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MORPHEUS MUSIC INTERVIEW -FIELD ROTATION

09.12.10 - on release of Acoustic Tales.

 
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Q: Can you tell us a bit about how you first got into music?
 

I'm sure it was before I was born!
As my parents are both musicians I think I was listening to it before I could know what music is all about. But the point of ‘deliberately’ getting into music could be seen as the first violin lessons at the age of seven. Since then I’ve been classically trained – also on the piano later.


  Q:   How did Field Rotation come into being – what influenced you initially?  

Field Rotation came into being in 2008 when my former music projects/bands were closed due to university issues and fellows relocating. So I decided to put up my own solo project which totally works with my daily routine, not being dependent on others. I didn’t want to cramp my music to a specific genre so I decided to call this project ‘Field Rotation’ – and now I’m rotating between ambient (Licht und Schatten), experimental drones (Why things are different) and more classical, cinematic music (Acoustic Tales) and I think these genres are my home now.

     
             
Q: What was the concept that lead to the new album – what were you aiming at?   My new album ‘Acoustic Tales’ is based on the idea to create a collection of auditory short stories. The short story is one of my favourite literary genres since I have known the work of Franz Kafka and Ernest Hemingway. So I decided to adapt the traits of the short story into acoustic forms, creating a sort of concept album with a collection of these works.   Q: How do you go about creating your music – where do you start?  

Normally I don’t write scores for the music, but sometimes it’s the only chance to archive some ideas when I’m away from home. Mainly I start to record an idea or just a single sample to build on that one and to develop a complete piece of music from these first thoughts and sketches. So it’s just an initial idea and the creative process is part of the recording which means I’m listening a lot to the intermediate results. It’s just more interesting than composing theoretically and writing a score though I sometimes also do this. It always depends on the complexity and instrumentation of the composition: the more classical it is the more I tend to write a score (or just collecting some notes concerning the structure or harmonics). Creating drones is more technical so a score might be useless for me here.

             
Q:   Can you tell us any anecdotes around the making of Acoustic Tales?   

Well, the making of ‘Acoustic Tales’ started before my hard disk crashed and I lost the first two tales. So the first thing I learnt whilst working on this album: never slack off doing backups. But I was sure that these two nearly finished compositions were worth it to be part of the album and I started to re-record and re-create these. It turned out to be more difficult than I would ever have imagined before. But somehow I got it managed though.

  Q:   What is your studio like?   Talking about my ‘studio’ is not that interesting me thinks, because it’s also my living room - some acoustic instruments (violin, piano, electric organ), two microphones and an old reel-to-reel which I’m using sporadically for the recordings. The central place is my sofa with my laptop, a small audio interface and a pair of stereo headphones for processing and mixing. That’s it.
             
 
     
Q:   How involved are you with the visual presentation of your music – what impression do you mean to convey visually?
  The visual presentation of my music is very important though I’m not involved intensively concerning the visual aspect of the ‘Acoustic Tales’ album. The visualization of music is the first step of interpretation – and as we know that there’s much more secondary literature about short stories than short stories itself, you could see the visual presentation of the ‘Acoustic Tales’ album as sort of secondary literature. It might help to interpret the tale but it is not written or presented by the artist himself. So I was involved to pick out the photographs for the booklet, but I’m absolutely relying upon the competence of Antonymes (Video, Photographs) and Dan and Jess (Fluid Audio).
  Q:   You have a number of other interesting projects on the go – can you share something of the progress of any of these?
  Yes there are some really interesting projects on the go, indeed. There are some collaboration works but they will be presented all in good time. Beside all this I started a chamber music project under my real name. The debut album of Christoph Berg will be released early 2011. For previews and a promotional video I’d like to recommend to visit me here: http://christophberg.tumblr.com

 

             
Q: What’s ahead for Field Rotation?   There are some nice things ahead for Field Rotation. Beside ‘Acoustic Tales’ there are some contributions to different compilations in the queue, such as the ‘Cloud 11’ VA on Cartesian Binary (curated by Rena Jones) or a collaborative piece for the ‘Brave New World’ VA on FeedbackLoop label (curated by Leonardo Rosado). Another Hibernate Recordings release is planned for 2011. That will do it for now though the list contains some more good news I could tell you – but it’s more exciting to hold my tongue for now… so thanks a lot for your interest and keep in touch!        

 

           
 

Thanks to Field Rotation and Daniel @ Fluid Audio for allowing us that interview.

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