Field Work, our friends and party promoters in South London, have a live collaboration upcoming from Land of Light’s Jonny and Kyle and Black Merlin of World Unknown and Bird Scarer performing together as Kommune. The reason for this? It is Field Works first birthday (well done guys!) so they wanted to do something special you’ll never see again. I am getting quite into these semi-art and music happenings (see the Spirit Bear Mezcal Ensemble). It’s interesting and perfect to get lost in something that you can’t predict. In advance of the show collaborators Kyle and George took time out to answer some questions.
What are the origins of Kommune?Kyle: As a group, we individually have our various music projects going on but have also collaborated together for many years through DJing and producing records. It only seems natural that we should do something live together. Kommune seems like a good platform for us to express ourselves, warts and all, in today’s perfect world of ‘no mistakes’. Many groups have played improvised sets but we had never heard of people doing it in this manner with electronic instruments before. The idea spawned from jamming in the studio with drum machines and step sequencers and seeing what would happen if we did that in front of an audience. We played one gig together a while back (under a different guise) and the results were pretty interesting!George: The origin of Kommune comes from a mutual understanding of three producers coming together and performing as one.
How do the improvised aspects of the show work?George: Our live sets are purely improvised. We’re testing ourselves as artists and the capabilities of the machines that we use. It is the fight between man and the machine. Who takes control of who.Kyle: The improvisation makes things unpredictable and interesting. We each take our own part of the sound, one on drum machines, another on sequenced synths, another on effects, sequences and mixing. It’s like any band playing instruments: one on drums, one bass and so on. We all know each other well musically and have a mutual understanding of the sound we are trying to make so we will try to feed off of the sounds the others are coming up with, holding back or stepping up as appropriate.
How are your different sounds are reflected in Kommune?George: As a group we all have our own individual projects happening and itis just a different platform for us to express ourselves in this perfect world of no mistakes. Stripping it back and rebuilding. Every gig we play will be new and fresh to who ever wants to hear us.
Tell us about the visual elements of the show…George: There’s a visual aspect with any band we’re no different. It’s about the music.Kyle: Mankinis all the way!
How would you describe Kommune’s sound?George: AnalogKyle: Anybody who has messed around on synths and drum machines will know that each device has it’s own characteristic and specific sound; that will have as much to do with Kommune’s music as the individual operating it (ed). However, we don’t know what it will sound like yet though, we just have a vague idea. “Analog” would probably describe it pretty well.