A TURBULENT FRIENDSHIP THAT CAN ONLY END IN MURDER!
autoKratz: ?I don?t feel we?re a typical British band at all.?
?Neither of us is typical in our approach to the world.?
Untypical is definitely one adjective that can be used to describe autoKratz.
Even David?s first encounter with bandmate Russell was far from conventional: ?Some pissed up wanker puked on my shoes outside a club. I was about to kick his head in but felt sorry for him as he had also puked on his really nice Devo T-Shirt. That wanker was called Russell. It was the start of a turbulent friendship that can only end in murder!?
Despite those less than glamorous beginnings a solid friendship and incredibly productive working relationship quickly blossomed. ?We locked ourselves in a grotty studio in the East End and started trying out some ideas,? explains Russell, ?Influences came from loads of places but have never dominated things as making something original is essential to what we do.?
While the autoKratz sound was still in development an early demo found its way into the hands of Gildas Loaec, head of slick Parisian label Kitsun?, who was so taken with the embryonic autoKratz sound that he immediately added the band to his roster. It?s a creative partnership which the guys are immensely happy with as David explains: ?We can go to Gildas with an idea and he’ll throw it on its head in such a fantastic way. Everything from the artwork onwards is such an interesting process. It makes you push yourself.?
Russell is equally convinced that the maverick attitude of the label makes it the perfect home for them:
?For me Kitsun? is so important in electronic music because the forces behind the label are so adamant on continually moving forward rather than finding a sound and monopolising it for ages. They are constantly on the look out for new things which are exciting and original and needn’t necessarily fit the template of what people expect.?
Getting the music out there also seems to be a turn-on if their intense touring schedule is anything to go by. Their blend of hard rock attitude and dirty, fuzzy electronics has been wowing crowds all over Europe and shows no signs of letting up.
?The live thing is so hectic at the moment and going from strength to strength,? says Russell, ?Last week we played to over seven thousand at Dour Festival in Belgium and it was absolutely unbelievable.
It was one of the most amazing experiences of my life to see that many people turn out for autoKratz and go for it in a massive way.? Touring is also something which is necessary to their artistic development as Russell explains: ?To have the opportunity to travel round the world playing your music to people is pretty unbeatable. We love meeting different people and seeing how youth and electronic music culture is different across the globe. It?s really energizing to meet people who share excitement for this kind of sound.
I would say with the music we write we try to be original and innovative so although we thrive on inspiration and influences the music can only reflect you at that point in time and what’s going on in your head.?
Inspiration comes from all sorts of places and touring and exploring new countries and cultures is certainly one of them. But what about the guys? musical heroes? Needless to say, they?re quite diverse.
?The first time I heard Underworld it blew my mind!? enthuses David, ?The intense vocal deliveries and weird lyrics all underpinned with a dark electronic score which was neither techno or house; a rarity in the early/mid 90s. And Russell? ?I was brought up on a diet of Shoegaze so at home I suppose I still find myself listening to loads of My Bloody Valentine, Jesus and Mary Chain, Chapterhouse?that kind of thing. I’ve always been fascinated by bands that explore other sides to their creativity to produce this wealth of amazingly innovative and forward thinking music.?
A lot of hard work and a little bit of good fortune go a long way in this business and the autoKratz story has progressed from humble beginnings to the verge of super-stardom in a relatively short space of time.
Kitsun? have jumped on their sound with gusto thus far releasing four very sexy 12? singles, the newest of which, Stay the Same, recently topped DJ Mag?s Hype Chart ahead of tracks from Hot Chip and Laurent Garnier. A 9-track mini album is due to drop in autumn, intended to draw a line under the first chapter of autoKratz?s musical odyssey before work starts on their hotly anticipated debut LP.
And if you?re expecting more of the same, then it might be wise to think again; unlike some of their peers, autoKratz certainly won?t settle for sticking with a sound that sells at the expense of creative development as Russell points out: ?For an artist to be truly important, moving forward, changing and innovating whilst still remaining compelling must be a prerequisite. Like an involuntary reflex.?