We speak to the girl behind the creepy productions of 'Modern Witch' after she plays Berlin's collaborative Drop Dead Fest
Last night in Berlin, BL4CK M4G1CK and Drop Dead Festival hosted an evening of 'ritual music', embracing all things neo-folk and general witchiness featuring the likes of Creep, King Dude, Modern Witch, reliq, and Legendary Pink Dots. Alongside an exclusive online showing of the new film from Matt Lambert and xorzyzt that premiered at Drop Dead, we speak to the Amsterdam-based producer Modern Witch after her stint about her dark and trippy, unique take on terrifying dance music.
...your secret talent?
Years ago, Mario Zoots and I were making music in Denver, Colorado under the name Whore Hair, it was chaotic stoner noise and we were making hours of recordings each week on an old VHS camera that we'd then edit down to 3-6 minutes and make a video. This type of intense art making has a certain lifecycle and people starting coming over and collaborating. I think our secret talent is this type of open collaboration, and allowing the band to change and find influence in other places. I'm not sure this is much of a secret, but there's been a level of anonymity about the band because we live in different cities now and the whole of the group isn't really represented by a single person. The anonymity has been unintentional but in some ways very powerful.
…the story behind your name?
I'm not sure who to credit for the name, I really can't remember. In Denver, one night, on Youtube, I think... Denver's a small city in the middle of the US, and [there are] a lot of young people who believe in magic and the power of making art and music to express and relieve the tensions of living in this in between and very industrial place. Every night music happens somewhere - Rhinoceropolis, Glob Glob, Bar Bar, Curtis Street, hi-dive, the Mercury, at various people's homes - there's a special casting in and out of certain energies in the music scene there. Denver is also fairly close city to the four corners energy vortex.
... your favourite sound?
...your favourite website?
Visit daily for guidance: http://www.oraclecat.com
... good for breakfast?
I like coffee and a nice morning LP, like Nitzer Ebb Join in the Chant Maxi-Single.
...your worst fashion secret?
Two flannel shirts, sometimes double gloves, double hats. It gets really cold in the Netherlands. Hoping to bring the beanie/baseball hat combo back in style winter 2012.
...at the top of your shit list?
How the death of big business and the related market insecurity is making the richest act even more cruel and treacherous.
...are you listening to now?
Right now, I'm really into Xex, Conrad Schnitzler, Klaus Nomi and Robert Gorl. Loving the weird Shangaan Electro: new wave dance music from Africa compilation put out by Honest Jon's Records. And I listen to a lot of Joe Hart's mixes. I'd really love to attend a Bodyhammer party in the future.
How would you describe your work?
Dance music with house and wave influences and deep dark vocals, creating a spooky effect on the dancefloor. Meant for any space high or low with a good sound system and creepy edge. Chicago native Kamran Khan, who goes by Saint, has composed most of the tracks in recent years. He's a hip-hop / house veteran and to me, he's really mastering our sound. We're trying to press as much vinyl as possible.