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The Audio Movie-maker [2008-05-01]

For many experimental & noise fans KK Null’s sound is an instantly recognizable and distinctive mix of noise, electroncia, cinematics, improvising and some rock elements. The projects solo member is Tokyo born Kazuyuki Kishino  has been recording music and sound at a hugely prolific rate since his first recordings in the mid 80’s- Last year alone saw four new KK Null albums appear. Kazuyuki kindly took time out from his busy schedule of recording and live shows to give me an email interview.

m[m]What are some of your earliest musically memories and what got you started on the path to making sound?
Kazuyuki When I was a teenager  I was a big fan of progressive rock such as King Crimson, Pink Floyd and I  went to London to see the Pink Floyd "Wall" show
in 1980 and that changed my life. One year later in Tokyo I saw & listened Fred Frith playing a live improvised guitar, which was so new to me and inspired me to play guitar.

m[m] Most of your albums feel like sonic films or novels- Do you script the albums? And if so can you tell us stories behind some of your more recent releasers?
Kazuyuki No, I've never scripted beforehand. when I start to create a piece or album, firstly I just improvise/play with my synthesizers and/or other devices, and create interesting sound materials as many as possible and pick them one after the other, like to complete a puzzle. It's very spontaneous and my instinct works greatly.

m[m]Of late you seem to be using field recordings made on your travels weaved into albums structures- can you ever see your self purely doing an field recording album?
Kazuyuki In fact I’ve never done field recording with intentional purpose before 2006,I think. Working with Chris Watson on the album Number One (Touch, UK) inspired me me much. And  yes, that'd be fantastic to do a pure field recording album some day, actually I have some ideas.

m[m]you mentioned you had some ideas for a possible field recording album- doyou think you'd set in one place or country, or use different recordings from around the globe? And were next would you like to visit?
Kazuyuki  I'd love to visit again Kakadu National Park in Northern Territory and  rainforest in Australia and also in other countries. However, field recording costs a lot of money for travelling. There're still a lot of greens & trees around my neighbourhood here in Japan and many kinds of wild birds, but too bad there're also a lot of artificial, human-made noises going around all the time, so it's impossible to record just birds' singing.....

m[m]Tell us about some of the more breathtaking, strange or awe inspiring places you have visited when getting field recordings?
Kazuyuki In June of 2006 I was invited to perform at the festival "Sound Unusual" in Darwin, Northern Territory in Australia. After the festival, the organizer took me with my wife and a good friend of us David Brown from Melbourne to the Kakadu National Park and Arnhem Land, which was the highlight of the trip. I  have been to Australia many times and love its wild nature so much, but this was my first time to visit Northern Territory. Before sunset we
stopped the car by the South Alligator River, it was so tranquil, nobody was there and no artificial noise. The surface of the river was so still like a mirror, it took my breath away and got me so moved and excited. I then,jumped out the car and ran to the edge of the river in a kind of trance of delight, David shouted aloud after me and warned "Kazuyuki!! don't get close to the water, there must be killer crocodiles!!".

We also encountered a flock of the wild birds (little corella/cacatua pastinator) there, I recorded their clamoring noise and I landed up used it on the track no.6 of the album Fertile (Touch, UK). We also, luckily happened to find  a "bush fire" flaring just beside the road we're were driving on. I used this field recording on the track no.7 off the  Fertile Album. The next day we stopped by a huge wetland and I recorded such an magnificent symphony orchestra sound by insects, frogs and birds. Which I  used a bit it in the beginning of the album [BaryoGenesis] (Vivo, Poland).

m[m]A lot of your work has a very Sci-fi feeling. Are there any sci-fi writers, movies or comics that have particular been a big influence on you?
Kazuyuki When I was a teenager I  was a big fan of Philip K. Dick but not anymore. however, still I  like reading Sci-fi books by J.G. Ballard, Ludy Rucker, Greg Bear, Greg Egan, Stephen Baxter, to name a few. Especially James Tiptree Jr. (Alice Sheldon) is my  favourite Sci-fi writer and very important influence on my work.  I also  like Sci-fi movies such as "2001 : a Space Odyssey", The "Alien" series, and my recent favourite is "Pitch Black".

m[m]talking of film- have you ever been approached for soundtrack work? And is there any film you'd like to do your own soundtrack to?
Kazuyuki Unfortunately not yet. I’d like to try my own soundtrack to "El Topo" by Alejandro Jodorowsky which has already a great original soundtrack with though. And also, there're some good films but with bad soundtrack that I’m interested in doing my own soundtrack to.

m[m] Are there any sci-fi writer's novels you'd like to try and turn into an album?
Kazuyuki "Painwise", a short novel by James Tiptree Jr.

m[m]Did you find it difficult to getting your music excepted in Japan when you first started out & do you think Japan is now more open towards experimental music?
Kazuyuki Yes, it was very difficult, that's why I started myself alone and established my own label in 1985, and still yet is difficult. Now it seems more open but maybe it's just because there're many more things going on and
people just have more choices.

m[m]Absolut Null Punkt album Metacompound was an interesting and different project from your self- any plans for any more work live or album wise with this project?
Kazuyuki The new ANP album "Absolute Magnitude" has just come out from Blossoming Noise (USA). And coincidently ANP performed live in Paris on March 24th.

m[m]What are working on at present and what's due out next?
Kazuyuki right now I’m working on the album titled [Akumu] for Vital (Denmark) and simultaneously recording another KK NULL album for Noiseville (USA),
an irregular sized (8"-9"-10"?) vinyl for Steinklang as well. And the following releases should be coming out this year : [Mondo Paradoxa] CD /collaboration with John Wiese (Aufabwegen, Germany) and [Oxygen Flash] CD / KK NULL on Neurot, USA.

m[m] You mentioned a few upcoming collaboration- who else would you like to collaborate with? Living or dead.
Kazuyuki Bulgarian Female Vocal Choir (living). Miles Davis (dead).

Thanks to Kazuyuki for all his time and effort with the interview and supplying pictures for the interview too. For more info about KK.Null and his other projects drop in  here

Roger Batty
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