time, money, stress and the avoidance of bullshitters are motivations
in your life, that is. But anyway, Braer Rabbit are three electroconeys
based in Brighton where they make bent dancefloor records stuffed
with samples. I like them like they like carrots.
are Braer Rabbit ?
Tiny hunter and Le Funki Gibbon.
the same people are behind Foolproof Projects ?
me a bit about yourselves.
I spent years and years playing drums in bands. The only significant
stuff, as far a I'm concerned, was Union Wireless, kind 0f lo-fi
Krautrock improvisation, and also various samba bands in Leeds and
Brighton. And we're talking full-on 100mph Rio-style batacada, not
lounge music...These are the only things I've done which have any
real influence on what I'm doing now. Since I've started doing my
own stuff, I've got together more studio gear, played less and less
in live bands (the final one being Speedboat, who went down 18 months
back with all hands) and gotten more into the electronics. Oh yeah,
and simultaneously doing lots of mundane day-jobs.
Hunter: Started promoting club nights in Guildford loosely based
on funk/soul/hip hop/reggae, namely 'Connected vibes' and 'Melting
pot' which were very broad-minded/eclectic nights before that term
became a cliche. Had been record collecting since early '80's and
had one of the largest bootleg tape collections in the UK. Went
to about 4/5 gigs a week in London. Early big influences - Cabaret
Voltaire, 23 Skidoo, New Order, Shriekback. About the same time
started buying secondhand stuff, Mowtown, Stax, anything black!
Remember going to London every Saturday to buy hip hop at Groove
records in Soho, then the Belvedere pub in Richmond to hear Gilles
the Puffinboy as I used to do super-8 films, projections etc. at
Speedboat gigs (trying to recreate middle Earth...). Le Gibbon moved
into the basement flat of the building I was living in.
Funki Gibbon: Enjoyed most of school life listening to and swapping
hip hop tapes. Scratched my way through 3 midi systems before affording
my turn-tables. Generally always wanted to noodle with music after
learning to scratch for the first time, hence this Braer Rabbit
tell me about Foolproof Projects.
Foolproof is basically just a label for any music we happen to be
involved in, although I'm the only one who at the moment is actively
making tunes outside of Braer Rabbit. We started putting out our
own stuff 'cos no one else was going to do it, and I'm impatient,
I hate the idea of sending out demos, waiting for someone else to
um and er about maybe putting stuff out sometime. I just wanted
to get on with it.
it would nice to put out stuff by other people, you know, like a
proper record label, but we just don't have the money at the moment.
To say that none of us went to business school is something of an
you from Brighton?
Nope, I'm from Crawley, but I lived in Leeds for about 8 years before
moving down here.
Hunter: Moved to Brighton in 1995 from Tory toy town of Guildford.
Gibbon: No, Yeovil (Non-league, soon to be Division 3)
you move down to do music?
Yes and no. I moved out of Leeds simply 'cos I needed a change,
not because the music scene wasn't happening. But music was/is the
only thing I'm interested in doing, so I was going to have move
to somewhere which seemed to at least have something interesting
Hunter: Got a call from some old friends in British hip hop group
First Dawn. They had relocated to Brighton and wanted some fresh
samples for the LP they were making. After hanging out with them
I moved to Brighton a few months later. So yes.
Brighton a good place to be making cracked electro?
Difficult question. To be honest, I could probably be doing this
anywhere, cos I'm not playing live, just releasing records, so geography
doesn't come into it so much. Especially now with the internet it's
really easy to find people/radio shows/magazines etc. around the
world who might be into the sort of thing that you're doing, and
to get in touch with them. The most radio play we get is in Los
Altos, California. I have to admit to being a bit lazy in checking
out a lot of other Brighton electronic stuff though, partly lazy
and partly put off by the idea of going to a gig where it's just
one one guy sat on stage with a laptop. Not interesting usually.
That said, I know some good people down here also making stuff,
Lom recordings put out a fantastic record by Maxwell pleasure dome
last year, and I heard a track by Fugiya & Miyagi that was right
up my alley. As I said, I need to get out more.
Gibbon: Living amongst music heads in Holland Road has always inspired
else in Brighton do you are you keen on ?
Gibbon: Erm..Slack Sabbath always come through with good nites and
generally keep things on a different scope. Also check out new stuff
coming out on Dazed Gauntlet (DG-HQ.com). There's a bunch of Ltd.
My favourite act down here are the Domestic 4. Also really like
Electrelane & 7 & 7 is. I'm aquainted with an ensemble called
Yeti, who have to be admired for trying to fuse Blue Cheer with
Marillion in 2003. Admired or shot, one or the other.
tell me what you're about, is there an aim or plan with Braer Rabbit?
A plan???? Does it sound like there's a plan?
just go through hundreds of records, and pull out things that hit
us as being exciting or interesting. We're pretty broad minded,
it doesn't have to be a straight ahead funky break, if it start
sounding like a '60's horror soundtrack, fine, if it starts sounding
like Pink Floyd, also fine. As to an aim, just to make good records,
ones that we're proud of, excite us, and don't just sound like every
other fucker on the block. And yes I want them to sell, I want to
get the attention, want to get them heard.
so, is it working?
Sales are approaching triple figures I'm told.
do you think of the comparisons with Stereolab, King Tubby, Kevin
Shields etc. that Record Collector have bestowed on you?
I love Stereolab and My Bloody Valentine, big influences. I can
see the MBV influence coming through in 'Allez-z', but not in the
other stuff. I don't listen to dub all that much but some of the
production techniques have filtered through. I've got a really nasty
old analogue delay that I use a lot, that's about the only reason
I can think for comparing the Puffinboy tune to the King Tubby sound.
would you describe your stuff? There's a noticeable lack of press
releases with your records, so you haven't had to do it?
My press releases just quote your reviews. This could be why Smash
hits haven't been on the phone yet... Seriously though, I really
don't like trying to describe stuff that I do. I do send out press
releases, don't know why I didn't send them to you. What I do usually
send out consists of a couple of stupid sentances that are meant
to be funny but probably tell you fuck all about the record, followed
by a few quotes from previous reviews, the dafter the better. I've
seen a few 'professional' press releases which have sounded really
pathetic, like the bands are applying for a fucking admin assistant
job or somesuch. What's the point?
Foolproof Projects, then. What's the big idea? And how ironic is
the name trying to be?
It just sounded good. We don't think too hard about stuff. If it
sounds good, run with it.
(Puffinboy) told me you weren't really interested in remixes. Why
No, I've got nothing against remixes really, it's just that 90%
of the time if I really like a tune, I'm disappointed by the remixes.
And viceS versa, if I like a remix, it's usually cos the original
was boring. I've got no big theory about this at all, it was just
an observation. We're up for having a go at remixing other people,
we'll try anything. We have actually done one, of a tune by Nocopilot,
For Lom Recordings, but this seems to have been shelved for the
moment. And hey, if you want to have a go at re-mixing us, go ahead.
We're very unlikely to release it ourselves, but we'll put it on
the website (when it finally appears).
what's happening next with Braer Rabbit and Foolproof?
New Puffinboy 7" 'Voodoo for beginners' March/April, split Puffinboy/Braer
single for Jonathan Whiskey Records sometime soon. I want to make
bigger, phatter records, I need to work harder on them, at every
aspect, to make something that really hits people. Better presentation
too. We're all still just figuring out just what the Hell we're
doing, trying out different ways of working. When you get into the
studio side of things there's a lot of options open to you, a lot
Gibbon: I'd really like to do a radio slot with the whole Foolproof
concept, generally taking a mixed load of music out around and beyond
[An edit of this interview previously appeared in
Careless Talk Costs Lives]