The Black Dog pay tribute to Detroit with an Underground Resistance mix.
If you have any chance of moving forward, you must know where you've been. So goes the thought behind The Black Dog's nascent mix series, in which this Underground Resistance podcast is the second. Earlier last month, the Sheffield trio celebrated the work of minimal master Robert Hood, who recently returned the favor by remixing the group's "Train by the Autobahn."
As a group that has relentlessly looked forward, the dogs have earned the right to look back a little bit—in the late '80s and early '90s, their sound was most decidedly the future and still is, as Soma's recent re-release of their early work, Book of Dogma, and 2008 album Radio Scarecrow has so aptly proved. This mix and—presumably the ones that will follow—are celebrations of influence and a timely reminder that Underground Resistance still have few peers when it comes to blistering techno and hitech jazz. You can learn even more about the interstellar fugitives here.
What have you been working on recently?
We are due to remix a few tracks for Robert Hood shortly, there's also a Phil Oakey remix that's waiting for the full treatment. Work has already started on the new album, a live art/installation project with another collective and the soundtrack to 20 minute animation. We'll have the best studio tan ever at the start of 2009. We've been gigging 3 or 4 times a month to support the Radio Scarecrow release. We haven't really stopped this year and it feels good to be creative, out there meeting people and just about making the rent!
Where and how was the mix recorded?
The mix was recorded in our Sheffield studio over a period of two weeks, with each of us adding, mixing and making new edits as we went, we then jammed it across 3 laptops and recording it into Soundforge to get the final mix, it took so long as we all tried to get our favourite tracks in. It was difficult to do the track-listing as so many of the tracks are cut up and different parts are used to create new edits but the order is as close as we could get it and it was important to us to do UR justice.
Tell us about UR and the inspiration for the mix?
UR have been an influence on us in more ways than one, we've always shared a musical passion with Detroit but rather than just copying the "template" we've always tried to put our own take on the sound and send it back as a signal. UR are always changing and aren't afraid to make their moves on their own terms and bring new talent through, for that alone they'll always have us there.
In recent times when things have been getting us down (it rains a lot in Sheffield and the skies are always grey) we'd play the interview that Mad Mike did WDET radio and that would bring us back around because it was intelligent, humble and honest. We recently got a chance to meet Mike to say thanks and he was just everything we thought he would be and you can't really ask for more. We also share his view that techno is about the music, not what we look like, not what we wear and certainly not anything to do with many of the rockisms that DJs/Bands often get caught up in, fuck that!
How would you say your sound has changed from your earliest days to
your most recent work?
We've never stood still, making the same sound we made in 1992 would be pointless, as great as the Ramones were, doing that for the rest of your creative life holds no interest to any of us. We move with the times, our feelings and try to reflect that back in our music – we pour everything in.
Detroit vs. Sheffield: Who wins?
We kind figure that it's 2-2 at the moment, both have their own ways and difference should be celebrated we believe, who knows when Robert Hood gets the tracks to us, maybe we'll make it 3-2 to Sheffield [laughs].
What are you up to next?
We'll continue to support Radio Scarecrow with more gigs and then we hit the studio hard to work on the projects mentioned above, 2009 is going to be an even more productive year for The Black Dog.