What is Ravish (for those who don’t know)?
Die Young of the Shapeshifters and Deeskee..our new album. Or more specifically:
ravish [v] hold spellbound; To seize and carry away by violence; to snatch by force. To transport with joy or delight; to delight to ecstasy; To have carnal knowledge of (a woman) by force, and against her consent; to rape.
This project has a cinematic feel to it. What elements of production did you focus on to bring about this essence?
With this record I focused on notation, tempo, mood, mix, etc. I studied the hell out of the placement and execution of incidental music and soundtrack music in films to figure out how the feel of each scene was dictated musically and I ran with that formula. I saw a documentary that showed Claudio Simonetti scoring the film Suspiria..we was watching the film on a screen in his studio and going along with the scenes to find the mood while playing the music. Instead of a screen I had a story line to follow..and Die wrote a cool story. He was great to work with and I actually had a chance to be a PRODUCER. We could sit down and re-write songs, put the songs to new music that fit the lyrics better, re-record it, re-mix it, everything. I think the lack of ego on both of our parts really helped it along, and the fact that Die was just as willing and enthusiastic to do the research that I was to make this project come out the way we pictured it before it was even finished being written.
What role (producer, actor, dolly grip haha) did you, Deeskee feel like your place in this project feel analogous to? i.e. did you feel like your beatmaking was like that of a producer, or actor? Why?
This one was more of the “director”. The shot, acting and the dialogue are the key factor in what makes the scene.
You watch a lot of movies. What elements do you think make for an effective movie production? How did you attempt to translate these virtues into a musical endeavor?
I’m a sucker for anything artistic, and at the same time a bit over-analytical. I can never just sit down in front of my stereo or at the theater or an art show and let the speakers or the screen or the canvas think for me. I always have to dissect and pick everything apart to figure out how it was made. I’m kinda like a big kid that gets kicks from taking apart electronics to look at the parts inside rather then appreciating the fact that it has its own unique function and functionality when assembled. Effective production in my opinion is to leave that curious kid with the screwdriver in his hand baffled. If someone opens it up and expects to see some elaborate maze of seemingly useless parts, you gotta give them something simple and well-placed (and vice versa). Like I said, keep ’em baffled.
How did you meet up with DieYoung and come up with the idea to do this project? Why did you pick the themes you did for this project?
I met up with Die in ’99 and we kept talking about doing something but never got around to it until 2003. We have similar opinions and similar musical constraints so we agreed to sit down and make THEEE album we always wanted to make without the influence of a group environment. We’re both really into movies so we traded DVDs back and forth and after watching like a dozen Dario Argento films we decided to go with the soundtrack theme. The story line was something that Die had in his head for a while so after talking about it for hours and hours this is what we came up with.
What was the hardest part of making this project work out as a cinematic project?
The hardest part was the obvious. We had to make something original without biting an idea we took from a film or biting other albums that were made as “films”. I didn’t want to make an album that people could say “Hey that’s a bite of ‘The Wall’ or ‘Tommy'”. The next equally difficult part of it was making it sound original without sampling or playing the soundtracks that we were inspired by. Next was making songs that were the “scenes” vs the songs that are part of the “soundtrack”.