Sascha Konietzko: A Rock And Roll Fables Conversation

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Time flies when you’re having fun or in the case of KMFDM’s founder, Sascha Konietzko, when you’re prolifically creating new music. He elaborated on the topic recently via phone:

“Well, it’s just something I can’t help. When I wake up in the morning I go in my studio, and unless I have chores to do,  I just sort of work on stuff that comes to my mind. I feel more inspired these days than I did when I began making music.” 

“About two and a half years after I started this ‘art’ thing I was talking to a guy in a bar and he was, like, ‘I have a record label’ and I was like ‘Oh yeah? How does that work?’ ‘Well, I just release stuff from people that do things’ and I said: ‘I’m doing things but I never thought about releasing it’ He said let’s give it a go and put it out then it got picked up and a sequence of things having to do with luck and good fortune ensued and within about a year the record was released in the UK. In the US I was introduced to the guys from Wax Trax and before I knew it I was opening for Ministry. That basically opened possibilities that a few years earlier I’d never dreamt of.”

Which brings us to 2014 and the release of KMFDM’s latest opus, Our Time Will Come (Which we reviewed here). Kapt’n K spoke on the appeal of the new album at length:

“For KMFDM fans, it’s something they must have and for people that don’t know KMFDM maybe it’ll open up the wonderful ways this band kinda works. I mean, it’s a fact that KMFDM is really polarizing. I rarely ever hear from people that they think ‘Oh, KMFDM is okay…’ They either really love it or they hate it with a passion but the phenomenon is that once bitten by the KMFDM thing people tend to acquire everything that was ever put out in a relatively short amount of time.”

The band has plans to tour the US in “late spring/early summer” which will jumpstart the album/touring cycle all over again:

“This whole kind of thing works in a cyclical way: it’s coming home from a tour, getting back in the studio, making a record, putting it out, doing some stuff with it (remixes), and then go out on the road again and start over At this point I don’t have any indication that this cycle is going to break anytime soon lest I get run over by a bus on the way to the liquor store tomorrow.”

One thing you shouldn’t expect to see KMFDM do is take a step back for a nostalgia-fueled album or tour with members from the ’90’s line up:

“I’m always open and I’m always tolerant of things that may have happened in the past but there’s this sort of threshold that once that’s sort of been passed then the door closes. Unfortunately with most of the members of the old line up that has happened because the abuse I had to suffer in various forms was enough for me to say ‘Enough is enough!’ There are definitely some older members that the door is still open with but the principle ones, no. I think KMFDM has really moved way beyond that…the older members were in KMFDM for a maximum of fourteen years and KMFDM has lived another sixteen years on from that. Sometimes it’s weird for me to think ‘Why do they even have to associate themselves with KMFDM?’ Sixteen years is a long time. We fucking built an empire!”

And part of that empire is collaborating regularly with his wife and fellow band member Lucia Cifarelli:

“It’s very easy because in a way we have no inhibitions about talking about stuff to its’ utmost depths so we can discuss ideas without having to tread lightly or walking on eggshells. She will say to me ‘Honey, now look, this approach is absolute shit’ and I’ll do the same. In that sense we strive for some sort of perfection that, in the end, after a year you don’t go ‘See, I told you so'”

Looking ahead to the future generation and future projects, Konietzko mentions former touring partners and KMFDM collaborators The Morlocks as ones to watch:

“Well, there’s this band from Sweden called Morlocks which I think would be really appealing to KMFDM fans. They have this sort of intricate layering of stuff and in part it’s kind of operatic even much more so than KMFDM. It’s somewhere in the terrain of Foetus, Pig, and KMFDM: intelligent music.”

He continues to talk about a follow up to his 2011 solo album, OK*ZTEIN*OK:

“I’m actually currently, as we speak, working on the solo project that will probably be released in March next year. That first release was a very limited one: One thousand copies made and it sold out in like a day or something. There’s more stuff on the way in that direction.”

But pressed on his proudest moment so far, Sascha keeps things modest:

“My proudest moment? I think just sitting here right now talking with you about having 30 years on my back and not seeing  any signs of ending. Personally I don’t think a 30 year anniversary is a great anniversary. It’s the 10’s, the 25’s, the 50’s. Having seen a lot of bands come and go I’m, like, well something was done right or maybe I’m delirious and flogging a dead horse. Sometimes I’m not so sure.”

Either way, the Ultra Heavy Beat continues. KMFDM’s latest, Our Time Will Come, is out now through Metropolis Records. Get yours here and stay up-to-date on the latest KMFDM happenings here.

 

 

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