Nestled in the bosom of Germany there’s something undeniably unique and interesting about Electric Moon and I was bound to get to the bottom of it! With fifteen full-length albums to their name, three years might as well have been a lifetime for psychedelic acid rockers Electric Moon. A back catalog that would put most people to shame, none of it appearing to be filler culled mostly from live improvised performances keeping up with Lulu and Sula is a full time job these days! Soaring psychedelic guitar lines cut through a tide of thunderous drums and crooning keyboards forming a cosmic nod to those pioneers in the field that long preceded them. Relying more on composition and a tight control of atmospheric noise than a wanky forty-five minute guitar solo there’s nothing boring about songs that build into massive crescendos, fading back into hazy trance like soundscapes before crumpling in on themselves like white dwarf stars. Sula and Lulu took some time out of their hectic schedules to talk about where the band’s been, how it got there and most importantly where they are heading from here so catch the cosmic wave and I will see you on the other side!
Where are you originally from? Where is the band currently located?
Lulu: We are from Germany and the band is currently located in the middle of Germany at the moment, our new home is between Kassel and Marburg.
How involved are you with the local scene there? Has it played a large part in Electric Moon’s history or evolution?
Lulu: Well, the scenes in the small cities in Germany are also very small! In Marburg we now have nice radio station support and a cool venue to play.
What’s the band’s lineup? Is that the original lineup or have you gone through any personnel changes?
Lulu: At the moment we’re just a duo with guest drummers.
Are any of you in any other bands? Have you been in any other bands that released anything?
Lulu: Yeah, Zone Six, Krautzone.
Dave: Yeah, Zone Six, Krautzone, Sula Bassana. In earlier years, Liquid Visions, Weltraumstaunen, Growing Seeds, Psychedelic Monsterjam, Suedstern 44, and Interkosmos.
How did you all meet? How and when did Electric Moon start?
Lulu: Pablo our former drummer, Dave and I met to make some music, just for fun. But it became so good we decided to really do something with this band.
Where did the name Electric Moon come from? What does it mean or refer to?
Lulu: It comes from the moon, and it’s electric!
I know there’s a lot of improvisation involved with your music, especially when performing live. Can you talk a little bit about the songwriting process, or the lack thereof with Electric Moon? How do you approach jamming? Does someone come in with a riff or general idea or is it all totally spontaneous?
Lulu: Some of the things we created with a theme, but most of the stuff is totally spontaneous and gets finished into a more complete song later when, for example vocals get added and stuff.
Dave: But it’s not a typical jam-band. We wanna make music, with soul and feeling. Not the typical noodling for hours. It’s more about painting a soundscape than showing off our talents!
You have a lot of live material available, due you dislike or intentionally avoid recording in the studio?
Lulu: Recording in the studio is lot of fun, but live appearances happen more often than a rehearsal or a studio session; our drummers all live so far away. In the future though there will be more studio stuff, with Dave on drums which is very cool!
Dave: We did a lot as a duo in the past like the single-track, The Pop Art Accident, the sampler-track Madrigal Meridian and some of the shorter tracks from our Lunatics album.
I don’t like to define or label music, it’s art and therefor I think defies any sort of logical categorization in that sense. Instead of labeling or categorizing, how would you describe Electric Moon’s sound?
Lulu: A psychedelic experience that facilitates the possibility of having an encounter with your innermost self.
You are obviously pretty heavily influenced by a lot of psychedelic rock but there’s a ton of other influences swirling around in your music like jazz that are pretty apparent as well. Can you talk about some of your personal major musical influences? What about the band as a whole?
Lulu: The major influence is love! (not the band)
Dave: Love is a great band! Late sixties psych and early electronic are for sure my deepest influence, next to life and love that is.
Lulu Artwork (http://luluartwork.jimdo.com/) has become synonymous with your releases and graces most of your album covers and band posters. Do you put a lot of thought into the visual aesthetic of the band or images that represent the band? How did Lulu come to do the covers and general visual design of the band?
Lulu: Because I’m in the band! It’s only logical that I do the graphical stuff as I’m familiar with what we are trying to do and communicate as a band. It usually has a theme, it just depends on what we want to express.
Dave: It’s sooo good that Lulu makes all this great artwork that has become synonymous with the band, I love it!
Can you tell us a little bit about Lulu Artwork? How long have you been doing art and graphic design? Did it start before the band?
Lulu: Yes it started before the band. I’ve been doing it for many years but I was really underground before we founded Electric Moon. I just did illustration jobs for books and private stuff before.
I know that Sala runs his own record label Sulatron-Records. Can you tell me a little bit about Sulatron?
Dave: I started Sulatron-Records to release my first solo-album on CD in 2004. Then I got offers from some friends, Seid from Norway and Electric Orange from Germany, to release their stuff on CD as well so it slowly grew. Since then some more bands have come onboard from Sweden, USA, Germany, Norway, Denmark, Austria and then Sweden again, he-he, plus Italy not to mention our stuff with Electric Moon, Sula Bassana, Zone Six and soon Krautzone!
You have amassed a serious back catalog in the relatively short time you’ve been around. You’ve only dealt with one other label Nasoni Records, with the exception of the Hypnotized Not Paralyzed split 7” with came out on TransubstansRecords last year. How was/is your relationship with Nasoni Records? What caused you to begin to exclusively releasing your own albums?
Dave: Sunhair-Records also handled some CD-releases, two albums each of Zone Six and Psychedelic Monsterjam. Alost 45-Records as well as Sysyphus Records each released one Liquid Visions album and Pancromatic from Norway released the vinyl version of my The Night album not to mention Transubstans also released a split-LP/CD of Zone Six and Vespero, so there were definitely more labels. Nasoni was my way of getting into vinyl releases. Hans-Georg Bier released a lot of my/our early albums. The relationship with Nasoni was good! Later I had to decide what to do to get an income though because I was unemployed for a few years so I founded a label and a mail-order service.
What are the advantages and disadvantages to releasing your own material? How about dealing with a record label?
Dave: It’s a lot of work to do everything yourself so having both is nice! Pancromatic will be doing another Sula Bassana vinyl later this year and a repress of The Night on marbled vinyl.
You release several albums a year usually, what do you have out right now? What do you have planned for the rest of this year album wise?
Dave: Our latest album is Introducing Night Sound by Italian band Giobia. A very nice late sixties inspired album which will be out on CD and LP. Next will be the collaboration with Papir from Copenhagen, Electric Moon and Mogens the keyboard player from Øresund Space Collective. We met in Copenhagen last year for a recording session and had a great time together. It was a two guitar, two bass, drums and keyboards lineup and it worked perfectly. What a great bunch of people! It will be out on CD and LP as well. Then there will be the debut of Krautzone, our Krautrock-jamproject, featuring Lulu on drums, Modulfix from Zone Six and me on organs and synthesizers, Rainer from The Pancakes and Zone Six, on guitar and Kaktus on bass; with the spiritual support of Baba Lali. Great trancy hypnotic stuff!
If someone is new to the band and is looking to get their first album of yours which one would you recommend that they listen to and why?
Lulu: I would recommend a compilation of all the albums, maybe I would copy them a sampler.
Dave: Lunatics is nice, because it has slightly different styles and songs on it. If you need a bit harder sound than The Doomsday Machine is your ticket, and if you need loooong tracks, Inferno will be the best for you with just two songs in sixty-six minutes!
Most of your releases are strictly limited edition affairs. Why is that? Are there any plans to make any of that out of print material available in physical formats again or via digital music distributors like Bandcamp or iTunes?
Lulu: No we are totally against the virtual music scene. All of our albums are available for free download from several blogs and we won’t stop them from offering our stuff or anything but we’re against iTunes and all of that stuff.
How do you go about recording? Many of your albums are recorded live and I was wondering what kind of equipment’s used and how exactly you go about capturing the fury and splendor of a live show so vividly?
Lulu: Well, we record it!
Dave: We always use cheap equipment, but we mix and produce it with that sound in mind!
What do you have planned as far as touring goes this year? Are there any plans for any U.S. shows this year?
Lulu: No intercontinental shows in 2013. We go to Eastern Europe all the way to Romania, and we will have an Italian tour in September. We also had a Scandinavia tour in spring and several shows from here to there earlier in the year.
Do you enjoy touring? Do you spend a lot of time on the road?
Lulu: Yeah of course, and yes.
Dave: It’s boring shit ha-ha! Sometimes.
Where’s the best place for our readers to keep up with the latest news from Electric Moon at?
Lulu: Facebook and http://www.electricmoon.de
You have played with some of the real legends, can you talk a little bit about who some of them? Who were some of your personal favorites?
Lulu: I really can’t decide...
Dave: We did? Okay, well we’ve shared the stage with some fantastic bands that’s true! We love the guys from, and music of, so many of the bands it’s really hard to single out just a few.
Do you have a funny or interesting story that you’d like to share with our readers about a live show or performance?
Lulu: One day, I wanted to stomp on my effect pedal but instead I ended up stepping on the power plug! There was this big boom! And then absolutely nothing after that, but no one noticed! So I stepped on the power plug again, and after a second boom! Everything went on fine, ha-ha. I was laughing my heart out it was so funny!
I love having a digital copy of the album to listen to but I have a pretty deep connection with physical releases. Holding them in your hand, having something to look at while you listen to the music helps create a universe. Do you have any such connection with physical releases?
Lulu: Exactly and I totally prefer vinyl.
How do you feel about digital music and distribution? You’ve run your own record label and have been constantly releasing music throughout the rise of the digital music age, I’m always curious to hear artist’s opinions about the rapidly changing face of the music industry especially people so heavily involved with the industry such as yourself.
Dave: I love vinyl and I will continue to release music on vinyl. I feel that’s important!
I ask everyone that I talk to this question, in a vain attempt to keeping up with the never ending tide of awesome music coming out, who should our readers be listening to from your local area that they might not have heard of?
Lulu: Local area? We don’t really know any bands here, um…
Dave: No, not really... A couple hundred kilometers from here there’s a band Vibravoid and you should definitely listen to them though!
How about nationally and internationally?
Dave: Scandinavia has a lot of great bands, Papir, Telstar Sound Drone, Baby Woodrose, Uran, Motorpsycho, Electric Eye, Spacious Mind, Seid, The Movements, ØSC. Also in the UK there’s Mugstar and Gnod but there isn’t much happening as far as psychedelic rock in Germany. Right now most of it is stoner rock, but in my opinion it´s not psychedelic.
Is there anything that I missed or you’d like to talk about?
DISCOGRAPHY (click for an official discography and links to purchase music)
(2010) Electric Moon – Lunatics – CD, 12” – Nasoni Records
(2010) Electric Moon – Live At Epplehaus 2010 – CD-R – Sulatron-Records
(2011) Electric Moon – Live At Immerhin – 2xCD-R – Sulatron-Records
(2011) Electric Moon – Lunatics Revenge – 12” – Nasoni Records
(2011) Electric Moon – Flaming Lake – CD, 2x12” – Sulatron-Records
(2011) Electric Moon – Inferno – CD-R, CD, 2x12” – Sulatron-Records
(2011) Electric Moon/Glowsun – Sun And Moon – 12” – Sulatron-Records
(2011) Electric Moon – The Doomsday Machine – CD, 2x12” – Nasoni Records
(2011) Electric Moon – Live At Sulatron Records Night – CD-R – Sulatron-Records
(2012) Electric Moon/Hypnotized Not Paralyzed – Split – 7” – Transubstans-records
(2012) Electric Moon – Cellar Space Overdose – CD-R, 2x12” – Sulatron Records
(2012) Electric Moon – Live 2012 One – CD-R – Sulatron-Records
(2012) Electric Moon – Live 2012 Two – CD-R – Sulatron Records
(2013) Electric Moon – D-Tune – CD-R – Sulatron Records
(2013) Electric Moon – You Can See The Sound Of… – 10” – Sulatron-Records (tour only, 499 white vinyl copies)
Do you want sweet artwork just like Electric Moon? Need an album cover or just really want your logo to have that extra bit of flair? You are in luck! Lulu is looking for steady work from other bands designing logos, flyers, posters, covers and she wants to hear from you! For details, contact information and galleries check out the official Lulu Artwork website at http://luluartwork.jimdo.com/.
If nothing else I highly recommend you peruse the galleries to check out the amazing artwork!
Interview made by Roman Rathert/2013
© Copyright http://psychedelicbaby.blogspot.com/2013