Kathleen Chausse got some time after the Tragedy (For Us) tour to sit down and talk to Jairus of Ad-ver-sary. Ad-ver-sary is a Canadian Industrial project signed to the independent label, Tympanik Audio.
Kathleen: Coming off a successful tour, I noticed that you used a line from the Dead Kennedy’s “Chickenshit Conformist” on a forum while promoting the tour, why did you think this line was fitting?
Jarius: Because it could have been written yesterday about industrial music. It’s all about who looks the hardest, who you know, assholes with record deals, and the same sexist lyrics. On the Tragedy (For Us) tour, we were trying to prove that it’s possible to be ‘successful’ within industrial music without doing any of that, and it worked, you know? We did a six-week long North American tour, we played to thousands of people, we had a great fucking time, and we came home with a tour account in the black.
We did it without paying-to-play, we did it without buying on to a tour of a band that doesn’t give a shit about us, and we did it without paying management companies for tour support.
The point of this isn’t to brag, the point is that there’s nothing special about what we did. Yann and I are just two guys who love music, and are willing to put in the effort to see the things we want to happen actually happen.
So the Chickenshit Conformist quote was a challenge. Industrial’s not dead, it just deserves to die when it becomes another stale cartoon, right? So let’s see if we can do this, let’s see if we can take our music on the road and find support for it. And we did.
K: There’s quote on your remix EP, “a bright cut across a velvet sky”, which is also the name of your EP, where does it come from, and why do feel it was fitting for that EP/time?
It was from a poem I wrote, a few years ago.
J: I don’t know that I have the emotional vocabulary to explain poetry, so I’ll give you the poem instead:
a city frozen
under stars and amber lights
dreaming of wind and earth
where stillness serves to lift the burden
of concrete spirits
and sleeping streets sink into brief respite
the sharp air bringing such a hush upon the world
even the birds refuse to break the peace
in this, all things agree
the snow is a blanket of silver dust on the world;
the moon a bright cut across velvet sky.
K. With the increase of DJs and festivals, yet a decrease in labels or labels turning into net labels, what effect do you think it’s having on the scene?
J: I think it’s too early to tell what changes are happening with DJs, and how those will effect the scene in the end. Anyone can be a DJ now, since laptops aren’t being laughed out of clubs anymore. If these new DJs are willing to spend time exposing new artists and building community remains to be seen.
The problem with net labels is they haven’t figured out how to promote their music yet. They’re working off the same model as labels built around physical releases, except without the physical release. There are a lot of amazing releases that are never going to get the exposure they deserve, because they’re on a net label download that tried to sell it like it was a CD.
K: A note written on the CD case, was “the greatest compliment you can give me is to share this music with your friends.”, and the mention of the creative commons license, what’s your opinion on downloading/copyright?
J: Downloading is the single best thing to happen to people who listen to music since recorded music itself. I honestly don’t give a fuck anymore what artists or labels think about copyright. I’m done caring what artists think is best for their art, or how labels think they can best sell it. I’m interested in how people who love art use art, and the way they use art is by downloading it so it can be a part of their lives everywhere.
And if that means that businesses built on unsustainable models of exploiting artists or artificially limiting the supply of art available to the public fail, then that’s fine with me. If artists who need copyright to make a living are drowning, I’ll happily stick a fucking hose in their mouth.
K: Following this topic, with various bands like Pop Will Eat Itself, Snog, and even Coil, openly putting out parts of their music for fellow musicians to play with, what are your thoughts on this tactic?
J: Snog and other acts were ahead of the time with Musicians Against Copyrighting Of Samples / MACOS. They were the forerunners of the Creative Commons movement, really. I have nothing but respect for artists like Coil or Trent Reznor who can dissect their own music in public so that any of their fans can work with it. I’d like to do something like this in the near future, but I don’t want to just throw up Ableton Live files or something so that only people with music software knowledge can use it. I have a few ideas on how to do it, but they might be a little ambitious. We’ll see.