Interviu cu Valerinne: despre muzica, film si carti.

May 2, 2013   /   byCitadinul  / Categories :  Interviuri

Valerinne e o trupa tanara, s-a format la sfarsitul lui 2011, dar are in componenta muzicieni cu experienta, Alexandru, Mircea (cei doi au demarat proiectul dupa desfintarea trupei Uma Swan unde erau colegi) si Liviu. Asa se face ca au lansat deja un prim album Kunstformen der Natur, au deja in lucru un EP, Arborescent si pregatesc al doilea album, acesta intrand insa in planurile pentru 2014.

valerinne 1

Numele trupei, Valerinne, nu are vreun inteles abstract sau obscur, a fost pur si simplu o alegere dintr-o serie de alte nume, si zic eu ca a fost o alegere reusita.

In februarie Ana a fost la doua concerte ale baietilor, de unde a revenit cu cateva impresii, intre timp ei au avut parte de cateva saptamani pline si interesante cu un turneu prin tara si prin Europa alaturi de Environments. Au trecut pe la Timisoara la Underground Fest #16 (despre care i-am intrebat pentru ca e unul din lucrurile bune care continua sa se intample in Timisoara, spre deosebire de TMBASE pentru care editia cu numarul 13 a fost cu ghinion, in plus Alexandru e sau a fost cel putin, un apropiat al festivalului) dar si prin Belgia unde au avut ocazia sa cante la prestigiosul Dunk! Fest (de unde va propun si o inregistrare).

Nu imi ramane decat sa le multumesc inca o data lui Alexandru, Mircea si Liviu pentru raspunsuri, Alexandrei si Anei pentru traducere in engleza pe care o gasiti mai jos si pentru poze.

Urmatoarea intalnire cu Valerinne are loc pe 17 mai in Underworld atunci cand are loc si debutul celor de la Modern Ghosts of The Road, un alt proiect al lui Alexandru.

Pe Valerinne ii gasiti online la:  valerinne.tumblr.com, Valerinne Official pe facebook sau pe valerinne.bandcamp.com

*********

1. Salut! Nu a trecut foarte mult timp de cand ati revenit in Bucuresti, asa ca prima intrebare e legata de turneul vostru prin tara, dar mai ales prin Europa. As fi curios sa stiu in special cum a fost la Underground Timisoara Festival si la Dunk! in Belgia.

Alexandru: Salut! Nu cred ca este corect sa compar Underground Timisoara Festival cu Dunk! Festival, sunt doua lucruri complet diferite chiar daca sunt ambele festivale independente. Dunk! Festival a devenit brusc festivalul meu preferat, sunetul si organizarea au fost impecabile, atmosfera a fost grozava. Dar lucrurile acestea sunt posibile in primul rand datorita interesului pentru muzica prezenta la acel festival. Din pacate la noi lucrurile se misca mult mai incet ca in restul Europei. Underground Timisoara este insa un festival la care am cantat de-a lungul timpului cu mai multe trupe in care am activat, am fost implicat si in organizare cativa ani, am realizat si designul pentru afise/tricouri si altele mai multi ani de zile, asa ca relatia mea cu acest festival e una mai speciala. Mi se pare foarte fain ca s-a ajuns la editia a saisprezecea si cred ca desi putem sa criticam tot felul de aspecte organizatorice din toti acesti ani, e foarte important ca acest festival sa existe in continuare.

Mircea: Salut! A fost un turneu foarte reusit si bine organizat din toate punctele de vedere.
Ne-am descurcat destul de ok, bineinteles si cu ajutorul foarte mare al celor de la Environments si al lui Florege cu corabia lui care ne-a purtat prin Europa si care ne-a adus teferi acasa. Le multumim foarte mult! Peste tot unde am cantat am fost foarte bine primiti. Ne-am simtit bine peste tot. La Underground a fost foarte ok. Ma bucur ca inca continua sa existe acest festival. Ca intotdeauna ar merita mai multa atentie si promovare. Am intalnit multi oameni cunoscuti acolo si o atmosfera foarte relaxanta si prietenoasa in ciuda faptului ca nu a lipsit deja clasica vizita a politiei. Pentru mine a fost o deosebita placere sa il revad pe Nichici de la Terror Art prestand live. Dunk! Fest a fost cumva “peak”-ul turneului. Din toate punctele de vedere. Organizare, public, sunet, atmosfera. Impecabil!. Am fost placut surprins sa vad atata lume la o ora de pranz la concertul nostru care a deschis a doua zi de festival. Oameni veniti si interesati de toate trupele.

2. In turneu i-ati avut alaturi pe cei de la Environments, care sunt legaturile dintre cele doua trupe, in ce fel colaborati, aveti cumva anumite planuri comune pentru viitor ?

Alexandru: Am inregistrat Kunstformen der Natur cu Marius Costache si tot cu el vrem sa colaboram si in continuare, eu am avut placerea sa realizez artwork ul pentru albumul lor Fraktal si sper si in continuare sa mai colaboram pe partea asta, Stefan a fost inginerul de sunet la concertele din turneul european, Marius s-a ocupat de visuals pentru noi pe parcursul turneului iar Alex a avut grija de merchandise. Fara ajutorul lor, turneul nu ar mai fi fost la fel. Avem si niste planuri comune pentru viitor, dar inca nu putem vorbi despre asta.:)

Interviu Environments: Muzica e in prim plan, nu noi

Mircea: Chiar ca i-am avut “alaturi”. Ne-au ajutat foarte mult. Initial trebuia sa mergem singuri. Ei doreau de asemenea sa plece intr-un turneu de promovare al noului lor material Fraktal asa ca ne-am hotarat sa il facem impreuna. Multe aprecieri! Mie unul mi-ar placea sa dam un concert impreuna si in Bucuresti.

3. Ce imi puteti spune despre muzica abordata de Valerinne, ati plecat la drum cu o anumita reteta ? Sunt importante pentru voi clasificarile stricte pe genuri?

Alexandru: Am dorit sa cantam ceva instrumental. Cu toate ca avem si gusturi muzicale comune, avem totusi un background diferit si influente diferite si cred ca se simte lucrul asta in piesele noastre. Cat despre clasificarea pe genuri, e foarte usor sa fim etichetati ca post-rock sau post-metal, dar mie imi este indiferent.

Liviu: Eu nu am avut o anumita reteta in minte, important era sa gasesc niste oameni care sa aiba gusturi asemanatoare in privinta muzicii si cu care, daca se poate, sa ma inteleg bine. Am avut noroc si i-am gasit destul de repede 🙂

Mircea: Nu ne-am propus ceva clar de la inceput. Poate doar faptul ca vroiam sa fie cu siguranta o trupa instrumentala si sa cantam ceva mai zgomotos. Acum lucrurile sunt ceva mai clare. Ne gandim putin mai in perspectiva dar cu toate astea nu cautam sa abordam un anumit gen. Gen-ul cred ca vine din muzica pe care o asculta fiecare in parte. Pentru mine nu sunt importante clasificarile pe gen. Nu ascult o muzica doar pentru ca este un anumit gen. Din contra, cu cat sint mai imbinate cu atat imi suna mai interesant.

4. Desi proiectul Valerinne e relativ nou, voi sunteti aprope de scena underground de ani buni de zile. Pentru ca tot am amintit de festivalul de la Timisoara, aflat la editia #16 as vrea sa stiu cum vedeti voi evolutia industriei muzicale de la noi. E mai simplu astazi sa faci muzica si sa ai acces la concerte, decat acum 10-15 ani, sa zicem ?

Alexandru: Da, acum este mult mai simplu sa scoti un album, sa iti organizezi un turneu, sa ai merchandise, sa iti cumperi scule etc., fata de acum 10-15 ani. Pe de alta parte, si noi ne-am maturizat si privim lucrurile diferit fata de cand am inceput sa cantam. Experienta dobandita pe parcurs face ca lucrurile sa decurga mai usor in ceea ce priveste aspectele astea si in ceea ce priveste abordarea muzicii in sine.

Mircea: Este clar ca a evoluat foarte mult. Mai multe trupe, mai multe abordari muzicale, mai multe concerte. Trupele reusesc mai usor sa faca un turneu in tara sau in strainatate. Mai multi organizatori care reusesc sa aduca trupe reprezentative. Lucrurile se misca mai rapid si mai calitativ. Si este clar ca o sa mai evolueze. Simt ca ultimi 5 ani au fost ceva schimbari majore in sensul asta.

5. Ce inseamna muzica pentru voi ? Cantati mai ales de placere sau va ganditi ca la un moment dat ati putea trai din asta ? Ati fi de exemplu dispusi sa cantati altceva pentru « mai mult » succes ?

Alexandru: Daca de aproape 14 ani, de cand am pasit pentru prima oara intr-o sala de repetitii, nu am facut niciun compromis in muzica, in niciun caz nu voi incepe acum. Indotdeauna am facut fix ce am dorit. Nu as vrea sa traiesc din muzica daca asta ar insemna sa existe o anumita presiune asupra a ceea ce ar trebui sa cant pentru a fi vandabil. Nu ma intereseaza ideea de industrie muzicala la modul asta.

Liviu: Nu cred ca mi-as dori sa traiesc facand bani din muzica, pentru ca probabil as ajunge muritor de foame. Banii si succesul sunt ultimele lucruri la care ma gandesc atunci cand cant.

Mircea: Eu in trecut desenam foarte mult si ascultam foarte multa muzica. Mai tarziu am simtit nevoia sa ma exprim si prin muzica. Din pura placere. Cu totii avem joburi din care traim si finantam trupa, instrumentele, repetitiile, inregistrarile. De trait din muzica nu stiu ce sa zic. Nu prea cred. E foarte greu. Cred ar exista o presiune mai mare asupra actului creativ. Ar aparea constrangerile. Exprimarea nu ar mai fi libera.

6. Daca tot suntem aici, o intrebare poate stupida, poate doar delicate, care sunt diferentele dintre publicul roman si cel de dincolo, sau diferentele in modul in care sunt perceputi artistii si actul artistic in Germania sau Belgia, de exemplu.

Alexandru: Cred ca in continuare (sau poate am fost doar noi mai norocosi in turneul asta) exista mai mult respect si interes pentru actul artistic. Dar nu ar fi corect sa generalizez, pentru ca si la noi lucrurile se misca intr-o directie buna si nu cred ca a fost pana acum vreu concert Valerinne din tara unde sa nu ma simt foarte bine sau sa avem probleme cu organizatorii/cluburile pe unde am cantat.

Mircea: Nu exista diferente foarte mari. Insa publicul imi pare totusi ceva mai atent la concerte. Nu intorc capul in spate. Mi-as dori insa sa vad la noi mai multe cluburi, locuri de cantat cu sonorizari mai bune.

7. Ce alte pasiuni aveti in afara de muzica ? Filmul, cartile… imi puteti spune niste titluri pe care le-ati recomanda?

Alexandru: Nu am nicio pasiune in adevaratul sens al cuvantului in afara de muzica. Pentru mine muzica si partea vizuala merg mana in mana si tot ce ma inconjoara, tot ce observ, tot ce ma atinge sau ma afecteaza in vreun fel ajunge pana la urma in muzica. Ma uit la o groaza de filme, de la filme de serie B pana la filme “indie”, filme romanesti socialiste si filme de prost gust hollywoodiene cu buget imens. Am revazut de curand Kairo si Sakebi de Kiyoshi Kurosawa (probabil regizorul meu preferat, alaturi de Lars von Trier) si recomand toata filmografia Quay Brothers, in special The Piano Tuner of Earthquakes si Institute Benjamenta. Cat despre carti, in ultima vreme nu am mai citit beletristica, acum citesc Hegel and the Infinite: Religion, Politics, and Dialectic, de Žižek.

Mircea: Filmele. Ultimul film care mi-a placut foarte mult a fost Lawless de John Hillcoat si acum vizionez filmografia lui Nicolas Winding Refn. Deasemenea am gasit o lista cu top 10 filme preferate ale regizorului Michael Haneke. Foarte interesant. De citit citesc mai rar. Ultima carte teminata a fost Moartea lui Bunny Munro de Nick Cave si acum citesc View from a Hill: The Chameleons de Mark Burgess. Si cititul se invarte tot in jurul muzicii. Imi mai place sa gatesc foarte mult. Iar vara joc aproape saptamanal fotbal.

8. Care e relatia voastra cu mediul online, poate fi considerat un sprijin real pentru trupele care vor sa fie mai aproape de cei interesati de muzica lor?

Alexandru: Mediul online ne-a oferit o expunere foarte mare cu un efort minim din partea noastra.

Liviu: Cu siguranta Internetul este o unealta folositoare si la indemana oricui vrea sa fie auzit de mai multi oameni.

Mircea: Da clar. Ajuta foarte mult. Cred ca este chiar esential daca vrei sa ai expunere si sa fii ascultat.

9. Spuneati inca de anul trecut ca lucrati deja la al doilea album, iar de curand ati anuntat ca in toamna avem parte de un EP cu 4 piese. Imi puteti da mai multe detalii, la ce sa ne asteptam ? Ce va fi diferit fata de Kunstformen der Natur ?

Alexandru: EP-ul se va numi Arborescent, am inceput deja lucrul la artwork si sa facem demouri la sala de repetitii pentru ca atunci cand intram in studio totul sa fie clar, deci am putea spune ca suntem cumva in faza de pre-productie. Eu privesc materialul ca pe o continuare a primului album, dar si ca un pas intermediar catre al doilea album, cu care nu dorim sa ne grabim si care va fi foarte diferit de aceste doua materiale. Doua dintre piese le cantam deja de ceva timp in concerte iar celelalte doua sunt compuse din partile care ne-au placut cel mai mult din ce am lucrat pentru concertul de la Centrul Ceh (soundtrack-ul pentru

No silence please! Valerinne la Centrul Ceh

filmele lui Man Ray), dar intr-o alta forma fata de cum le-am prezentat atunci. Pentru cel de-al doilea album ce am compus se afla inca in stadiul de home-demos dar tot ascultand “schitele” acelea acasa mi-am dat seama ca inconstient m-am indreptat spre ceva mai dark, mai greoi si mai progresiv fata de Kunstformen der Natur si ce veti auzi pe Arborescent. Dar, despre asta vom vorbi mai multe anul viitor.

10. Valerinne canta pe 17 mai in Underworld, ce alte planuri aveti pentru urmatoarele luni ?

Alexandru: Vrem sa lansam EP-ul la toamna in mai multe orase din Romania si sa facem un videoclip la una dintre piese dar inca nu stim la care. Pana atunci, pe perioada verii, inainte si dupa studio, vom petrece cat mai mult timp in sala de repetitii.

Mircea: Vrem sa lucram cat mai mult si sa pregatim EP-ul.

Multumesc! Daca e vreun punct pe care nu l-am atins dar care vi se pare important si vreti sa spuneti ceva despre asta, asta e locul potrivit.

Iti multumim si noi pentru interviu si te asteptam pe la concerte!

*************

1.Hey. It hasn’t been long since you returned to Bucharest, so my first question is related to your tour within around the country, but especially around Europe. I’m especially curious about the Underground Timisioara Fest & Dunk! in Belgium.

Alexandru: Hello! I don’t think it would be fair to compare the Underground Timisoara Fest to Dunk! Festival as they are two very different things, even if they are both independent happenings. Dunk! Festival has instantly become my favorite, the sound and organization turned out to be great as well as the atmosphere. But these things are possible mostly because of the increased interest for the music presented at the festival. Sadly here things are moving a lot slower, compared to the rest of Europe. Underground Timisoara is another festival we played during the years we were active in a lot of other bands. We were even part of the organizing crew at some point. I made the design for t-shirts/posters and lots more, therefore my relation to this festival is a special one. I find it very cool that they managed to organize the 16th edition.

Mircea: Hey! It was a great tour, very well organized on all accounts. We managed fairly well with the help of Environments and Florege, whose ship transported us across Europe and brought as back home safely. We’d like to thank them a lot. We were well received everywhere we played. At Underground everything was very nice. I’m happy the festival continues to exist. As always it would deserve more attention and promotion. We met a lot of people we knew there and the atmosphere was really relaxing, even thought the police visited us, like always. For me it was great seeing Nichici of Terror Art perform live. Dunk! Fest was the peak of the tour of course – on all accounts: organization, crowd, sound, atmosphere. Everything was impeccable. I was pleasantly surprised to see so many people attend our opening act scheduled for lunch hour on the second day. People who came there were interested in seeing all the bands.\

2. You went on tour with Environments. What’s the connection between the two bands and how do you collaborate? Maybe you have made some future plans together?
Alexandru: We recorded Kunstformen der Natur with Marius Costache and we’d like to work with him in the future as well. I have had the pleasure of designing the artwork for their latest album Fraktal and I hope we will continue along these lines. Stefan was our sound engineer for our European concerts, Marius did the visuals during the tour and Alex was in charge of the merchandise. Without their help the tour wouldn’t have been the same. We also have some common plans for the future, but we can’t talk about them yet.
Mircea: They really were there for us. They helped us a lot. Initially we were supposed to go on tour alone. They also wanted to go on a tour to promote their newest material Fraktal, so we decided to do that together. We have many thanks to give them. I’d personally like to play a show with them in Bucharest.

3. What can you tell me about Valerinne’s music? Did you start out by following a certain pattern? Do you believe in strict genre classifications?
Alexandru: We wanted to play something instrumental. Even if we have common musical taste, we come from different backgrounds and have different influences. You can sense that in our songs. As far as the genre labeling goes, it would be very easy for people to call us post-rock or post-metal, but that’s not important to me.
Liviu: I had a certain scenario in mind, at first but I wanted to find people with similar taste in music I could get along with if possible, first. I got lucky and found them quite quickly.
Mircea: We didn’t set out to do something in particular. Maybe that we wanted to play in a noisy instrumental band. Now things are a bit more clear. We’re thinking into, perspective, but nevertheless we’re not looking to play a certain genre. I think genre is defined by what the person is listening to. I don’t place much importance on the concept anyway. I don’t listen to music just because it belongs into a category. On the contrary, the more diverse it is, the more I find it interesting.

4. Even if Valerinne is a relatively new project, you have been close to the underground scene for years now. Because I mentioned the Timisioara fest reaching its 16th birthday, I’d like to hear your thoughts on the evolution of the musical industry in Romania. Is it simpler now to make music and go to concerts as it was 10-15 years ago?
Alexandru: Yes, it’s easier to release an album today, to book a tour, to print out merchandise, to buy gear compared to 10-15 years ago. On the other hand we’ve grown a lot and we see things distinctly compared to when we started playing. The experience acquired on the way made things run more smoothly regarding these aspects. I’m talking about the way we approach music as a whole as well.
Mircea: Of course it evolved a lot. More bands, more artistic expressions, more concerts. The bands can more easily organize their tours within the country and outside the borders. A lot more organizers managed to attract representative bands. Things move faster and better. And everything will keep evolving. We have been sensing this trend for the past five years.

5. What does music mean to you? Do you play out of passion or do you think that some point you’ll be able to actually make a living out of it? Would you be willing to play something else for instance, in order to become more successful?
Alexandru: We didn’t make any compromises since the first day we ever stepped into a rehearsal room 14 years ago, and we’re not going to start now. We always did what we wanted. I wouldn’t want to live off music if that meant we’d be pressed to play something that sold better. I’m not interested in the music industry represented as such.
Liviu: I don’t think we’d really want to make a living out of music, because then we’d be hobos. Money and fame are the last things on my mind when I play.
Mircea: In the past I used to draw and listen to music a lot. Later I felt the need to express myself through music as well. Just out of pleasure. We all have jobs and thanks to them we can finance the band, instruments, rehearsals, recordings. About making a living out of music I don’t know. I don’t think so, it’s very hard. I think there would be a lot of pressure imposed on our creative act, otherwise. Constraints would start popping up. Our musical expression wouldn’t be a free one.

6. Since we are here – this might be a silly question or on the contrary a more delicate one. What are the differences between the Romanian and the foreign public? Or the difference of how the artists are perceived in Germany or Belgium for example?
Alexandru: I still think (or maybe we’ve just been lucky on this tour) there’s a lot of respect and interest in artistic acts. But it wouldn’t be fair to generalize, because things are starting to move into the right direction here as well. I don’t think there was a single Valerinne concert I didn’t feel extremely at ease at. We also didn’t encounter problems with organizers/clubs in which we played.
Mircea: There aren’t a lot of differences, but I feel the public is a little more sensitive to concerts. They don’t turn their heads around. Still, I’d like to see a lot of club/venues that offer better sound conditions.

7. What other passions you have aside from music. Films, books can you name a few titles you’d like to recommend.
Alexandru: I don’t have any other real passions except music. For me, music and visuals go hand in hand and everything that surrounds me, everything that I observe, everything that touches me or affects me, ends up being transformed into music. I watch a lot of movies, from B rated ones to Indie, socialist Romanian movies and tacky Hollywood one with a huge budget. I recently re-watched Kairo and Sakebi by Kiyoshi Kurosawa (probably my favorite director along with Lars von Trier) and I recommend everything by the Quay Brothers, especially The Paino Tuner of Earthquackers and Institute Benjamenta. As for books, I’m been reading mostly fiction lately. Right now I’m reading Hegel and the Infinite: Religion, Politics and Dialectic by Zizek.
Mircea: Movies. The last film I saw and I really liked what Lawless of John Hillcoat and now I’ve just taken up watching all movies by Nicolas Winding Refn. I also stumbled upon the top 10 favorite movies of director Michael Haneke. Which is very interesting. I tend to read a lot more rarely. The last book I finished was The death of Bunny Munro by Nick Cave and now I’m reading Mark Burgess’s View from a Hill: The Chameleons. Reading also revolves around music. I also like to cook a lot. And during summer I play almost every week some football.

8. What’s your relationship with the online space. Can it be considered a real means for bands who want to get closer to their audience?

Alexandru: The online medium offered as a lot of exposure with minimum of effort.
Liviu: Surely the Internet is a useful tool and available to everybody who wants to make themselves heard.

9. You were saying since last year that you are already working on your second album and you recently announced this autumn you’re going to launch a 4-track EP. Can you give me more details, what should we expect? Will it be different from Kunstformen der Natur?

Alexandru: The EP will be called Arborescent , we’ve already started working on the artwork and we are doing rehearsals so when we go in the studio, we’ll have everything figured out. So I could say we’re in the pre-production stage of the material. I see the material as a continuation of the first piece, but also as a bridge towards the second album, with which we’re trying to advance. It will be very different from these materials. Two tracks we’ve already played for a while during concerts and the others are composed of the parts we enjoyed best while performing the concert for the Czech Center (the soundtrack for Man Ray’s movie) but presented in a different way. For the second album, what we come up with so far, lays still in a home demo state, but listening to these “sketches” at home I realized we started sounding darker, heavier and more progressive compared with Kunstofermn der Natur and what you’ll be hearing on Arborescent. You’ll probably be hearing more of this next year.

10. Valerinne is playing on the 17th of May in Underworld, what other plans do you have for the upcoming months?
Alexandru: We’re going to be launching an EP in fall around some cities in Romania and we’re also going to do a video for one of the song, we don’t know which one yet. Until then, during summer, before and after the studio session, we’re probably spent a lot of time in the rehearsal room.
Mircea: We want to work as much as we can and prepare our EP.

Thank you! If there’s something you want to add that hasn’t been mentioned, this is the right place.

Thank you for the interview and hopefully we’ll see each other at concert!

3 comments

Leave a reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.