Separate _ Interview With Stormfield [Combat Recordings / Fausten]

Stormfield _ 1

Entertaining chat & an amazing mix for subsekt 043 by Stormfield.

Derek Stormfield does many things very well. He runs Combat Recodings whilst producing music under his own name in parallel with his work with Fausten. His music is as fucked-up up and addictive as the visuals that he creates and performs.

Always interesting..  and we’re genuinely blessed to have got the 90min mix for subsekt 043, as its just one of those mixes that goes everywhere. You’ll have plenty of moments where you’ll go, “What am I listening to?”.. in a genreless confused state. It’s been in the pipeline a LONG time and now its finally here.

 

I’ll let him chat a bit now..

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Hi Derek, how are you doing? It’s been a while since we spoke in the last Fausten interview (Read interview here). How has life been treating you since?

Yeah things have been fine overall. Apart from the house getting broken into and some expensive kit stolen. But I’m back up and running now with faster machines. Just generally keeping busy paying bills, doing musical/visual stuff in preparation for Germany gigs, and training to get my fitness up this year.

Serious? Man.. Really sorry to hear that!

The album has been out a while now.. what has the reaction to it been like?

If the reviews are any indication, so far so good. I get the impression the Fausten reviewers smoke a lot of weed, especially the French. Their write-ups tend to be very good, esoteric and graphic. I’ll paste a few quotes :)

”totally indulge instruments of torture and sink into a sado-masochistic liberation”.

“A whole range of horrific textures condensed into a single body, eaten away from within.”

“promotes concussion and loss of early blows of phalanges teeth.” (Google translation)

“The idea of any tenderness is completely obsolete now. We had rarely heard something so violent,”

”Do not listen to the morning if you want to keep a bit of good humor and joy of life for the day.”

“Cryptic and oppressive world that we encounter most of the time, that tasty paradise lost, dark ambient. The infection is spreading slowly but surely closes like a clever trap on the listener who had not expected the crescendo of violence.”

“Their first album is like an unbridled orgy in a septic tank, a rape sphincters’ meeting without local anaesthetic” (Google translation)

“Whoever gives you the taste of blood mixed with dust in the mouth when the septum breaks. Breathe through the nose especially, and let pee. “

Hahaha.. They’re hilarious. Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen after 10 pints of Chablis. Google Translate comes up trumps again!

I know you were doing a few shows as Fausten with Julien / Monster X? How did they go in the end? Where were they?

We did a couple of shows recently in Germany. The first was Maschinenfest, in a gigantic turbine hall. The fest has been going yearly for over a decade and has the largest gathering of people wearing black clothes I’ve ever seen. From the stage you saw a cavernous hall with a moving sea of blackness. Julien and I went on wearing loud Hawaii shirts . It was one of those “THIS IS SPARTA!” moments.

Soundwise, Julien did the beats/bass while I did the soundscapes and visuals. Overall people seemed to like the set although some found it noisy, expecting it to sound closer to the album tracks.

There was some very strong reactions to the visuals. We’d been told weeks before that bondage / fetish stuff is a bit overdone for that audience, so instead the more extreme porn stuff got used – and ended up having people say “nice but that was heavy, man”, “this is too much!”, “are they taking the piss?” or “it is simply not necessary for such visuals to accompany this music”. But it generated debate, which is good. Overall the fest is really friendly and chatty. The rig was well organised, the scale of it is impressive; the backstage cafe is the size of Fabric room 2!

You can’t please everyone, eh?

And you were over in Germany for Burn The Machine there the other week too.. Fausten were playing there, weren’t they?

Yeah I’ve just about recovered from Burn the Machine (in Berlin). Burn the Machine is more like family. It’s run by friends that I’d gladly hang out with if we lived in the same city. Same like Maschinenfest, they put a lot of work into making it good. The setup was different this time, there were three of us: Jerome doing visuals, Julien and myself on the sounds. Again the Hawaii theme. One of my controllers stopped working halfway so the reverbs were on too long, but this got fixed. Overall, a friend said the set was “deeply disturbing” :) Another friend said the visuals weren’t disturbing enough for her. We will try harder :)

“Not disturbing enough?”.. FFS!? Haha!!

Has the show changed much since the beginning of the album? More extreme? Less disturbing? haha

The way the Fausten show is set up, it’s more like a live remixing of the tracks over many separate channels using their basic elements, plus throwing in more things we’ve done / picked up since then. Bear in mind some of the album tracks are up to 2 years old. Add custom effects racks and random automations in the workflow multiplied by 2 or 3 people, we could not make the same set even if we tried. There were maybe 10 rehearsals in total and every one sounded different. But the set in Berlin had more acid lines and screaming.


Music production and history are my biggest passions in life. Though people often say that Techno is faceless and should be about the music blah, blah, blah.. I believe in the need to document the people and stories behind it. Techno is a very small world in reality and I think it needs a proper resource. I hope that everyone who is interested in Techno finds this blog accessible in terms of the way that it is written. I personally prefer to hear the artists voice as loud as the music and never enjoy synopsised and pasteurised versions of old conversation; the sort that's peppered with the occasional quote here and there.

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