Photos courtesy of Rèmi Ferrante
Not to long ago, it was read throughout the music world that the notable JFK of MSTRKRFT (previous DFA1979), gave The Bloody Beetroots some high marks stating, “[The Bloody Beetroots] are old-school 70s style punks, and they dress like King Diamond. For real, like all the time, no joke, shaved head, white face make-up, massive black eyes dripping blood. That’s how they dress normally. They are actual punks. And then, they got into electronic music. While they still have their punk band or whatever, they are making some amazing tracks, like cutting up Timbaland and shit. And they are doing it all on PC, they aren’t even using Macs. I was a punk when I was a kid and I guess I’ll always be in my head, and that kind of thing, being like, fuck all these conventions, I’m gonna do whatever I want. If it’s good music, then that’s all that matters. And it’s the furthest thing, from something like, you know Sasha and Digweed.” JFK couldn’t be any closer in his observations.
Two thousand and seven has come to an end and with that, I’ve decided to kick the year off with an interview with one of my ultimate favorites!! Italy’s Bloody Beetroots and Bob Rifo‘s self titled band (Bob Rifo – Kinky Malinki video) are quickly gaining true phenomenon status, with sounds and images that come from the gut – Two projects with equal rawness. Most of you know them and love what you’ve heard. For those who are about to get familiar, let this be a proper introduction to what is behind this incredible musical force!! If 2007 is any indication as to what they have done thus far, rest assured that 2008 will be grandiose!! Look out as BBR storm into the U.S. in March for SXSW and WMC!! HAPPY FUCKING NEW YEAR to all!!!!
A few of my favorite BBR tracks + an exclusive interview with Bob Rifo and Tommy of The Bloody Beetroots!
Captain Phoenix – Pistols & Hearts (The Bloody Beetroots rmx)
Lovestar: What is the meaning behind the name “The Bloody Beetroots”?
The Bloody Beetroots: Beetroots is a philosophy and bloody is the ultimate state of bein’ of such philosophy. There are many reasons, but mainly it is technically expressed in the fact that The Bloody Beetroots can be typed on a search engine and be always leading to us and only us. Behind the name there is all our action of media convergence. There are naturally other personal liasons intertwining beetroots, Tommy and Bob: accidents, our love for certain types of food etc.
Lovestar: Why did you decide to name “Bob Rifo”, after yourself?
Bob Rifo: There is precisely the same technical reason as in The BBs. Bob’s the evil spirit of Twin Peaks, from an elaboration of a cryptic character, contradictory. It embraces thriller, horror, drama, sci-fi, pathos and Italian comedy of art. Rifo: from an elaboration of “Repo Man” of Alex Cox, it has been used to give a “surname” highlighting the fanta-thriller side of the figure. Together the two generate a unique substantive that uses the architecture or the web searching engines, same concept as from the name “The Bloody Beetroots”.
Lovestar: Describe your musical roots growing up. Were you musically driven?
BR: I have never been driven enough from anything to become fanatic of it, but I have been passioned about cartoons, soundtracks and b-movies that from amalgamation by DIY connection created my real roots.
Lovestar: Discuss the early projects that led up to the inception of both Bob Rifo and The Bloody Beetroots.
BR: Both the solo and the electro projects are related to passed experiences as drum n’ bass, hip-hop, electro and punk productions under different heteronyms.
Lovestar: What provided a backdrop for your Djing and productions?
BR: Mainly life on the road with electro old school. Starting from Grandmaster Flash to nowadays with all the sort of new hybrids. 30 years of music history. All included.
Lovestar: Which punk bands changed your idea of music or your point of view?
BR: Sex Pistols. They did the only real rock n’ roll swindle, they made punk born and die to continue still now taking joke of everybody.
Lovestar: What type of equipment do you use for your productions?
BR: I avail myself of PC-based systems, interfaces pro audio to develop sounds, spectrum analyzer and a monitoring system created according to my past experiences.
Lovestar: How does pop culture effect you?
BR: Like anybody else on this globe. It is just that The Bloody Beetroots try to bring on its most assimilable parts.
Lovestar: What do your t-shirts, “Fucked From Above 1985″ mean?
TBB&BR: Best thing is to ask Giulia, the designer behind FFA1985.
Giulia: Fucked from above 1985 is obviously a sort of tribute to death from above, one of my favorite bands ever, now MSTRKRFT, one of my favorite producers team ever. 1985 is when i was born…or when “back to the future” has gone out. whatever.
Lovestar: There are so many influences in the world today, how do you filter through all of it and apply the best to your music?
TBB: According to our personal taste dictated from experiences. Live to learn.
Lovestar: With Bob Rifo you play all of your own music, with the Bloody Beetroots you play your own productions as well as other artists. Two completely different things, what is the best of both these worlds?
BR: My way of conceiving has only one way. As much in Bob Rifo as in the BBs the listening selection is vast, and I look for more everyday.
Lovestar: The white face make-up, black eyes and red mouth are quite intriguing. What motivated you to paint your face?
BR: To make a clown of myself more that what I already am. In reality it is an evolution of one of the most important masks of the Venetian comedy of art. From where I come.
Lovestar: How important is image? Does it go hand in hand with your music?
BR: Yes indeed, it is an integration, an organ doing its part.
Lovestar: Do you write the lyrics for “Bob Rifo”? What are they about?
BR: The songs are written together with my friends. They are all experienced we lived brought back to the form of music.
Lovestar: What is the vision in your mind when you are making music?
BR: Being a visionaire and not mad I have a perspective that changes from time to time. Do you wanna know what I was thinkin’ about while producing “Bluto Fucks Popeye”?
How do you hope music will evolve in the distant future?
BR: I do wish music will become as important as it was forty years ago.
Lovestar: Are there ever any limits when creating your music?
BR: There is a limit, when your head is full of things that does not have anything to do with the music and you end up in a situation of total incapability to continue making it.
Lovestar: Albums take a load of time which means being cooped up somewhere, less travel and fewer gigs. Any plans for one in the future?
TBB: The time needed to make an album can be measured in quality rather than days. That is a better unity of measure for us as we will always keep on hitting the dancefloors asking for it.
Lovestar: What is the secret to make people dance?
TBB: To dance with them.
Lovestar: What do you think about the death of vinyl?
TBB: The vinyl keeps on going, it bears its market, we do not use it just for practical matters, but both of us are fans and collectors of it.
Lovestar: How do you stay ahead of the rest and do things differently in a scene where music can, at times, sound the same?
BR: I would like to have a formula for this, but the only rule I stick with is being myself.
Lovestar: What’s in store for both projects in the future?
BR: There is an EP soon on our Sony BMG/ h2o
TBB: Right about now EMI Music France is distributing the soundtrack of the movie “99 Francs” and the same track appears in Etienne de Crecy’s “Commercial Volume 2″ (V2/France). Timberland Boots has been re-printed and Need for Speed Pro Street is already in store.
The Bloody Beetroots and Crookers team up with Crack Crack Records