It started approximately a month ago when we’ve just heard about IAMX coming to Lviv. Long stories written about Ukraine and the received promise of an interview ended up in a failure due to tight schedule of the musicians. So we’ve managed to meet Chris in person just at the short press-conference. The musician turned out to be very sweet and he seemed interested with our questions, it was noticeable that Chris cannot wait till the concert starts to see the audience in Ukraine. In spite of us expecting something a bit different, these adventures still went a great way. Moreover, live show energetics compensated all the sudden circumstances.
AZH: How are you doing?
AZH: How is Ukraine?
Really, really nice, so far.
AZH: We’ve heard you had some problems with the gear?
AZH: How is it doing now?
It’s working now but festivals are always very unpredictable, so we’ll see, hopefully it will work.
AZH: How do you feel about the fact that you should perform at the daytime today?
No, it’s great, it’s quite a nice challenge sometimes, it’s good to do things differently, and we always play in the dark, most of time we play in the dark, so it’s quite an unusual thing for us to do, I like the idea.
AZH: Obvious question, how is your new album going?
Good. It’s very early, early days but so far there’s some nice songs, it’s gonna take other two or three months to really get the sound right but I’m very happy so far.
AZH: I also would like to ask you about your control-freak nature, changing into more people person, involving other musicians in your creative process, and how do you feel about this shift?
It’s still very hard for me because I used to do things by myself, I’m a very private person, so working with other people is new but it’s quite exciting and I need to adjust to that, to work out the best way to edit materials. We have already recorded a lot of things as a band and now I need to work out how to combine that with what I do in the computer with programming and electronic work.
AZH: In some recent interviews you mentioned your new project and that you want to try something new in a creative way. Could you tell something about that?
Well, I have a place in Berlin, an old factory. It’s basically a big old GDR building, it was empty for a long time. I live there now and there are many different rooms and I do lots of visual pieces, lots of art videos and recently I shot the video for a remix by the artist called Alec Empire and… So basically the project is that building and everything that happens in that building.
AZH: Yeah, we talked with Reza about that, about the abandoned buildings, we have loads of such stuff here in Ukraine.
AZH: I think you would like it a lot, if you’ll have some time you should go back to Ukraine and we will show you some of them (so you can film your new videos there).
AZH: And now about the videos. I know that when you were in the Sneaker Pimps, once you told that the first video that was produced by yourself/by the band turned out to be complete mess, and that videos should be done by professionals. And now your approach to this has changed dramatically. And you not only shoot videos for yourself, you have produced the video for the other bands (Dollhouse – face to face). And how far do you think you will go with this?
Well, I’m a very restless person and music is just the one thing that I do. Unfortunately, I know how to do it the best among the other things that I do. But hopefully I will learn maybe to work with the cameras and to work more with people direction and go into that a bit more into video making maybe I even will make a short film at some point.
AZH: Also do you have any fine art influences?
Only my friends. And I was a scientist when I was in school. Astrophysics and Mathematics. So now it’s just my friends, my friends are all fine artists and I was the science freak and it was a quite nice combination.
AZH: You mean like Noel Fielding from the Mighty Boosh?
Yeah, yeah he was also a fine artist but the people from Sneaker Pimps were all in art school apart from me.
AZH: You like Svankmajer, Deleuze, Brecht and you told that they influence you a lot. And I would like to ask if there are any new influences in your life right now? Something like them?
Em..yeah. A few writers. Science writers.
AZH: Could you name them?
Yeah, there’s a guy called Richard Dawkins and he’s a big influence, not artistically but psychologically. I can really relate to him. Christof Hedgins. Actully there are two filmmakers called the Quay Brothers.
AZH: Oh yeah, I wanted to ask you do you like them, because you like Svankmajer and they are kind of the same.
Yeah kind of the same…
AZH: I always wondered if you like them.
I do, I do I think they’re fabulous. And I’ve recently got the whole collection of theirs and Svankmajer, Bergman, I like Bergman too.
AZH: You mentioned that you want to make a scrapbook on your touring and…
How do you know that? Did I told you personally?
AZH: No, the Internet is a great thing. And you mentioned it in the interview. Also I remember your first site was very playful with loads of codes and hidden links and all of that stuff, you mentioned that the scrapbook should be the same. So I would like to know if it’s ready or you are working on it?
No, it’s not ready
AZH: Absolutely not? Or it’s in the process?
No, no it’s in the process. There’s lots of stuff that we are collecting and I think we just want to get it right. The first site was very chaotic, it was charming but it was chaotic. I think we would like to do it more professionally, so at the moment we have a standard site and eventually we’ll have a door into this other world which should be more chaotic.
(At this moment we are back to the thought that it’s not Chris’s giving the interview only for Azh, so other journalists ask him questions (about Kyiv, the Ukrainian musicians and about IAMX’s plans for evening in Lviv. Than press-conference finishes, everyone is leaving the room and waiting for IAMX show.)
Drumsticks in the air, the umbrella for which Chris went down the stage to the fans, outfit in Dracula Count
and Edward Scissorshands styles, shiny masks, emotions, running and jumping on the stage, bassist who comes down from the stage to take the Ukrainian flag at the end of the show – we suppose, they liked it not less than you and we.
Photo-report is coming soon.