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Meat Beat Manifesto - conducted by Todd E. Jones  

The Off-Centre Meat Beat Manifesto of...

December 2005

MVRemix: Indie labels do give you creative control though.

Jack Dangers: That gives you the freedom to do what you want to do. Iím sure The Chemical Brothers are not free to do what they want. They have to come up with a product or album that the label will be happy with. They may have to put some vocals here or there, get played on the radio, and all of that malarkey. The only good thing about being on an indie label is that you can do what you want. Even at that point, some of these indie labels think they are majors and start prodding you in the ribs. ĎWhat about getting Bjork on vocals?í, they say. Things like that, which has nothing to do with me or the way I make music. In the end, you just get fed up with these industry people and you want to try to do something yourself. Thatís why I started Tino Corp with Ben Stokes.

MVRemix: Tell us about Tape Lab.

Jack Dangers: Well, thatís the place I do all of my recording. Basically, thatís the name of my studio. Thatís where we do all of the masters, Tino Corp stuff, and everything else. Thatís where I am right now.

MVRemix: When and why did you move to California?

Jack Dangers: At the very end of 1993. I got married to my wife. Thatís why I moved here. I was in the area because I was working with Consolidated.

MVRemix: Do you feel that the place where you are affects the song?

Jack Dangers: No, I donít, not at all. Otherwise, I would be making whispy new age music with no meaning, no angst, and no anything. I could be living in Britain doing the same thing. It doesnít matter where I am, as long as I am able to do my work. Itís good to keep your finger on the pulse of whatís going on. I donít think it affects anything I do.

MVRemix: Political issues have always been apart of Meat Beat Manifesto. What are some of the major issues we should deal with?

Jack Dangers: Itís almost like there are too many. The whole corruption of government has gone to a complete apex at this point. Iím sort of lost for words about whatís going on. Who would have ever thought that America would do a pre-emptive strike on another country? How do you write a song about it? Even if you did, it almost negates it. Writing or creating anything about it is almost useless. Itís more serious than that. Sort of like 9-11. When that happened, I couldnít do anything. It was pointless. People were dying on television around the world. I wasnít going to write a song about. It was time to not do anything for a month. All of the right wing Republicans were sitting on their hands through the Clintonís two terms. Look at the way they acted then with Monica Lewinsky. They and degraded the presidency. The dress? What the fuck are these people on? They must be from some other country, republicans are. Damn them! I thought I hated Conservatives and Tories in Britain. They are exactly the same. They are the same people. They have the same ideals and the same way of looking at things. They are just greedy, ignorant, and selfish people.

MVRemix: Abortion. Pro-choice or pro-life?

Jack Dangers: Pro-choice.

MVRemix: Euthanasia. For or against?

Jack Dangers: For.

MVRemix: Word association. When I say a name, you say the first word that pops into your head. So, if I said ĎFlava Flav', you may say, ĎClockí or ĎThe Surreal Lifeí Okay?

Jack Dangers: For Flava Flav', I would say, ĎChuck Dí.

MVRemix: Public Enemy.

Jack Dangers: Flava Flav.

MVRemix: Trisomie 21.

Jack Dangers: Play It Again Sam. Thatís only because they were on there. Thatís the first thing that came into my mind.

MVRemix: Consolidated.

Jack Dangers: Mark Pistel.

MVRemix: The Wolfgang Press.

Jack Dangers: First London show.

MVRemix: Ministry.

Jack Dangers: First American show.

MVRemix: The Orb.

Jack Dangers: Vast amounts of marijuana. Fields of it. Majestic wildebeasts.

MVRemix: Primal Scream.

Jack Dangers: A name of an old track I did back in the 80ís.

MVRemix: Hieroglyphics.

Jack Dangers: Egypt.

MVRemix: The Wu-Tang Clan.

Jack Dangers: Rza.

MVRemix: Chirac.

Jack Dangers: Iraq. I donít know I thought of that.

MVRemix: Queen Elizabeth.

Jack Dangers: King Elizabeth.

MVRemix: The Young Ones.

Jack Dangers: Rik.

MVRemix: George Bush.

Jack Dangers: Father Bush, George W. Bush.

MVRemix: Eminem.

Jack Dangers: Small chocolate treats.

MVRemix: What are some major misconceptions do you think people have of you or Meat Beat Manifesto?

Jack Dangers: Probably the whole industrial tag. I do not have anything against industrial music. I just believe that my music was more electronic/hip-hop. I donít think it was solely that and that only. We werenít on labels like that anywhere else. I a lot of people in England thought that we were Belgium because we were on a Belgium record label. A lot of the labels in England, like Mute and Rhythm King, didnít want me. I ended up on a label in Belgium because no one wanted me in England.

MVRemix: What do you think of Psychic TV and Genesis P-Orridge?

Jack Dangers: Genesis P-Orridge is an icon. He was the father of indusial music. Lots of respect to him.

MVRemix: What was the biggest mistake you have made in your career?

Jack Dangers: Thinking that Sydney was the capital of Australia.

MVRemix: Technology-wise, what is some of your favorite equipment?

Jack Dangers: Wow! I still like to use old equipment, old gear, but I use them with new programs. Max Now has gotten so powerful. Like, the video sampler program we use, you couldnít have come up with that 5 years ago.

MVRemix: Didnít Severed Heads do something like using video samplers?

Jack Dangers: They may have, but I donít think that they are doing it the way we are doing it. We are using MIDI controlled visual samples. The only people messing around like that are TV Sheriff. Itís pretty rare in the world right now, mainly because you have to know a lot about video. A lot of musicians donít. Iím lucky to have worked with Ben. Through his whole career, he made videos of the two of us together. We make a pretty good team. Technology dictates what you can do. With the new laptops, you can use Max, Logic Audio, and Program Live.

MVRemix: Would you agree that we are slaves to technology?

Jack Dangers: I think that we are slaves to technology. I know I am. Iím always slaving over a hot sampler (laughs).

MVRemix: On the song, ĎMoney, Power & Influenceí from Guruís ĎThe Street Scripturesí album, Talib Kweli mentions that Pro-Tools made producers lazy. Do you agree?

Jack Dangers: Itís not just Pro-Tools. You can say that about any audio program. Itís definitely easier than it was 20 years ago, where you would have to set everything up for a mixing desk. You can do that now, virtually on your computer. You can take your laptop around and work on a plane, doing high quality 96K digital editing. You couldnít do that 10 years ago. I think other things have made people lazy, not just Pro-Tools. A program like Live does things so fast and easy. You can see how it cuts out a lot of time. During that time, you may have spent time going down different avenues. Thatís the only thing. It has made everything faster and easier. I donít think that itís the same as being lazy. What is lazy is that you donít go down those avenues where you could with something more complicated, where you have more choices.

MVRemix: Drugs references are used throughout your music. Have you experimented? Do you still use?

Jack Dangers: Yeah, Iím not a big druggie. I do occasionally do the odd smoke. I never had mushrooms. I only had acid a couple of times. Thatís only from going to shows. People would give it to me. They said that they listened to our music while on it and think that I must be on it while making the music. Thatís definitely not the case. The couple of times I have done it, I didnít want to do music. Itís just too confusing.

MVRemix: Whatís next?

Jack Dangers: Well, weíre going to be touring in February. Weíre still in tour mode. We have a bunch of shows coming up. We just did a Halloween show. Weíre in that mode more than anything else. Iím not sitting down, writing the next album, or anything like that. Now, I just think that itís more touring.

MVRemix: Final words?

Jack Dangers: I donít know. I think we covered quite a lot there. We did the whole history. Youíre very concise, Todd. It was a cool interview. You had some really good questions. You got me on a couple there. Maybe, it depends on what time of day it is, if someone lit up a doobie or not. Thanks, Todd! Thanks for doing this, man! Right on, excellent!

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