by Sabrina Sexton Weil
In anticipation of Pleazure's The First Episode, we spoke with DJ T-1000 about techno, Detroit, and comic strips.
Lunar: When and where did you start dj'ing?
T-1000: Detroit MI, 1988. First as a radio personality, then into clubs, then the early raves, finally internationally.
Lunar: With so many genres of "electronica" music carelessly being tossed into a bin named "techno," what to you classifies techno music? What makes techno different?
T-1000: Techno music varies from hard repetitive sounds to almost film music. It's all about the new sounds that you can discover as a producer and how you can manipulate those sounds as a DJ and still rock the crowd. It's minimal and oblique. It's not all obvious like trance or breaks; obvious candy-rave music. You have to really know music to see the differences between techno and other musics.
Lunar: How do you see the techno scene in America compared to the techno scene in Europe?
T-1000: The techno scene in Europe is way more serious about the music. It's older and more club-oriented. You'd see guys in suits and women in high heels at a techno party in Europe. But in America, that's where the energy is. Kids here just want to have a good time. I've heard Europeans say that America is like what the rave scene was for them 10 years ago. I like the rock energy of the rave kids.
Lunar: Who or what are your major influences?
T-1000: Hmmm, good question. I'm influenced by all good music. I travel a lot, and that inspires me. My style is the synthesis of a lot of good shit. I'll leave the observant music fan to pick them out.
Lunar: Why do you think Detroit has such a great techno scene? What about Detroit has cultivated such great techno dj's?
T-1000: Because in Detroit, you either spin and make tracks with the little gear you can scrape together, or not work at all. It's a hard city. That's what separates us from the trust-fund, rich daddy, raver-boy DJs. That and Detroit's great legacy of music and great radio DJs of the past, educating the public.
Lunar: How do you see the sound of your music progressing? Where did you start, and where are you going?
T-1000: Hopefully more polished, more complex, less minimal. I'd like to produce some rock stuff in the future, and some lowtempo music with sexy girl vocals. I like Curve and Garbage if that's a clue.
Lunar: Tell us about your comic strip.
T-1000: It's called "The Adventures of Orietta St. Cloud." I write and draw the whole thing. It takes place in a future where we're at war with these aliens who have invaded Earth in small doses and do terrorism, psychological warfare, things like that. St. Cloud appears wherever she's needed and kicks their asses. Much property damage and high heeled, laser-resistant, Dolce & Gabbana latex body armor ensue. The character first appeared back in 1994 under the name "Danger Girl." The new issue will be out next year. A preview of it is in my new album for Tresor.
Lunar: Tell us about your latest projects.
T-1000: My first album is out October 1st on Tresor Berlin. It's called "Progress." 13 tracks on CD, 8 on vinyl. I'm really proud of it; it's my crowning glory as a producer. It took me a year to record. It goes from full-on bangin' techno to classic Detroit style to film music without the film. It should be available everywhere. Please give it a try.
I'm also headed out to master the new EP on my own Pure Sonik label; it's called "Codes and Structures Volume Two" (PURE12). Hard bangin' minimal techno with full album cover. Out in Oct/Nov. All my projects are under the DJ T-1000 name.
I have two new live mixtapes on the way too, one from 611 Philly and another from Dust Traxx you'll have to watch the shops for those.
Lunar: Is there anything else you'd like our readers to know about you?
T-1000: Hmmm, let's see, I love sushi, Roots clothes and Tommy Hilfiger shorts. My favorite house DJ is Derrick Carter. My favorite Detroit DJ is Stacey Pullen. I like drum & bass, but it ain't all what the junglists make it out to be. Same with rap music. The Matrix was the shit, I've seen it 3 times. I like southern belle accents, so you ladies come and talk to me at the party... =)
DJ T-1000 spun a slammin' set from 2-3:30am at Studio Central on Saturday, August 28.
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