Konrad Black is no stranger to our disco, having appeared here multiple times before this time he’s representing the label we’ve had the pleasure of discussing a lot in our blog of late - Wagon Repair. Black, real name Todd Shillington, was born and raised in Vancouver but like Nathan and Mathew Jonson and Colin de La Plante (Hrdvsion, Midnight Operator and The Mole) has claimed Berlin as his new home. A perfect base for the creative operations of the label as well as his important role ‘Marshalling the Gnar’ amongst other duties...
Whilst we’re more than onboard for jokes and banter there’s no amount of appropriate humour that can detract from the allure of the brooding and dark tones contained in Black’s mix to promote the imminent Wagon Repair takeover of Room One on Saturday.
Hey Todd, how’re you?
Fantastic. Couldn't be better. Hopped up on goofballs.
You’re one of the founders of Wagon Repair - what’s your role in the label?
My role is a many faceted one. Marshall of Gnar for starters. I am also chief resident somnambulist as well as, of no lesser importance, Keeper of the Sacred Puck.
If you were going to introduce someone to the label’s sound - which releases would you chose to do this with?
Start at 1 and count backwards!
What can we look forward to hearing in 2011 on Wagon Repair?
We're taking it back to the streets...
Coming soon! It's time for Konny and the rest of the Regulators to get back on the saddle. We're doing a series of vinyl exclusive releases by the OG's, Mathew Jonson, Mike Shannon, The Mole, Tyger Dhula, myself and more...
Plus...an excellent new album as well coming soon from a dear friend of mine, Bea, (of Dollz at Play fame) together with her studio partner Beatmaster G, under the name Class B Band. The Album will be out March 28with a video coming in early March. Also we have an album by a group called Blue Fields which is a band put together by one of our cohorts, Mr. Michael Shannon from Cynosure. That will be out around May/ June with a few videos to boot.
Then, also slated for May/ June, comes the Wagon Repair Allstars compilation...a who's who of heavy hitters taking the sauce to a new level.
You’ve not released yourself since 2006, why’s that? And can we look forward to some more Konrad Black productions in the future?
Bad case of the old tour bus blues I guess...to battle them I decided to head south. I was warming up to some southern comfort preparing myself for inspiration's deadly strike when encountered a trio of tribes having their annual general meeting. I then headed back North. I didn't even realize how long I'd been gone… out there... riding.
Now that I am back, inspiration at my side... I have been working on a project with Jeremy Shaw from Circlesquare called Headgear over the last few months as well as a couple other lab experiments with fellow co conspirators. Just steady percolatin' basically.
You’ve said in the past you do your own artwork, can you tell us a bit more about this?
One time my parents made me go to Sunday school.... it was a horrible experience... talk about a bad case of the heebeegeebees. I do recall, however, a project they made me do, me and all the other poor Rod's and Tod's locked in for the afternoon. It was to carve a Noah's Ark out of soap. I thought to myself "now hang on a minute, that's right up my alley." Of course, in conversation, my brain didn't quite say to me "alley" as either of us hadn't quite spent any time in one yet, but both my brain and I were excited by the fact that we could play with knives and that Jesus said it's OK. Thus began my carving career. Thank you Jesus!
As a self-confessed analogue lover, what are your favourite bits of equipment in your studio?
Yes..alas...I ran away from my digital rehab yet again. My favorite bits are the ones that make me shake. I have a "you show me yours and I’ll show you mine" policy when it comes to showing ones bits...any takers?
Have you been taking notice of NAMM this year - any particular bits of gear tickled your fancy to go with your Traktor DJ set up or in the studio?
I haven't got my nerdface on quite as hard this year so I'm not sure what happened at NAMM. However, having said that, I am intrigued by the new Lynn Smith drum machine that has been taking forever to come out...she makes the hotness when it comes to things that go boom.
Well, in Canada NAMM isn't such a big thing as it is in the States...we just had a lot of draft dodgers come up from California. I wonder if that's where the LA Dodgers got there name? Holy shit...I bet it is.
What gems can we expect out of your record bag for Wagon Repair at fabric?
Definitely not cubic zirconia, that's for sure. Bombs awaaaaay!
1. Raime - Retread - Blackest Ever Black
2. Electric Indigo - Phytoplankton (Rossella Remix) - Temp Records
3. Sutekh - Untitled (Track 8) - Periods.Make.Sense. - Force Inc.
4. Raudive - X-Rays - Macro
5. Geiger - Bambam - Areal
6. Benjamin Fehr - Stay at Home, Read a Book - Catenaccio Records
7. Peter Van Hoesen & Donato Dozzy - Elektra - Time to Express
8. The Timewriter - Wasteland - Neurotraxx Deluxe
9. Klartraum - India Express - Lucid Flow
10. Go Hiyama - Mathematical Accuracy (Norman Nodge Dub) - Perc Trax
11. Mike Parker - FWD (Donato Dozzy Remix) - Prologue
12. Lucy - Bein - Stroboscopic Artefacts
13. Staffan Linzatti - Absence_Of_Waypoints(Par_Grindvik_s_Brother_Next_To_You_Rmx) - Rrygular
14. Minilogue - Snake Charmer - Wagon Repair
15. Queen Atom - Merlin - Dumb Unit
16. Alessio Mereu - Epidemy (Par Grindvik's Great Deep Love rework) - Amam Extra
17. Samuli Kemppi -Quantum Mechanics (P.A.S. Dub Edit) - Mote-Evolver
18. Raiz - Keep Secrets (James Ruskin Remix) - Droid Recordings