The producer sent a scathing email to electronic artist Powell documenting his hatred of club culture. It’s now being used as an advert …read on, and have your chance to say what you think at the end of the article…
Steve Albini has written an impassioned rant outlining his hatred of club culture … only to find it plastered over a billboard.
The legendary punk producer made his remarks after being contacted by electronic artist Powell, who wanted sample clearance for a segment of Albini’s voice taken from a Big Black gig. In an email, Powell explained his love of Albini’s work with Big Black and outlined his plans for how he would use the sample, but the feeling was not quite mutual.
“I am absolutely the wrong audience for this kind of music,” Albini replied. “I’ve always detested mechanised dance music, its stupid simplicity, the clubs where it was played, the people who went to those clubs, the drugs they took, the shit they liked to talk about, the clothes they wore, the battles they fought amongst each other … basically all of it, 100 per cent hated every scrap.”
He continued: “The electronic music I liked was radical and different, shit like the White Noise, Xenakis, Suicide, Kraftwerk, and the earliest stuff form Cabaret Voltaire, SPK and DAF. When that scene and those people got co-opted by dance/club music I felt like we’d lost a war. I detest club culture as deeply as I detest anything on earth. So I am against what you’re into, and an enemy of where you come from.”
You might think that all this could be interpreted as a “no” to the sample request, but Albini is a man who likes to go against the industry grain. He signed off the email by saying he had “no problem” with Powell using his sample.
“I haven’t bothered listening to the links, mainly because I’m in a hotel with crappy internet at the moment but also because it probably wouldn’t be to my taste and that wouldn’t help either of us,” he wrote. “In other words, you’re welcome to do whatever you like with whatever of mine you’ve gotten your hands on. Don’t care. Enjoy yourself.”
When Powell said he’d like to print the correspondence for a billboard advert, Albini replied: “Still don’t care.”
The billboard is currently up in Shoreditch, East London. Powell’s new single, Insomniac, will be released shortly by XL Recordings.
Via the Guardian
So, is Steve Albini being hypocritical? If he hates dance music so much should he have refused to let Powell use the sample?