Interview: Puritan [Murder Records]
Photo: Iri Terrace
Tbilisi based Murder Records will mark it’s first release with various artists compilation available on 12” vinyl, featuring exclusive tracks by JK Flesh, BMSK, Codex Empire, Puritan and Crystal Geometry. For the first release, label head Puritan invites four different artists with similar approach to the music: bringing raw, rough analogue sounds to life, revealing the future direction of the label. The release comes in a black disco sleeve with big sticker on the top, designed by Georgian artist Stugbear.
TF: What was the turning point in your life, where you have decided to fully delve into electronic music?
PU: Firstly, thank you for having me. It’s a pleasure to have a chat with you. It wasn’t a while ago. I discovered electronic music 5-6 years ago, when Georgian electronic music scene came to boom. I remember my first visit to club when I was 17, it was Max_M tribute night at Bassiani, Fabrizio Lapiana was doing opening and it had a huge impact on me. Then visiting KHIDI for the first time, seeing Ansome with his modular live set. After all of this I began experimenting with sound. The first 2-3 years were more of discovering myself than making music, studying, experimenting, failing and making lots of mistakes. Afterwards, I thought it would be a good time to begin playing with this project and here I am. Mostly, as mentioned on my facebook page, last year was very decisive for me, I stoped playing gigs, releasing music and fully dived into finding my sound, exploring more about synthesis and modular synths. That was the moment when I fully decided to dwell into electronic music and I used this period to work on my idea about founding record label.
TF: Please tell us about your musical influences? Give us a chart, please
PU: My musical background comes from different genres. My early interests in music industry started from rock and punk. I remember listening to my childhood favorite “The Prodigy” for the first time in live (R.I.P Keith). As a techno artist I think my biggest influence was local electronic scene. First electronic track I listened to is “Prince of Denmark - Are you ready ralph ?” the sample from Timothy Leary is outstanding, I remember I used this sample for my first track (If you can call it a “track” haha) and Miss Sunshine aka Insolate asked me to send this track to her for an opening of a set. It was my first try and It was a great feeling and great motivation for me to keep going with music. I even used this track for opening of my live set. Whole album “Soulfood“ from Prince of Denmark holds a special place in my vinyl collection.
Photo: Anna Nizharadze
TF: You live in Tbilis. How does this place influence you as an artist? What is happening now in the city?
PU: Tbilisi for an artist (with its dark side) is really interesting place to live. There are lot of things going on, club-wise and not only. Things are changing, generations are changing, tolerance, equality and acceptance are coming to front. We are fighting for a better life and as an artist it’s really important for me to be a part of the changes. There are lots of interesting musicians coming from Tbilisi and from Georgia in general. More and more people are getting involved with electronic music and trying to contribute to the scene and there’s nothing better than that.
TF: Your label, Murder Records, is now built on a strong first EP. What was the initial project? Can you tell us more about what to expect on the imprint?
PU: Despite all the Covid-19 related stuff, first release is going well. There is big interest on the label and it makes me and whole Murder Records crew happy. It’s really hard to run an independent vinyl label from Georgia, we find difficulties pressing records and managing distribution, but I’m glad we pushed ourselves and made this happen. Murder Records was born from an idea to bring raw, rough sounds to life and we ended up with these legends on first wax, JK Flesh, Codex Empire, Crystal Geometry and very interesting artist from Athens - BMSK. When you read the description “Tbilisi based imprint for electronic music and more”, more isn’t written by accident, we have collaborations with not only musicians, also designers, visual artists, photographers, Mastering engineers and etc. Murder Records isn’t only a label, it’s a big community of open-minded people. We focus on involving more and more Georgian artists and striking example of this is our first collaboration with Georgian artist Stugbear. Furthermore, with our ideas and projects we are trying to create liberating safe space for marginalized communities and the younger generation. I don’t like to talk about future plans, but can tell that, at this time we are working on big V/A compilation with 25 artists, where both Georgian and foreign artists will participate.
TF: Which aspects of sound do you examine recently? Is for you important the impression that your music produces on the audience?
PU: My recent track “Under Pressure” which was featured on Murder 01 is summarization of my approach to making music. I like going deep in sound design and creating evolving basslines or kick drums that works good in soundsystems. Can’t tell if I’m satisfied with what is coming from me right now, but there’s always room for improvement. In addition, I began working on my modular synthesizer, It’s lots of fun to work with. Modular can do a lot of stuff that you can’t do with computer and I like having full control on the sound with it. I’m obsessed with Noise Engineering modules and my modular is pretty much based on their system, I need couple of days and I think it will become part of my creative process, in productions and in live sets as well.
Regarding the second question: There are always some stories and ideas in my tracks, I always try to communicate through my music with people and leave impression to listener with my productions. I will be more than happy if my music will affect and change listener in a good way and make strongest impact possible.
TF: How do you perceive the techno scene today? What are its strengths and weaknesses for you?
PU: It’s really tough time for not only electronic music scene. This ongoing global crisis affects everyone. I hope everything will turn positively in the nearest future. I won’t say much but meantime it will be good if we use this time to rethink everything, whole independent music scene, from artists to promoters, agencies and venues need to reset their approach to work. I think we all will learn something from it. When everything finishes we will have to be back with fresh minds and ideas. Don’t forget to support underground, buy music and merch, support your local record labels and record shops!
TF: Could you tell us a bit more about your future projects?
PU: For now all my efforts are directed to music production and working on myself. I think there will be more coming from me in the next days, weeks or months. We have really straight and linear plans with Murder Records and hope we will kick off with our showcases and event series when all this will over.
TF: To say goodbye, what can you tell us about the premiere track you publish with us? Any experience during the creative process? Why JK Flesh?
PU: Justin is true inspiration. His music career counts decades and I’m delighted that I have worked with him. He is so kind and professional and gave a lot of advice in the working process. I hope we will work again in the future in terms of music and label showcases.
Thanks for having me, All the best!
Release date: April 24th, 2020
Pre order link.