Three young nut fiends of vinyls and machines, three dark chaotic rooms and underground soundscape lovers took the form of a band, naming it FJAAK back in 2009. Raised in Berlin, these childhood friends explored the sound of drums, guitars, microphone captures and everything related to music before they stepped on the dance floor of the techno capital. Later on, they got addicted to repetitive music so they gradually built their studio for hardware jams. After days and nights spent at the new home, their intriguing techno-house-breakbeat vision got signed on Baalsaal, Klasse Recordings and mighty Modeselektor’s 50Weapons imprint. Just a few weeks before their new release, I caught this youngest live act in Berghain so far for a 60 minutes radio guest mix and a chat. Let’s talk.
Hello boys, how’s your life these days? You just finished the Independent Label Market weekend and the stamping of your upcoming “Attack / The Wind” release on 50Weapons?
Pretty busy, but we are happy from head to toe. We can do what we love and love what we do!
Why do you think ILM is that important? Face to face talk with music freaks and supporters? Are there a lot of people visiting that event?
At the end it is a very personal and intimate thing, more about to see some friends and enjoy so much nice people in one place, also with the same interests. One day in a week where you don’t feel like you’re the only nerd;)
As you are back in studio now, are you preparing something at the moment or just playing and trying out new toys? What’s the newest addition to your studio, have you finally got hands on Cwejman S1 Mk2 which was on your wish list?
Making music for us is always about to try out new toys or play around a little, just to catch the ideas. We are preparing a lot of stuff, some EPs, some remixes and some other stuff of course but we don’t want say more – topsecret.
The newest addition in our studio is the Universal Audio LA-610, great thing!
Ok, let’s wind it back a bit now – you are childhood friends and you were involved in separate projects before. What was your music scenario when you started out?
Imagine three boys hanging around in the outskirts of berlin in some dusty, dark and muffy cellars filled up with cable jungles,.. totally stressed out parents because the whole building is vibrating because of the punching kickdrums.. haha.. funny how things changed, but also nice to see some things seem to change never.
Can you list a few of your favorite records and artists from that time?
Object, Jeff Mills, MCDE, Mr. Fingers and too much good artist we don’t remember yet.
How did you get connected to the techno scene over there and decide to try it out together?
It was no decision at all, we just did the same thing at the same time and we’re friends since a long time as well, you even can say we grow up together. We started to produce all kind of electronic music without any idea about techno or club culture. Then we were starting to look for places where we can listen to music which is similar to what we do. That was the beginning of our discovery tour through the berlin underground/club scene.
Would you like to point out some party that changed your point of view or some influence from the DJ booth?
Of course there are some places and parties that will give you more than others but at the end it’s about the whole experience you collect everywhere. It will let you know what’s going on and give you a overview about where you are.
A Party that really stand out last year was this crazy and 100% illegal rave party in the old runes of the subway-stations in berlin ostbahnhof’s underground ..2000 ravers, 5 floors and most important point: good music.
Your productions got heavyweight support from names like Scuba, Laurent Garnier and Modeselektor and after this led you to become a 50Weapons artists. It must be a big thing for you, but I believe it feels kind of normal now. Where do you find inspiration to continue, what keeps you pushing?
50Weapons is still a great label, being part of it makes it even better 😉
And the love for music never stops, there’s nothing better than a good old jam with just our machines.
I know you are a big vinyl fan. Two turntables, a mixer and a proper sound system is all you need for your Machine Vibes party series.
It’s very simple: Vinyl makes fun and just feels good. And this is also how a good night should be.
Machines Vibes is also focusing on extended sets and a journey developed over the night.
Is that vibe translated on your guest mix that you recorded for my radio show last week?
Right, vinyl only and also a small journey.
What are your top five records that stood out on your latest parties?
Randomer – Stupid Things I Do (New School Mix)
FJAAK – The Wind
Truncate – Breakdown
Matrixxman – Simulation
MMM – Jack7
And for the end, do you have an idea how many meters of cables are in your studio?
All cables together are so long, feedback loops wouldn’t even do it once in 100 years 😉
Thanks for your time and music guys, we will stay in touch. Keep chopping!