klangstabil are an experimental band; to prove this, their next release is derived from the abuse of a gameboy. to support their work and others they started their own label megahertz. along with their own releases they are responsible for a series of compilations and selected releases by other artists. to learn more we spoke to them about klangstabil and the label megahertz.
ri: for how long has your megahertz label been running? how does it relate to your work as klangstabil and what role does it have in your work?
Mhz: we founded klangstabil in 1994; two years later we had the idea to establish our own label. in the meantime megahertz has the same status like klangstabil concerning our thoughts and actions. megahertz nowaddays isn't only a label, but a multimedia-company and does distribution as well. megahertz arose out of our work with klangstabil. we're independent and able to give a clear point of view that way. megahertz is a fortress for klangstabil.
ri : you have a number of releases already planned for the upcoming months. these include your new klangstabil cd gioco Bambino which is constructed using gameboys as a sound source - can you tell us a little about this release?
MHz: like always this project evolved very spontaneously. some time ago i showed maurizio a gameboy-camera; these cameras have an additional software synthesizer, which is suprisingly versatile. maurizio couldn't stop working with it and recorded several tracks within a very short time. somehow norbert schilling, the owner of the plate lunch label got hold of this material. he liked it a lot and he asked to release it. in cooperation with norbert, we've recently been working on a concept for this album. curious thing, this gameboy; i've had mine for more than ten years now and still use it before i go to sleep. (marioland 2 for the 5th time.)
ri : along with that you have the 12" kopfmusik, and zuflucht; a double lp release, which has klangstabil on one disc and various artists on the other. how regularly do you release klangstabil 12"s - it seems that there are fairly regular releases? as for the split lp, what is the idea behind this release and who is on the second lp?
MHz: the concept-album "kopfmusik" (= headmusic) has
been announced for more than a year now, but it is still in it's "genesis".
regular release-dates would restrict us extremely. it's like in a workshop,
where pieces that have just been started or even finished are laying around.
you put that what you started aside, maybe because you don't have the
right tools for it and you continue to work on something different. the
same has to be said about "zuflucht" (= shelter); the concept
had been developed already four years ago. meanwhile other musicians and
authors appeared to realize the whole project. one lp will offer a radiophonic
play, that we're going to add music to and on the second lp other artists
are going to interpret this
ri : speaking of various artists, part of the mhz label is your series of tape compilations - what is the concept behind these? each of these releases has had a different type of packaging; how does this fit the idea behind the series
MHz: a part of our work is to give people the opportunity to present
their ideas to an audience. therefore these tapes are made. to label these
tapes we use the old greek alphabet. meanwhile we've released the third
tape, titled "gamma". there are always six different artists
on each tape. the first track is always from us. what follows are tracks
by artists we got in touch with. via internet we got in touch with artists
from new york or Brasilia, they'll be on these tapes as well. what's so
wonderful is that people get in touch with others who normally have nothing
to do with each other. it hasn't always to be music; on "beta"
we have a reading and a radiophonic play, both from two very different
people. the special covers of
ri : which compilations are still available for people to buy and how often do you release new ones? could you also tell us something of the bands that you have featured on these tapes?
Mhz: we try to release these tapes every three months. like i mentioned, the artists featured on these tapes are all very different. it's important for us to make the tape as interesting as possible. every artist, who's serious about it, is invited to contribute - no matter which kind of music he does.
ri: one of the other artists that you seem to be publishing is goran Besov with the album major malfunction already available. i've seen this name appear on a couple of recent dj lists and am curious as to what i could expect to hear? in your pcoming releases is a second goran Besov release called elements which is on two lps - how does this compare to major malfunction and why is this release vinyl when the previous one was cd?
Mhz: his first release was on vinyl as well. there's a lot of development in goran Besov's new works. his new release will be, without to exaggerate, one of the most important releases for us. major malfunction was a definite phase of work for goran, to finish well known stuff and to start to walk new ways. with elements goran moves an extreme step forward, he has broken closed doors and conquered new territories. i'm really frightened of this album. if you'll listen to it, you'll know what i mean.
ri: another release that is imminent 12" by p*a*l called play at 2am which has 4 tracks and is limited to a 1000 copies. how did his release come about?
MHz: we got in contact with pal via stefan alt (label-owner of ant-zen/hymen/duebel). we traded existing material and showed interest in pal's future projects. that resulted in a pal-release on mhz. By the way: the maxi 12" is limited to 500 copies. pal, as well as goran Besov, salt and norbert schilling are all part of the big megahertz/klangstabil-family.
ri: what other bands/releases do you have planned for the next 6 months?
Mhz: the pal 12" has just been released and is sold by various mail order outlets and distributors. also the lp Berbat sez/stoerfrequenz - weltschmerz has been released in an edition of 500 copies on heavy-vinyl about two weeks ago. further plans for 1999:
goran Besov 2x12" vinyl elements 300 limit
Mhz: like for lots of other bands the internet is the most important medium to use for communication. although i prefer the personal contact, it isn't possible for timely and financial reasons to fly to scotland and to answer your interview.
ri: what ideas in music do you regard as important - whether it is your own music or the music of others that you are releasing or even just listening to?
Mhz: probably this question shouldn't only be connected with music, as music is only one medium of many, you can use to show an idea. it's the idea itself that is important.