Friday, October 28, 2016

'Fighting Talk' - James Stinson Muzik interview June 1995

I'm very happy to see that the newly unearthed James Stinson quote above, from the first ever issue of Muzik magazine (June 1995), has caused something of a stir online with 70 shares and almost 250 likes after just 24 hours of being on the DRL Facebook page. You can read the whole issue here (quote on page 75). Initially I wasn't sure where the cutting originally came from (I think the scan first began to appear just a few weeks back on social media) but hoped if I posted it on the FB page first, someone might know and they did (thanks for that). It looks like the journalist, Dave Mothersole, was responsible as he edited the Muzik techno singles page that issue and the Drexciya piece ran underneath. A few months previous to this he also had an interview with James Stinson (where very similar sentiments were expressed) in Melody Maker (January 14th 1995), so this must be more from the same interview (read here).

It's 21 years ago now and it's great to hear James's voice and opinions breaking through so clearly to today's world. I have transcribed the quote below for easier cutting and pasting. 

Muzik Magazine Issue 1 June 1995

James from Drexciya hits out at what he views as the current lack of invention in techno

"Techno was supposed to be about the future, but its been going backwards not forwards over the last couple of years. It's too easy now. People read about what equipment to buy and, because it's so advanced, all they have to do is push a few buttons and they've made a record. There's no focus, no direction, no understanding. It's meant to be an intelligent music form, but the only intelligent thing about it now is the equipment. 

I wish more artists would cut out the sampling and the loops, go back to scratch and programme the shit themselves. I've heard some good ideas, but there are just too many samples. We need sounds we haven't heard before, we need different rhythms and patterns. That's what electro is about. I mean, do you want a fine home cooked meal or do you want to go to some fast food joint and eat a bunch of chemicals and shit?

Too many people focus on what label a record comes out on, rather than what the track actually sounds like. To me, that means there's something wrong. I remember the days when nobody cared if you were on Warner Brothers or Booty Up, just so long as what you were doing was good. When you throw a party, what are you spinning? Are you spinning the middle of a record where all the writing is or are you spinning the wax? You know what I'm saying.  When a group comes to perform, who's up on the stage?  Is it the business people punching their little computers or is it the artists themselves? 

Drexciya won't be putting records out for a while now. We'll still be making music, but not records. We won't allow this form of music to just stop where it's at, but we're not even satisfied with the quality that we are producing. And I have to say that I really wish people wouldn't follow us. Be inspired, sure, but please don't follow. The minute we hear footsteps following us, we switch our style. We'll totally abandon what we're doing. We won't release any records or perform anywhere until things change." 


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