The Ural 13 Diktators are a part of the underground techno scene for many years and they are about to achieve their World Domination strategy thanks to their particular own style. Besides, since last years, some prestigious labels have been conquered by the sound of Helsinki. And it seems to be only the beginning ! So it's time to discover these two Finnish guys with this interview kindly done by Lauri... Which one ? That's a mystery !
- Atome : Hi the Ural 13 Diktators ! Could you introduce yourselves and tell us from which planet do you come from ??
- Lauri from Ural 13 Diktators : Hello my komrads at Atome ! We're two 80's hi-nrg disco lunatics from Helsinki, Finland who really haven't got anything else better to do than rock at our hi-end studio equipped with only Amiga and large bottles of vodka..
- A : For how many time do you work together ? How did you meet yourselves ? which is the task of each one within the band?
- Lauri : We've known each other for so long that we can remember.. maybe we exchanged some he-man toys or something and then decided to form this group. The thing is that we don't have any certain tasks.. maybe we could say that other Lauri is more dedicated making the bassdrums kick and hand claps snap and the other is concentrating more on the melodies and vocals but you really can't make a clear line like that. Normally one of us just comes out with a hook while jamming at our studio and then we start building from that. Of course we sometimes have to wrestle to decide which idea is better but no one has been hurt badly so far..
- A : What does Ural 13 mean ?
- Lauri : Well there is a really long story for the name but for you guys I'll tell you a shorter explanation.. when you read ural back wards it says the location where our studio is.. nothing to do with the fact that Finnish people origin from the ural mountains.. or that we just love Ural motorcycles.
- A : Your first names are Lauri and Lauri. Do all the boys have the same first name in Finland ? What does " Lauri Virtanen and Lauri Pitkanen " mean ? Is it a Finnish pun ??
- Lauri : Funny thing is that another group from Finland, Mr Velcro Fastener, is formed by to boys whose first name are Tatu's. So I guess in Finland you just don't work with people that have different first names..
-A : You are always wearing combat uniform with red berets on your pictures... And the titles of your tracks are especially aggressive... But your music sounds happy, funny and dynamic... have you ever thought of consulting a psychiatrist ?!
- Lauri : You know, living here in the frozen waste lands of Finland(as described by certain of you media people)can sometimes be pretty rough for your mind. When you're in a situation where you won't see daylight in winter during for 3-4 months, you easily come up with crazy ideas. And maybe heavy vodka drinking has also something to do with it...
- A : What do your parents think about your music ?
- Lauri : I don't want to describe that.. it would frighten you guys away.
- A : Who sings on your records (hits not hype, lazer attack) ? Lauri or Lauri ?
- Lauri : We've wanted to keep it as a secret but just for you guys: it's Lauri.
- A : We had sworn ourselves never to listen to Trance music and you succeeded in making us change our mind... How is this possible?
- Lauri : Well you know how dictators usually are: they make people think their way. More seriously speaking, even if it must be a cliché we don't want to categorise our music. The thing is that while producing, it's not really creative or innovative to try to do a track to fit the taste of certain genre or try please people by doing something that's already being done. Other thing is that before claiming our tracks to be trance, people should check where trance it self has got it's influences : 80s Hi-NRG / Italo disco from which we take most of our influences.
- A : While speaking about trance, some of your titles sound commercial and maybe it could become enormous hits in the clubs, just like the dance-trance remix of Kernkraft 400 from Zombie Nation. Are you conscious of that ? Are you thinking about a remix of your track made by Mauro Piccotto ??
- Lauri : Maybe we should hook up with him at Mayday this year.. We really aren't so concerned about our sales figures. We rather concentrate on doing our own thing and on developing our sound of Helsinki further. Of course we don't mind if our music will some day please a huge amount of people. But that's something we try not to think about.
- A : Your music is very particular, not always accessible at the first listening but you are releasing more and more records on different European techno labels. Did you expect such a success? How did you manage to produce EP's for Christian Morgenstern (Forte), Savas Pascalidis (Lasergun) or for the label Mental Groove?
- Lauri : Well, our first release Diskossa EP got really fine response from the top DJs from Germany and specially from Berlin few years ago and after that one thing just lead to another. Of course it was sort of a surprise that it all came so fast but we're in hurry on our mission of Total Destruction and World domination.. and believe us, you've seen nothing yet!
- A : You are also well known for your live-acts... But do you also have experience in deejaying?
- Lauri : Currently we like to concentrate on developing our live set further and get to see more clubs with our hi-end Amiga sound system. But still our Technics won't dust up at our studio - I think lauri just scratched ones needle broken..
- A : On your website, it is possible to download modules (.xm .mod) made between 1995 and 1997. Their style oscillates between techno and house, sometimes minimal or deep, sometimes acid or hard. They are very different from your current sound. Were you the only producers of these tracks ?? In which goal ? To illustrate demoscreens on computers or for your live-acts ?
- Lauri : We still love trackers.. the best possible format for making dance music and it really makes you work hard to get best possible sound. We just wanted to show computer demo scene a different kind of music from the usual and bring techno more alive in Helsinki.. We even won some prizes at Assembly which is the biggest computer demo event in the world. Back then there was more producers doing stuff under our name and that's something what will come back this year 2001 as you can found the debut ep of a talented producer from Helsinki, Kosmonaut, on Ural 13 Records this spring.
- A : That's all for the interview !! But before leaving you, we wish a long life to Ural 13 Diktators... Keep the good work guys !! And if you have a message to spread, don't hesitate !! These last lines are for you...
- Lauri : Look out, more of Total Destruction coming out this year
www.ural13.com/records www.forterecords.de www.mgroove.com www.lasergun-records.com