DJ Scud: Ambush & Maschinenbau, Interview Resonance#1 (1997)

An interview with DJ Scud about Ambush & Maschinenbau in the first issue of the French zine Resonance (1997) !

You are involved in Ambush and now in the new label you founded with Adverse: Maschinenbau. Can you present us these 2 labels & the persons who are behind?

I do Ambush in partnership with Jason Skeet (Aphasic) and Maschinenbau with Paul Nomex from Adverse records. Maschinenbau is more abrasive-noise and purely Amiga produced. Nomex & myself are dedicated Amiga Abusers.

When did you start working with Jason Skeet? Do you also have solo-projects?

We started working together last year (Sept. ‘96) after going to the Brittany Teknival Tir-Na-Nog. Solo-projects? Ambush 04 is supposed to be a Scud record but I work very slowly and I get bored of my own tracks very easily so I bin most of what i ever start on. It’s better that way. What do I want to be anyway? A solo-artist?!! I prefer working with other people – when you put two minds together there is always a bastard-third.

Tell as about the person of Shizuo about your collaboration with him.

I first met the Shizu-man at the legendary Dead by Dawn parties. He was living in London at the time, on the run from Arab drug-dealers and didn’t have any friends because he was such a nutter and always on acid and getting into fights and molesting girls! He was looking for drugs one night and I sold him some ecstasy and tried to rip him off – I thought he was some sucker squat-punk-tourist & we started making tracks together (this was summer ’95) and the tracks have only just been released this year! -2 on the ‘High on Emotion’ EP and 2 on the LP. Typical DHR…to bury the tracks and sit on them for 2 years! But they have other priorities…

You also run the fanzine FallOut – what does it represent for yon? Which fanzines do you read?

It represents the fact that everything’s screwed up and we like it that way don’t we? I don’t take it too seriously as you can see. It’s just an outlet for my sardonic humour. I read the usual rubbish – TNT, The Skreem, Underzone, Turbulence, some cool Jap ones & other drunken cut & paste punk ‘zines but there are some very well produced professional und*round magazines coming out here in the U.K. which I should say a massive respect to… Datacide & Autotoxicity.

Do you read newspapers? I think you don’t really like TV – what would you say about it?

No. I try not to. It would be crass (but true) to say that is all propaganda & lies – but I said it anyway! You noticed? I guess it IS my pet hate. But like I always like to point out…70% of your leisure time is spent watching the fucking thing! That says it all. On the other hand there is the argument that says “how can you analyse your own culture if you don’t watch TV”? I don’t ever say that I NEVER watch TV – I do, but only very rarely – it’s too passive for me. I actually had a TV fOr a couple of months but it blew up. Too much negative energy…it just imploded.

Your point of view about peoples’ mobilisation for the death of Lady Diana:

Diana, Princess of Wales was the Queen of peoples’ hearts.

It shows a sickness in England towards the traditional Kingdom. It seems that people have enough of this anachronism. Do you think the situation is gonna change?

Well that’s England…love it or leave it! I myself like drinking warm beer and causing trouble at football matches. The real question is “do we hang them or shoot them?’

Back to the music. With Ambush you have developed a new breakbeat, very industrial, metallic sounding with strange structures. Can you describe us the musical & ethical concept of Ambush? Is there an evolution since the beginning?

We don’t have an Ambush manifesto. We just want to release material that doesn’t pander to any genre-market – we think in terms of Mutant machine-music…strange hybrids…broken beats, weird grooves…anti-4/4…anti-speed. We like rough caustic Amiga 8-bit technology fused with more ‘professional’ hard-disk recording-studio production. The evolution happens by itself.

Maschinenbau is more noise oriented with the meeting of harshnoise & breakbeat. This kind of tracks, such as Give Up can bring a lot to hardcore music. What do you think about the alliage of hardcore & noise, breakbeat (or other such as jazz or classical…)?

Hardcore Techno???? I don’t really know what that is anymore. It sounds very ‘92! Like I just said: I think the only way forward is hybrids.

For the Maschinenbau 01, tracks are inspired by urban sounds; a train & a piling machine. What influences you in making your tracks? Sounds of life, other music, anger??

Well the M’bau 01 used sounds of the approaching millenium – not generic urban sounds; the sounds of progress in our fair city of London. Yes my influences are urban and of course other music influences me: Praxis, Shizuo, Jap-noise, Tech-step etc. I’m influenced by the people I work with. When I hear good Djs who fuck it up and make it ruff that inspires me too. I just want to make even rougher records for them to play.

What do you listen to now?

I’m listening to a lot of Ragga at the moment.

You play as DJ Scud, do you also play live?

No, I don’t play live. I haven’t worked out a proper way to do a proper live act. It would be dumb to just take any Amiga along somewhere and just hit play with the mouse and mute channels. There’s too many live fakers as it is. It’s so Rock’n’Roll this ‘live’ thing and anyway I don’t have any lether trousers.

Your projects

Maschinenbau 02 “Skatebored” with Nomex again A London/Berlin 7” project Scud – Kill Out Trash / Nomex – Society Suckers Ambush 04 Scud Ambush 05 Aphasic Ambush 06 Hekate sound system

something to add:

Yes. Big up the Sub-Net Massive! Shouts goin’ out to the Hekate Crew, the Fringeli, the Aphasic, the Nomex…Hold it Down! Oh My Goooooooosh! Message going out to all the French sucker Djs who play their records on 45. Kill Your Speed!!!!!!

Discography Shizuo & Scud (various) DHR 14 & DHR LP7 Jackal & Hide Ambush 01 Aphasic & Scud Ambush 02 Nornex & Scud Maschinenbau 01

Maschinenbau 01 and 02 were rereleased on one 12″ as Praxis 56 in the Autumn of 2018. Get a vinyl copy (with download code) HERE or listen to the tracks here (where you can also get a download):

More information about the Maschinenbau release can be found on our discography page HERE.

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Spring 2019 – New Shop & New Online Shop

Starting in Spring 2019 we opened a new virtual shop under the previous URL: https://praxis-records.net/shop/
and we opened a new real life shop in Berlin in collaboration with Yaya23 and Haedre under the new header of Disconnect Store Berlin at this street address:
Disconnect Store Berlin. Finowstr. 25. 10247 Berlin-Friedrichshain.
Open Tuesday-Saturday 2-7pm. Phone +49 (0)30 9840 2889

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Dimentia live at Detonal, Køpi 2016 on Mixcloud now

Finally online! The great set by Dimentia at the 2016 fundraiser for Datacide at Køpi in Berlin. 27-08-2016. Full set now on the PRAXISRECORDS mixcloud.

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Disconnect Store Berlin: Crowdfunding ending soon, Store opening soon!

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NEW Praxis Online Shop – 10% off until the end of March 2019


The new Praxis Webshop is online now . Help us test and improve it. Everything seems to be working, still many pictures missing and the design is basic, but many improvements are already implemented or on the way. Everyone has to make a new account (even if you had one in the old shop). Feedback welcome! Until the end of March you get 10% off most items (only exception: new German books) by using the code NEWSHOP2019 at checkout!
https://praxis-records.net/shop/news/

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Bulkrate: Wake (praxis_digital 00011) added to the Praxis YouTube channel

Bulkrate’s 2018 mini-album is now also available on our Youtube channel!

check the discography page HERE

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praxis_digital_00001 – Noirodyn: Infradesigns Added to YouTube Channel

The first praxis_digital release from 2013 was Noirodyn’s Infradesigns. Here’s another upload to our youtube channel with the new cover design.

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praxis_digital_00010 – Noirodyn: Eyes of Ages added to YouTube channel

Now added to the Praxis YouTube channel: the second release in the praxis_digital series from 2016 by Noirodyn, titled Eyes of Ages.

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Review by Peter Shapiro of Ambush 06 and Maschinenbau 02 in THE WIRE 1998

Found another review of Total Destruction (and Bodysnatcher) in the archives. I only have a bad quality photocopy, hence the re-type. If someone happens to have the issue and could send a good quality scan of the review page would be much appreciated!

DJ Scud & Christoph Fringeli
Bodysnatcher AMBUSH06 12”
Scud & Nomex
Total Destruction MBAU02 7”

As producers, DJs, theorists and fanzine editors, DJ Scud and Christoph Fringeli are the real breakbeat extremists. Harder, faster, louder than anything else around, the Bodysnatcher 12” and “Total Destruction” embody art as collision and rhythm as punishment. Emerging from the free party scene where pure visceral noise seems to be appreciated more than anywhere else, these records have moments of feedback whiteout that border on Boyd Rice territory, but are constructed with a sense of rhythm and an awareness of texture – something like Masami Akita in an Afro and hot pants. The Bodysnatcher EP makes any pretence of Ed Rush and Optical as hard men seem laughable, while “Total Destruction” sounds like a Sam Peckinpah film breaking out at a reggae dancehall. When the US Army wanted to get Noriega out of his bunker, this is what they should have played.
Awesome.

Peter Shapiro, The Wire #177, November 1998 in his “critical beats” column.

In issue #188, October 1999, there’s another brief mention: ‘Scud & Nomex’s awesome “Total Destruction” was last year’s best single’!

Of course Total Destruction has recently been repressed on the Maschinenbau EP (Praxis 56) which you can (and should) buy HERE on vinyl, or HERE as digital files.

A short snippet is here:

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Scud & Nomex: Maschinenbau EP

Scud & Nomex
Maschinenbau EP
Praxis 56

cut at Finyltweek by Shane
330 copies pressed at Optimal
Official release date 08-10-2018

Maschinenbau was a label run by DJ Scud from Ambush and Nomex from Adverse which released only two 7”s in 1997/98. The first, Eurostar/Piling Machine, was limited to just 300 copies. It combined psychogeographical exploration and field recordings with Amiga-produced non-conformist breakcore and noise-abuse, while the second one, Total Destruction, became a classic of breakcore / noise crossover with several appearances on compilations such as Collision Drive on PIAS (compiled by Kevin Martin, aka The Bug), but nevertheless fell into relative obscurity – like most of the great early breakcore – during the following decade. Listening back, one can only be astounded by the raw energy and urgency of these tracks.

Twenty years after the original 7”s, Praxis is proudly releasing a 12” with all four original tracks in
October 2018 with the catalogue number Praxis 56.

‘Ambush meets Adverse to proliferate and diversify into Maschinenbau. On Eurostar the concrete sound source of a high speed train engine is cut up to provide bass sears, rumbles of re-harnessed energy and grainy Doppler-effects. These dense timbres are set into further movement by tinny breakcore rhythms and quicksand sucks to create a vertigo of sound quality and a collage of propulsions. If this track blows out the ‘the battle of the bass sound’ at the same time that it is distantly ironic then Pilling Machine does the same for the hardcore 4/4 kick by making a construction site mobile and ever relocatable. Waves of noise, a kitsch refrain and a voice sample move in and out of the ever more insistent pacing, waging a guerrilla struggle in defiance of the irrovocable tyranny of the 4/4. Rhythms make light aural tonnage.’
Flint Michigan in Datacide 3.

‘Scud’s best union of post-industrial scuzz, bionic steppers’ riddims and rootical reggae was his mind-boggling collaboration with Nomex, “Total Destruction” (1998) on the Maschinenbau label. With a ragga DJ gleefully singing , “Total destruction, the only solution” in the face of searing whiteouts of white noise and escape velocity “Amen” drum shrapnel, “Total Destruction” sounded like a Sam Peckinpah film breaking out in a Kingston dancehall.’
Peter Shapiro in Drum’n’Bass – The Rough Guide

Paul Kidd aka Nomex was a noise musician and video artist. He ran the label Adverse and released a 12” on Praxis titled Trocante Gramofony in 1998 (Praxis 33). Formerly based in Croydon and London, he moved to New Zealand in the early 2000s where he continued his noise research. He died in a motorcycle accident in 2014.
A section of the Almanac for Noise & Politics 2016 is dedicated to him.
Toby Reynolds aka Scud is a DJ and producer who was a co-founder of Ambush, the seminal breakcore label based in South London in 1996. He also co-ran the Transparent label with Isound and collaborated with Panacea under the name The Redeemer on Position Chrome. Currently based in Cape Town, he produces (see Praxis 52) and blogs under the name Prole Sector.

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