Your last release ´The Futurist´ talked about leaving rock and roll behind, yet ironically any ground that techno gained over rock in the mid 1990s has now been dramatically beaten back by the stadium emotion of bands like Coldplay. How do you feel about this, do you think there is any hope of an electronic or experimental backlash?
The end of the 90's was so wild, this almost had to happen. George Bush, Blair, the return of garage rock and retro. I interprete the last years in that way that people were scared. 9-11, the war, everything suddenly changed. That’s perhaps why the music scene, especially in the UK has gone so conservative. But I already see the signs of that ending. Evolution is on our side, that’s the good thing. I mean we can watch films on our mobile phones, but we listen to music which sounds like it was done 30 years ago? This is stupid and boring. We witness the death of the music industry like it existed for the last fifty years. Pop music in the British sense is dying. And that’s no provocative statement, it’s a fact. Globalisation plays a huge part in that. The identity of the 'people' of a nation will slowly fade away. And with that goes pop music. The underground has the right model in place. It has created a worldwide network already and only the good music can survive within that system. 'Good’ meaning, truly chosen by the crowd and not being financed by corporations or religious organisations.
Alec Empire from Atari Teenage Riot reassures us that the Ghost Point hasn't actually happened yet. Although note a comment posted to this interview:
Alec's politics are alright with me... just a shame his music is awful. I found it as aurally appealing as putting a steel rubbish bin over my head and having several people smash the bin with hammers. Maybe some people enjoy that attack on the senses but I cant stand it. All of the ATR/DHR stuff never seemed to mature beyond that sound, which is a shame because as mentioned in the interview, the ease of making music with software meant that a lot more people could pick it up - which they did, witness the continuing mutant children of all forms of electronic(ally produced + arranged) music ranging from the bass weight of dubstep to the cut+paste/sample-happy bastard pop.
Alec is just as uncomprimising with his views as he is with his music, this means of course while other (apolitical) people went out and made fun, engaging, soulful music, he was still banging it out ear-blistering style, while people got bored of it and went elsewhere for their kicks. I didnt even know he was still around.
Music that is constantly out and out political all the time (by that I mean artists who only ever write political lyrics) gets fairly tedious + childish too... count the number of lame punk bands screaming the same shit repeatedly about the system, the cops, the man.. it might not have even been so bad if you could actually hear what they were saying. But I doubt it.
A timely warning against musical as well as political sectarianism, there.