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LISTEN: Gum Takes Tooth Mix & New LP
Mat Colegate , January 8th, 2018 12:28

London psychedelic dance unit announce new album and discuss this weekend's show at the Lex. Band photo by Marie Valognes

Next Saturday throbbing electronic ne'er do wells Gum Takes Tooth will be bringing their assault and battery of rumbling drums and shrieking electronics to London's Lexington for a fund raising show in aid of us here at TQHQ. Currently working on a new album for release on the estimable Rocket Recordings, Jussi and Tom, sole members of GTT, spoke to us about what's in store for the gig, how the new album's coming along and terrifying sacrificial ululations.

Tell us about the mix you've put together for The Quietus

Jussi: It's what we're listening to now. Our ears are always open and it reflects that. It's not in any one corner stylistically.

Tom: For me it ended up being slightly more techy this time round.

Is the music on the mix indicative of the influences on the new record?

T What I quite like about the way we make music is that quite often you can come in and be like “I've been listening to this track, it would be quite cool to do something like this”. But no matter what we do it'll never end up being like that because we've got such a weird way of making music. So yeah, in some ways probably, but you might not hear it.

J: Whatever we aim for ends up such an amalgam. We don't aim to copy anything, but equally we don't really aim to sound different either. What comes out is absolutely natural and unpremeditated. It's always better to be open and just accept that what comes is what comes and that's that.

A good way to compose is to try and copy something and then get it wrong.

J It's great hearing throughout recorded history musicians that have done exactly that: copied something from a culture that is totally separate from their own. You get that honest love for a sound and an honesty in its interpretation which makes it the musician's own. I think that's really fantastic.

Hows the recording of the new album going?

T: In theory it's done. We've got one last evening with with Wayne (Adams, member of Big Lad and Death Pedals) over at Bear Bites Horse Studios to finish it all up. It's been nice working with Wayne because he's got a background in electronic music as well as noisy rock. When it comes to sound design and synthesisers and stuff it's really nice to have his input.

J: It was fantastic to have enough time to experiment. There was a fair bit of the album that was still a load of question marks when we were going in. His input and ideas as well – leaping around the studio going “Try this, try that”. Coming together in that environment really hit the nail on the head. It's a really great creative partnership with him.

Let's get geeky. Are there any new techniques or bits of kit that you've brought to the sessions?

T: It's much the same as we've done in many ways. We've been trying to do some stuff where I don't play drums as well, where I play sequenced drum machines. There's one of those tracks on the album. In theory we're still working the same way we always have. We do that for live gigs with what is in theory a simple set up.

J: In your brain Tom, maybe.

Is there an overarching concept behind the album?

J: There's a lot of discomfort and tension between human and machine at a time where our material and social wants are set against a drive to integration with the digital. I think there's a sadness in that. An uncertainty of self. Having a daughter a year and a half ago has made me think about the changing nature of humans on this planet really. I'm very positive about those things but it has some uncomfortable sides to it.

T: Having all the demos and listening to them a lot, I was actually quite surprised to find that we'd made such a bleak album. It's quite nice when you start with a collection of songs but then realise that actually as an album it really works and that everything does fit. That took me by surprise. I never thought of our band as being dark or bleak or cold or anything like that.

Are you looking forward to the TQ gig next week? What can we expect?

J: For us there's always a bunch of wild cards. Nothing ever turns out as expected and that's good.

T: Lower Slaughter's is one of my favourite records of last year. I've seen those guys so many times and they're always fucking great.

J: Sinead is an incredible force as a vocalist.

Jussi, can you confirm or deny that the last time you met Quietus editor John Doran it was New Year's Day and you were – and I quote - “ululating like a man who was about to sacrifice a goat”. A sound that was apparently so terrible it made him have a bad trip.

J: I hope so. I can't confirm it, but I can definitely put my heart and soul behind its truth. If it was New Year's Day then the fact that I can't remember it means nothing. That's what New Year's Day is for.

Gum Takes Tooth Mix

Z'ev - '# 25 Song/Scene # 3 85 BPM'
Maarja Nuut - 'Kiik tahab Kindaid' (feat. Patrick Mcginley)
F Ingers - 'All Rolled Up'
Oren Ambarchi - 'Hubris, Pt. 3'
Lakker - 'Empress'
Darren Keen - 'How Polite'
Nazar - 'Tyrrany'
Dead Fader - 'FYI'
Roly Porter - 'Mass'
Clouds - 'Overflow Ya'

Gum Takes Tooth play with Lower Slaughter and Mighty Lord Deathman at The Lexington on Saturday January 13. All proceeds go to The Quietus. You can buy tickets here

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