J: It was honestly very easy. We met in my studio in Berlin and jammed out most of the record in a few days in early 2018, then edited them over the year in between all of our other projects. It was pretty fast because we both have a lot of ideas and can work quickly on complimenting each others contributions. The editing and finalizing process took a bit longer as we were in different countries, but the tracks are not so different from the initial demos. Dissipate started off as a Front Line Assembly track that Rhys had written by himself. I did some work on it and we pitched it to Bill for the new record, but he wanted to take things in another direction so we decided to use it for the EP. The other three were written in my studio.
R: I think it worked quite well because we both have different fortes. A simple way of describing it would be Joey brings the grime and I bring the gloss. In the studio we were both doing different things that complimented each other right from the start, so it was a fairly organic process.
“Joey brings the grime and I bring the gloss.” Rhys Fulber
Did you know where this musical journey would go to right from the start or are you surprised by the outcome yourselves?
R: Not surprised, but at the same time we didn’t know exactly where it would go. There were no set destinations. We just started jamming and recorded. After that of course we refined our parts remotely and that is where more of the changes occurred. The biggest transformation, and the only one we didn’t start at Joey’s Berlin studio was the track Dissipate. It was something I had already that started out as a more synthy EBM type groove. I sent it to Joey, who added a different beat, and from there it sort of evolved into this more modern, moody soundtrack industrial piece.
“It was fun to just run with that.” Joey Blush
J: I think the initial goal was to just combine our sounds and make an effective EP, there wasn’t so much premeditation about what it should be. The first track we did was Threat Perception, and we were definitely both surprised with how it came out. We were messing with one of the filters in my modular system and came across this great acidic sound. Once we tapped out the tempo we realized it was around 150bpm! It was fun to just run with that. The acid line is just barely in there now as a texture, but it was the genesis of the entire thing, and definitely not what I thought our first track would be like. I honestly expected something more deep and moody, like Dissipate for example.
Is this collaboration thought as one-off experiment?
R: I could see us jamming more in the future but we have to see what happens. There has also been talk of a live set using this material and probably some improvisation, but nothing is set yet. Stay tuned.
J: Who knows what the future holds ...
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