TROUM - Interviews




This is the full interview made by Jose Leseur, appearing in French language in his Naninani-newsletter (naninanicorp@free.fr), also extracts of it will be published soon in the next FEAR DROP-issue (#9) in an article about Troum (feardrop@wanadoo.fr).

The issue will also have a free compilation CD with a Troum-contribution.



Interview troum

1. You founded troum in 1997, just after the end of maeror tri.
What is in your opinion the fundamental difference between the two projects?

We think that with TROUM we work more focused, more conceptual, more composed, than with MAEROR TRI. M.T. had more improvisational elements in it, was more raw. It is interesting to see that both "post"-MAEROR TRI follow-up-projects, 1000SCHOEN and TROUM, are working more focused, more studio-technique-based. There is more reflection on the compositions flowing into the music, whereas with M.T. it was more chaotic, session-like. TROUM is like a "condensed" and further developed version of M.T. maybe, like a child that has grown up into a more mature being.

2. Troum is an old germanic terms which means « dream ». why did you choose this name for your project ? does it means that one of your goal in troum is to create a « transe », to push in another and subjective world that doesn’t exist in anyway ?
Why the dream instead of a more explicit political expression of your subjectivity (i guess it is, isn’t it)

Yes, it’s one of our aims to create a world outside from reality, to create states of emotional trance.
The dream is a symbol for us, it stands for the unconscious. Like the dream, known to be the "main path to the unconscious", also music is able to confront us with most inner & unconscious areas, here you can feel a "direct touch" with it. So we think there are many parallels between the music we do and dreams in general:

  • both are symbolic but non-verbal languages, who reveal a deeper meaning hidden behind the phenomenal structure
  • both can be seen in regards to their relation to the human unconscious
  • in our dreams and inside music, everything is always in motion, there are no static dreams (thus showing their dynamic and emotional quality)
  • the effect dreams have is a kind of mystery to us, as it’s the same with music
  • you can listen to new music in your dreams, as you can have dreamlike visions when you listen to music
  • both transcend reality and may lead to a further understanding of the human "soul" or psyche

But the dream has many different aspects, you can also see it as a wish to change reality. We wouldn’t say the dream has no political dimension: The dream represents an inner world, but without dreams you can’t change the outer world. The music we do is based on a kind of dualism: on one hand there’s the wish to regress, the yearning to go back to very early and basic states of existence (oceaning feelings, de-subjectivity), on the other hand it has a "progressive" character, because it expresses also the yearning to change reality into a more human place, to show what could be. This is the "dialectics" of such music, as it doesn’t fit into todays reality.

Glit[s]ch: So the dream also stands for the rejection of todays reality & the reflection on today society. The reality as we know it is sharp & cold, so it is necessary to dream another reality, one that is smooth, soft & warm.

3. You don’t use any synthetisers or software. All sounds are created by your hands (guitars, objects, effects…). Why ?

Basically, we are socialized with analogue equipment and are used to work with them. But we also see advantages to use such equipment and not digital stuff – the production process is different if you touch the instruments that create sound (not just "pushing buttons"). There’s a greater variety to express emotions if you use instruments you can play by hand, and also there’s a specific about analogue created sound we think.

4. How do you work your pieces ? Are they based on a precise idea, a definited goal ? 

It’s different: sometimes we work with a precise idea or concept, sometimes it’s more based on experimenting and improvisation "out of the blue". If we work on a specific theme, the music is more constructed & composed.

5. Your music seems to describe an ancient lost world, runs along a dark, gloomy and staired melancholic mood. The music seems to be only these pure sensation. What are the aims that you want to reach with troum ? Is it the vehicle to pass a precise philosophy (as your other activities : « our music is our weapon », « non entertaining music » etc)

There is no distinct philosopy, but we see what you mean. This ancient archaic lost world symbolizes perhaps the yearning for the things that have gone (or that may come). You could say that our music is a tool to pass not a precise philosopy but everyday life in all it’s strangeness. It touches our whole existence.

With TROUM we want to mirror the most inner emotions & contents, we want to console, we want to sensitize the listeners. Music can be a precious treasure. At the end it’s music for the harmed or damaged souls of todays strange world.

6.You have began a trilogy called « tjukurrpa », a word that is closely related to the australia’s arborigen culture and which symbolize their ancestral animist world relation.
Why did you this choice. In your opinion, can the music a such back to nature release ?

Tjukurrpa represents the link between certain music/songs & people & places in aboriginal culture, that’s what we liked about it... also it means "dreamtime". People are linked through "Tjukurrpa" through space & time, so to say.

For us, it also means that you can’t judge reality just by the phenomenas you can see , it’s important to see the structure/meaning behind it. That’s what you do when you try to find out the effects of the unconscious on our daily behaviour & thinking.

Tjukurrpa doesn’t mean to us that we have to go "back to nature". We want to reveal the essence, the "core" of sound, that’s maybe a relation to your "back to nature"-idea. Tjukurrpa is a nice idea, a reflection, a phantasy. It expresses a mythological structure, but it also says: Reality as we know it IS NOT TRUE. It can be changed (and we add: it should be changed). [for more infos about Tjukurrpa, please check our website at www.troum.com ].

7.Don’t you think that the rules of creation processing changes with the society in which the human lives ? Your music is in my opinion the prefect example of an art which use technology to create a world that is managed by the subjectivity of the listener… so a free world made of desires and all faces , known and unknown, of the human spirit. What is your position on this point ?

A very good suggestion we think. Yes, the music should form a "free world". The subjectivity should be supported. There’s no precise definition or message in our music, it’s more an "emotional ocean", one can see and gain many things out of it. It’s amorph music, it tends to dissolve.

No one and nothing in life is one-dimensional and we love to create pieces that form somehow schizophrenic emotions, so a lot of poissible ways to go can be opened to the listeners.

8. You named the two first parts of the trilogy tjukurrpa « harmonies » and « drones ». Why ?

It stands to reason that they are two characteristics of your music that are inseparable. Even if the second part is maybe darkest, more abstract & closed to an industrial aesthetic, it contains also a lot of harmonies in the low tunes that you develop… the first part is also very near a cold wave aesthetic, very melancholic but also melodic and luminous (it reminds me some of the cure works - carnage visors ! - or sometimes eyeless in gaza, 4AD stuff)… the twos contains some rythmical tentations…maybe « rythms » will be the last part of the trilogy ?

Of course these elements are not totally seperable, but the music is soundwise focused on the title it is related to. Usually these basic elements (drone, harmonies, rhythms) are more mixed, we wanted to set a focus on one of these elements for each CD. Yes, "rhythms" or "pulsations" will be the last part of the trilogy.

9. What are the « drones », the « harmonies » represents for you ? They are two characteristics that we find in the nature, without any human treatments (even if yours are strictly humans !)…

We are not sure if you mean the sounds as basic elements, or the structure of nature itself. In case you mean the sound, of course these are two charasterics you find in sound or music, but we have our doubts if you can find "harmonies" as such in nature – it’s a question of definition. Any sound in nature can be "harmonic" if you enjoy it, but if you talk of harmonics as defined in classical music, it’s different.

Speaking of TROUM, it was not our idea to represent basic "nature-elements" in the music.

BarakaH: These basic elements of sound are for me more linked to pre-natal psychoanalysis – as these are the basic elements you experience first as a fetus in your mothers’s womb: heartbeat (rhythms), movements of womb-liquids (drones), mother’s voice (harmonies). As such they represent the base-characteristics of our later fascination for music.

10.What is your relation to the time ?
All troum pieces (as the previous maeror tri) seems to be based on meditation (this way to strecht the time…). Like the spiral which is your logo and that also representing a distortion of the time…

Glit[s]ch: The music pushes and pulls us out of time and therefore out of reality. So take it as a drug that gives you a break from everyday-life. Or to say it poetically: Time is the whiplash under which our (mental) back is suffering. Society, especially economy is making our lives faster and faster. Sometimes we even have time to think. So explore the slowlyness of being !

BarakaH: I think our music is also the try to create a state of "timelessness" itself ! It’s a musical world without boundaries, an endless, timeless world. Maybe a yearning of the time of being inside the womb of our mothers (as said before), when the bounds of the self were not existing.

There is a state where subjectivity ceases to exist, call it "de-subjectivation", where also no other object exists: All is one and one is all. Everybody knows it (at least knows how it feels with the body), but this "knowledge" is buried deeply in our "body-selfs", or unconscious areas.

So it’s not just to slow down the time, it’s the wish to leave behind time totally. It’s an "endless" music, things should not end at all! And there’s also the sadness in it that things always end.

11.You did some remixes from pieces of ultra milkmaids or kapotte muziek…
How
do you approach this work ? What does the artist reworked represents for you ?

Remixing is a challenge for us, to interprete the music of others that we like. It’s like musical alchemy, the transformation of musical ideas into something new without totally loosing the old ground....

12. At last, could you give us a word about your projects in the near future ? do you have something to add, to precise… something you want to say ?

The next release should be the long-planned (we began with it in 1996!!) collaboration work with YEN POX, which comes out as a CD on Malignant Records. Then there’s a 10" named DARVE SH on Beta-Lactam Ring Records in their 10"-series, which should be out in summer.

Also finished is a new CD-work called SIGQAN, to be released on Relapse/Release Records hopefully soon.. the track we choosed for this FEAR DROP – compilation is an outtake from the SIGQAN-recordings.

Of course, there will be also the third part of the TJUKURRPA-trilogy on our own label Transgredient Records, later this year or early next year. Some other projects are in the making or discussion-phase, for which we don’t have titles yet.

Something to add?:

Music has saved our life, we are sure.... it’s the basic swamp that formed our little beings.. "From the deepness of DRONES we raised, the PULSATIONS pushed us up to higher states, where HARMONIES welcomed us". (just joking)



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