Loving the bomb: Dr Strangeloop interview
Dr Strangeloop is Californian and was born into a family of film-makers. He’s long stopped worrying and loves the bomb = music.
His tracks sometimes sound like a bunch of androids hijacking mother earth, humming the theme from Blade Runner on a never-ending trip into galaxies far beyond… you’ll see, he’s a very original kind of fella and also does visuals for Flying Lotus, who says Strangeloop has had a big influence on his music. In one interview with an L.A. newspaper he said his art was “some trans-cultural beast from the future that can’t be controlled”. Now, that’s what I’m talkin about…
How did you start getting into music?
I’ve been tapping out little intricate rhythms on anything that’s around as long as I can remember, its kind of an OCD quality I have. I always feel rhythms in me, and over the years they have come to inform everything I do. I took classical piano lessons for 8 years before abandoning them in favor of electronic experimentation.
When I was 14 I began working on Protools and helped my high school found its electronic music department. There was never a question in me of whether I wanted to make music or media, it all came naturally and intuitively…it was in a way the most obvious thing to do with my time.
If there was no music in the world, what would you do instead?
I think about the world as basically musical in nature, so it is very hard to divorce music from it. I think if there were no music in the world, there would be no world 😀
Who would you like to collaborate with?
Hmm… There is definitely a lot of people I would love to collaborate with, but off the tope of my head I would love to collaborate with CLARK ; I’m just finishing up this LORN promo video for Brainfeeder, and it is a trip to see his credit on there. He mastered the album, and it sounds incredible. He really inspired me in a way that few musicians have … his sound is a future-aesthetic I can roll around with, an empowering companion, strangely emotional, and psychically catalytic.
What was one of your most memorable gigs?
Oh I couldn’t say, but this last Flying Lotus gig [Cosmogramma release party] was pretty phenomenal. It was the first time where Steve and I were really collaborating on the visuals live. We had visuals feeds from both our computers running through a video-mixer and I was utilizing both to weave it all together. I have performed with Steve so much, and he has less of a need
How important is technology to you and your music?
I think of technology in a Marshall McCluhan kind of way; all our technologies are extensions of the Self. “The book is an extension of the eye, the clothing is an extension of the skin, electric circuitry is an extension of the central nervous system.” I am my technology, and it has as much a voice in the creative process as I do. However, I think it is important to remember that the most advanced technology we know of is our own nervous systems … that’s a really good starting point.
A quotation you like?
“[We are] catalysts to say what has never been said, to see what has never been seen. To draw, paint, sing, sculpt, dance and act what has never before been done. To push the envelope of creativity and language. And what’s really important is, I call it, the felt presence of direct experience. Which is a fancy term which just simply means to have to stop consuming our culture. We have to create culture. Don’t watch TV, don’t read magazines, don’t even listen to NPR. Create your own roadshow. The nexus of space and time, where you are now, is the most immediate sector of your universe.
“And if you’re worrying about Michael Jackson of Bill Clinton or somebody else, you are disempowered. You are giving it all away to icons. Icons which are maintained by electronic media, so that you dress like X and have lips like Y.This is shit-brained kind of thinking. That is all cultural diversion. And what is real is you and your friends, your associations, your highs, your orgasms, your hopes, your plans, and your fears. And we are told no. We are unimportant, we’re peripheral, get a degree, get a job, get a this, get a that, and then you’re a player. You don’t even want to play in the game. You want to reclaim your mind and get it out of the hands of cultural engineers who want to turn you into a half-baked moron consuming all this trash that’s being manufactured out of the bones of a dying world.”
~ Terence McKenna