Monday, October 3, 2011

EIC'S10Q'S w/Chris Carter

"..inventor of experimental machine based innovations.."

Chris Carter
Empirical Pioneering Automaton

Chris Carter Bio:
He began his career in the late 1960s' working for various UK TV stations (Thames, Granada and LWT) as a sound engineer on numerous TV shows and documentaries. This gave him an invaluable grounding in sound and audio techniques and theories. He also found himself getting more involved in the visual side of entertainment, which eventually progressed into designing and presenting light shows and visual effects for numerous festivals, events and gigs, including bands as diverse as Yes and Hawkwind. This led to commissions for BBC Television shows, Colour Me Pop and The Old Grey Whistle Test. By the early 1970s' Chris was touring universities and colleges with a solo, multimedia show playing self-built synthesizers and keyboards and incorporating a myriad of lighting effects gleaned from his previous work. During this time he also worked extensively with visual artist John Lacey on many 8 mm & 16 mm experimental films and multimedia presentations.

In the mid 1970s', and through his connection with artist John Lacey, Chris began an experimental music/sound collaboration with Cosey Fanni Tutti and Genesis P-Orridge, who were also working as performance art group COUM Transmissions with Peter Christopherson at the time. The results of this musical collaboration was the creation of the now legendary Throbbing Gristle, Industrial Records and the birth of the 'Industrial Music' genre.

In 1976 Chris also worked at the London bureau of the ABC News agency as a sound engineer and during that time designed and constructed their London radio studio. In 1977 he was offered a contract to build another ABC studio in Rome but turned it down to continue his involvement as a member of Throbbing Gristle.

During the early years of Throbbing Gristle the four members each continued with other solo projects and work. It was during this period (1980) when Chris recorded his first solo album for Industrial Records called 'The Space Between', which is now available on Mute Records. Shortly after the demise of Throbbing Gristle in 1981, and with help and backing from Rough Trade Records, Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti formed their Conspiracy International (aka CTI) record label and began working together as Chris & Cosey and CTI. Initially releasing only music they soon moved into producing video works, and with the help of Doublevision released a number of Conspiracy International (aka CTI) experimental video films and soundtracks. In 1985 Chris released his second solo album Mondo Beat.

As well as successfully touring all over the world Chris & Cosey also recorded and collaborated on innumerable releases, most notably with Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart, Robert Wyatt, Coil, Boyd Rice, Lustmord, Monte Cazazza and many more. Chris & Cosey and Carter Tutti have also remixed tracks for Mortal Loom and Erasure, Pantaleimon, Throbbing Gristle, John Cage, Current 93 and Chris Ewan (FBH).

In 1994 Chris moved also into journalism and regularly has technical articles and reviews published in UK magazine Sound on Sound. Chris is also a keen photographer and graphic designer and in collaboration with Cosey Fanni Tutti has designed and produced numerous album covers, posters and art works. Chris returned to solo performance work in 1995 after a gap of 15 years. His performances included subtle references to his earlier works but with obvious influences from his more recent collaborations. In 1998 Chris released a compilation CD titled Disobedient, consisting of tracks from his 1995 Disobey tour (produced by Paul Smith). In 2000 he released a solo studio album: Small Moon. In 1998 the album Caged, a collaboration album with electronic musician Ian Boddy was released on the DiN label.

In 2000 Chris, in collaboration with Cosey Fanni Tutti, began producing and releasing a series of albums titled: Electronic Ambient Remixes. The first of these, EAR ONE, consisted of dark ambient remixes of his 1980 'The Space Between' album. In 2002 he released EAR THREE a further solo ambient CD, which consists of radical remixes of his original Throbbing Gristle industrial rhythm tracks.

In 2003 Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti stopped releasing material and performing as Chris & Cosey and began producing all their work under the title of Carter Tutti. One of their first appearances as Carter Tutti was a special quadraphonic performance in the Disney Theatre at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles in 2005. Chris Carter and the other original members of Throbbing Gristle regrouped the band in 2003 and released the TG24 CD boxed set, with an accompanying art exhibition in London. TG performances followed in London, Camber Sands, Turin, Berlin, Barcelona and Paris.

During 2007 Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti again worked on numerous Throbbing Gristle projects, recordings, installations, exhibitions and performances. These included their groundbreaking audio/visual performance at Tate Modern turbine hall and their 3-day 'public recording session' at the ICA London. Chris Carter has recently finished working on a new Carter Tutti album entitled: 'Feral Vapours of the Silver Ether' which is released on the Conspiracy International (aka CTI) label and is already being heaped with praise and rave reviews and is being acclaimed as "their finest yet". Chris Carter continues to work and collaborate with both Cosey Fanni Tutti and Throbbing Gristle. He is also currently working on a new solo experimental audio project titled CCCL. and is producing a new Carter Tutti film, due for release on DVD in 2008.

Hello, how are you?

I'm OK, but feeling a bit sore as I'm recovering from some recent surgery. And I am frustrated to being 'house bound' for a week or so.

What are you currently listening to?

Right this minute I'm listening to the remastered Throbbing Gristle test pressings - I'm multitasking.

Whom/what influenced you the most as a child growing up to make the sounds/gear you make now?
In equal measures: Jimi Hendrix, John Barry and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.

What have you been up to these days as far as new music is concerned?

For the last two years Cosey and myself have been working on our 'Harmonic Coaction' project - prior to a Carter Tutti performance we accumulate material from the surrounding area of the venue and incorporate those elements (field recordings, stills, video) into a live semi-improvised audio/visual performance.
Also this year we re-released our remastered early Chris & Cosey albums on vinyl and have been playing Chris & Cosey shows around the UK and Europe.

Can you tell us a little bit about the "Desert Shore" project, why that album & why now?

Well 'Throbbing Gristle's Desertshore' (to give the project its full title) was the brainchild of Sleazy, It was conceived by him on a flight from Bangkok to perform with TG in Berlin in the winter of 2006. Originally, and over three days of the summer of 2007 at the ICA London in front of an invited audience, TG recorded (as a quartet with Genesis providing vocals) what became the initial basic interpretations of the album.
But from the outset it was Sleazy's intention that TGʼs 're-imagining' of the album would mean inviting friends and artists to collaborate as guest vocalists and musicians. Sleazy was in the process of refining the recordings and readying to record the vocalists when he died last November. To fulfill his vision of
Desertshore Cosey and myself are now in the process of completing the album and have just begun recording the guest vocalists parts. It will be the final Throbbing Gristle album and we intend to release it in 2012.

I was really bummed to hear about Peter passing away, got a funny/great story involving you and him that you'd like to share?

No, not really… I'm saving all those for my biography.

Has the future of "X-TG" been laid out yet, touring, new albums, etc?
X-TG came to an end when Sleazy died, as did Throbbing Gristle.

Out of all the songs you've had a hand in, which are you most proud of and why?

Wow there here are so many… but if you had a gun to my head it would probably be 'Woven Clouds'. I know the style and that kind of arrangement is not to everyone's taste, particularly industrial minded TG fans. But for various (personal) reasons it was a very difficult track for us to write and to work on and I'm really glad we persevered and completed it. And although I think it's one of the best songs we've ever written I still occasionally have trouble listening to it, if I'm in the wrong frame of mind.

You can only keep/listen to ONE album for the rest of your life ..which album would it be?

Abba's Greatest Hits

Are you living your dream?

Well I don't know about that… although with the state of the planet I sometimes feel as if all of THIS is all just some weird dream.

Thanx Chris!!

Chris Carter is currently working on a bunch or re-releases, both for his solo/side projects as well as Throbbing Gristle. Look for the last Throbbing Gristle album (:() sometime in 2012...

No comments:

Post a Comment