Well, so much for finding time to add to the Some Assembly Required blog this week... all I know is: time flies - and I can't even really say that I'm having all that much fun. Ah well, at least I can stay true to my goal of podcasting every week, and along with that comes the self-prescribed obligation to add to the SAR Q&A...
This week I've chosen to focus on The Coherent Encoherence.
About four years ago, I got a package from a couple of kids here in Minnesota (brothers, in fact), who've since moved on to other states - and like all the submissions I get for the show, it was opened with great excitement and then tossed into the backseat of my car (I was driving a red pickup truck at the time, with a tape player - which came in handy...), where it sat waiting for me to find the free time to review it. On this particular occasion, the aforementioned cassette player was what afforded me the opportunity to review the submission a bit more speedily than is perhaps the norm. The Coherent Encoherence had sent me a cassette tape of their sound collage composition. It was titled, "Will a Computer Give you Kids?" and it was NOISY.
I don't usually like noise. Keep that in mind. Some "noise" has gotten some time on the show, because (with a little effort) I've been able to appreciate that there was some method at work; a message, a joke, a point that was trying to be made -- something. But, for the most part, I'm a fan of music, or comedy, or the spoken word (not to mention rhythm, melody, political commentary... I think you get the idea).
So, The Coherent Encoherence... These guys were definitely noisy, but what I liked about the tape was what I perceived to be the innocence, the lack of pretension, which went into its creation. It reminded me of the first sound collages I used to make, when I was in the 9th grade (which, if I'm not mistaken, is approximately the school years of the two members of TCE, at the time that they finished this collage). It was simply a collage of what was at hand, at the time, influenced only by the mindsets of two young men who were working with that material, at that time. I listened to it over and over all week, and shared my favorite tracks with a handful of people, who (with the proper introduction), were able to appreciate what I saw (heard). The next step, I felt, was to see if we could get anyone else to hear that... and so I wrote the duo to see if they'd want to be a part of the first series of releases I wanted to put out, on a record label I launched in 2004.
"Will a Computer Give you Kids?" was released in June of 2004, on Recombinations - the first of three new releases on the new label. The response was mixed, to say the least. It earned one review which was definitely (no doubt) the worst review I've ever witnessed any band get for any release. I was shaking in my chair, as I read it. It also earned two reviews which were quite a bit more favorable. So who's to say what the critics thought? Ink 19 spared no punches, saying it was "the most annoying record since Metal Machine Music, and I mean that in a bad way," while Indieville gave it a 70% and Wire Magazine chimed in with the sort of positive ambivalence which only the most sought after reviewers will save for some of the more unknown Outsider Art - which is where, at least at this stage, I'd say The Coherent Encoherence fit in most comfortably.
They tell me they're working on new releases though, and they share most but the most negative views on their debut release. A stellar first effort, to be sure. It was wildly entertaining, for me, riding around Minneapolis in my (now, dearly departed) big red pickup truck. My new car doesn't even have a tape deck. One thing's for sure - I'm proud as heck to have been the one to put out these guy's first record! So, without further ado, here's the SAR Q&A with The Coherent Encoherence...
*Name: The Coherent Encoherence
*Are there any additional names used to describe this project: TCE
*Do you use a pseudonym? TCE, Keith Harvest (Keith’s solo side project), Lonelyfox (Nick’s recent solo side project), Eighth Tiny Reindeer (Nick’s older solo project).
*Members: Keith Dylan Hadad, Nick Hadad
*Founding Members: Nick and Keith
*Tape manipulations, digital deconstructions or turntable creations: All of the above.
*Another genre descriptor: Medialation, Medipulation
*Why you use this descriptor: Medialation is manipulating and reconstructing any prerecorded audio media/mediums in any which way to create something entertaining in a scattered and unorganized fashion. (This describes "Will a Computer…" and our other older material).
Medipulation is a more structured, creative, technical, well organized version of Medialation that has more plots and/or themes in the songs. It’s usually a digital reconstruction of a tape manipulation. (This describes our new material).
*Location: Right now we’re recording near Rochester, New York.
*Original Location: We started as a group in New Ulm, Minnesota.
*What is your creative/artistic background: Playing around and experimenting with music, sounds, sound equipment, and old records from groups that helped inspire us (The White Album by The Beatles is probably the biggest influence) since we were kids. We started manipulating with dual tape decks before we knew that it was an art form. We also both have been painting, drawing, writing, and doing photography for as long as we can remember.
*History: We’ve been making manipulations since 1997, and we started recording projects as a group since late 2000.
*Born: Keith was born in Fall River, Massachusetts in 1989, and Nick was born in the same place, 1985.
*Motivations: It’s fun, you can create something funny or just plain entertaining out of something old or boring.
*Philosophy: We’re finding ways to convey a message through spliced previously existing material.
*How would you like to be remembered: We’d like to be remembered as an underground group trying very creative new (sometimes humorous) directions in music.
*Web address: http://www.livejournal.com/userinfo.bml?user=lonelyfox_music
Thanks to The Coherent Encoherence, for submitting to the Q&A this week... Stay tuned for my next post: the Podcast for Some Assembly Required, Episode 100. The 100th episode includes 15 excellent tracks by a very diverse group of sound collage artists, of which one is The Coherent Encoherence. Stay tuned...
I'm trying something new this week - uploading late Sunday night (hey, its after midnight, so technically its Monday), to see if we get more downloads this week. My guess is that there's a lot more down time on Mondays (time more easily spent listening to podcasts?) which we've been neglecting by sleeping in Monday and not podcasting until later in the evening. So, we're giving it a shot. As always - feel free to drop me a line! There's contact info at the Some Assembly Required website. Do let me know what you think of all this nonsense...
Thanks for listening,