Here’s a really good interview with Kontakte from At The Sinema discussing the new album, ‘We Move Through Negative Space’.
KONTAKTE’s second studio album ‘We Move Through Negative Space’ hits the airwaves this April 11th and we here at ATS were lucky enough to get a sneaky peak. We loved it so much, we begged them for an interview and they happily obliged. The band have withdrawn from live performances for a while to concentrate on new material and worked incredibly hard to make the song writing, instrumentation and production better than their debut album and trust us, all that effort paid off. But I’ll let them do the rest of the talking:
ATS: On your myspace page, you describe your sound as ‘Hypnotic, textural, cinematic noise’, how did you find this sound?
K: Well, if we have arrived at that sound then we’re heading in the right direction. Its very difficult to analyse and describe your own music. These words were elements we wanted our music to include.
ATS: Are there artists out there who influence you?
K: There’s a myriad of artists who influence us certainly, but hopefully we are not influenced too directly or obviously with the sound we produce. The whole band listens to a range of similar ‘guitar bands’, perhaps anything from Mono to The Album Leaf, but individually each member definitely listens to different types of music that all gel together in the melting pot that is Kontakte. From Ludivico Einaudi, Eluvium, Torche, Nils Frahm, Bon Iver to Sunn O))) – its all in there.
ATS: Your second album ‘We Move Through Negative Spaces’ will be released in April – what can we expect?
K: What can you expect? A much stronger and concise record in comparison to the first. We are a much tighter unit now and the positivity of that certainly comes through in the music. We were very proud to have the first album released, at the time it was a massive boost to find a label that loved what we did and wanted to work with us – but once we started working on the second album properly it wasn’t long before it took its own path and we realized we were writing something that was going to take everything we had previously done up to another level.
ATS: A lot of artists struggle with ‘second album syndrome’. Did you find it hard to move away from your debut album and find something fresh?
K: In many respects this second album was an easier experience than writing the first. We started writing as soon as Album 1 was released, we had a few things half written and were just excited to be getting back into the studio. There was no ‘second album syndrome’ for us at all. As it is we’re already discussing Album 3! Though i think that’s quite normal for musicians and artists in general to always be looking forward and considering what you’re going to do next.
ATS: From the tracks I’ve listened to, there seems to naturalistic feel to the songs, is this something that influences you when writing a song?
K: A naturalistic feeling? That’s a good thing to hear when you consider all of our beats and rhythms are electronic. We certainly look for a warmth of tone when we produce our music. We want it to sound quite earthy. We are to some extent inspired by our surroundings, whether that would be the city or travels to other countries, staring at the sea or walking through a forest.
ATS: You played at the Feedback Fever Festival in Hamburg and have tour dates in Hamburg and Munich this year- we’re seeing a pattern- are you well received in Germany? Do you see a difference in audiences compared to gigs in England?
Feedback Fever in Hamburg have been very good to us. Their festival last year was our first show out of the UK and an amazing experience. We were very well received. There is definitely an enthusiasm out there that is incredibly difficult to capture at home, especially in London. I’m not sure exactly why that is other than they love their music and are simply happy to show it. They don’t expect to be impressed, they’re just up for a good time. We are heading back this spring for more dates and are hitting some more cities, it should be a good party.
ATS: If you could collaborate with anyone, who would it be?
K: Collaborating with a renowned producer would be great for us. The first and second albums were both self-produced so it would be interesting to hear what someone else would do with us and our music. Having other musicians whom we admire mixing our stuff would also be interesting. That’s what was great about the first album, having the entire record remixed by friends and other musicians we felt a kinship with. In every remix they brought out elements and created something different to what we had first produced. I’d love to hear what our album would sound like if Olafur Arnalds or even Brian Eno was behind the desk! That would be special.
ATS: If you could wipe any genre of music (or any musician) off the face of the earth who would it be?
K: Good question. Funk Rock is a bit of an oddity. Not sure we should signal any one musician individually though. I tend not to register music I don’t like, I find what I consider bad music quite easy to ignore.
ATS: And finally (and I’m very sorry about this, we decided this would be our generic ‘ask everyone question’ but didn’t really think it through) what underwear are you wearing?
K: I’ve just got out the shower so…. i’m not wearing any. You?
ATS: Funnily enough, as I’m writing this up, I’ve just got out of the shower too.