Wed Jun 19 2024  

atome, centrale digitale




France Techno Ural 13 Records
Növö interview - Psi49net - GenComProdukts - BE 

- Atome: First of all Laurent, we'd like to congratulate you for your brilliant, eclectic and full of references "Konztruktivizm" opus which sounds a little different from the current electro outputs (cf. our review on Atome pages). According to echo you might have heard from here to there, how did people react to your album?
- Növö: Well, thank you for the congratulations. To answer your question regarding how did people react to the album, I'm delighting of the first positive comments I received from here to there. We're living actually a real infatuation for past years, it's probably the main reason of its success. 70's and 80's are main influences for fashion and design. And music doesn't escape to them as well ! As involved into those underground movements (end of 70's and early 80's), I simply wanted to satisfy myself with synthesizing my first loves and my first artistic ways started during my musical career. My point of view is that we haven't finished yet and we don't need to re-invent something else to pretend banish another. Furthermore, news are not necessarily the sign of creativity. I keep on thinking we have not completely explored the ways that are mine today and there's still a huge potential. Years have erased old standards but perspectives are still as important. This album is a kind of retrospective of my new wave, electro and industrial years, evolution in addition!

- A.: Let's talk about its content. How would you describe "Konztruktivizm" artistic line and how would you qualify your own sound?
- N.: Konztruktivizm is a synthesis of my main influences as well as a kind of modern come back to sound of my first productions. It's quite difficult for me to sum up my style or my sound. Indeed, since I started my career in 1979, I often was the subject of misunderstanding from medias, expecting me elsewhere than where I was. Graded directions are not part from me. I rather belong to the ones who try to make things go forward, not to make them stagnate. I dislike copies of what's mainstream, furthermore I work in a creation system which is basically different from the ones used by 75% of the actual electronic artists cause I work function of "projects" and "concepts". Konztruktivizm is a concept from Növö's project. Its concept is based on a personal vision of a constructivism no more managed by human, but by evolution that comes from its existence. Its own evolution (machinery, robotic, computer science, consumer society etc.) becomes the leader and no more the slave of its existence, all this in a totalitarian system, just return of things...

- A.: 17 cuts in one opus, it's almost rare nowadays. How do you explain this?
- N.: I don't explain it cause I'm not working in this kind of perspective that follows a certain standard in a matter of style or marketing. Like I said earlier, I work on projects and concepts. I'm not trying to limit their forwarding but I rather try to express them with aptness and the closer to the meaning of my vision. About Konztruktivizm, final result was 17 tracks, no less, no more !

- A.: Could you introduce "Nagazaki", one of "Konztruktivizm" climax which seems to be a cover of legendary Belgium band POLYPHONIC SIZE. Are you familiar with its leader, Roger Marc VanDeVoorde? How did you meet him in that case and how did he appreciate the track? Why did you want "Nagazaki" to appear in your album?
- N.: Before all, I must remind shortly who were Polyphonic Size. Belgian band formed by Roger Marc VanDeVoorde in 1978, it had a major influence in Belgian post punk new electronic scene. Punk was getting out of breath and a new generation of atypical artists started to invent new things using new instruments (synthesisers, rhythm boxes). P.S were part of this "new wave" at their beginnings, and their ideas were really originals. Discovered and produced by Jean Jacques Burnel from Stranglers, Roger-marc and its partners released several albums and EPs from 1979 to 1989 when they split up. They worked with the biggest producers as Nigel Gray (Siouxie and the Banshees), Taxi Girl but also Daniel Bressanuti (Front 242). Belgium was welcoming during those years a small scene of electronic artists who became later references we know. Stephane Werquin, ex-radio player and promoter of parties in Brussels helped me to meet Roger-marc. I've been influenced by P.S first productions at the beginning of my career. According to 80's passion and electronic new wave strike back, I thought I would introduce him to the new generation cause P.S is part of those less known bands that are worthy of interest. After working several months in GenCom studios, "Nagazaki" remix came out. I made Roger-Marc listen it. He gave me his feedback and agreement immediately. He felt very surprised by this cover completely different from the original (specially with rhythms) but he was extremely enthusiastic. I'm quite proud of final result.

- A.: Did you write all "Konztruktivizm" lyrics and what are your favourite themes?
- N.: Yes, I did all the lyrics (except Nagazaki), the lead vocals, and the artwork. I don't really have favourite themes, I'm influenced by so much things but I would say human life and its environment, political, occult and psychic structures have a special interest for me.

- A.: What did Anthony Rother say about your album? Have you met him? Why did we have to wait so long before its release?
- N.: I still remember the day I received a call from him. He left a message on my voice mail saying roughly : "Congratulations for the tracks, brilliant! Few tracks are less but overall it's really good". He appreciated also GenComProdukts artwork (first graphic works, not the definitive ones). I was very glad of the greetings and its offer to sign me, all the more than I had nothing new over the last few years and I was on the point to stop my musical career. Thanks to my ex-boyfriend who forced me to send a demo, this project happened. This demo was only featuring few tracks as "I've Been Inoculed" , first Növö Ep released on Psi49net, "Dial 6.05am", "Our Future", "Relative To U", "A Strange Melody" which have been released on Psi49net compilation "Electro Commando 1 - Welcome To Psi City", plus two or three other tunes. Most of them were not completed! This project started in 1999 and closed in 2002 when I definitively finished it. It wasn't the first time I was in Contact with Anthony Rother: In 93/94 I already sent him a demo from Genetik System project which received a negative answer but strong encouragements. The story says that few months later those same tracks were signed at Distance Records / Sony music on "Initiatique" album. Regarding Konztruktivizm's out, I have to admit I met lots of problems. I was not expecting it at all any more! First, it had a strong delay without explanations (previously to be released early in 2002), then a change of distributor (Intergroove instead of EFA), and at last a delay with the definitive achievement production of the cover, all this almost nearly without any communication from both parts (GenComProdukts International and General Music GMBH).

- A.: Could you introduce yourself a little bit more ? Where do you come from, what is your musical background, when and where did you hook up with electronic music?
- N.: I come from Antwerp (Belgium), although I was born in Berlin where I spent most of my adolescence before I left to Brussels for my high school studies. I live for years now both in France and Belgium. I started my musical career in 1978, when I was 13. At that time, I was part of a Berliner Punk band which received a quite good success. My career is almost eclectic : from New Wave to electro projects at the beginning of the 80's (lots of productions and contributions under various pseudos more or less known), passing through industrial music and EBM. Around 1989, I started new direction by discovering Acid house and New Beat. From there Genetik System project was born (no doubt the famous one because I did lots of performances around the world) then at the end of the 90's with X2proton (Ambient) project. I discovered electronic music through 70's atmospheric German wave (Tangerine Dream, Can, Neu, Klaus Shulze etc...) then via Kraftwerk and of course Telex. But my taste for this kind of music really grown at the end of the 70's thanks to this new wave of "Punk-electro" artists like US "Suicide". "Human League" first works, leaded by ingenious Ian Graig Marsh and Martin Ware, but also Gary Numan, John Foxx, Cabaret Voltaire, DAF, French band Moderne (completely unknown!), Kas Product, Depeche Mode and Ultravox, were and are still my main influences. Later on, various artists world-wide came to my influences because I'm not only interested with electronic. I like 80's Gothic and Industrial, specially SPK or TG bands to name.

- A.: Let's talk about Genetik System, a musical project which had a turning point in your musical career. Explain us how did you manage to pass through experimental transe to pure electro music?
- N.: I didn't pass from there to this because electro is one of tendencies I exploit for more than 20 years. I dislike labels and for me it's only electronic music at its largest sense. Let's listen to Genetik Sytem "Initiatique" album released in 95 and then listen to "Welcome to Psycholand", out two years later and you'll see that there's some electro tracks on there. "Apocalypse", "Trauma" or even "Welcome to Psycholand !" are the best examples. To conclude with Genetik System, I must underline that it wasn't a good business because I'm still involved in a lawsuit with swindlers from Distance Production, a still active label that never respected its financial commitments! At the end, I've been totally spoiled and it is good to say the truth in order to warn the ones who would like to work with the label.

- A.: As Növö, you experiment electro. As X2 Proton, you explore a more ambient side. How do you manage those numerous musical projects at the same time? What do you expect from the music? What other areas of music would you like to work in?
- N.: Once more, I'm not working function of management term, career or style but rather function of expression. I don't belong to the ones who lock them up into "mainstream" yoke. I just try to express myself and share this expression to the ones who want, nothing more! Ambient and experimental allow me to explore new landscapes without any kind of prohibition! No place for dogma or other classic musical systems diktats like you could find in Techno or "mainstream" electro. It's far easier to copy what has been done than innovate or try to make style go forward. Ambient and experimental look like rebellious in this standardised industry.

- A.: Could you explain your creation process. I mean, how do you create sounds? Do you start with a specific idea (is it already all in your head when you start music) or do you experiment sounds until something specific appeals your ears? Which kind of equipment or material are you using? Mostly analog machines?
- N.: I conceive my sounds and productions from some ideas. Once an idea is really clear, I synthesise it. I mainly use analog instruments for several reasons: 1) Heat 2) Grain 3) Quickness of creation for brut matter but I like also combining numeric equipments, not to emulate analog machines which is often the case nowadays, but to use important abilities of synthesis those instruments can offer. To me, we have to use numeric only for what it is. Its dryness can be interesting but on the other hand I'm not for its systematic and unique use. My favourite analog machines are Sequential Prophet5, Moog Memorymoog+, Korg mono/poly and Roland SH09. Regarding rhythm box, Korg KR 55 and of course TR808. About numeric, Roland JD800 or Sampler of course. During more than 20 years, I had the opportunity to use tons of synthesisers, I invite you to see the list at GenComProdukts International website.

- A.: What is GenComProduks purpose? Could you introduce them?
- N.: GenComProdukts International is a promotional unite created basically for my projects. As one goes along, this unite has opened to new artists who gained my attention as Flood Veyor, leaded by talented French Frank Goupil or SIDHARTHA, orchestrated by Andrew Kiritchenko, a expérimental artist from Ukraine.

- A.: Is there a Belgium electro scene and how would you describe it?
- N.: Sure. An important one far more underground and radical than the one we can see in France which can be qualified as non-existent. France is a place for musical diktats. It is not new. About electronic, this country can't escape from "binary rhythm" ghetto, which is quite boring finally. Belgium electronic culture was born 25 years ago and is still very active. Belgium electro is more focused on experimental and dark while in France "popy style" is more important.

- A.: Who's the artist you never worked with and you'd like to in a near future?
- N.: They are many ! Mainly the ones from the old generation, mine indeed ! To name a few that I deeply respect, I would say John Foxx and Suicide (Martin rev/Alan Vega)! I'd like also to work with a real singer with a cavernous voice!

- A.: What could we expect from Növö in the year 2003?
- N.: Being happy and welcomed hotly everywhere I will play.

- A.: Are you interested in a live experience?
- N.: Justly! I work hard for this and I'm looking forward to get new bookings. I send a call! Performance is complete but I'm expecting for daring promoters. A date is already booked in Paris on September the 26th at the Nouveau Casino along with Ultradyne from Detroit and Adult. I'm waiting for the rest...

- A.: Few words for the world-wide electro community?
- N.: Audacity !
Nexus 6, 26/05/2003





I've Been Inoculed