[BadPanda048] RocketNumberNine – You Reflect Me
Rocket Number Nine, take off for the planet venus: the title of this Sun Ra track sounds like a manifesto.
The two brothers, Benjamin and Thomas Page, that form RocketNumberNine have been improvising for the past eight years as well as playing in other bands such as Rothko, Elite Barbarian and The Sleeping Years and their influences are rooted in jazz and electronic music.
Fresh from an acclaimed UK tour supporting Four Tet (with Nathan Fake and Pantha Du Prince) last March, today they have out a digital 12” on Four Tet / Kieran Hebden own record label, Text Records ( physical 12″ will be out in october). And be sure to check the upcoming live dates on their website, they’re going to tour again with Caribou in november and december and they will play few shows also with Four Tet and James Holden.
Here‘s a preview of Matthew and Toby, a recording dedicated to jazzist drummer Steve Reid, passed away on April 13, 2010.
The awesome Silent Ballet tried to describe them: “Take a basketful of biscuits made of the grains of jazz and feed them to a flock of rabid printing presses. Grab a bunch of empty oil drums, a vintage synth and a high-hat, wait for it to rain and use them to summon a glacier-sized caterpillar, ensuring your tribe’s salvation. Ok, we can’t really do that, but those are some of the things Rocketnumbernine sound like they’re doing. (…) Imagine Sun Ra swallowed a Tortoise, and within his belly the animal removed its own shell to drum kraut-beats on while electrified juices slowly digested its brain. Then the occasional breath.”
The free download song of the week is taken from “You Reflect Me” (available from Trace Recordings), an album which they recorded onto a minidisc, when they played as an improv only duo, a few years ago. And now take off for the planet Venus.
And here is a short interview with Benjamin and Thomas, many thanks to them.
Where do you live actually?
Ben: Somewhere called London.
Tom: Walthamstow, North East London. About 5 mins from where I was born.
What is the last thing you ate?
Ben: Some delicious Gnocchi.
Tom: Breakfast, which consisted of a bowl of museli followed by 2 fried eggs on toast.
Ben: Chess – I play 3mins Blitz so if anyone wants a game, don’t hesitate to ask…
Tom: Fags and booze
What do you collect?
Ben: Lots of different electronic stuff for making music really…
Tom: Stuff! It just seems to accumulate from nowhere.
Ben: “Me…We…” Mohammed Ali
Tom: “Don’t fear mistakes. There are none.” Miles Davis
Ben: One is tricky but I suppose Escape From New York, as I think it has been the biggest influence on me musically. I’ve had the theme in my head since first watching it when was about 12.
Tom: I’m pretty indecisive so I struggle with these single answer questions.
Two films i’ve probably seen more than any other are Quadrophenia and Bladerunner but I can’t not mention Mike Leigh and Wes Anderson.
Ben: Narcissus and Goldmund by Herman Hesse but in all honesty I don’t read much I’m afraid.
Tom: Just one!? Hmmm…The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac
Which song do you listen to when you wake up?
Ben: Whatever I’m working on, if anything.
Tom: Today it was Air a Danser by The Penguin Cafe Orchestra. Otherwise probably something to get me going, perhaps some African music or propulsive jazz.
A song you wish you wrote yourself?
Ben: Sea Song by Robert Wyatt, from Rock Bottom – my favourite ever album.
Tom: ‘Couldn’t Love You More’ by John Martyn
The song to be played at your funeral?
Ben: Sea Song
Tom: I might have a silent disco but people will be able to choose from pre-selected tracks depending on their feelings about my death.
‘In A Sentimental Mood’ – by Duke Ellington and John Coltrane would definitely be one of them as would ‘Love Is Everywhere’ by Pharoah Sanders
A song for relaxing on a beach?
Ben: Probably something by Fennesz
Tom: Anything by Getz and Gilberto would do just fine. It was made from sunshine itself.
Tom: I’m not much of a web head really. Apart from the obvious sites I couldn’t really say.
What do you think about music industry in the year 2010?
Ben: I think one has to try and use it to the best of one’s advantage – although it continues to raise the same issues – musical saturation and apathy and a dilution of quality. People will always want and need music and hopefully support the artists they love.
Tom: Since the music industry is in this transitional period right now with the rise of filesharing and internet at the centre of this change it’s hard to say. So long as the interests of the artists, writers and composers are looked after then I think it’s potentially a very good thing. I suppose it depends on how it is used and who is using it. There is great potential for artists to get their material out there to be heard. Having said that i think the web is also saturated with music so there’s more durge to get through. It’s all relative. So long as people listen to music there will always be a music business. I hope that people will respect where that music comes from.
Ben: Corsica Studios in Elephant and Castle, South London. An immense sound system and the most wonderful people running it. We love playing there…
Tom: Who’s playing? As a musician I would have to go with my Brother on this one and say Corsica Studios. Good people, good sound, good atmosphere. It always feels right when we play there.
Ben: I had an epiphany when I saw Hamid Drake with Fred Anderson at the Tortoise curated ATP – that was when I knew I had to make music.
Tom: I’ve seen many mind blowing shows but I have fond memories of going to see The Sun Ra Arkestra on new years eve, 2005 i think it was, in Philadelphia at the Ethical Society. It was the first time I had seen them. They played for 5 hours in an intimate setting in their neighbourhood which made it pretty special. I met Marshall Allen and there was a whole lot of love in the house.
Favourite place on earth?
Ben: Anywhere deep in the Wilderness.
Tom: There is so much I’ve never seen but give me some trees, water, wildlife and hills I’m happy.
Where would you wish to wake up tomorrow?
Ben: In the same place I went to sleep.
Tom: In my bed but with someone else in it.