KRAMP is the noisy solo sound art project of visual artist Stijn Wybouw.
“Anger as much as shame”
How did it all start for you?
Stijn Wybouw: From a very young age on, I played in bands and collected punk and garage rock tapes.
And how did got into KRAMP?
Mainly by making DIY recordings and distributing these. I was always fascinated by this. I also started making more and more tape recordings. This is how I got into KRAMP, my solo project.
What about the name KRAMP?
A cramp is something that bothers you and has to come out some way or another. In this case: the urge to get music out of my system.
From an early start on, I also found it very important to do everything myself with KRAMP; the recording of the music, the visual part, …
Yeah, you come from a visual arts background. So how did you get into music?
KRAMP is my alter ego that runs through my music AND my visual art.
So these are linked to each other, there’s no real difference?
There’s no difference. When I play live, the visual part is as important as the audio part. Not only for the audience, also for myself.
KRAMP is like a character to me. I express my alter ego by painting my face red.
In cartoons, red is the color used to express anger and shame. When I paint my face red, it’s as if I’m preparing for a ritual. Once the red paint is on, I become KRAMP.
Where did you get this idea?
From Black Metal bands. This all seems very heavy, but first, they isolate themselves and put their corpse paint on.
“I love to manipulate sound until I lose control.”
Your music also has something dirty.
This comes from my fascination for home tapers and lofi recordings. I love to manipulate sound until I lose control. By playing recordings backwards, for example, and than recording over these again. I also like to record with old tape recorders, or I enjoy using old instruments, or instruments I don’t know how to play. And than I cut and paste these recordings into new compositions. This way, I get surprised by my own recordings. These obscure recordings create a ‘mystic’ bound’ between the recording and the listener. This intrigues me. I love to work fast and I love to record a lot. I like to record with a zoom or a tape deck. This way, I can make fast and unclean recordings.
Your music reminds me of Aaron Dilloway, Jason Lescalleet and Dylan Nyoukis. But also of older stuff like LAFMS, and even Henry Chopin.
All these artists are great, of course, but what I find most interesting for myself is finding links with other types of music.
Like folk or non-musical recordings where the experience of music comes first. The sound of my surroundings is also a big inspiration. I find it very important that KRAMP is not about the technical aspect of playing music. It’s about the experience, about being surprised by sound. I think that’s an attitude I share with the artists you mentioned.
– Joeri Bruyninckx