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Funkstörung's Studio

Funkstörung's Studio catches up with Michael Fakesch from German group Funkstörung, who gives the lowdown on their studio ethic and their favourite production tools.

Funkstörung comprises of Michael Fakesch and Chris De Luca, and have been described as the German Autechre.

Known for their excursions into dark, lo-fi electronica and instrumental hip hop, the duo have been producing music for the underground since 1994.

To celebrate their 10th anniversary, they have released a special album called 'The Return To The Acid Planet' which features some old tracks they found whilst cleaning out their studio.

Here Michael Fakesch talks to about studio gear and not cleaning.

Questions and Answers

1. What is your favourite production tool?

The computer, no doubt, and my favourite software programs are Cubase SX and Ableton live.

2. What was your latest purchase for the studio?

We hardly buy anything new for the studio anymore.

We have no hardware in there now, but luckily we get all our software for free.

For our live-setup we recently bought a Korg Microkontrol, a Kaosspad Entrancer, an Alesis Bitrman, a Behringer UB1222fx that we use as submixer, and last but not least an Acidlab 303 clone, which was made by a friend of ours, and is really cool.

Check for more info.

3. What's the most important thing to consider when making music?

Having fun! If you don't enjoy making music, don't start.

4. If we lived in a world where anything was possible, what piece of studio technology (real or not) would you like to own?

I wish I had a box which could control software and hardware using only the mind, or by voice.

That would be really cool, and easier too!

5. Briefly outline the beginning process you go through when producing a new track - how does it start?

We mainly start with a little sound or beat from a synth, a noise we recorded with a microphone, samples from old tracks, tracks from live sessions, and then we play around with it.

6. If someone wants to start producing, but can't afford much, what kit would you suggest they buy?

Buy a cheap computer, a cheap midi interface, and get Ableton live.

If you still have money left buy a cheap Behringer mixer with built-in FX (such as the UB1222fx), a Korg ES-1, and an old Clavia Nordrack2.

7. 'The Return To The Acid Planet' is only available on vinyl or from iTunes. Why?

Although we spent a lot of energy producing this album, it was never actually meant to be a real album.

It was meant to be a bit of fun for our 10th anniversary.

Originally, we just wanted to do an EP, but then we got a bit carried away, so a whole album came out.

Additionally TRTTAP is not an album for the home, so there was no need to release it on CD.

Vinyl is a must, and you can't ignore MP3s.

8. You found some old tracks in the studio that you used for 'The Return To The Acid Planet'. Tell me more.

Our studio is a complete mess. Once in a while, (about once in a year) we clean it, and the last time we bothered, we found loads of old tape recordings.

After listening to it, we both agreed that we had to release the music somehow.

Initially, we just wanted to release the original versions, but then we started remixing and made it sound much better.

9. This new album is quite different to your last one 'Disconnected'. What's your next musical direction?

That's a secret, but I can tell you that we're already working on some exciting tracks for the next album. Stay tuned.

10. Who was the last person to criticise your music to your face, and what was your response?

The last person to criticise our music was my girlfriend.

She doesn't really like TRTTAP.

My response? I've got another girlfriend now. Haha, only joking.

Seriously though, I don't listen or react to critics.

The positive ones make you feel like you're the best (which is not good), and nobody likes bad reviews, do they?