Saturday, February 28, 2009

Greater Than One

Greater Than One

Greater Than One is British Electronic musician, Michael Wells. Along with Lee Newman, in the mid 1980's, Wells formed Greater Than One as a performance art group, mounting art installations and film presentations around Europe.

Their first releases were on cassette, put out in 1985, while the pair were studying at The Royal College of Art, in London. At least a half dozen albums followed, with additional recordings released under different names, including Church of Extacy, GTO, John and Julie, Killout Squad, L.E.D., Salami Brothers, Signs of Chaos, TD5, Technohead and Tricky Disco. Wells has recently released new work as Tricky Disco (2007). Newman passed away in 1995.

At least two Greater Than One albums were put out by the techno music label, Wax Trax, in Chicago, which is how I came to find out about the group, discovering a few of their LPs hidden away in the vinyl library at my college radio station, around about 10 years later. They've also released albums on the Side Effects label, ROIR, Torso and their own label, K=K. Brainwashed Archives recently announced plans to release the entire recorded works from Greater Than One (1987-1991). Check it out HERE.

Without further ado, here's the SAR Q&A with Michael Wells, of Greater Than One...

*Name: Greater Than One

*Are there any additional names used to describe this project: G.T.O.

*Do you use a pseudonym? Technohead/Tricky Disco/Signs ov Chaos/John & Julie/S.O.L.O.

Michael Wells

*Founding Members: Michael Wells & Lee Newman

*Tape manipulations, digital deconstructions or turntable creations: Electronic music, Sampling/Techno

*Another genre descriptor: Originally Post Industrial Deconstruction.

*Why you use this descriptor: Greater Than One was a concept that could include many forms of media manipulation... Film/Art/Music/Performance etc.

*Location: England

*Original Location: Liverpool, England

*What is your creative/artistic background: Bachelor of Arts in Visual Communication and Master of Arts in Fine Art (Royal College of Art, London).

*History: Since 1986. Greater Than One started as a performance/art project, the seeds of which were sown when I was studying at the Royal College of Art in London. The first music releases were a combination of cassette recordings, photos, objects and graphics sold in limited editions... for some strange reason Wax Trax records in Chicago got hold of one of them and asked for an album to be recorded... this became the first album, "All the Masters Licked Me.” At the same time we were making art installations and exhibitions in Europe, covering everything from video and film presentations to ' live' performances... we were even invited to create a 'Happening' of our choice in Amsterdam... We decided to stage a public “manifestation"/“Demonstration". We gathered a number of volunteers and printed banners and t-shirts with the word TRUTH printed on them... We organized to have two white police horses with police riders to lead the "march" through the streets and canals of Amsterdam, stopping at significant monuments for photographs. Along the way we gathered more people until we were hundreds... It was a demonstration for Truth, but against nothing... This was as much a part of our work as the music... At the same time as recording the albums for Wax Trax we diverted our attention to the growing club scene, as acid house and techno were new and undiscovered areas. We morphed the name into G.T.O. and created a few new monikers - Tricky Disco (Warp Records) and John & Julie (XL) both our middle names... These became successful on many different levels and enabled us to enter the Club and DJ world... and we performed and DJ'd around Europe. I continue to make music under different names... A new collection will be issued by Brainwashed soon… Artist name: S.O.L.O, title: Hidden Melodies… a collection of minimal doodlings...

*Born: Liverpool & Ipswich

*Motivations: To be creative means creating things that previously did not exist.

*Philosophy: It's purely a personal reaction to the world we live in... It can't be any more than that.

*How would you like to be remembered: A decent version of myself.

*Web address: Refer to

Episode 226, Some Assembly Required

Episode 226, Some Assembly Required

01 A plus D - “$20 Monday”
02 Antediluvian Rocking Horse - “The Rhythm Sticks”
03 Escape Mechanism - “Awkward Silence”
04 Dawgisht vs. DJ Stoic - “Hangover”
05 Lobsterdust - “It's Fun To Smoke Dust”
06 I Cut People - “Delete Jesus”
07 Greater Than One - “I Don't Need God”
08 Ram Dass & Kriece - “Mystic Poetry”
09 Escape Mechanism - “The Truth”
10 Forty One - “Love Is A Circle”
11 Z-Trip - “U Can Get With Discs Or U Can Get With D.A.T.”
12 Christian Marclay - “Christian Marclay”
13 Double Dee & Steinski - “Jazz”
14 Copycat - “A Smalltown Monday Solution”

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Saturday, February 21, 2009

February 21, 2009

February 21, 2009

No new Q&A this week... I tried tracking down some of the artists featured in our 2001 interview with Illegal Art's Philo T. Farnsworth (in this week's program: Episode 03), but even Philo had no idea how to get in touch with most of them anymore, due to time's passage and the fact that so many were hiding far beneath their pseudonyms, even (or especially) at the time. So, I'll just point you to past SAR Q&As with Illegal Art artists such as B'O'K, The Bran Flakes, Corporal Blossom, The Evolution Control Committee, Girl Talk, Steev Hise, Lecture On Nothing, Oh Astro, Realistic, Steinski and Wobbly. You can find them all linked to HERE.

The label has been quite active since this interview. Most recently they've released a new Girl Talk release, titled "Feed The Animals" and there should be a new Bran Flakes record shortly, titled "I Have Hands". Check out the Illegal Art website to find out what all they've been up to, of late.

Check out Episode 03 HERE, to hear our 2001 interview with Illegal Art's Philo T. Farnsworth.

Thanks for listening,
Jon Nelson

Episode 03, Some Assembly Required

Episode 03, Some Assembly Required
(featuring an interview with Illegal Art)

01 Corporal Blossom - “Plastic job”
02 Office Products - “Mount & do”
03 Pechiney Par[k] Heavy Industries - “No phunk last night”
04 Jane Dowe - “Bust a move”
05 Steev Hise - “Stuck together, falling apart”
06 Spacklequeen - “Eggs eggs, arms legs”
07 Wobbly - “Only musical”
08 Pine Tree State Mind Control - “Testosterone”
09 Evolution Control Committee - “Music for selling”
10 The Bran Flakes - “Turn the channel, it’s another commercial”
11 Experts Of Legitimation - “Breathe”
12 Alien Heat - “Illegal space kids”
13 Pedro Rebelo - “...Just cartoon music”

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Sunday, February 15, 2009

DJ T-Rock

DJ T-Rock

DJ T-Rock is a "Scratch Technician" with over fifty MP3s available at his website, as well as a CD and 12". San Francisco's Bomb Hip Hop label has also included his work on many of their excellent compilations. He's performed before crowds as large as 2o,000, touring throughout the United States and Europe, and appeared in independent films, television & advertising campaigns.

DJ T-Rock's soundtrack work has been featured on Cartoon Network TV shows, where he has even been known to make a personal appearance, from time to time. Most recently, T-Rock has been producing music for MTV ("Making the Band") and composing soundtrack music for independent film in Los Angeles.

Without further ado, here's the SAR Q&A with DJ T-Rock...

DJ T-Rock

*Are there any additional names used to describe this project: DJ T-Rock and Squashy Nice.

*Members: There are 2 members in the band BUT... I sometimes work with various artists, therefore the numbers increase.

*Founding Members: I am the founding member.

*Tape manipulations, digital deconstructions or turntable creations: I would say that I/we are turntable manipulators with a high dose of digital warriors running thru our veins. We try to stay skilled in both areas!

*Location: DJ T-Rock and Squashy Nice are from Atlanta, Ga. T-Rock lives in Los Angeles and Squashy Nice still lives in Atlanta.

*Original Location: Atlanta, Ga.

*What is your creative/artistic background: Squashy Nice is a music producer as well as DJ T-Rock. Graduated from the Art Institute of Atlanta with a degree in music business. DJ T-Rock was a regular at local DJ battles as well as a fixture on local college radio... spinning records since 1987.

*History: DJ T-Rock and Squashy Nice have been together as a group since 2000.

*Born: DJ T-Rock was born Dec. 3, 1972 in North Carolina.

*Motivations/Philosophy: The motivation behind my work is simple, I love music. I've always kept an open mind about different types of music which I believe enables me to be a better producer. I love hip hop, electronic, rock, film score, it's all part of the world we live in, so as a producer/DJ I try to stay versatile.

*How would you like to be remembered: I would like to be remembered by the things I've left behind. Albums, songs, films, anything that I've done that makes someone feel something. This is how a person remains alive long after they’re gone.

*Web address:

Episode 225, Some Assembly Required

Episode 225, Some Assembly Required

01 Osymyso - “Welcome To Musicland”
02 Animals Within Animals - “Hello”
03 DJ Shyboy - “You Spin Me Upside Down”
05 Jason Forrest - “Spectacle To Refute All Judgments”
06 DJ T-Rock - “This is the Captain”
07 The Real Tuesday Weld - “Crazy In Love"
08 The Evolution Control Committee - “Nothing really matters”
09 Splatt - “The Usual”
10 Apollo Zero - “Robot Music Forever”
11 Wax Tailor - "Beyond Words"
12 Cassetteboy - “Blow A Dog's Hair Out”
13 B'O'K - “A Greater Threat”
14 DJ Quest - “Quest Represent”
15 Poj Masta - “Plate Smashing”
16 Daniel Steven Crafts - “Snake Oil Symphony (Part III)”
17 Divide & Kreate - “Livin' la vida”

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Sunday, February 08, 2009

Thousand Void Crush

Thousand Void Crush

When I first played these guys on the show, I was unaware that they are actually a quartet from Minneapolis. This week's Q&A is with Dave Wesley, one of the group's founding members. He went on to form "The Push" with fellow Thousand Void Crusher, Casey Borchert (aka St. Vitas). The duo produce their own brand of techno music, called "Arctic Dub." Check out The Push online, HERE.

I've known Dave Wesley for more than a few years now. I think we must have gotten in touch around the point that Some Assembly Required first started up. Considering his background, I imagine he may even have been listening when we first started netcasting, way back in 1999, and sent in a CD of sample-based techno (Is there any other kind?).

Wesley's website, Sursumcorda, was where we first started experimenting with archiving the show, actually. The site has always been very supportive of dub, electronic and experimental musicians, and even spun off a posh downtown club, in Minneapolis, for a time. The Push and have just launched a new, interactive social networking site for fans and creators of minimal techno, ambient and experimental music, called Machine Based Reasoning. Dave Wesley is also the man behind Arctic Dub Records. The label promotes dub techno, ambient dub and minimal music. Check it out HERE.

It's really hard to say what he'll be working on, on any given day, or which website to primarily point to! So without further ado, here's the SAR Q&A with Dave Wesley, of Thousand Void Crush...

*Name: Thousand Void Crush

*Are there any additional names used to describe this project: TV Crush

*Do you use a pseudonym? No

*Members: Dave Wesley, Monte Schaffer, Casey Borchert, and Craig Grossman

*Founding Members: Dave Wesley and Monte Schaffer

*Tape manipulations, digital deconstructions or turntable creations: We are definitely digital deconstructions.

*Another genre descriptor: "Spamation"

*Why you use this descriptor: We created a serious of tracks that each highlight a different form of spam or dogma - ranging from personal ads, self-help propaganda, musicians wanted ad, and food recipes.

*Location: Minneapolis

*Original Location: Minneapolis

*What is your creative/artistic background: DW - Musician, DJ and Producer - Guitar since 5 years old. Active in bands and now the electronic scene from a young age until now. Currently concentrating on own brand of political dub techno that I call "arctic dub". Founded Sursumcorda the website and club... and now Arctic Dub Records and Machine Based Reasoning (a social network for dub techno, minimal, and experimental music fans, DJs, and producers.

*History: 10 years.

*Born: I was born in Minneapolis in '63. Don't know about the others. Same general age range.

*Motivations: Always been motivated by outsider artistic expression and sound production is in my blood.

*Philosophy: All expression comes from the same source. I see reusing media or appropriation as just a lower level of granularity when compared to traditional musical components, like the Western 12-note scale, etc. Combining sonic elements in time at a specific time and place - always produces unique human expression. TV Crush recent activity has focused on live improvisational performance (and performance art) - always combining deep groove with ambient guitar and computer generated found sound and atmospheres.

*How would you like to be remembered: As an outsider artist.

*Web address:

Episode 138, Some Assembly Required

Episode 138, Some Assembly Required

01 Stunt Rock - “I will make up for a lifetime of f***ing chicks poorly by having the most diverse cd collection in the world”
02 RX Music – “My name is Rx”
03 The Evolution Control Committee - “Computers”
04 Divide and Kreate - “It's a fine holiday”
05 Splatt – “New uni tour”
06 John Oswald – “Black”
07 Tom Recchion – “Musaphonic”
08 The X-ecutioners – “Mad Flava”
09 Thousand Void Crush – “Spamation Four”
10 Steve Fisk – “I Wish I Were Dead, Part I"
11 Woulds – “Prof. Thespian tongue twister”
12 Double Dee & Steinski – “Lesson 2 (The James Brown Mix)”
13 Project Data Control – “Blame The Media”
14 Negativland – “Christianity Is Stupid”
15 Buddhapest – “Bite The Hand Manana”

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